Jonathan | Potters Bar, UK | July 01, 2014
Re Sunday's strip about the music biz, the fact that there are a variety of means by which people can voluntarily support their musicians, as though those musicians were so many charitable causes, is not a substitute for an actual market in music. A market is an arrangement whereby someone who desires a good, is obliged to pay for it if he wishes to enjoy it. A situation in which anybody can enjoy the good without paying for it, is not a market. I say "the good," but in reality this means the dwindling output of fewer and fewer artists who are less and less able to afford to devote themselves mastery of the art of composition.
Nick Dangerfield | Tillamook, OR | July 01, 2014
Jimmy Thudpucker living in his car?! To put it in Nate-Harris-Speak, "Methinks not." Unless, of course, his car is one of those tricked-out mega mobile homes, maybe...
ON THE MONEY
T.J. Martin | Denver, CO | June 30, 2014
As a professional musician currently "retired" in my mid 50s both by choice as well as circumstance I have to say Sunday's Thudpucker strip was right on the money. There's tons of virtual fame to be had with almost zero income to go with it. If video killed the radio star, downloads, YouTube, and the Net in general are killing off the genuine musicians, leaving behind a trail of "virtual" ephemeral entertainers, very few of whom can be considered musicians.
Paul Jones | St. John, CANADA | June 29, 2014
I think that the problem is less that the Internet is inherently evil and more that Jimmy has always been a naive little kid (as evidenced by his not having the same eyes as other adult characters) in a world where being a wild-eyed optimist is, well, not what I'd call adaptive behaviour.
Thomas | San Francisco, CA | June 29, 2014
It's true that it is difficult for independent artists like Jimmy Thudpucker to make a living directly distributing content online to their fans, without record label sponsorship. It is not impossible, though. Kickstarter crowdsources fan-based funding for new artistic projects. Fans can support their favorite artists monthly, or even by the song, at Patreon.com. Artists can sell their recordings online at Bandcamp, CDBaby, Audible or Amazon. Artists can design and distribute merchandise through retailers like Zazzle, Cafepress, Topatoco, and even Costcophotocenter.com. If artists prefer to bypass intermediaries, services like Paypal and Project Wonderful allow artists to fundraise directly via their own websites and blogs. Projects like Concertsinyourhome.com allow musicians to, as Jimmy Thudpucker once predicted, "earn a modest living through touring." Direct marketing requires networking, outreach, and personal thanks for even small incremental support. But hasn't Jimmy's career always been about connecting personally with his fans?
Allan Olley | Oakville, CANADA | June 29, 2014
I would love to help Jimmy Thudpucker out, unfortunately the only music of his available to buy I can find is his greatest hits album from 1978 in Vinyl secondhand. I would happily pay him for his music if this were only possible. It is unfortunate his ring tones revenue has apparently fallen through, it sounded like he was doing so well...
Carpetbag Yankee | Hartford, CT | June 29, 2014
Re IMPLAUSIBLE. Actually the 6/26 Classic strip was well-founded: the slave trade in New England thrived until 1808, with New London and New Bedford both being ports of call for slaves and sugar, and points of export for rum.
C. Hexham | Traverse City, MI | June 28, 2014
...but of course ratification of the US Constitution didn't stipulate either assembly or bearing arms. That didn't happen for two more years.
Brian Harvey | Berkeley, CA | June 28, 2014
I think even back then nobody would have said "Now we truly have liberty" about the Constitution. Even the pro-Constitution people saw it as a desirable compromise of liberty for security and economic growth. That's why they put in the Bill of Rights as a promise that the strengthened central government would preserve rights that people had under the separate state governments.
K.E.W. | South Miami, FL | June 26, 2014
Today's scenario is perhaps a mite implausible for Massachusetts, but the cartoon went straight up on my university office door nonetheless.
Dennis B. Swaney | Oroville, CA | June 26, 2014
As Yogi Berra would say, last week's fall of Saigon flashback strips are "Deja vu all over again," especially given the Iraq situation. In 1973, we cut and ran from our promise to to help the Republic of Vietnam; two years later the RVN was conquered by North Vietnam. In 2011, we cut and ran from our promise to help the Republic of Iraq; three years later it looks like the same result will happen there. And in 2015 we are scheduled to cut and run from our promise to help the Republic of Afghanistan. Yep, deja vu all over again!
THE HUNDRED HEARTS
William Kowalski | Erie, PA | June 26, 2014
Because your strip has spent a lot of time chronicling the lives of vets, I thought your readers might want to hear about my novel The Hundred Hearts, which is about the plight of a young veteran of Afghanistan dealing with PTSD and physical injuries. It was recently nominated for the Thomas H. Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award. Until July 4, I am donating all the proceeds of the e-pub version of my book to two military charities, Fisher House Foundation (which your Wounded Warrior and Sandbox books raise money for) and Homes For Our Troops, both of which are rated as four stars by CharityNavigator.Org.
Roger Webb | Little Rock, AR | June 25, 2014
The difficulties that Mark is having getting married in the 15-years-ago Flashbacks provide a great documentation of how far we have come. Today, the Rev would not be worrying about eternal damnation for performing a gay wedding, but falling all over himself to do it. It is my contention that you could write a social history of America over the last 40 years using Doonesbury as the sole source and improve on the standard texts.
Clara McKenna | Colorado Springs, CO | June 24, 2014
The timeliness of the early strips in today's world blows me away, and I love seeing them as we did the first time, one a day. What a great gift -- thank you!
Jim A. | Dallas, TX | June 24, 2014
The evacuation of Saigon is a moment that should be replayed every year, just after coverage of the D-Day invasion. Our proudest moment followed by a lesson in the dangers of hubris , one that we seem to have totally forgotten.
MY LOST YEARS
A.M. | Washington State | June 24, 2014
The time between 1975 and 1987 was my lost years -- age 25 to 37. I don't remember exactly why, but I stopped reading Doonesbury during those years. This is the first time I have seen the image of B.D. after the fall of Saigon. What I do know is that I started reading Doonesbury again around the time B.D. returned once again from war. Somewhere I have the strip where he and Boopsie are talking in a car, right after he returned. I related to that scene and started reading Doonesbury again. Seeing these old strips that I missed is filling in all sorts of blanks. Had no idea about Kim until now. In recent years, Toggle and Alex are most dear to me, along with the new twins, and they all give me hope. Thank you for everything.
HEAD IN HIS HANDS
Virginia | Milwaukee, WI | June 22, 2014
BD's head in his hands as Saigon is evacuated could not be more prescient, and heart-breaking, today as Iraq falls apart. I am grateful every day for GBT's offering of insights and smiles, but especially today. Turns out this hiatus benefits all of us with invaluable historical perspective. But we have to keep paying attention. I extend thanks and good wishes to all our vets!
TEARS FOR AMERICA
Ray Lampe | Templeton, MD | June 21, 2014
I just have to say that the historic arc of the strips on the 6-21-14 Flashback page brought me to tears for America. Where is the humanity of our "leaders"?
Herb | Littleton, CO | June 21, 2014
I served two tours in Vietnam. We never lost as a fighting force. Our mission was never their mission and when we left they caved. Kind of looks like what's going to happen in Iraq. Either commit to win or stand back and watch the blood roll.
S. Mikkelson | Meota, CANADA | June 20, 2014
So much history is being paraded before us. We think that the problems of today are the worst, but it's just distance and time that makes the difference. There is still a war, people are still dying, just in different countries this generation. You think we would learn from our past... Thank you for the reminder.