September 23rd 1968  (Age 52)

<< November 2006 >>
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
 01 02 03 04
05 06 07 08 09 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30

Your messages are being regularly deleted.

RSS feed

Check out some
of my travel photos...
This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from cartoonist2006. Make your own badge here.

Random Thots is brought to you by Graeme MacKay, Editorial Cartoonist at the Hamilton Spectator, in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Website:

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
Winston Churchill

MacKay's cartoon archive
Who is Graeme MacKay?
MacKay's Photo Album
MacKay's Blog
MacKay's miscellaneous caricatures
Canada Gallery
Ontario Gallery
Hamilton Gallery
USA Gallery
World Gallery
Iraq Gallery
Stephen Harper Gallery
Paul Martin Gallery
Sheila Copps Gallery
MacKay's old comic strip
Buy a MacKay reprint
Add a cartoon to your blog
See my old list of links
Tips for aspiring cartoonists


Custom Search
Inaugural Front Pages
Judging Presidents
Presidential Gathering
2008 Review
The Ignatieff Era
RIP: Stephane Dion
Wreckless Coalition
U.S. Day of Decision
Election Prediction
'08 Federal Election HQ
Election Whining
ACEC Banff Convention II
ACEC Banff Convention
Canada at the Olympics
Cartoon Clichés
Radovan Karadzic
Zimbabwe's Mugabe
The Bay Sell Off
The New Yorker Controversy
Hugs for Hamilton
Green Shift
George Carlin
Apology to Natives
Hillary Clinton
Holmes on Harper's Home
Know Your Famous Cartoons
Harry Stinson Strikes Back
Pope Benedict's Red Shoes
Trevor Garwood-Jones
Germany and Afghanistan
Parallel Shepherds
A Cougar Cartoon
Ye Olde Pot and Kettle cliche
Clinton and Obama VS. Canada
The Great Bagel War Part II
Vote for me
Afghanistan and Petty Canadian
The Montreal Bagel Challenge
Ken Dryden visits
The Manley Report
Save the Lister Block
Campaign 2008 Begins
Editorial Cartooning Q&A
Cartoon year in Review: Canada
Cartoon year in Review: Ontario
Cartoon year in Review: Hamilton
Spelling disasters and Isotope
Jean Chretien and Global Warming
The Chocolate Cartel
Karlheinz Schreiber goes to Ottawa
Remembrance Day Confusion
Ottawa Halloween
Editorial Cartooning 101
Dion in the dog house
Gore gets a cold shoulder
The day after the election
Election Endorsement
Hitting the nail on the head
Ivor Wynne neverendum
Greg Sorbara, Puppetmaster
John Tory: Up Close
Mulroney vs. Trudeau
Canadian War Museum Bombing
Gridlock: Hammercab
Alas & Alack
The Cold War Then and Now
Death of a Cliche
Le Tour de Farce
The Games of Hamilton
The Anti-Editorial Cartoonists
Life and its Lessons
The 50th AAEC Convention
Onward Ho...
Front Pager
Rahimi Benefit Review
The Pope's Driving Commandment
Elizabeth May at the Spec
The Advance of Balsillie
McGuinty comes to work
The Rahimi Family Benefit
Feedback from a school tour
Are the politicians crazy?
Picking the ripest of the crop
From a Global Warming Skeptic
MacKay in China
Not so bright light bulbs
Green Stuff
Boris Yeltsin
Killed Cartoons
The Theatre of City Council
Presenting your caricature
Attack Ads
Attracting the french audience
Drawing on the world
Creating a combo cartoon
YouTubing Animation
Budget Day Revision
Roll up the rim rant
St. Patrick's Day
Pipe Dream Capital of Canada
Our Anglican at Lambeth
Ad Parodies
One year of Caledonia
Drawing Terrorists
David Suzuki Event
Groundhog Day
A Hamilton East Cartoon Chronology
Roy Carless Book
The Greens conquer cartoons
Bollywood Dalton
From the mailbag
Nice Way to Start the Year
A Year in Review II
A Year in Review
Cartooning Stephane Dion
Stephane Dion
Farewell Paul Martin
Stan Keyes Weighs in?
Missing the boat
Turkey time
Outrage and Congratulations
Worth Repeating: Justin Trudeau
Harper and the Chinese
Evolution of a cartoon
Raising the Hammer on Satire
Failing to Predict an Upset
Executing a Hanging
Income Trust Glaze Over
A lefty rant... against guess who?
Rant, Rant, Rant...
Iraq's Turning Point
Caledonia Cartoon Outrage
Drawing from life
The Ups and Downs of Stan Keyes
Caledonia Freedom March
Retraction and Distraction
Conservative Environmentalism
Municipal Disgrace
Lib. leadership by the numbers
Drawing on the Liberal Leaders
Cartooning in 2006: Reuse, Recycle
Low Points: Cartooning
Pinning down the issue du jour
Pete and Condi's Pictou Coffee
NDP Stupid Gas
Happy Anniversary
The loosened tie of Dalton McGuinty
Joanna Chapman
Cartooning the Crocodile Hunter
Canada's Buffoon Leader
Cartooning the Future
...And another Pet Peeve...
Icicle Lights Rant: 2006 Edition
"Entertainment Tonight" news
What the?
A Three Cartoon Day
Fairy Tale Series
Blogging Who's Who
Fun with Logos
Measured cartoon
Floyd Landris' Package
Advanced drawing
The August Long Weekend Monday
MacKay's Atlas of the world
A coffee rant
Common Cliches, and Metaphors
The new Dalton McGuinty Gallery
Conference Tables
Dalton Assad? Bashir McGuinty?
Scene of a newspaper
The Pot God of Hamilton
Not so nuanced on complainers
A nation of complainers
Ticat Critics
France versus Hamilton
Peeing up a storm
Pope Cartoons
The background on backgrounds
What to draw when politicians
Jumping the Shark
What to draw?
World Cup Disconnect
The Lister Saga
Still recovering after Denver
A half baked Cartoon
Sex, drugs, and watering down
 Local Cartoons
The joys of Photoshop cheating
Blog Rejig
Anger Management
Pushing the Envelope
Who's Dog the Bounty Hunter?
Heightened Editorial Sensitivity
Go ahead and 'Bite Me'
The Beginning

If you want to be updated on this weblog Enter your email here:

rss feed

Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Raising the Hammer on Satire

(Previous blog entry pertaining to Joanna Chapman)

One of my cartoons made it into Raise the Hammer, a local blog which claims that it's dedicated to providing a variety of views and approaches to the goal of making Hamilton a great city. Towards that end, we encourage readers to contribute feedback, letters to the editor, and article submissions. But really, it mostly attracts lefties who love to bash the Spectator whenever possible. Still, it often provides some well thought out commentary on local civic affairs. Here's the cartoon at the centre of the fuss:

Posted 2006/11/16, By Ryan McGreal

Graeme MacKay, the Hamilton Spectator's sharp, funny, and sometimes mean-spirited editorial cartoonist, took one last opportunity to throw a swipe at Joanna Chapman, the private citizen who did City Council's job for them and personally pursued charges against Mayor Larry Di Ianni for his violations of the Ontario Municipal Elections act.

Turning the David-and-Goliath mythos on its head, MacKay's November 15 cartoon shows a gleeful, witchlike Chapman brushing off her hands as she drops a slingshot and walks away from the giant feet of her slain opponent, who lies in repose with a "Re-elect Larry Di Ianni" sign resting against his shin.

This closes a trilogy that started with a malevolent, scheming Chapman pushing Mayor Humpty Dumpty off the wall and continued with a sorcerous (complete with black cat) Chapman monkey hanging onto Di Ianni's back.

Again and again, we see the habit of blaming the whistleblower and sympathizing with the whistleblown.

Joanna Chapman did not break or even bend the law: she enforced it. When she first raised the issue with council, they failed to do their job and launch an audit on the Mayor, preferring to close ranks around one of their own.

Di Ianni denied any wrongdoing and attacked Chapman's character until the evidence was overwhelming that Chapman was onto something, and then he switched to claiming he had made an "honest mistake".

+   +   +   +   +   +

Well, it's good that the writer noted the aptly named 'trilogy' of Joanna Chapman cartoons I've drawn over the past few months -- another benefit of posting related cartoons beneath main cartoons (editorial cartoonists take note.)

It surprises me that some are interpreting this as a swipe against Ms. Chapman. It is indeed an exaggeration to suggest that she alone was responsible for the defeat of Larry di Ianni, but I think she deserves more credit than what has been given to her in post election commentary.

As for the suggestion that I depicted her as a witch, well, that's an interesting interpretation but I usually depict witches with brooms, pointy hats and green complexions. The cat in her bag refers to her bookstore, where I dare not enter anymore due to the number of cats laying all over the place and the fact that I have a very bad allergy to furry animals.

Joanna Chapman's very determined pursuit of an audit of the mayor's campaign books became such a significant story of public interest that it simply begged for satirical commentary. Like any editorial cartoonist, I simply acted on my own in caricaturing Ms. Chapman. There is never any direction ordered upon me by some corporate media agenda as is often attached to anyone who works or writes for the Hamilton Spectator. Ms. Chapman was lampooned with the same degree of exaggeration and satire I would apply to any other local personality be they Russ Powers, Stan Keyes, Larry di Ianni, or David Christopherson. The accusation of misogyny is just plain absurd. She's a tough person, and she's British, with a good sense of how brutal British satire can be. To a few shrill complainers lacking a sense of humour and getting bent out of shape over a few tame cartoons I suggest leaning your weak kneed frames on Joanna Chapman for physical support. She knows better than to get into a big stink about harmless satire.

* * * UPDATE (November 20) * * *

Raise the Hammer raises it's hammer (& sickle) again, this time in a confusing attempt to deny that it bashes the Hamilton Spectator. (Reacting to my statement at the top of this blog entry). RTH "usually criticizes the Spec's editorial stances, not its straight reporting", writes mouthpiece Ryan McGreal. He embraced my boss Dana Robbins and his weekend column in defence of endorsement editorials like it was some sort confession that the Spectator does indeed hold some opinions. To the Raise the Hammer folks this admission of the Spec expressing opinion is really code word for possessing an evil big money pro developer corporate AGENDA. Which is crap. But the comments beneath McGreal's article only confirms what he tried to deny in the first place, that Raise the Hammer loves to bash the Spectator... but who really cares?

* * * UPDATE (November 29, 2006) * * *

Joanna Chapman wades in with her comments:

Here's an excerpt:

* * * UPDATE (February 9, 2007) * * *

Dear Graeme,

I have just returned from the International Congress on Ethics. Your cartoons were a huge success.

  My talk was 20 minutes long. The details of the case were in the first half, and I worked that section around the 4 cartoons. When I showed the final cartoon (David & Goliath) there was a burst of applause and scattered cheers. Totally unexpected. I also got a huge amount of applause at the end.

  I have spoken before, and sometimes to fairly large groups of people, and never have I received that type of response. I owe this all to you, and just wanted to thank you again. Of course, it will be all downhill from here, but never mind.

  My understanding is that the congress organizers may be publishing  a book with all the presentations. If this is the case, I will once again need your permission, because, what I said does not work without the cartoons. Of course you will probably need to see context in which I used them, but first let me know if you have any general objection.

  I did not congratulate you on your recent award, which was remiss. Belated CONGRATULATIONS!

  Thanks again,

Posted at 11:35 pm by Graeme_MacKay

D. Shields
November 19, 2006   09:54 AM PST
The Spec still doesn't get it! As of the Sat. Nov. 18th, they are still scraching their heads, wringing their hands, & agonizing over Mr. D.'s defeat, & how they didn't see it coming. They weren't looking in the right places.
The last Spec. poll that I read, put Mr.'s D. & E. virtually neck & neck, (14% & 13%) with a huge undecided %age.
Didn't that tell them something, esp. since it was their own poll?
November 20, 2006   05:51 PM PST
D, That poll was of 100 people. It had no statistical significance whatsoever. Think about all those ipsos-reid polls of 10,000 participants and the margin of error is 1-2%. Now, what do you think the margin of error would be on a poll of 100 participants?

Essentially, those polls were meaningless.

Leave a Comment:


Homepage (optional)


Previous Entry Home Next Entry