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Preview: Suzanne Fields from Creators Syndicate

Suzanne Fields from Creators Syndicate

Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber.

Last Build Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2018 01:03:07 -0700


The G-Men and Their Emojis for 04/20/2018

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700

Once upon a time in a previous century, I was invited to watch a widely banned movie, "I Am Curious (Yellow)," in company with a number of FBI agents and officials to see just how naughty it was. I had written about censorship and whether the movie was over the line of decency. The U.S. Supreme Court would eventually decide that it wasn't. There were mildly graphic sex scenes, nothing like the R-rated movies of today but enough to make me uncomfortable watching with clean-cut G-men with neatly combed hair, buttoned up jackets and neutral ties. They weren't comfortable either, watching it with a woman present.

I tried to look straight at the screen, but when my eyes wandered, I saw frowns of embarrassment around me. Times have obviously moved on, but the discomfort I saw must be what many agents felt listening to the excerpts from former FBI Director James Comey's book, "A Higher Loyalty," especially when their ex-boss said there might be some truth, though no evidence, in the salacious details. The social media shorthand described it as the "pee tape."

Updated: Fri Apr 20, 2018

Free Speech in the Time of Rant and Rage for 04/13/2018

Fri, 13 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700

Polarities are the spice in a dish of politics in search of a recipe. Sometimes the dish becomes a fallen souffle, and once a souffle falls, no hostess can serve it with pride.

The celebrated chefs of Washington's political cuisine are having to deal with fallen souffles cooked to recipes that worked once but now not so much. The midterm elections begin to close on the cooks like the pressure of the approaching first seating at a popular restaurant. Sometimes the chef just quits the kitchen in frustration. Case in point: House Speaker Paul Ryan. The rest of us are stuffed with the unrelenting breaking news that scrambles every point of view into something that looks more like a kitchen disaster than dinner.

Updated: Fri Apr 13, 2018

A Good Man Is Still Hard to Find for 04/06/2018

Fri, 06 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700

Women have been complaining since the original Adams family was evicted from the Garden of Eden that "A good man is hard to find." Despite radical feminist mockery of the very idea of manliness, that men are natural sexual predators, most women — with very few exceptions — still want one.

The #MeToo movement has nevertheless changed a lot of things in the wake of the sexual harassment-scandal season. One of them is the regard in which men are universally held by women. It often seems we're back to the '80s, when there was a similar assault on the idea of manhood and some women decried all sex as rape.

Updated: Fri Apr 06, 2018

Trying the Golden Rule in Washington for 03/30/2018

Fri, 30 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700

So much turmoil. So much chaos. So much cynicism in Washington, D.C., and everywhere else. "Divide" is the name of the game. Everyone is in fighting mode. The most dramatic (and ludicrous) image of the week was President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden boasting how they could punch each other out, as if they were heavyweight boxers prepping for the "Thrilla in Manila" or "the Rumble in the Jungle." Two mature men seasoned in the highest offices of the land sounded more like adolescent boys on the playground, testing their testosterone.

When Rex Tillerson bid farewell to the State Department, having found out he was fired as secretary of state via a Twitter message, he reminded the audience, "This can be a very mean-spirited town." He urged the audience to counter the nastiness, "to treat each other with respect, regardless of the job title, the station in life, or your role." He spoke with a familiar echo of the Golden Rule, saying: "We're all just human beings trying to do our part. Each of us get to choose the person we want to be, and the way we want to be treated, and the way we will treat others."

Updated: Fri Mar 30, 2018

Stormy Weather Over the White House for 03/23/2018

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700

It's difficult to have a reasonable conversation about sexual mores in the Age of Trump. We could start with the "Access Hollywood" tape, made in 2005 when Donald Trump was the star of a different kind of reality show than the one he is now. His vulgar boasts about how to seduce women did not prevent him from being elected president.

Enough voters understood that he thrived in a contemporary culture of macho manhood, which many hoped was receding but knew was far from finished. If Trump was still on the retro side of public sexual attitudes, there were many men (and women) keeping him company.

Updated: Fri Mar 23, 2018

Twitter, Truthiness and Titillation for 03/16/2018

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700

When talking politics, online or in person, you don't often hear anything about the "magnificent middle." You hear epithets like the "dirtbag left" or the "wicked alt-right," and all of the ugly, free associations with references to commies and fascists, loonies and wackos. Moderation is mush; even-handedness is stupid considering two sides of an issue is so 20th century (or maybe 19th). Only one side could possibly be right.

Arrogance and self-righteousness reign everywhere — and rain, too.

Updated: Fri Mar 16, 2018

How #MeToo Revives the Damsel in Distress for 03/09/2018

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0800

Oscar has no penis. That was the startling revelation of Jimmy Kimmel in his opening monologue at the Academy Awards. This statue of limitations will be remembered for the attention Oscar got in 2018 for being neutered, not to be confused with being transgender. Who knew?

This is the emcee who debuted in "The Man Show" back in 1999, touted as a show "by men, for men, about men," drawing on boorish stereotypes of beer-slogging, woman-leering, feminist-loathing, insecure chauvinists. That Kimmel complained about the "Oprah-zation" of women, but that was before liberal ladies who lunch talked of drafting Oprah to do what Hillary Clinton couldn't.

Updated: Fri Mar 09, 2018

Mourning Becomes Electronic for 03/02/2018

Fri, 02 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0800

"I weep for Adonais — he is dead!/ Oh, weep for Adonais!" These opening lines of Percy Bysshe Shelley's elegy for the poet John Keats could be a dirge for our times. It's a poem about a young man whose petals were "nipp'd" before the wind blew them away, a poet who died before "the promise of the fruit."

Not so long ago, it was a poem studied by high-school scholars as a reflection of romantic lyricism, a poetic form to mourn; to experience grief with words of solace; to vent anger through poetic imagery, powerful metaphors and similes; to lament loss and express rage, sadness and helplessness in confronting the death of a young man or woman who had promise and the years ahead to redeem such promise.

Updated: Fri Mar 02, 2018

Here Comes Another 'Year of the Woman' for 02/23/2018

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800

Only yesterday, the Democrats thought they had the House of Representatives signed and sealed, ready for the second coming of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and the Senate was probably in play, too. But second thoughts can ruin the fun.

A malady called "midterm migraine" struck the House Democrat retreat at Mount Vernon in suburban Washington early this month after a focus group was called in to describe the lay of the land to the assembled nabobs. Democrats looking for feel-good news should have called in the pundits who have confidently predicted not only that Republicans are sure to lose the House but also that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer could probably regain control of the Senate if Democrats were to just rant about President Donald Trump a little harsher and a lot louder.

Updated: Fri Feb 23, 2018

Nudes, Pop and Naked Truth for 02/16/2018

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800

Playboy magazine, now a relic in the legacy of its founder, Hugh Hefner, was not so long ago the sex educator of the young men of America. So pervasive was its influence that a running joke at the time was "a generation of men, having learned about the female body from Playboy's famous centerfolds, were astonished on their wedding nights to discover that their wives don't come with staples in their navels."

Pop nudity was a rationed commodity when Hefner's magazine made marketing sex almost legitimate, and made him a rich hedonist in silk pajamas and a dark-green velvet jacket surrounded by ladies dressed like bunnies with long ears and fluffy tails. The magazine was thought a little bit naughty.

Updated: Fri Feb 16, 2018

The New Moral Combat in America for 02/09/2018

Fri, 09 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800

The debate over the #MeToo movement continues. The ladies keep coming out of the confessional with "j'accuse," but some of the players are missing. They're the women who slept their way to starring in movies roles, and obtained powerful positions in politics and the media but didn't talk. We don't know who they are, nor are we likely to learn the details of success on the road to the top, because they play by the old rules of Hollywood and Washington, keeping their dalliances private.

They're a little like Mae West, the famous actress and comedienne of yesteryear. In one of her movies, a woman she met looked at the not-so-little rocks on her fingers and exclaimed, "Goodness, what beautiful diamonds." Mae replied, "Goodness had nothing to do with it, dearie."

Updated: Fri Feb 09, 2018

How Melania Describes the State of Their Union for 02/02/2018

Fri, 02 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800

The president gives the State of the Union, and the first lady offers her state of their union. A president and a first lady, a husband and a wife, a father and a mother, a man and a woman reflect different kinds of power, purpose and propensity.

Melania Trump puts Frank Sinatra's defiant croon in the present tense: "I'll do it my way." Feminists ought to love her. No one thinks of Trump as an appendage of her man. No one sees her trapped in the role of "wife of," that notorious Washington "title" that once circumscribed the lives of women married to powerful men in the nation's capital.

She's so independent that she won't even take advantage of the easy "gender" appropriation that qualifies any woman, by experience or attainment or not, to sound off as an authority on women's issues. Wearing a pink pussy bow on a blouse is not an authentic feminist statement, nor is her white pantsuit a credential of a suffragette. Her strength lies in her dignified deportment and her thoughtful silence. One cartoonist jokes that her power lies in her gorgeous cheekbones and having the ultimate trophy husband.

Updated: Fri Feb 02, 2018

The Mishmash of the New Sexual Morality for 01/26/2018

Fri, 26 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800

The abundant conversations about sexual harassment have become a mishmash of modern morality in America. Talkers mix the accusation toward the evildoer, the man who uses power against innocence to abuse women, with accusations against a man with less calculated motivation whose weakness of the flesh exploits a confusion of sexual signals.

In between are all kinds of boorish behavior. One kind that emerged over the past months involves the uncouth man with a patina of sophistication who thinks his naked body under a robe tantalizes simply because he's the Big He.

Updated: Fri Jan 26, 2018

Linda Tripp Laughs Last at the Clintons for 01/19/2018

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800

What fools (and hypocrites) these mortals be. Two decades have passed since Linda Tripp blew the whistle on sexual hijinks in high places with her tapes of Monica Lewinsky, the young intern who described to her confidant and colleague the passionate ordeal of a sexual liaison with the president of the United States. She blew the whistle, she says, to protect her friend. Twenty years on, she's still a villain for many women who remember those times.

But history's on her side.

Updated: Fri Jan 19, 2018

When Hollywood Confronts Its Shady Past for 01/12/2018

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800

Whoa. Stop the music. When Ethel Merman belted out "There's no business like show business" as Annie Oakley in "Annie Get Your Gun," a little girl could have been forgiven for believing it. On Broadway in 1946, the stars of showbiz, like the stars across the Milky Way, were protected by myths of glamour and mystery, and the studios could keep the bad stuff out of the newspapers. Naughty deeds went undiscovered and unlamented.

"Annie Get Your Gun" posed other myths for women to live by. Annie took on her rival, a macho cowboy, and she let him know that "Anything you can do, I can do better" and proved it. There was a quickening in the female brain and a flutter in the breasts of women everywhere that a sexual revolution could be powerful and might one day be on the way. It was a seed that flowered decades later.

Updated: Fri Jan 12, 2018

A Royal Tale With a Lesson for Our Time for 01/05/2018

Fri, 05 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800

Watching "The Crown" in the reign of President Trump is a trip into British nostalgia that leaves an American viewer with mixed feelings about the monarchy, the institution Americans loathed and left behind with a revolution of arms. Nevertheless, the democracy that followed is currently suffering from an overreaching populism with a president trying to fake out a "fake media," and it might benefit from a few lessons in nuance and understatement.

"The Crown" is a sophisticated television soap opera that runs against the grain of our troubled time. We watch Queen Elizabeth II grow as a sympathetic figurehead who uses her celebrity without flaunting it. She does what comes naturally through careful tutoring and artful tuning, and shows a flair for British understatement and profound personal self-discipline that contrasts vividly with the current style of in-your-face leadership in America.

Updated: Fri Jan 05, 2018

Trapped in the Bubble for 12/29/2017

Fri, 29 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0800

When summing up the year now fading, the catchall phrases that generalize a common view don't work. It was neither the best of times nor the worst of times. In our fragmented politics, the center does not hold, and moving out to the edges of the frame doesn't hold us together.

There's lots of e pluribus and not much unum.

Updated: Fri Dec 29, 2017

How Christians and Jews Connect in a Season of Holidays for 12/22/2017

Fri, 22 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0800

'Tis the season to be merry, and we need a little merriment this season. This year, the passage of time between two holidays of the spirit, Hanukkah and Christmas, is short, focusing attention once more on the Judeo-Christian moorings of America. Every year we honor the ways Christians and Jews appeal to what they hold in common in exhortations. But like so much else in our high-tech, 24/7 media world, differences are magnified and politicized. Political overtones have always influenced how we celebrate our holidays, but not until now has so much attention been paid.

President Donald Trump is alternately admonished and applauded for emphasizing the word "Christmas" in the celebrations, as many Christians think the origin of the holiday is deliberately lost in the generalized wishes of "happy holidays." His rhetoric is a little sharp for the taste of the secular world, but religious folk have always differed in how they invoke God in their politics. Dr. Robert Jeffress, pastor of the large and influential First Baptist Dallas, even says God was at work in the 2016 election. "God intervened in our election and put Donald Trump in the Oval Office for a great purpose," he says.

Updated: Fri Dec 22, 2017

Why We Can't Let the Creeps Write the Rules for 12/15/2017

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0800

Maybe we need a fresh perspective. Everybody regards sexual harassers as creeps. We're watching them fall on their swords of necessity and regret, as much for being caught as for what they've actually done. Some of the rest of us, however, are acting a little too much like Madame Defarge in Charles Dickens' "A Tale of Two Cities," knitting with contented delight as the heads of the guilty and innocent drop from the guillotine.

Nobody wants to do nuance. No one wants to take the side of a hideous harasser or boorish jerk. But we do need to face up to the difference between a man charged with rape and one simply forcing an unwanted kiss on the lips of a lady, between the man who presses his body close and the creep who locks the door of his office to prevent her escape, between the dedicated masher and the flamboyant performer taking slapstick to the point of touching a bosom or bottom.

Updated: Fri Dec 15, 2017

Pow Wow Politics at Harvard Yard for 12/08/2017

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0800

President Donald Trump thinks of himself as the comedian-in-chief for reprising Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren as the butt of his pointed political satire. To her consternation, he draws chuckles, if not guffaws, when calling her "Pocahontas," the celebrated squaw of early American history, and saying she invented Cherokee ancestors just to claim a diversification slot on the Harvard faculty. "Fake ancestry," he might call it.

Now, a real Indian, one from India, has stepped up to steal his comic thunder in Massachusetts, where such wit may count for real votes.

Updated: Fri Dec 08, 2017