Blowback_toon

Blowback

A clean, well-lit place to vent

Please feel free to contribute to this frequently-updated forum, which posts selected commentary on our favorite comic strip. If you’d like your critique to be posted, please note that civility, if not approbation, counts. Click here to submit a comment.

ZEITGEIST
Peter Mikkelsen | Spokane, WA | November 21, 2014

Back in the '70s, I knew a few NCAA players whose trainers passed out the performance-enhancing drugs like they used to pass out salt tabs. Their later lives were noticeably poorer for it. Also, a possibly forgotten (today) aspect of the issue: the popularity of PEDs was at least partially in response to the dominance of the Soviet Union's, and especially East Germany's, international athletes during those times. But the speed? That was definitely an American experience that rippled across the country from the 1950s on through to Breaking Bad. GBT has had a grasp of American zeitgeist for decades and I (we) love his work because of it.

THE CREDIT
L. Lapp | West Chester, PA | November 19, 2014

I love the publication details in Monday's 1978 "amphetamine scandal" breaking news story about Duke: The realistic masthead, "Washington Post SPORTS Monday"; the authentic page layout and page refs; and especially the credit under the headline, "By Richard Redfern." I definitely missed that the first time around.

HAPPENSTANCE
Winston Smith | Washington, D.C. | November 18, 2014

How mush happenstance can one person handle? As the Uncle Duke/Redskins reruns play out, immediately above the strip, the Washington Post sub-headline says, "In the news . . . NFL Drug Search." -- although it was the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who were met by the DEA at BWI airport after they beat the Redskins.

AMAZINGLY TOPICAL
Boise Ed | Atascadero, CA | November 18, 2014

 

Are we sure this was written a third of a century ago and not in 2014? It's amazingly topical today.

 

PREDISPOSITIONS
Roger Webb | Little Rock, AR | November 17, 2014

As a psychologist, I loved Sunday's strip that speaks to the genetic/biological predispositions of political behavior. There's no consistent ideological distinction between liberal and conservative, but there are very consistent personality differences between the people we label that way. Sensitivity to threat seems to be the biggest single factor. The role of the amygdala is not simple, but certainly involved -- e.g. John McCain doesn't seem to have one. The evidence for genetic factors is strong. There's a good book -- Predisposed: Liberals, Conservatives, and the Biology of Political Differences, by John Hibbing, et. al. -- that explains the research and speculates on the evolution of the types. I'm glad to see this stuff make Doonesbury. It's important for understanding our political mess.

FEAR
Maryhelen Posey | Calgary, CANADA | November 17, 2014

I was pleased to see how quickly those who sent in BLOWBACK posts confirmed the results referred to in the strip!

EVERYWHERE
Martin Snapp | Berkeley, CA | November 16, 2014

I agree with GLAD TO HEAR. I see terrorism everywhere: elementary schools shot up, abortion doctors murdered, Cliven Bundy threatening shoot-outs with the authorities, etc.

GLAD TO HEAR
Sue Schrems | Norman, OK | November 16, 2014

So…there have not been Ebola cases and deaths in the United States, and our borders are secure, even though there are 4.5 million illegals, and there is no terrorism, even though it is reported that an American was beheaded today? Glad to hear it is just a problem in the Conservative brain.

CONTROVERSY
Richard | Cape Town, RSA | November 12, 2014

I wonder what we are to make of the choice of a series of Classic strips about the Redskins in light of the current controversy. I have to agree that the name is demeaning to those that occupied the country pre-Columbus.

NO SUBSTITUTE
Benjamin Smeall | Green Bayl, WI | November 12, 2014

Ain't no substitute for telling your own kid that smoking sucks. I tried it myself, and it did!

TOO POLITICAL
Daniel Meyer | Readfield, ME | November 11, 2014

Something an earlier Blowback commenter said reminded me that most Montana newspapers did not carry Doonesbury in the 60s -- too political. I love reliving those days through these Classics, which are, sadly, still too relevant, but hilarious. (Billings West High '67.)

PARALLEL
Bren | Dublin, IRELAND | November 10, 2014

Interesting parallel between today's 40-year-old Flashback strip and a more recent storyline, about a student who sued Walden for not giving him an "A."

MASTER SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT
Rick Bush | Parkersburg, WV | November 09, 2014

I really enjoyed today's strip about the Master Settlement Agreement. My daughter did her social studies fair project on this topic several years ago, when issuing bonds secured by future tobacco settlement proceeds was a hot potato in the West Virginia legislature. I learned more political science in three months than I learned in four years of college classes. I also learned something about raising revenue without mentioning the word "tax" in an environment where any politician who even hints at a tax increase is doomed. The partnership between Big Tobacco and the various states' Attorneys General which resulted from the Master Settlement Agreement has generated numerous incongruities over the years, as the states, in order to preserve their income streams, have squelched all potential competition, upon the pretense of protecting the public. Thanks again for today's expose!

ENFORCING
Alan | New York, NY | November 09, 2014

I enjoyed today's strip on Big Tobacco and anti-smoking efforts, and did a little research afterward. Articles at NPR.org and on the New York Times site report that most of the tobacco settlement was given to the states with no strings attached. The Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement apparently did not include language enforcing the perception that states would use the money primarily for anti-smoking education.

NOBODY
Edward Cherlin | Columbua, IN | November 08, 2014

I'm nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there's a pair of us -- don't tell!
They'd banish us, you know.

How dreary to be somebody!
How publicly, like a frog
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!

-- Emily Dickinson, 1891

COMMENTS
Mike | San Jose, CA | November 07, 2014

As a longtime fan, I suggest GBT bring back the talking begonia. I think its comments would be relevant to today's politics. Thanks!

ZONKER / SNOOPY
David Gottfried | Portland, OR | November 07, 2014

Zonker : Disco  =  Snoopy : Flashdance

SOCIAL COMMENTARY
Rev. Dr. Bob Faser | Hobart, AUSTRALIA | November 07, 2014

I must admit that I completely forgot Zonker's "Boogie Fever" phase. (My excuse: I was living in Montana at the time.) Anyway, brilliantly hilarious social commentary.

Edward Cherlin | Columbus, IN | November 02, 2014

Cheating spouses? Goof-off employees? What about clueless politicians who keep deleting Facebook posts and Tweets and wondering why they don't stay hidden?

FACEBOOK COMMENTS
Bruce Miller | Sacramento, CA | November 02, 2014

I remember a talk I gave to the company I work for in which I recounted real Facebook comments from one person. First "[Deleted expletive] I wish I could call in hung over."  Later "LOL. So bored. The customer in front of me thinks I'm typing her information in right now. LOL." And still later "[Deleted expletive] those [deleted expletive] fired me today!" So folks, it isn't just suspicious spouses looking; so are your employers.