Laughing at the Left

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Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Zack Rawsthorne, a conservative writer/cartoonist who is the creator of Diversity Lane (www.diversitylane.com), a print-cartoon series and soon-to-be-released book which mercilessly skewers the liberal/left world-view on a regular basis.  A man on a mission to “help get America laughing at the Left,” Rawsthorne believes that far too much ground is given up in the humor department to the forces of modern liberalism. In his view, without widespread participation in the arena of Humor, the conservative vision– which Rawsthorne regards as essentially common-sense– is severely undermined in our culture.

FP: Zack Rawsthorne, welcome to Frontpage Interview.

Rawsthorne: I appreciate the invitation.

FP: Congratulations on your creation of Diversity Lane.

Rawsthorne: That’s most kind of you– thanks for the vote of confidence.

FP: Tell us what inspired you to start it.

Rawsthorne: Our culture is saturated with liberal/left thinking, which is to say dangerously mistaken assumptions about life, people, the world, America, you name it.  I was leaving a used book store one rainy afternoon and my eye fell on an old Addams Family collection– you know, those cartoons The New Yorker used to run many years ago which evolved into a TV show and then movies. The Addams Family was a clan of grotesques, people ominously opposite from normal folks, and it suddenly hit me that today’s incarnation of such an against-the-grain household would be a hypothetical family of liberal/leftists.  The Addams Family reveled in darkness– that is, the characters came down on the side of Death and morbidity in a way that series creator Charles Addams was able to make wryly amusing.  But many liberals today will march in a candlelight vigil in support of condemned-to-death murderers, for whom these reverent ideologues have a twisted sympathy.  And hundreds of thousands of other liberals not physically engaged in the hushed quasi-religious midnight march routinely vote and think in ways that support the ghouls circling Death Row.  This is just one of countless examples.  They glorify the down-and-out vagrant lying in the gutter as some kind of societally wronged Noble Savage with a bottle of Jack Daniels, while holding the self-sacrificing, responsible, hard-working entrepreneur in suspicion or contempt if he has dared to become reasonably successful.  They squirm and rail against the public mention of God as if it indicates some fearsome evangelistic insurgency come down from the hills of Appalachia to enforce violent religious strictures on us all– rather than the ever-present touchstone of countless speeches from Washington to Lincoln to Roosevelt and practically every statesman in history.  They’re skeptical-to-condemnatory of Israel but cautiously supportive of the radicalized Palestinians and other bloodthirsty Middle East types whom they paint as “wronged” by America-like (and therefore suspect) Israel.  And this just scratches the surface.

FP: What are your goals with Diversity Lane?

Rawsthorne: My regularly re-stated chief goal is to get America laughing at the left.  I’d like to help people– through my cartoons– see the left for what it is: a twisted, anti-rational, often anti-human world-view which, through its widespread spokesforces in the mainstream media, has come to dominate our cultural mindset to a dire degree.  And all through cleverly devised arguments and theories which routinely represent Good as Bad and Bad as Good.  In their extreme ideological gyrations they can be not just dangerous but funny, and this needs to be more fully explored.  If enough people can come to comprehend the laughingstock essence of leftist thought we’ll go a long way to undermining it as the pervasive destructive force that it is.

FP: Are your cartoons based on real people, and do we know any of them?

Rawsthorne: They’re based more on actual human types than on specific people but to be sure many of the traits exemplified in my characters get played out publicly every single day by Democrat politicians or, alternately, Hollywood & TV celebrities. When Harry Reid condemns our war effort as “lost” while we still have troops engaged in battle, he’s being an Alex Lane.  When Joy Behar screeches that Republican senatorial candidate Sharron Angle is a bitch en route to Hell, she’s being a Devon.  Sadly, Republicans too at times can betray their ideals and act like liberals.  I keep trying to formulate a cartoon character representing this trait but always end up tossing them in the trashcan in disgust.

FP: Have you done any political art before?

Rawsthorne: I began several anti-Left cartoon series since renouncing my initially Democrat roots several decades back but none of them really got off the ground.  I think their main shortcoming was the lack of a family structure, however demented.  My earlier attempts were also a bit over-ripe.  For example I started one called The Adventures of Liberalia, which followed for a few pages the highly symbolic journeys of a left-leaning knight as he sails from one metaphorical situation to another… kind of a “Pilgrim’s Progress” for the National Review set.  I think the lighter tone of Diversity Lane suits our age much better, and besides it’s wearisome rendering armor and chain-mail all the time.

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  • sflbib

    Re: "Good as Bad and Bad as Good"

    It is liberal fascination and obsession with death and communism that are the prime movers of this dementia.

  • tim heekin

    I hope Mr. Rawsthorne will consider a satirical Islamic cartoon series. Humor will be a marvelous tool in fighting the totalitarian ideology. There are, of course, plenty of Lefties hanging out in the Islamic bathroom that could be added to the series. My own thoughts were to establish "Muhammads Lingerie and IED Surplus" wherein Muhamad and his seven associates, also named Muhammad, operate a retail store for selling suicide vests for children, gasoline tubes, vintage mortar shells, etc. Next door to the surplus store would be Fatima's burqua strip club where Muhammad and his boys hang out.
    Of course if one would do this it would have to be under a pseudo name to avoid getting ones head lopped off.

  • therealend

    I have encountered this Leftist twisting of reason more than once (far more). I remember reading a USA Today article on proposed voter registration requirements. One commenter opposed to registering in person with a photo ID, wrote something like " I'd rather have 10,000 illegitimate registrations than disenfranchise one potential voter with these new requirements". Now that is strange. If all of these illegitimate voters cast their ballots for the same person, that would mean 10,000 votes for the other candidate would be canceled out, in effect, disenfranchising 10,000 legit voters for the sake of one.

  • "gunner"

    i've been following zack rawsthorne's "diversity lane for a year or so now and find it immensely entertaining, i'm most pleased to see your interview here, and the support it gives zack, and i heartily recommend his book when it comes out, as for progressives burning it, they'll have to buy copies to burn them, and that money will end up in zack's pocket along with the money from conservatives who will buy the book to read and enjoy it.

  • USMCSniper

    Dennis Miller Ridicule Is Funny: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjS0Novt3X4

  • aaron_truax

    I enjoy Rawsthorne's comics, but when you go to his website, for some reason the URL's for the cartoons are messed up . Some of the backslashes are backwards – if you want to view the cartoon, simply go to the address bar and switch the erroneous slashes. Additionally, I find the music too harsh.

    Is his webmaster a progressive?

  • ebonystone

    Another excellent anti-left cartoon series is the "Day by Day" strip by Chris Muir.

  • tom1925

    Some Thoughts on Islam and the Proposed Mosque at Ground Zero

    I have just finished reading two different perspectives relative to the building of a mosque at or near ground zero. Both Roger Ebert writing in the Chicago Sun Times and Sally (Quinn) scribbling in the Washington Post, have their heads on lopsided. Roger acts like a namby-pamby bleeding heart while Sally is simply ignorant and arrogant.
    Both Roger and Sally insist that the Islam, as a religion, must be accorded the same rights as the religions which have shed blood for America. That is an insane notion. First, Islam has never shed a drop of blood in defense of America; some few American Muslims have made that sacrifice. Other than that, Islam has been an aggressor, killing thousands of Americans and others attempting to free millions enslaved by Islam.

  • tom1925

    Secondly, I and many others have serious doubt about treating or recognizing Islam as a bona fide religion. Most, if not all reasonably sane, thoughtful and generous humans, who are adherents to a recognized, non-Islamic religion, serve a deity perceived as pure and devoid of evil. On the contrary, Muhammad, who was illiterate, recounted the so-called words of the Angel Gabriel, the self-same enunciator of the pending birth of Jesus Christ. Words which ordered Muhammad to command those who chose to follow the word of Allah to proselytize or convert the Arab tribes people and the Israelites by the sword if necessary.
    According to Muhammad, Allah set forth all the rules for social and community behavior to include as worthy, polygamy, pedophilia and murder. In addition Muhammad stated that Allah said it was permissible to lie to protect oneself in ones Islamic beliefs (the practice of taqiyya).
    Therefore, I conclude that Islam must not be considered a religion to be practiced as a right. This would constitute sufficient reason for denial of a permit for Islam to violate the hallowed Ground Zero site.

    • Liberty Clinger

      Islam is a coercive totalitarian legal system (Sharia Law) supported by threats of violence, violence, murder and mass-murder (Islamic Jihad); so Islam is not just a religion, it is the enemy of our life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

      “In regard to religion, mutual toleration in the different professions thereof is what all good and candid minds in all ages have ever practiced, and, both by precept and example, inculcated on mankind. And it is now generally agreed among Christians that this spirit of toleration, in the fullest extent consistent with the being of civil society, is the chief characteristical mark of the Church. Insomuch that Mr. Locke has asserted and proved, beyond the possibility of contradiction on any solid ground, that such toleration ought to be extended to all whose doctrines are not subversive of society. The only sects which he thinks ought to be, and which by all wise laws are excluded from such toleration, are those who teach doctrines subversive of the civil government under which they live.” Samuel Adams

  • Guest

    I'm left wondering if Zack has ever pursued the idea of newspaper syndication? I've been reading political cartoons in the editorial pages for decades and I've NEVER seen anything but anti-conservative political cartoons – a lot of it badly drawn and much of it jejune. The old L.A. Times had Conrad (or "comrade" as I called him) who was far left but his artwork was excellent.

  • Fat Tony C.

    Even lefties have admitted Rawsthorne can draw. They hate being laughed at so, of course, they attack and censor Diversity Lane.

  • http://connectthedots2006.blogspot.com Connect the Dots

    Then, of course, there's Michael Ramirez, the ultra-right-wing-conservative (Yay!) cartoonist at Investors Business Daily. http://www.investors.com/EditorialCartoons/Defaul

    His artwork and satire put many a lefty cartoonist to shame.

  • Samurai Hit Woman

    I've often thought that comedy was the way to portray the Left in uprooting them from their self important perch.

    The Left has been quite successful in using humor to make Conservatism a laughing stock. Or at least their perception of Conservatism. Remember little ticky tacky houses that all look the same?

    So be careful what you send out because it will return to you as surely as a tale follows a dog. This seems to be a law of the universe, and the Left has a lot to answer for in the return department.

  • MCPO Airdale

    Thanks for this wonderful interview!

  • Jamie

    I’d say, “Zack Rawsthorne for President”, but it would mean he’d have to give up his important job…

  • Dios

    In this Interview Mr. Rawsthorne, has expressed some very clear thoughts and Common Sense. I hope and wish his Cartoons will be able to deliver that same quality of ideas.

  • Sharon

    Mr. Dios! You "hope and wish his Cartoons will be able to deliver that same quality of ideas"? They have been ever since he began drawing them. If you haven't seen them, better buy his new book of all of them and begin to enjoy!