to arms!

warning: politics

Consider yourself alerted. Bissette is galloping by your home, lantern in hand, calling you to WAKE UP and READ THIS! He's also again challenging morons like me to finally snap out of it and see the truth, be enlightened and coherent and smart and caring like he is. I think he may disown me if I don't flip over this one! Sounds like the camel's back is near the breaking point!

I'm going to digest this first. And read Jay's blog etc, get some more info. I'm also SWAMPED at the day job, so it may be a couple of days before I react. I'll give this the intense attention it so richly cries out for. YOU can express rage or apathy on Bissette's blog, or here, or Daily Kos, or to your "representatives" as quickly and as fully as you see fit.

MEANWHILE, in Bissette's own back yard, another man's rights are being trampled! Here's an update on the Naked Man of Brattleboro!

Vermont: City Known for Nudity Opts for Emergency Coverage
Published: July 19, 2007

People in parts of a Vermont town known for nudity are being told to keep their clothes on. In a 3-to-2 vote, town officials in Brattleboro passed an emergency antinudity ordinance for main roads and near schools and places of worship. A gaggle of naked teenagers who hung around a downtown parking lot had prompted the Select Board several months ago to think that clothing-optional was not working. Officials decided then to let winter take care of the problem, and never voted. But, they decided they had seen enough when an elderly man strolled through downtown last week wearing nothing but a fanny pack. Next month, Brattleboro will hold a public hearing on whether the ordinance should become permanent.


eeTeeD said...

so, let me make sure i understand all this...

not long ago i posted a link here to some really great art by a cartoonist named milton stein. milt worked in the east coast animation and comic book industry from the 40's 'til the 70's. he was a tremendous talent, but fame and fortune was never his.
milton stein committed suicide in 1977.

nobody here could be bothered to follow the links and check out this man's incredible work.

now a cartoonist named jay stephens, who has worked in the field of cartooning for a very short time (compared to milt stein), and has yet to make a contribution equal to those milt stein made, was on his way to receive even more fame and fortune than milt stein ever did, and he is briefly detained from doing so.

and now i'm supposed to feel 100% okay that milt stein continues to be ignored.

and i'm supposed to be outraged that jay stephens had a tiny little bit of trouble in his life.


yeah, yeah. i know the POINT was to look at how evil and oppresive the usa is currently behaving, but if you want me to do so, don't use a story where some a guy with a great life livin' in the lap of luxury with no idea of what adversity is finds an itty bitty incinvenience.

EVEN WORSE, i heard that when jay stephens finally did get on his plane, the hot towels in first class were only luke warm!!!!

Jed said...

Eeteed: Milt Stein? Ok, let me get this straight:

you posted some links to some cartoonist, whom I'm sure is the bee's knees, named Milt Stine, and because we failed to heed your post, attention given to Jay Stephen's COMPLETELY UNRELATED ordeal is undeserved? Forgive me, I know I've asked before, but are you totally high? What are you even talking about?

Sucess shmuckcess. Whatever. Hey, I think the lady who got his breast milk taken from her at airport security got a little more coverage than this. Relevance here, is that Jay Stephen's is a cartoonist, and you know, Bisette is just rallying the comics community to support him, and Milt Stein remains unmollested by airport security.

Anyway, Eeteed's crack smoking aside:


But actually, I mean, lets talk Guantanamo Bay. No due process of any kind. The Patriot Act is clearly a license for the FBI, CIA, and Bush administration to do whatever the fuck they want. Hey, it's just a shitty and hastily put together document! Even folks who--heaven help us--think something like the Patriot Act is necessary, should at least consider a better written document that includes, I don't know, the right to be tried in public court, a hearing of any kind, due process, anything resembling basic human rights.

As for Jay Stephen's ordeal--it's pretty representative of bonehead US airline security. if there was any rhyme reason or logic to the way airline security operates, maybe, just maybe, you might have some argument as to why this kind of thing is necessary, but there aint.

I support Jay, even though, on a message board recently, I apparently really pissed him off when I dissed the Ruben awards as irrelevant--they routinely ignore his work in favor of what passes for newspaper strips these days, so whatever the reason for his defense of the Rubens is obviously not personal. The guy's a really talented cartoonist (I don't know how he stands up to Milt Stein, but talented nonetheless) and these awards are really important to him for some reason. I can respect that. Denying him passage, harrassing him, treating him like a criminal, and generally putting the fear a' god in him, not to mention preventing him from picking up his daytime Emmy, just aint right. And the guy can definitely write the funny--I reccomend Land of Nod to Mark Martin fans and anyone who enjoys a good funny.

So please support Jay Stephens, and let us all pray that Bush doesn't cause any more serious damage to this country and our Constitution before the end of his term. No matter who follows Bush, they'll be mostly cleaning up after his mess, and oh what a mess it is. We've got an intractable war that is now undeniably our new Vietnam, the Patriot act, No Child Left Behind, possibly the most wrong-headed approach to education yet, oh hell. You don't REALLY like this guy, do you Mark?

And please support Eeteed's rehabilitation and recovery from the perils of crack.

Jed said...

Correction: hat would be "her" breastmilk.

eeTeeD said...

my point... if people aren't going to respect/show support to cartoonists i care about, then they shouldn't expect me to respect/show support for cartoonists that THEY care about.

further, the deeper point was that s.b. was trying to show is how incredibly evil the us government is, but in his illustration a well-to-do man has a slight delay in an airport, and he may now have to pay a small annual sum for a work permit to work in this country.


a far better example than this is needed to get my support.

back in the 1950's the us governemnt meddled in the comic book industry, and the end result was that comic books became heavily censored, sales, plummeted, and many talented creators were forced to leave the field of comics...

...but that pales in comparison to this terrible injustice of a cartoonist being detained for a short while at an airport.


government = money + power.
the type of people who are attracted to money + power = evil.
all governments are evil. always were. always will be.
basically, anyone who has MORE than you is evil.

'twas ever thus. 'twill always be.

Jed said...


This thing with Jay Stephens happened what? Yesterday. That's why we're talking about it. That other mess happened 50+ plus years ago, and really, it's been thoroughly discussed and written about elsewhere.

Bisette's been talking about the Bush administration and its reaction to terrorism for a while now, and a colleague was recently a victim of the consequence of that reaction. Not just some rich guy, but a colleague. Jay Stephens the cartoonist. Yesterday. He wasn't using the colleague's experience simply for the purpose of an illustration of why the government is corrupt, but the colleague's experience was brought into a continuing discussion on Bisette's blog about a system that isn't working. Because it happened to a colleague it brings the point closer to home, especially to an audience of cartoonists and cartoon and comic book enthusiasts.

You're babbling about a bunch of unrelated and tangentially connected "injustices" that are completely irrelevant to the context of Bisette's discussion.

Now I could ignore you, like most people are doing, and I probably should, but this is just the kind of infuriatingly scatterbrained shit you tend to post on a routine basis that I for some reason allow to chafe me.

If you want to ramble about this stuff, I encourage you to start your own blog--that's just what they're for! And I don't mean that sarcastically. Much. I've got mine! It's fun and groovy. I mean, sure, it's not as though there's some imperative that we never stray from the path at hand--that's been more than proven to be the case--but you've obviously got an agenda here, Eeteed, an agenda I think you have a right to promote. Step up to the soapbox, Eeteed, and sign up for your own blog! It's free of charge!

Anonymous said...

I'm in favor of keeping our borders safe, so I have no problem with DHS interrogating Jay.

I think he should have been let in as a business visitor, as he was in the past, especially since the DHS officer was shown his contract.

Even if you agree that he should have been denied entry, I certainly do not think he should have been detained, had his passport confiscated, couldn't call out, etc. for long hours.

I also think he should not have been charged with trying to enter the US illegally since he had a good faith assumption that he was doing nothing wrong.

Finally, taking all of the above into account, I think it is wrong that there is no possibility for appeal to or redress from a higher authority to at least get his name cleared.

That is how dictatorships work, not the US of A.

JM Lofficier

Greg said...

Well I guess since eeteed's Milton Stein links were ignored, it logically follows that Mark can no longer post anything about any other cartoonist, ever. Drat!!

SRBissette said...

Milton Stein's case history is indeed a tragic one, but as Jed pointed out, has nothing to do with the point of my own posts on my blog. Lest Eteed remain teed-off, I've brought the Stein situation to the attention of many, and regularly discuss similar life & career stories with my students at CCS (if only to say, "make sure your life/career doesn't got this way!"). There are countless cartoonist life stories that are catastrophic and terrible, and if that's what you want to discuss, Eteed, let's dance. I know a million of them, a couple of them personally. Let's talk.

Given your peevish upset, Eteed, hell, post the link AGAIN -- here and on my blog! I'll write it up further. Backtracking through comment threads is daunting at best, and not everyone checks any blog (much less its comment threads) daily.

But that has NOTHING to do with the Jay Stephens situation AT ALL.

As for the matter at hand: Jed summarizes my concerns, and the context of the post on Jay, perfectly. Thanks, Jed.

The corruption of power in the US throughout the Bush Presidency over the past seven years has been alarming and outrageous; the reason for my post about Jay was to point out it IS impacting the comics community. I did so on a cartoonist's blog (my own), and spread the word on others (like Mark's, here). I can think of nothing more legitimate, in intent or context -- and indeed hope to bring Jay's situation into the spotlight.

SRBissette said...

As for nudity in Brattleboro, the message is clear:

Young, virile teenager nude protesting Vermont Yankee: Upsetting, but tolerable

68-year old saggy-man-titted dangly-balled nudity, with fanny pack: BAD

I think it's the saggy flesh they find offensive, folks.

Jed said...

All right Eeteed. I was a little harsh on ya. Look what I found!

Check out how awesome this site is in general.

Some great early Kurtzman on there too, Cliff Sterrett, and on and on.

Also in the Little Golden Book category:



Ok. This site is seriiously making me cum. I have to go now.

HemlockMan said...

Who is Jay?

What are Ruben Awards? (Something to do with sandwiches?)

Why am I not surprised when police detain people?

Why is Mark Martin funnier than Steve Bissette?

What am I doing up at this hour?

HemlockMan said...


And I will find out who Milt Stein is and why he is so great.

Jed said...

named after Rube Goldburg, The Ruben is an award given to people who make cartoons and comic strips for newspapers for alleged excellence. You know, the ones that nobody reads anymore?

The sandwich is more rellevant to American culture at the moment as far as I'm concerned, since I can't think of a single contemporary syndicated newspaper strip that doesn't suck balls. And the mediocrity of contemporary political cartoons is just astounding.

And let me clarify this for you:

Mark Martin does the FUNNY.

Steve Bisette does the SCARY.

Certainly, at times, the two intersect, but that's the general picture. Do you need a bibliography?