Immigration and Jobs

Cartoon by Barry

Illustration shows Alamar, a dark-skinned man wearing overalls and a hardhat, standing behind a partly built brick wall holding a brick in one hand and a trowel in the other.
CAPTION: Alamar came to the United States to find work. Alamar is a brick mason. He works hard and is very productive.

Illustration shows Alamar continuing to work on the wall, while a woman nearby wearing a hardhat checks something off on her clipboard. Behind Alamar, a man walks up carrying a box. Behind that man, a large truck has pulled up.
CAPTION: Because Alamar is so productive, people in related jobs, like brickmakers, site supervisors, and truckers, have more work to do.

Illustration shows Alamar, no longer wearing a hardhat, buying groceries from a cashier.
CAPTION: All those people, including Alamar, spend money in the local economy, on things like groceries and movies and diners and gas and clothes. All that spending creates more jobs.

Illustration shows Alamar back at work on the wall. Next to him, an angry bald man is yelling.
CAPTION: That’s why Americans welcome Alamar with friendship and open arms.

And here’s the same cartoon, in French! Thanks to Immigration Libre for the translation.



Panel 1.Alamar a immigré en France pour trouver un travail. Alamar est maçon, il travaille dur et est très productif.

Panel 2.Grâce à sa productivité, Alamar procure du travail à ses collègues tel que les routiers, contremaitres et briquetier.

Panel 3.Toutes ces personnes ainsi qu’Alamar dépensent leur argent dans l’économie locale, sur de la nourriture, des places de cinémas, de l’essence ou encore des vétements. Toute cette consommation crée encore plus de travail.

Panel 4.Et c’est pour cette raison que les Français acceuillent Alamar chaleureusement.
Angry Man Chauve: *Rentre chez toi ****** de voleur de boulot!*

Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Really Good Careers

Cartoon by Barry


Description of cartoon: The cartoon shows a woman holding a child’s hand, in a fairly dismal-looking city area, standing on a sidewalk at the entrance to a building. Above the entrance is a sign that says “Really Good Careers.” To the right of the entrance, a smaller sign says “An equal opportunity employer.” The entrance is shaped like a male silhouette; it seems apparent that the woman and her child could not fit through the entrance.

This cartoon is also available in black and white.

Posted in Economic cartoons, Feminist cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Top Ten Ways Teachers’ Unions Caused The Economic Crisis

Cartoon by Barry

Panel one
TITLE: Top Ten Ways Teacher’s Unions Caused the Economic Crisis (note: the words “teacher’s unions” are in a dripping blood font).
GRINNING DUDE IN SUIT WHO IS WEARING A FAKE HALO: Brought to you by the coalition of completely innocent bankers!

Panel two
BALDING DUDE IN SUIT, WITH PEDANTIC ATTITUDE: Maybe bankers wouldn’t destroy the economy if SOMEBODY had done a better job teaching them addition!

Panel three

Panel four
GRINNING WOMAN HOLDING BIBLE: If teachers allowed prayer in class and didn’t teach evolution, GOD wouldn’t have FORSAKEN THE ECONOMY!

Panel five
MAN SITTING ON HUGE PILE OF MONEY: Teacher pay sucks MILLIONS from the economy that could otherwise be spent in more PRODUCTIVE sectors of the economy. Like finance!

Panel six

Panel seven
SMILING WOMAN WITH NICE HAIR: When we just GIVE children an education, we kill their instinct for the FREE MARKET! First graders need more skin in the game!

Panel eight
MAN IN KLAN OUTFIT: Teachers unions support DEMOCRATS, democrats support giving MORTGAGES to BLACK PEOPLE, loaning BLACKS money DESTROYS the ECONOMY. Isn’t that obvious?

Panel nine
RICH DUDE STANDING IN FRONT OF MANSION: If unions didn’t lower PRODUCTIVITY, we BANKERS wouldn’t have to sell worthless sub-prime mortgages just to squeak out a meager living!

Panel ten
Image shows two young people, looking angry, and wearing Hogwarts uniforms.
GIRL: After Voldemort killed Lily and James Potter, his NEXT STEP was forming a TEACHERS’ UNION!
BOY: What a louse!

Panel eleven
GRINNING, POWERFUL-LOOKING DUDE IN SUIT: If no one was teaching MATH, we wouldn’t even KNOW there WAS an economic crisis. Problem SOLVED!

Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Health Care and Freedom

Cartoon by Barry

The scene: A woman in casual business wear addresses the reader directly.

Panel one
Woman: i’m TRAPPED in my job, because my kid is sick, and if i change jobs there goes my health insurance!

Panel two
Woman: i have a great idea for a business start-up — the kind of thing that could change my life! but i’m TRAPPED in my job because of the health insurance.

Panel three
Woman: the job recently forced me to relocate to IDAHO. i HATE living in idaho! i miss my family. but i’m trapped in my job because… well, you know.

Panel four
Woman: my boss assigns me unpaid overtime and makes inappropriate comments… but i can’t tell him to SHOVE it, because i’m TRAPPED.

Panel five
Woman: so my friend tells me that to solve all these problems, i should support single-payer health care. and i said
to her, ARE YOU NUTS?

Panel six
Woman: once the government gets involved in health care, we won’t be FREE!

Posted in Health care, Labor rights & Unions |

Unemployment: Democrats Vs Republicans

Cartoon by Barry

The scene shows two women, one of them a bit older and dressed in black skirt, heels, and a blazer, the other one a bit younger and wearing a hoodie, plaid pants, and sneakers.

Panel One
OLDER WOMAN: as an UNEMPLOYED person, you’d be NUTS to vote for the republicans! they’ve got NOTHING to help the unemployed!

Panel Two
OLDER WOMAN: republicans want giveaways for big corporations and they want tax cuts for THE RICH. that’s ALL they care about!

Panel Three
OLDER WOMAN: we’re facing the biggest unemployment crisis since the great depression! it’s CRUSHING our economy! and the gop IGNORES it!

Panel Four
YOUNGER WOMAN: okay, i WON’T vote republican! so tell me- what are DEMOCRATS doing to help the unemployed?

Panel Five
No dialog. The older woman thinks about it, the younger woman waits eagerly.

Panel Six
No dialog. The older woman grins like a salesperson afraid of losing a sale, the younger woman looks annoyed.

Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Our Top Ten Excuses For Ignoring Unemployment

Cartoon by Barry

Title Panel
In large letters: “Our Top Ten Excuses For Ignoring Unemployment”
Below the title, a man prays and says: As the Bible teaches us: “Screw those who cannot help themselves.”

Panel 1
Cheerful looking man in tie, seated at desk: High unemployment means lower wages! Think how high profits will be if wages drop to zero!

Panel 2
Declaming woman: Just get rid of welfare! Once the welfare queens have to pay their OWN way, they’ll find jobs!
Cheerfully agreeing man: Like during the great depression!

Panel 3
Sour-looking man in expensive suit: As the OPPOSITION party, we are firmly opposed to ANYTHING getting done.

Panel 4
Same woman, in smaller sub-dialog: I’ve been self-reliant since the day I was born!

Panel 5
Trembling, fearful man: Lower unemployment COULD raise inflation slightly, which MIGHT cause investors to make SLIGHTLY less money!
Same man, sub-dialogs: O the horror! I just peed my pants!

Panel 6
Cheery man on tennis court: I’LL FIGHT UNEMPLOYMENT! As soon as someone pays my six-figure lobbying fee.

Panel 7
Content-looking man in big suit, huge body, tiny head: DEFICIT SPENDING is WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! Unless it’s for something ESSENTIAL, like tax cuts for millionaires.

Panel 8
Senator in her office, buried above her elbows in a sea of cash: We Senators would LOVE to help, but we can’t lift our arms because we’re buried in Wall Street money.

Panel 9
Woman shaking her forefinger in the air: THE UNEMPLOYED ARE JUST LAZY! That’s what causes recessions! Sudden inexplicable national epidemics of LAZINESS!

Panel 10
Man standing on a path through the grass, picket fence in background. What’s in front of him might or might not be a cliff. He says: Who CARES? I’VE got enough money.

Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Top Ten Reasons Discrimination Against Fat People Is Perfectly Okay

Cartoon by Barry


Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Bitch If You Do, Broke If You Don’t

Cartoon by Barry

Bitch if you Do, Broke if you Don't

What I intended with this cartoon was to reply narrowly to one narrow argument; the argument that “women get paid less because they ask less.” It’s not that simple, and one reason it’s not that simple is that women can be punished for asking:

For example, a Carnegie Mellon and Harvard study by Hannah Riley Bowles, Linda C. Babcock, and Lei Lai showed that women are actually often penalized for negotiating. Bowles explains, “What we found across all the studies is men were always less willing to work with a woman who had attempted to negotiate than with a woman who did not.”  She continued, “They always preferred to work with a woman who stayed mum. But it made no difference to the men whether a guy had chosen to negotiate or not.”

Posted in Economic cartoons, Feminist cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

A Brief History of Corporate Whining

Cartoon by Barry

A Brief History of Corporate Whining

Each panel has a caption indicating what year the panel takes place in. Every panel shows an upper-class businessperson, dressed in clothing appropriate for their era, and complaining. All of them have expressions of panic or anger.

1842 Businessman: If workers can legally STRIKE, no business will be able to survive!

1887 Businessman: Give BLACKS an entire DOLLAR for a day’s labor? Might as well burn my business to the ground!

1912 Businessman: Worker deaths are TRAGIC, but ANTI-SWEATSHOP laws would be the DEATH of industry in America!

1915 Businessman: When workers can’t be FIRED for joining a UNION, how can ANYONE stay in business?

1924 Businessman: Banning CHILD LABOR would DESTROY the economy! Right, little Timmy?
Small urchan boy, missing a front tooth and two fingers, standing next to 1924 businssman: That’s right!

1938 Businessman: We can’t have a FORTY HOUR WORK WEEK, because if we DO there’ll be no employers LEFT to hire anyone!

1964 Businessman: EQUAL PAY for women AND negroes? Business can’t stay afloat if federal regulations STRANGLE us!

1970 Businessman: HEALTH and SAFETY laws are a formula for MASSIVE PERMANENT UNEMPLOYMENT!

NOW Businesswoman: If the new labor rights law PASSES, then business is doomed! DOOOOOOOOMED!

UPDATE: Someone pointed out this Chinese version to me on the web. I don’t know who created the translation, but I’m told it’s quite accurate!


Posted in Economic cartoons, Labor rights & Unions |

Star Wars Muppet Health Care Mashup + Original Art Auction!

Cartoon by Barry

This cartoon was published in the April 2009 issue of Dollars and Sense. The original art is being auctioned here.

To tell you the truth, I can’t draw Darth’s helmet to save my life. So I turned to the awesome Bill Mudron, who could easily draw Darth’s helmet with a crayon clenched between his butt cheeks, although in this case I’m pretty sure Bill used his hands. I wrote and penciled the cartoon, and Bill inked it, drawing Darth and the backgrounds pretty much from scratch.

Since this is a health care cartoon, I thought it would make sense to auction it off to help someone pay for health care. Somewhere on the internet I ran into Connie Parrott‘s case; Connie is a type 1 diabetic who is trying to raise funds for needed medical equipment through the internet. Although I haven’t met Connie, I emailed her, and she was willing to let me do the auction thing. Connie’s friend Ed Brayton, volunteered to help organize it.

So, anyway: The original art is being auctioned here on Ebay. You can find details (paper stock, image size, etc) over there.

It’s worth mentioning that I don’t usually draw my cartoons on paper! This is the first cartoon I’ve done in years that wasn’t done 100% on computer. So this is a relatively rare chance to own original paper art for one of my strips.

UPDATE: The art sold for $200. Yay!

Posted in Health care, Labor rights & Unions |