Financial Times Rips Off Ted Rall

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You don’t have to be a regular reader to know that I’ve been depicting Barack Obama in Hello Kitty regalia for about one year: flags, banners, you name it. Most recently, I did an <a href=””>Obamaman cartoon</a> that depicts our lame superhero president wearing a Hello Kitty logo on his chest.

Now a sharp-eyed FOR points out that an illustrator for the Financial Times has rather brazenly <a href=””>ripped off my meme</a>.

Usually, these things are less than cut and dry. But it’s pretty hard to believe that any illustrator could be unaware of my use of the Hello Kitty imagery to define Obama–it ain’t as branded as Generalissimo El Busho yet, but come on. This one fails the smell test.

Suffice it to say that, if this sort of thing annoys you, it is possible to <a href=””>email the Financial Times a letter to the editor</a>.

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About the Author

Ted Rall
Ted Rall
Setting himself apart from the herd with a unique drawing style and a take-no-prisoners approach, Ted Rall began editorial cartooning in the 1980s with a handful of alternative weekly newspapers whose editors saw his photocopied work hanging from lampposts in New York City. In 1991 San Francisco Chronicle Features began syndicating Rall’s three-times-a-week editorial cartoons syndication with newspapers including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Des Moines Register and Philadelphia Daily News.

Universal Press Syndicate picked up Rall’s cartoons in 1996. Today the man often called “the most controversial cartoonist in America” appears in more than 100 newspapers throughout the United States, ranging from the Washington Post to the Village Voice.

His trademark “Generalissimo El Busho” is an iconic caricature of President Bush. It has drawn criticism from conservatives. He was called “treasonous” by the right-wing Weekly Standard and “anti-American” by the Wall Street Journal’s conservative editorial page. The Right Wing News website named him 2003’s “Most Annoying Liberal” and was named number 15 in Bernard Goldberg’s book 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America. He has received numerous death threats.

Rall has also won awards, including the 1995 and 2000 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards for Outstanding Coverage of the Problems of the Disadvantaged. In 1996 he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

Rall also draws non-political strips for MAD magazine and cartoon journalism for EurasiaNet, a news website about the former Soviet republics of Central Asia.

"Editorial cartooning is an intrinsically negative medium,” Rall says, “but I’m an optimistic person. My hope is that, by calling attention to hypocrisy in our government and the inward focus of American culture in an amusing way, things will change for the better.”

Four collections of Rall’s cartoons have been published: Waking Up In America, All The Rules Have Changed, Search and Destroy, and America Gone Wild, as well as three award-winning graphic novels, My War With Brian, Real Americans Admit: The Worst Thing I’ve Ever Done! and 2024, a parody of Orwell’s 1984. He edited an influential three-volume anthology of edgy alternative weekly political cartoons, Attitude. He wrote the bestselling 1998 “generational manifesto” Revenge of the Latchkey Kids.

Rall covered the war in Afghanistan in cartoon form, where his harrowing experience—3 of the 44 journalists with whom he traveled were killed—led to the critically acclaimed book To Afghanistan and Back. He released two books of prose during 2004, Wake Up, You’re Liberal: How We Can Take America Back From the Right and Generalissimo El Busho.

Rall’s most recent book is Silk Road to Ruin: Is Central Asia the New Middle East?, a detailed analysis of the region in prose and cartoons.

See his books from NBM!

2 Comments on "Financial Times Rips Off Ted Rall"

  1. Wait, so you want to start a meme, but you don’t want other people to use it? That’s not how it works.

  2. shane white shane white | July 1, 2009 at 8:08 pm |

    jeffk: If you acknowledge him you validate him…just back away slowly.

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