Here's a scheduling insight, at least for the print end of the business:
The Sunday paper being, in most markets, two or three or more times the size of the daily paper, the sections which can be printed in advance -- chiefly Features, Classifieds and Editorial -- are often done Friday in the late afternoon and early evening, before the Saturday is run.
That avoids overtime and late deliveries that would happen if they tried to roll out the entire Sunday late Saturday night.
Which means that a lot of editorial cartoonists likely got their Sunday cartoons done Friday, then clocked out and were on their way home when they heard that McCain had declared his opposition to the Scrooge/Fagan bill.
Some were perhaps happy they had done an insightful cartoon about how young people in saggy pants stare at their cell phones.
Others were perhaps less than thrilled that the GOP repeal effort had suddenly become a dead letter.
Most of the latter's work will look flat and irrelevant tomorrow morning.
Kirk Walters, however, comes out pretty well, with a take in which he comments on the overall folly of the move. And, particularly since he brings in the upcoming tax reform effort, this continues to work, using the health care debacle as a general criticism of the GOP's Big Muddy approach.
In fact, the cartoon is somewhat enhanced by the McCain announcement, because, even without a final outcome, his anticipation of failure emphasizes the foolish stubborness upon which he comments.
It was a good approach to take, given that there wasn't going to be a vote Friday afternoon and the matter would likely be up in the air until after the cartoon appeared.
Even if McCain had come out in favor, there would have been enough uncertainty to keep the cartoon alive, while the odds were that McCain would remain silent if he did plan to vote for repeal.
By contrast, Matt Davies got caught by the change, and it's a shame because this is an excellent, trenchant commentary on the pigheaded refusal of the GOP to look to the common good rather than pursue partisan goals.
Unfortunately for Davies, it relies for much of its punch on the idea that, damn the experts, damn the impact on Americans, the GOP is going to ram it through, and they're apparently not going to be able to.
It's not entirely wasted: It's still a good comment on their overall refusal to consider the impact of dogmatic legislation.
I wish McCain had held his announcement for Monday morning, if only because the thing I hate most in political cartooning is lack of research, and so I really like this cartoon.
I have little respect for cartoonists who rely on personal ridicule to make their points, but I have real contempt for those who don't bother to find out what's actually going on, and that's not a partisan flaw. Laziness occurs on both sides.
Here, Davies did a nice job of assembling the facts and he got everything right except the timing.
He won't even get a good horror story out of it -- those come when you criticize someone in a cartoon and they're killed in a car crash before it appears, or you make a joke about poor ferry service and one sinks with 200 people aboard.
This, rather, is simply what the British call "a damp squib" and what I call a damn shame.
Davies can still include it in his awards portfolios. The judges aren't going to care about the precise timing, and it's a terrific cartoon.
Except, y'know, for the pffft factor. That's McCain's fault.
Juxtaposition of the Day
Sheldon suggests yet another re-imagining of Batman, while Comics Beat offers a preview of a for-real comic about Wonder Woman's newly discovered brother. These are samples; you should follow those links to see the entire things.
It's easy to tell which one is just kidding. The trick is to decide why the other isn't.
Wonder Fella's first problem is gonna be establishing siblingocity among Wonder Persons. As this Wikipedia entry explains:
There were two special months in the spring in which (the Amazons) would go up into the neighboring mountain which separates them and the Gargareans. The Gargareans also ... would go there to offer sacrifice with the Amazons and also to have intercourse with them for the sake of begetting children. They did this in secrecy and darkness, any Gargareans at random with any Amazon, and after making them pregnant they would send them away. Any females that were born are retained by the Amazons themselves, but the males would be taken to the Gargareans to be brought up; and each Gargareans to whom a child is brought would adopt the child as his own, regarding the child as his son because of his uncertainty.
Though of course he'd be a mighty hero.
Being Wonder-bred builds strong bodies.
Now, the business news
Here are the two most-recent episodes of Sally Forth, in which Sally's sister got herself a job that fits her utter lack of qualifications but which, as Ralph suggests, may not last forever.
Don't laugh too hard: I had one of those jobs, for about three months.
A real-estate marketer hired me and another employee apparently to sit in an empty building asking each other how this thing was ever going to generate money, because the more research we did on setting the business up, the less sense the overall plan seemed to make.
Finally, the boss sat us down and admitted it wouldn't work.
But our paychecks cleared.
That's the mark of a good job.
Meanwhile, if Jackie's new boss enjoyed the pop culture references, poor Marla over at Retail is simply feeling old.
I remember taking some comfort -- about a dozen years ago -- that an assistant, though younger than my kids, was a year older than my daughter-in-law.
Buck up, Marla: We're all gonna get old someday.
Thanks to John McCain.