Photo credit: USA Today. Adding the words “total disgrace” to the picture was my idea.
Presented with apologies to Bill Watterson.
It’s easy to throw words like “fascism” around without really thinking about their definitions . . . so I looked the word up, to reexamine it. In my opinion, the “shoe fits,” as the saying goes, whether you call it “American fascism,” or simply “Trumpism.” Just look at the details of the Google-provided definition above:
- Authoritarian? Check.
- Nationalistic? “Make America Great Again!” “America First!”
- Right-wing? Very much so.
- Government? Firm control of two of three branches, at the moment.
- Social organization? They’re working on that, in the usual “us and them” form.
- Extreme? Almost comically so.
- Intolerant? Vividly so.
What’s more, all of this is apparent after Donald Trump has been in office for only a week.
The current American election cycle was predicted, with amazing accuracy, in the late 20th Century, by Bill Watterson, the creator of Calvin and Hobbes. Evidence will follow. We’ll start with ignorance and apathy, both of which are certainly involved in American elections.
Not wanting to vote and not being allowed to vote are, of course, two different things to Calvin.
While he’s being ignorant and apathetic, Calvin is, at least, honest. Honesty is something which we definitely need, and currently do not have, in American politics, from the left or the right.
If only this fictional duo qualified under the Constitution, we’d be facing this choice, which certainly seems better than the choice we actually have:
Watterson understood, well, the corrupting role of money in politics.
The big issue politicians do not talk about enough is the environment. Why do they not devote more energy to that? Money, of course. The love of money drives people to do harmful and irrational things, and this includes things with obviously-negative environmental impact.
He also created numerous cartoons about pollsters and lobbyists, taking them every bit as seriously as these people deserve to be taken.
America has a lot of single-issue voters. They are not safe from Watterson’s satire. This cartoon is as on-target today as it was when it first appeared.
For what purposes was Calvin willing to do research? Could his spray-painting ambitions include negative campaign ads?
I certainly think so.
The next cartoon applies equally well, in my opinion, to the words and actions of both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.
If the next cartoon doesn’t remind you of the Trump-or-Clinton choice we face, and what an amazing waste of time and energy it is to have to make such an absurd “choice,” please read it again.
Finally, here’s Calvin’s invention of the perfect bipartisan slogan for this campaign season, and its nausea-inducing choice between bad (Clinton) and worse (Trump).
“So what?” Indeed.
[To obtain all these cartoons, and many more, I recommend purchasing this boxed set: the complete collection of Calvin and Hobbes.]