Comic: Can We?

can we political comic by kenan rubenstein

[ Photo: kenan ]

[ click panels to enlarge ]

can we political comic by kenan rubenstein

can we political cartoon by kenan rubenstein

can we political cartoon by kenan rubenstein

can we political comic by kenan rubenstein

[ Want to contribute political cartoons (comics, animation, collage, what-have-you) to the ACT NOW blog? send submissions to kenan [at] actnowny [dot] org. ]


  1. Pingback: ○ can we? • under the haystack ○

  2. Carolyn says:

    Feel the same way (although I can’t express it in lovely, heartrending drawings like you make, Kenan). I got a letter from the campaign the other day in which the president says we elected him to make tough choices. That’s not what I recall. I could have sworn those long days and nights were focused on putting forward a progressive agenda, not trying to compromise with the Republican one. Maybe we can send him this. With all respect…

    • Kenan says:

      Yeah, I seem to remember he had already made the tough choices (the public option, ending the wars), and I, for one, elected him to enact the choices already made.

  3. Alan says:

    If not obvious earlier, it sure is now, that expecting Republicans to cooperate towards a common good is absurdly idealistic. They really do represent the 1%, if not the 0.1% actually, and I wonder if campaign contribution realities make it so the Democrats are actually responsive to the top 5% – maybe. Hasn’t it been that way, actually, for a very long time, at least a couple of generations now? Just that it’s now so much more out in the open…..pardon my cynicism. Thanks, Kenan, for making it so visually powerful.

    • Kenan says:

      Yeah, I’m not in the “we shoulda went with Hillary” camp, but I do think her contentions during the campaign that all Obama’s talk about “bringing both sides together” was pipe-dreaming have been more than vindicated. I never expected Obama to be some kind of progressive messiah, but after the incredible campaign he ran, I sure expected to see a lot more fight. I thought that same media machine was going to be working to rally voters around progressive reforms.

      Instead, we had reactionaries in tricorn hats filling up the news networks with their hostile takeovers of “town hall” meetings, and just complete and utter silence from the oval office until the bill had been mangled far beyond compare.

      Of course, we later learned that he had sold out the public option before the debate ever began, to the very industry that attempted to kill the ACA altogether. That’s not compromise or negotiation, it’s just pathetic and infuriating.

  4. Allison Tupper says:

    Yes, Obama has not been strong enough–I don’t know why–and many Dems are marching to the same $ that the Repubs are, and that makes our work that much harder and that much more important. We have to get the best ones nominated in primaries, then get them elected (think how much worse it would be if not), and then we have to keep after them to do the right thing. Electing them is not enough.

    • Kenan says:

      So true. I think we progressives fairly deserve some of the blame for taking a two-year nap after the election and expecting Obama to be accountable because he’s so damn likable. Like you say, electing strong candidates is not enough, we need to keep the pressure on them throughout their terms. Which is, of course, frustrating and exhausting.

  5. Betsy Malcolm says:

    Thanks, Kenan. I relate to a lot of what you expressed so eloquently. However, I’m afraid that emphasizing the things that we wished could have been accomplished instead of the many things that were accomplished is playing into the hands of the Republicans. We need to donate and work for Obama! We need to get fired up again! It’s either that or President Romney. I had a long conversation with a middle-aged black woman on an OWS march the other day that scared me. She is a community leader and president of her tenants association and told me that she will vote for Obama but she won’t work for him or donate the way she did in 2008. That is the road to disaster. Too many kids — including my 19 year old son — are saying they won’t vote because it doesn’t matter.

    We may not have single payer health care, but we have health care reform. We have two great new Seupreme Court Justices. We will soon have contraception included in insurance policies with no co-payment. We are getting out of two disastrous wars and contributed to a very successful action in Libya with a new, creative model that worked. We got rid of DADT and are working on getting rid of DOMA. Stem cell research. The list goes on and on. I believe we need to emphasize it. I support this President!

    • Kenan says:

      I think these are all fair points, Betsy. But If the administration wants us to spend time and money none of us can really spare in this economy extending their tenure, then it’s their job to convince us that voting does matter. We need to see it.

      This comic isn’t meant to be punditry or a rallying cry, I’m just telling you honestly how I feel. I need to hear Obama demand, over and over, for the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall. I need to see him fight for the public option, not condescendingly brush it off as “the ten percent we didn’t get” after negotiating it away. I need to hear his plan for the green energy economy he kept talking about. I need to hear, unequivocally, that he’s done “evolving” on gay marriage. I don’t even need to win these fights, but I have to see them.

      He can’t expect us to fight if he won’t.

  6. Tricia says:

    Fell out of bed feeling down. This has brneethigd my day!

  7. Normally I’m against killing but this article slaughtered my ignorance.

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