14 July 2008

The New Yorker's Image Of The Obamas

The New Yorker has long been a practitioner of disturbing satire, much of the time being unintentionally dropped into their "serious articles." But have they gone too far with the cover scheduled to hit the racks next week?

According to The New Yorker:

[The cover] combines a number of fantastical images about the Obamas and shows them for the obvious distortions they are. The burning flag, the nationalist-radical and Islamic outfits, the fist-bump, the portrait on the wall? All of them echo one attack or another. Satire is part of what we do, and it is meant to bring things out into the open, to hold up a mirror to prejudice, the hateful, and the absurd. And that's the spirit of this cover.

According to Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton:
The New Yorker may think, as one of their staff explained to us, that their cover is a satirical lampoon of the caricature Senator Obama's right-wing critics have tried to create. But most readers will see it as tasteless and offensive. And we agree.

According to The Khaki Elephant:

The image is absolutely ridiculous. Michelle's hair is completely wrong, Barack's wrist looks far too straight and powerful in the fist bump, and the flag they're burning doesn't seem to have all 50 stars.


  1. GrEaT sAtAn'S gIrLfRiEnD said...

    True - plus the AK seems to have an old school M16 barrel, and it looks like Michelle is wearing Little Satan style camo pants.

    Totally whacked!

  2. DB said...

    Satire...and all the morons still fell for it thinking it was an attack as if they wanted to continue with the irony. It isn't like satire is some new genre in politics either. You can never predict how a stupid person will react to seemingly nothing.

  3. Khaki Elephant said...

    Excellent point on the AK. Though I must admit that they did capture that diabolical glint that we often see in Michelle's eye.

    And, DB, if we can't take satire seriously what is left for us?
    You're right, of course. And given The New Yorker's political leanings I have a hard time believing this is anything more than a humorous attempt to portray conservatives as fear-mongering extremist while at the same time making their magazine somehow relevant on the political seen.

  4. WomanHonorThyself said...

    lol..trudat!..and wheres Chavez's pic!

  5. Anthony Palmer said...

    Personally, I noticed how Michelle Obama is wearing brown boots instead of black ones. Don't you realize that she's a radical BROWN militant instead of a radical BLACK one? Illegal immigrants should be quite happy about this.

    Khaki, how do you think the outrage would have compared if the National Review or the Weekly Standard had published this cover?

  6. Ben Sutherland said...

    I thought it was hilarious, Khaki. It cut through all the nonsense about the Obama campaign. And then, suddenly and unexpectantly, it demonstrated just how mindlessly reactive both campaigns are to anything with a whiff of, hush, scandal. Weak willed, indeed. On the part of both candidates. What a weak crew of people we elect to the highest office. Makes me yearn for Reagan. Maybe Kennedy.

  7. Khaki Elephant said...

    Excellent point on the boots, Anthony. And an interesting question concerning other publications. My gut tells me (and my gut has been wise enough to steer me away from liver & onions so I trust its instincts) that had the National Review used the image the firestorm would have been explosive but short-lived, passed off as the fear-mongering of unsophisticated right-wing nuts. Truth be told, I wouldn't have found it an interesting topic had that been the case.

  8. Khaki Elephant said...

    Ben, that's an angle I hadn't given much thought. Instead of the intent of the image or the reaction of its audience, just examine the way the campaigns responded.