When We Can't See the Forest for the Bushes, by Pat...

Editor's Choice

March 24, 2002|By Michael Pakenham

When We Can't See the Forest for the Bushes, by Pat Oliphant (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 128 pages, $14.95).

Pat Oliphant, a native Australian, has stood firmly among the top three or four cartoonists in the U.S. since he began at the Denver Post in 1964. Now syndicated in more than 300 newspapers, his pen has never been sharper. In this collection of cartoons from October 2000 till a year later, he gives absolutely no quarter to anyone. Perhaps the closest thing to a lovable image in this collection is the enormous bear that represents the economy, which is alternatively tweaked, goaded, wrestled and ridden by a tiny, obdurate and over-spectacled Alan Greenspan. An enormous T-shirted Bill Gates is presented to a court as his lawyer intones "If it please the court, my client feels he should never have been tried as an adult." In the cartoons that preceded the 2000 election, George W. Bush and Al Gore appear equally absurd -- and bedeviled by a wraith-like, barely functional Ralph Nader. A grand tonic in trying times.

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