March 01, 2004
First Annual Report
NOTICE: Posting of cartoons will resume on Tuesday, March 16 -- unless something happens in the meantime that we can't resist cartooning. Future posts may also be less regular than previously (see details below).
Tomorrow, March 2, is the one-year anniversary of the Cox & Forkum Editorial Cartoons blog. We're using this opportunity to recap the year, announce some changes and take a break.
We started this blog with two stated
goals: 1) to publicize our book, , and 2) to have an outlet for cartoons that were not being published elsewhere. Black & White World
As an advertising medium for our self-published book, the blog has worked well, not as effectively as, say, a Super Bowl ad, but it has worked. We are grateful to everyone who has purchased a book. All sales contribute to the life of this blog and are appreciated. We may even publish another one.
Aside from our book though, we had an unexpected source of income: t-shirts. Our blog attracted the attention of Doug Weinberg at
ThoseShirts.com who contacted us about creating a t-shirt design. He now carries four of our shirts. Our thanks to him and everyone who has bought our shirts. (A notable t-shirt failure this year was our Dean RetrAction Figure, which didn't even make it as far as Dean did. People seemed to like the cartoon but not enough to wear it on a shirt. Live and learn.)
As an outlet for our cartoons the blog has been immensely rewarding. Prior to launching the blog, few situations were more frustrating than creating a cartoon and then having to wait for others to post it or publish it, or knowing that no one may ever see the cartoon at all. With the blog, not only do we post pretty much everything we create, but as we've said in
interviews, the immediate feedback we receive is wonderful. We're thankful to all the bloggers who have posted our cartoons and linked to our site.
The trade-off to freely posting our cartoons on the blog is that we don't get paid for most of our work. This is nothing new for blogging. It's practically a character trait. But unlike blogging, editorial cartoons are not limited to the Internet. The art form was born in ink and paper for the purpose of being printed, and that is still the medium that gets the most exposure.
Which brings me to an unstated goal of our blog. The question most frequently asked of us is: Why aren't you guys syndicated in newspapers? We have had a few newspapers carry individual cartoons. But becoming syndicated has been and remains a goal of Cox & Forkum. Syndication not only pays, it has the potential to reach millions of viewers. Last October we sent submissions to all the major syndicates. We received either form rejection letters or nothing at all. For whatever reason, syndicates are not interested in our work. So, in answer to the question: We're still trying. (We noticed that Chris Muir is having a syndication drive for his daily comic strip Day By Day, and we wish him the best. Be sure to check it out.)
Our desire for syndication had a significant impact on our blog. Early on we gave ourselves the task of creating an average of four new editorial cartoons a week for one year. We've been posting five cartoons a week, but they aren't always new cartoons; we occasionally post "old" cartoons, that is, cartoons created prior to starting the blog (such as cartoons from our book). Four new cartoons a week is comparable to the output of syndicated editorial cartoonists. We wanted to prove to ourselves that we could do it, and it has been a challenge to keep up this pace, particularly with the added work of writing commentary. But we did it.
However, combined with all the other work we have going on, it has become a pace that is not worth our while to maintain. We're going to try posting on a less regular schedule. Rather than every weekday, we may skip a weekday or two and begin posting more on the weekends. There may be fewer cartoons. We'll see. But such freedom will give us time to pursue other activities, like getting syndicated.
We are also taking some time off to recharge and work on some other projects. As the notice above says, we'll begin posting cartoons again on Tuesday, March 16, unless we just can't stand to wait.
In the meantime, I posted an old cartoon above (also see yesterday's repost). The hyrda cartoon is in our bo ok and was our first editorial cartoon to be published in print (by Robert Tracinski in his The Intellectual Activist journal). It is also one of my personal favorites. I'm a big fan of Ray Harryhausen's stop-motion animation. Our hydra was inspired by Mr. Harryhausen's hydra from his 1963 movie . I love the way John drew the creature, particularly the baby heads popping out of the stump. Jason And The Argonauts
This was also the first appearance of our heroic Uncle Sam. The cartoon was created in October 2001, close enough to 9/11 that we thought the bandage on his arm was an obvious reference. Today, however, we are compelled to label the band (as in
this cartoon) since so many people seem to have forgotten the significance of that day.
The cartoon expressed my concern at the time that the government would treat 9/11 as a mere crime, instead of an act of war, and respond with mere "police action." Fortunately, that was not the response. We launched a war against terrorists and, more importantly, against the states that sponsor them. Unfortunately, we have not waged the war consistently; two-and-a-half years later the world's worst terrorist-sponsoring regime,
the Iranian theocracy, still exists and still poses a threat -- not to mention regimes in Syria, Saudi Arabia and "Palestine". For different reasons now, I still have the same concerns expressed in the cartoon.
We are grateful to all the regular visitors to Cox & Forkum Editorial Cartoons weblog. It means more than we can say to know that our work is being seen and appreciated. Thanks to all of you for making our first year in the blogosphere so rewarding. We hope you'll come back for more on March 16.
P.S. I'm temporarily opening the comments on this post. I will turn them off at some random point in the next few days.
Posted by Forkum at March 1, 2004 07:40 AM
It's a crime you guys don't have a regular cartooning gig. The quality of editorial cartoonists for typical city papers is horrendous, and your stuff is so much better. Stand in there.
I wanted to sincerely thank the two of you for maintaining what has been for many months my favorite website on the internet. Your cartoons have been an inspiration and a source of cheer to all of us at the Society of Objectivist Students in Lubbock, Texas.
Let me conclude this brief note by wishing you the best, in syndication and in all of your endeavors.
You two make a terrific left brain/right brain combination, which is apparent in the quality of the work you do. Enjoy your time off, and good luck with the pursuit of syndication, which you more than deserve.
(If Forkum is Uncle Sam, does that make Cox the gorilla in the tutu?)
Viewing your daily cartoon has been the highlight of my mornings (along with caffeine of course). I'll just have a wait a bit longer between "fixes" now ;-)
I hope you'll publish another book. I'll buy that one too!
PS: I hope you guys get syndicated. I only buy newspapers (which isn't often) for two reasons: the comics and to line the kitty tray. The NY/LA Times aren't worth it even for that.
It is shocking that the two of you don't already have your own syndication. You works are so expressive and the message your images give are thought provoking, and yet immediately understandable. (not to mention all the fun *details* you put into each image. No political cartoons out there *speak* as well as yours do.) I cannot think of any reason why a publication would *not* want to run your collumns. This is my first stop every morning. I'll be here as long as you are. If there is anything your readers can do to help, let us know.
Wayne Stayskal at the Tampa Tribune retired recently. He was Mr. Conservative. They have been running liberal tripe since then. why not start small with one paper (hint) and see if Media General picks you up from there? They pick up Charlie Reese's editorials from Orlando, so why not?
Good work guys.
I am very suprised no one has taken you on for syndication- you guys are the best way to start a morning warmup "info run" on the information superhighway without getting run over. I hope you get a gig soon, as I'll be going through "C & F" withdrawals every day you can't post until you do......
I'm with Billy Hollis - our local newspaper has one political cartoon every day, and it's usually of the liberal knee-jerk, "BUSH LIED!!", Bush-is-a-moron-or-an-evil-genius-depending-on-the-day, no-brain-required CRAP (though they started carrying Mallard Filmore recently, so it's not a total waste).
On a personal note, I've enjoyed trading mails with you guys on topics we (politely) disagree on - keep of the good work!
Have loved reading your work, and have posted many on the bulletin board at work. Good luck and God speed, guys.
Your cartoons are far better than most of the tripe out there currently--you deserve syndication. You should consider doing a drive like Chris Muir is.
Thanks for all the great cartoons! I for one will enjoy them just as much, even on a less regular schedule. Good luck in getting yourselves syndicated.
I've been checking for new cartoons every day for almost a year. This website has always been entertaining and thought-provoking.
Thank you very much for the excellent cartoons (and the not-so-excellent ones) and, of course, I hope you get syndicated!
I would like to thank you both for hours of free entertainment you have given me. I thoroughly enjoy both your cartoons and your critiques and have yet to find anyone else who can so accurately, yet simply, show the world as it is.
Keep striving for that syndication. It'll come - remember Ayn Rand was rejected 12 times by publishers!
Have a good break guys - you deserve it!
I've enjoyed your cartoons, your book, and your blog immensely. Thank you so much for each of them--and I hope you get syndicated soon!
Good luck with your efforts at getting syndicated! I will miss the daily posts, but if that means that I can hopefully look forward to reading your cartoons in my newspaper some day it will be worth it. You definitely deserve to be paid (and well) for your work, as your cartoons are consistently the best.
As a devoted fan and regular reader of this site, I'm more than a little saddened by the news that you guys will be posting cartoons less frequently. I can't start my day without checking for the latest C&F!
But as an artist, I understand all-too-well what you must do. And I wish you two lots of luck in getting syndicated.
And I'll be sure to check in frequently, so I don't miss anything!
Refresh, and try again with a syncopated syndication drive online as well-your work & your readers merit it.
Your editorial toons need to replace about 95% of what papers are carrying.
Dude, this sucks. Sucks bad.
Is there any way we can get you to change your mind? You have a lot of people who are counting on you, and when you measure that against your desire to have a life, how important are your selfish wishes?
That's very sad.
I check this blog almost every day.
I find your work meaningful and entertaining.
Your cartoons are time savers, they summarize events in a witty and amusing way. Saves some lengthy article reading sometimes.
Now it is my chance to thank you for your excellent work.
Good luck in the future, actually luck as nothing to do with it, it is talent.
It was kind of frightening to read your entry this morning. I thought at first you were throwing in the towel and relegating yourselfs to something different. Thanks for not depriving the many who enjoy your work of the luxury of viewing on a regular basis. The eagle will fly your way, I'm convinced. And as I said before, when you guys appear on stage at the Waldorf Hysteria, I can tell everyone, I know those guys, I really do. Good work fellas and I'm proud to know you both.
It's a shame, I thought you guys were in syndication already. I know why you guys are not in sydication though, you don't suck up to the muslims/arabs and you defend (most of the time) the Isralis/Jews. Contrary to the myth of the Liberal-Jew-Run Media, it's just Liberal run for the most part. I do hope you both get syndicated soon.
John & Allen:
Happy "blogiversary"! Thanks again for the EGO logotype! Good premises with your mission to become syndicated.
I look forward to meet you on my "tour de" America!
All the Best,
Martin Lindeskog - American in Spirit.
Gothenburg, Sweden (a.k.a. the socialist "paradise").
You've done a magnificent job, and I dearly hope you keep going! Yours is a combined voice that needs to be heard. (Besides, even if I hated your message, the quality of your draftsmanship would keep me coming back. Cartoons with stick figures get tiresome after a while.)
You guys are absolutely incredible. Keep up the great work, you make my day when I get to see a new cartoon of yours. Keep fighting the good fight for syndication. It's gonna happen.
Thanks everybody. It's good to know that we've struck a positve chord with so many thoughtful souls. I'm utterly convinced that Allen and I have a mission before us:Whack the Hypocites and Cheer On the Wonderfully Rational. Am I buzzed about the artistic possibilites that abound in this hurly-burly age? YOU BET.
Let Us Pause for a Breather and WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.....(leftists may exhale, now)
According to your SiteMeter, you get well over 3,000 hits each weekday. What about putting us to work, like emailing newspaper editors across this great land and politely suggesting that they print your work?
I'll gladly join your minions! :-)
In Philly we have to put up with the execrable Tony Auth (gack)!
What if you ask your readers to e-mail just one specific newspaper each week, kindly requesting that they pick up your work for syndication? I don't see the harm in that and at the very least it will make your name more visible in the minds of newspaper higher-ups. It's worth a shot...
Oh man! I will definately miss your cartoons. They always hit the nail on the head! I wish you nothing but the best of luck in the future. I will also hope to see you in the newspapers sometime soon!
I'm going to keep this in the present tense.
I LOVE your work.
I'm surpised you're not syndicated already.
I hope your journey to syndication is short and fruitful.
I look forward to seeing your next cartoon on March 16.
Have an outstanding break full of great ideas and even better connections.
You guys are so great. I bought two copies of your book for Christmas gifts--one for brother, one for me. Your work is always refreshing, often poignant, and consistently spot-on in your analysis.
Thank you especially for your depictions of servicemembers and patriotic Uncle Sam--as the girlfriend of a Marine and a steadfast supporter of our troops, it is always gratifying to see your portrayals of them.
It will be strange to go so long without fresh cartoons, but you two have absolutely earned a break. I look forward to seeing your artwork syndicated in the future--make sure when it happens that you let us know where to look!
I disagreed with your opinions depicted in every single cartoon - except these last two (Mar01, Feb 29, 2004). And it turns they are a couple of years old!
Nevertheless, I've been looking forward to seeing a new cartoon every morning. You have a great sense of humor, and I get insight into the conservative mind. Keep up the good work.
This liberal democrat, deranged Bush hater, who disagrees with a lot of your views enjoys the site immensly. I know, I know, I'll buy the book. I'm afraid you might donate the money to republicans.
I will miss the frequent posts but be ever more grateful for future ones.
Like everyone else, I agree that your talent warrants publishing. Hang in there.
Perhaps online versions of papers like opinionjournal.com will see your value. Good luck!
I agree with the above comments, I have no clue why you can't get syndicated (other than the fact that you're conservative.. *gasp). The quality of the humor and art is unparalleled. This is literally the only cartoon I read regularly.
Maybe you could try adding google ads to your pages? I've read where other popular weblogs have actually made some decent money doing it.
Whatever you do, best of luck and I'll continue checking in every day for the latest.
Keep it up... it is great to see your cartoons every morning before I leave for work. Hope the recharge works out nicely and that your best work lay ahead.
You two are the only editorial cartoonists I've read whose work I have never disagreed with. All the rest have drunk the Kool-Aid of some defective collectivist mythology or another. You represent truth and honor in pursuit of individual liberty.
Howard Roark found buyers for his work - you will too.
As an anti-war Libertarian, I'd be lying if I said I agreed with every cartoon published on this site; but that doesn't mean your work isn't damn good, and I've linked your blog to many a friend looking for particularly incisive commentary. Best of luck on getting syndicated-- you guys are very much deserving of it.
I view this site daily. It's one of the few sites that is on my shortlist of sites that absolutely must get visited during morning coffee.
Your heroic Uncle Sam is inspiring. He's the best Uncle Sam I've ever seen drawn. There's nothing old, weak, or corrupt about him.
I wish you the best in your continued efforts, whatever format they appear in.
Thank you for sharing what you've drawn to date.
Only found your site recently. It's great. Enjoy your holiday but be sure to come back real soon.
Sign me up for whatever possible syndication campaign you may be planning.
We at TOG's thoughts pour out a cold one for you fella's. It's been a ride and we'd be proud to support you in whatever journeys lie ahead. Good luck with the syndication and here's to your success.
My copy of your book is already "dog-eared" and has seen its way around my office with almost all positive comments. It's wonderful to see your work online, and reading your cogent commentaries keeps fuel in my tank. I'm sure success will find you.
Congratulations to you both on a tremendously productive year. I have profound respect for your creations, and your passion. On this occasion, I lift a glass in toast to your successes in the next year and beyond.
In a four-page comic "Premise to Consequences" in Wha...!? (1975), Steve Ditko (co-creator of Spiderman) described a mechanized guardian of individual rights called "CO.-DE." or the Contradiction Detector. Of it a collectivist character said, "It is impossible to deceive the 'Contradiction Detector' that protects the country from political office seekers holding anti-individual right views!"
In the past year, you have materially and intellectually contributed pieces to the creation of a real "CO.-DE." As the flywheel builds momentum, there is much hope for the future.
Dear Allen and John,
Ive enjoyed your work immensly as it is both funny and hard-hitting.
Sock it to the irrationalists. heh
For now the only value I can return is my deep appreciation and gratitude.
Keep up the great work, and I'd rather have you draw rarely than not at all.
-Pavel A. from the Deranged Dominion, where our "superior" public health care now requires you to wait Two Days in the ER ward, in some locations. How's that for the golden hour?
I've only found you a few months ago and I truly thought you were syndicated artists sharing your stuff online. I'm amazed that you're not. Lets hope someone somewhere gets their head out of the usual place long enough to appreciate your quality work.
If I can help in any way, email campaigns, etc., please let me know. I'll join the volunteers above. I'm going to miss it while you rest up but I'll live with the fact.
Thanks for sharing with us.
Like many of the others posting here, I've enjoyed your work ever since I was introduced to it. I'm looking forward to the new book to go with the one I already have. Good luck on the syndication.
I will miss you a lot. I can understand your reasoning but am selfishly dissappointed. I wish you well in any future endeavors. It is a sad comment that you are not already syndicated.
I've made your cartoons a "favorite" on my blog site-list for most of this past year. Thanks for inspiring me and for putting into clearer focus many news issues. As for syndication, . . . Go forth and conquer!
Thanks to everyone. Your encouragement is like a tonic. We knew a lot of people viewed our cartoons. We saw the numbers. But to hear from you personally, whether in the comments or e-mails, makes it all the more real. If we devise a syndication campaign that utilizes our blog readers, you can bet that we will announce it here. Your offers of support are downright heartwarming.
I come here every day in the morning and always enjoy your cartoons - good luck with everything!
Please just let us know how we can help. I would love to see C&F in newpapers.
I love your work and I wish you all the best in your efforts.
You guys make some of the best political cartoons I have ever seen. You have the talent to open peoples eyes and to direct people to the truth through your work. It would be a crime if you weren't syndicated. I enjoy seeing your work greatly, and hope you two the best of luck in the future. Thank you.
I just found your site today, and I think it's awesome. I gotta tell you, the 9/11 cartoon - NEVER AGAIN - brought tears to my eyes. You so perfectly captured the horrifying visual of the falling bodies - it's almost overwhelming. You've got awesome talent, and I'm definitely going to join the syndication push. Let us know who to contact and we'll bombard 'em!
I'll definitely be checking in daily - catching up on the archives for now, looking forward to the new releases starting 3/16. Thanks for your stand and your willingness to share it with us.
It's unfortunate that I won't have anything to read until the 16th, but I wish you guys the best of luck, your cartoons are the best I have read in the long time. They are much better than the usual party-line Dem or GOP comics that I see printed in the major newspapers.
Keep up the Good Work!
Allen and John:
As I said last year when your blog and my son were born in the same week: "What a week!" Me and my family wish you the best of luck and offer whatever we can do to get your message heard.
I echo what Chris Muir said. . .
Have a great rest, but please don't give
up the fight. You are able to express
so much with your cartoons. I think
it needs to be expressed in syndication.
I love your work and will be suffering
withdrawal till 03/16/2004.
Congrats on the one year anniversary. I have your site on my "favorites" but I must admit it is my favorite! Your editorial cartoons and comments are always right on! Here's hoping you get picked up in syndaction by the Liberal Media!
Thank you Cox and Forkum. Yours are the best editorial cartoons I've ever read, and if I owned a newspaper you'd be in it every day. Your work provides some of that "spiritual fuel" we need in order to carry on in a world full of irrational people.
You guys are definitely gifted and I have no doubt your syndication will come. Until then I will keep supporting you guys by word of mouth and my wallet. Keep up the great work.
You are one of my "must visit" sites, whenever I need some conservative-minded inspiration, or a good laugh at the expense of the leftist-libs. A classic that springs to mind is the Michael Moore acceptance speech.
The fact that you are not yet syndicated, while rubbish like "Doonesbury" continues to be published indicates the sorry state to which the culture has declined.
Your work is fantastic. I wish you the very best and look forward to your return.
I wanted to thank you for your daily political cartoons. I looked forward to them as my daily nutritional intellectual digest of the current events. You will be sorely missed by this reader
Enjoy your break guys... you've definitely earned it!
Allen and John,
As an Objectivist artist/writer I have always dreamed of doing Political Cartoons, but once I discovered you guys, I realized that I no longer had to. You two do it far better than I ever could. I am envious of your brilliance, but more importantly, I am inspired.
You two hold the honor of being the only Political Cartoonists that I have never disagreed with. C&F is 100 percent on the ball 100 percent of the time.
I would gladly pay a monthly fee to view your site.
I will join any letter writing campaign that endevours to get you syndicated.
I the mean time, I am going to go out and buy a few more copies of your book... just to show my support.
Keep up the good work. And Thank You!!!
Your cartoons are some of the best, pleasantly politically in-correct. And yes, that also means that I like them when I don't agree.
Would be great to see you syndicated, you'd definitely deserve it.
from Pro Libertate, Switzerland
Cox & Forkum are two of the best minds in editorial cartooning today. That they are not carried in a major American newspaper is an insult.
If letter writing or other nagging would help, sign me up. These men deserve a home.
Your product probably inspires the same amount of teeth-gnashing and furor among the enemies of the West and civilization as the delight Mahmoud Kahil's hate-filled scribblings inspired among them.
Keep up the good work.
Alright...this is the last straw!
All I want to know is who's A** I have to kick to get you guys syndicated? Huh? WHO?!
Get me a list of the Syndicates you have applied to and lets ALL put some serious pressure on them. Also, I'm going to check with the Jerusalem Post and see what can be done there to put you on the International scene.
MORONS...I can't believe that they have turned you down...FOOLS.
I'm a little upset at this news...you might have to delete this email as a rant.
YOU KEEP AT IT...YOU HANG IN THERE...If I even think you guys are throwing in the towel, I'm going to come up there and give you both a personal pep-talk.
Let's put out the word through all the Blogs that everyone should write, call, email, etc. these syndicates, their local papers, and whatever else. Hey, I did it with the veterans and we HAMMERED the Maritime Administration and now they are under a GAO investigation....let's use the Net--it works...and we can do it so you don't have to get "involved". Just hang in there...and email me...I want to know what you think we can do to help.
Thanks for the excellent work. Good luck with the syndication efforts. Buying lunch for a few secretaries at places like Andrews & McMeel works about as well as anything. Sometimss you have to go straight to the top.
I urged my local "rag" to consider you guys since they run the usual boring "Bush-bashing" junk all the time.
Wishing you guys the best on a syndication run!
I have just heard of you guys from LGF.
Great work (smile slowly spreading across face) I will definitely return to this site.
You guys should continue on this blog. I love checking out your cartoons on a weekly basis. And guess what: i'm a democrat!
Just to let you know that your work is appreciated here in the Middle East and what I have come to know as the "Helly Land".
This forced diet is not appreciated if understood and I am looking forward to the breaking of the 'fast'.
You guys do amazing work. Your site is my most regularly visited site so as you can imagine, I'm sad that I won't be able to get my daily "fix" of laughs and insight. I'll gladly pay a monthly fee to help you guys keep turning out these amazing editorial cartoons.
Liberal cartoons are out of vogue. 9-11 never happened is the new Democratic slogan. That's the reason Bin Laden wants the Democrats to win. This is the reason Bush is going to be reelected. Democrats do not have an answer to the fact that America's enemies want Bush to lose. Bin Laden, Saddam, Taliban, Iran, Arafat, Hamas, Hezbolla, Jihadis and Arab dictators all want Kerry to win. Bush has utterly devastated them. They know they'll get more of the same if he's reelected. That's the simple truth. Look at the oil price. The OPEC and its band of assorted tyrants and enemies of America is keeping it artificially high to make sure the economy and the labor market do not recover. Just to anger the voters not to vote for Georgie the Tyrant Killer. To my surprise some democratic voters are falling in their trap. Who are electing the president of the US, Americans or America's enemies? A vote for Kerry is a vote for the enemy.
I'm writing to the local newsrags to ask them to run your most excellent cartoons! They are excellent both in technique and in speaking for the objectivist point of view.
I'm probably a rare beast, my folks read Ayn Rand's books back in the late fifties early sixties, and I worked for Barry Goldwater's campaign as a 13 year old...we need your work, and we need you published, whether on tshirts, newspapers or billboards!
Allen and John,
I've enjoyed seeing your cartoons in TIA and on the website for the past year. Enjoy your time off and I'll be looking forward to your return an another week. I'd also be interested in another book should you decide to publish one.
Like Nick suggested above, I too would be happy to help with a letter writing or other campaign if you decide that it would help you gain the syndication you deserve.