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Journal Archives

Wednesday Toon Roundup 3- The Issue

Wednesday Toon Roundup 2 - Chaos!

Wednesday Toon Roundup 1 - Goodbye, Rex

The White House really needs a sign out front

At the WH this morning

Tuesday Toon Roundup 4 - The Rest

The Issue




Fake News



Mr Fish

Tuesday Toon Roundup 3 - Trump gang






Tuesday Toon Roundup 2: Two tubby little liars

Tuesday Toon Roundup 1 - Coward

On Deepwater Horizon, and the flawed logic of "teachable moments."

MAR 12, 2018

One of the 21st century newspeak words that particularly makes me smile is the notion of a “teachable moment.” Some gargantuan news story breaks—an exotic disease breaks out in Houston, a gunman slaughters small children in Connecticut, an oil rig detonates in the Gulf of Mexico—and there simply is nothing going on in the news for several days. Once the initial media supernova cools, however, we get several more days of What Lessons Can We Take from this, our latest “teachable moment.”

Solutions are proposed, some half-daffy, some utopian, and some simply impossible. Some of them make a kind of sense, though, but then the event sinks into the morass of our current politics and its significance is slowly suffocated while, sooner or later, something else comes along and we have another “teachable moment” from which, ultimately, we learn nothing. No progress is permanent, no achievement lasting. That is the lesson born in the great political retrenchment in the 1980s, when the retrograde was made new again, and it is the only lasting lesson that has been taught, over and over again, through the increasingly volatile politics of the age.

On April 10, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded and sank in the Gulf of Mexico, 42 miles off the coast of Louisiana. Eleven people died. Oil belched into the waters of the Gulf until the end of July, some 3.19 million barrels of it. The dispersant used on the oil increased its toxicity.


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