Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Don Quixote (1977)

Click on the cartoon for a larger version:
1977 Dry Bones cartoon -Jimmy Carter

Today's news is about the trip to the Mideast by President George W. Bush's Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice.

Today's Golden Oldie is from thirty years ago. Back then the American President had sent his Secretary of State (Cyrus Vance) searching for peace by trying to force Israel to open the gates to the PLO terrorists. Back then I gave Carter the benefit of the doubt and cast him as an idealist rather than as an enemy. So we had Jimmy as Don Quixote and Cyrus Vance as Sancho Vanza (Quixote's servant Sancho Panza).

Back then, when I did a full-page cartoon, I always added a Doobie strip at the bottom. It gave the little fellow a chance to respond to the page by speaking the cold, hard, and cynical truth. Interesting to note that today, the situation has changed! the Arabs and Israel are facing a foreign enemy force... and we didn't have to call for Cuban mercenaries!

We've got Iran!

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Monday, July 30, 2007

Mr. History Says:

Dry Bones cartoon: Brit PM .
Readers have asked for more "Mr. History" cartoons, so here you are!

* * *

According to the British newspaper the Sunday Express:
"Gordon Brown has banned ministers from using the word “Muslim” in connection with the terrorism crisis.

The Prime Minister has also instructed his team – including new Home Secretary Jacqui Smith – that the phrase “war on terror” is to be dropped.

The shake-up is part of a fresh attempt to improve community relations and avoid offending Muslims, adopting a more “consensual” tone than existed under Tony Blair."-More

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Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sunday Mail: July 29, 2007

Letters Fron Dry Bones Posting a cartoon every weekday leaves no room for me to simply share news, ideas, and other stuff with you, so here's 'Sunday Mail: Letters from Dry Bones'.
Letters Fron Dry Bones
A New Beginning.
According to the Hebrew calendar, Last wednesday was Tisha Be'Av. The day on which our Holy Temple was destroyed. The three weeks leading up to that awful date are a time of sadness and mourning. A time when we dwell on the loss. But now, once again, we've passed through that traditionally dark time in the Jewish year and are now ready for a new beginning. So I searched and searched for a way to kick start a more optimistic and upbeat attitude for us all... and here it is!

I found a place that sells beautiful, accurate, fun to put together, Temple Model kits!! The kits are normally low priced at $29.95, but I beat them into giving Dry Bones fans a 10% discount!!

So for only $26.95 you can now have, and put together, an accurate and beautiful model of the Temple in your home. Whether you put it together for fun with your favorite 10 year-old, or want to construct it yourself for serious study, this is for you! Get full details and see some snapshots of the kit by clicking on Temple Model Kit.

And after you put your kit together, send me a nice photo of you and your finished model. I'll publish the best ones on a future posting.


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Friday, July 27, 2007

Double Trouble

Dry Bones cartoon: The PA Prez has two names and two faces.
I had some difficulty doing a cartoon today. Something was bothering me about every idea that I came up with. Then it hit me. I love to do cartoons about what's happening in the minds of most readers. I want to show our fears, hopes, and judgements... but after a while it's easy to forget that the Middle East (and its players and history) has become, for most people who are not experts, a complicated and confusing mess.

Recognizing the existence of that confusion became the jumping off point for today's Dry Bones.

So here's the question for today: Did you know that Mahmoud Abbas is Abu Mazen? Let me know. I'm curious.

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Help the Palestinian Authority (1997)

Dry Bones cartoon: Israeli Fundraising for the Palestinians.
Back in 1997, ten years ago, we were asking the world to support the Palestinian Authority?!!

Now, in 2007, we seem to be back in the "help us to help the moderate terrorists" mode again.

Of course this time we can blame the idiocy on the leadership of our "he's incapable of making a correct decision and nobody wants him to stay but he just wont go" Prime Minister Olmert.

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Latest News

Dry Bones cartoon: Arab Foreign Ministers to Israel for a Meeting.
I've used this newscaster character in Dry Bones cartoons right from the very beginning. Today I'm using him to express shock at the news script he's reading. The shock is that his script reports the blunt truth . . . rather than the politically correct cover story about "the sudden positive turn" in the search for a "Middle East Peace".

Official story here. Enjoy yourself.

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Occupied Jerusalem (1976)

1976 Dry Bones cartoon - Jerusalem, the Jewish City, illegally held by a series of occupiers for two thousand years.
This cartoon, done in March of 1976, was in response to a statement by William Scranton (the U.S. Ambassador to the UN in 1976)

Today being Tisha Be'Av, I thought it was appropriate to trot out the simple facts about the history of the foreign occupation of our eternal Holy City (which lasted until 1967).

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Monday, July 23, 2007

Dumb and Dumber

Dry Bones cartoon: Dumb and Dumber.
According to the Brit newspaper the Sunday Express:
"Gordon Brown has banned ministers from using the word “Muslim” in connection with the terrorism crisis.

The Prime Minister has also instructed his team – including new Home Secretary Jacqui Smith – that the phrase “war on terror” is to be dropped.

The shake-up is part of a fresh attempt to improve community relations and avoid offending Muslims, adopting a more “consensual” tone than existed under Tony Blair."-More

* * *
I don't know what it's like where you live but here in Israel nobody dies of cancer. They die after "a prolonged illness". An MD friend told me about an occasion when he had to inform a patient's family that their loved one was going to die. "Is it cancer?" the wife had whispered. "No," he said, "it's not cancer." "Thank God" was the wife's relief-filled response.

The West seems to be experiencing a similar state of fear and hysteria. We can't even name the enemy that threatens us. Islamists? Islamofascists? Muslim extremists? Jihadis? Wahabis? Islam? Nu? Maybe we should vote?

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Friday, July 20, 2007

Meet Mr. History

Dry Bones cartoon: Meet Mr. History.
Most of us are way too young to remember 1938. That's why I decided to come up with a new character. Mr. History. Problem is, that as a cartoon character he's funnier if he doesn't remember history. In this case he does not remember Neville Chamberlain. The Tony Blair of 1938.

So the story goes like this. The Nazis wanted "The return of Occupied Territories" (German speaking areas) which were part of Czechoslovakia. The Czechoslovakians, pressured on all sides, had "agreed" to exchange "Land for Peace". So the Brits sent their then Prime Minister to the region to work out the details with Adolf Hitler.

In explaining the "Peace" agreement he had secured in the region, (which led to the massive loss of life in WW2) Chamberlain said :

"We did not go there to decide whether the predominantly German areas in the Sudetenland should be passed over to the German Reich. That had been decided already. Czechoslovakia had accepted the Anglo-French proposals. What we had to consider was the method, the conditions and the time of the transfer of the territory. The second point to remember is that time was one of the essential factors. All the elements were present on the spot for the outbreak of a conflict which might have precipitated the catastrophe. We had populations inflamed to a high degree; we had extremists on both sides ready to work up and provoke incidents; we had considerable quantities of arms which were by no means confined to regularly organised forces. Therefore, it was essential that we should quickly reach a conclusion, so that this painful and difficult operation of transfer might be carried out at the earliest possible moment and concluded as soon as was consistent, with orderly procedure, in order that we might avoid the possibility of something that might have rendered all our attempts at peaceful solution useless. . . ."
-Read Chamberlain's 1938 speech.

* * *
So are we in a replay of British/Western appeasement? What do you think? And while we're at it what do you think of Mr. History?

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Syria: Chemical Warfare Threat (1986)

1986 Dry Bones cartoon - Syria and Chemical Warfare.

Below is the series of events in 1986 leading up to the publishing of this cartoon on December 03, 1986:

Early 1986
Unidentified US officials describe Syria's chemical weapons capabilities as including domestically produced sarin.
-Aharon Levran, ed., The Middle East Military Balance 1986 (Tel Aviv: Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, 1987), pp. 94-95.

June 5, 1986
The United States bans the sale of eight chemical precursors to Syria.
-David B. Ottaway, "Syria included in ban of chemical arms ingredients," Washington Post, 6 June 1986, p. A35.

August 7, 1986
In a speech before Israel's National Defense College, Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres announces that Syria is spending large sums to acquire surface-to-surface missiles and to develop chemical warheads. This publicly reported statement represents a change in Israeli policy, which had previously censored all mention of Syrian chemical weapons capabilities.
-Reuters, "Syria plans 'poison gas warheads'," Daily Telegraph, 8 August 1986.

August 7, 1986
Syria is reported to be helping the Iranian CW program, which is described as much smaller than the Syrian program.
-Michael Gordon, "Talks resume to stop spread of chemical arms," New York Times, 25 August 1986, p. A4.

December 2, 1986
Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Rabin tells parliament, "we are aware that Syria is armed with chemical weapons, artillery shells, bombs, and ground-to-ground missile warheads...including nerve gas." He also states that Syria is engaged in the production of gas carrying bombs.
-Andrew Meisels, "Israel Confirms Syria has Chemical Weapons," Washington Times, 3 December 1986, p. 1.

- For the complete timetable of reports about Syria and Chemical Warfare- 1968-1989, click here.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Computer Problems

Dry Bones cartoon: Political correctness requires that the Saudis be regarded as America's friend.
The following is reported in The Times of India:
"Although the United States has been accusing Syria and Iran of helping insurgents in Iraq, it is the Washington ally Saudi Arabia which is the largest source of foreign insurgents in the war-torn country.

About 45 per cent of all foreign militants targeting US security forces and Iraqi civilians are from Saudi Arabia, compared with 15 per cent from Syria and Lebanon, the Los Angeles Times reported on Monday.

Nearly half of the 135 foreigners in US detention facilities in Iraq are Saudis, the paper quoted a senior US military officer as saying.

The paper said that this has left the US military in the awkward position of 'battling an enemy whose top source of foreign fighters is a key ally that at best has not been able to prevent its citizens from undertaking bloody attacks in Iraq, and shares complicity in sending extremists to commit attacks against US forces, Iraqi civilians and the Shia-led government in Baghdad'." -more

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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

antiSemitic Epidemic (1976)

1976 Dry Bones cartoon - looking at the spreading epidemic of antiSemitism.
I was surprised to discover this Dry Bones cartoon from a July some thirty one years ago!

Back then, the spreading epidemic was antiSemitic ...and the main "carrier" was an Egyptian terrorist named Yasser Arafat. He posed (and was accepted) as a leader of the "Palestinian" people and was found worthy (by the West) of a Nobel Peace Prize.

These days the epidemic is no longer simply antiSemitic. It has changed and grown and become so virulent that we fear to name it. It is now a worldwide plague of religious-inspired terror which calls for the repression of women and the suppression of independent thought.

What surprised me about the cartoon from back in 1976 was that I had not remembered it when I did a cartoon just last week that examined the current state of the spreading virus .

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Monday, July 16, 2007

No Fault Insurance

Dry Bones cartoon: We slide into the Summer of '07 with Olmert still at the wheel!!!??.
A few days ago in a posting called Sherlock Investigates, I explained that "When I was a kid, growing up on some fairly tough Brooklyn streets, when someone stated the obvious he was put down with a disparaging "No sh-t, Sherlock." This prompted a loyal reader to write that "back in the Bronx" the phrase was "No Sh-t Dick Tracy."

I tell you this because, looking at today's cartoon, I realize that the punchline is also from the long-ago daze of my youth. I don't remember the joke but it ended with the occupants of a car that had been pulled over, explaining to the cop (who wanted to speak with the driver) that "We were all in the back seat, officer."

Am I having a "senior moment"? Was there such a joke?

And if so, how did it go?

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Sunday, July 15, 2007

Sunday Mail: July 15, 2007

Letters Fron Dry Bones Posting a cartoon every weekday leaves no room for me to simply share news, ideas, and other stuff with you, so here's a Dry Bones feature called: 'Sunday Mail: Letters from Dry Bones'.
Letters Fron Dry Bones
Item One: Our Secret Angel and Our Prayers.
Just a public thank you to our "secret angel"... the anonymous philanthropist and activist who is supporting the building of the Dry Bones Historic Archive Library. He's been an answer to our prayers. What we're praying for now is a grant to support the Dry Bones Blog itself.

Letters Fron Dry Bones
Item Two: Jerusalem and Your Prayers.
If you believe in the power of prayer, this is for you!

The Holy City Prayer Society, a nondenominational monotheistic fellowship dedicated to advancing the value of prayer produces literature, recruits members, and most importantly, prays for you. In Jerusalem. Members of the Holy City Prayer Society include Christians, Jews, and all believers in the God of Abraham. I've checked them out and they are kosher! Not only that, but I used "Protectzia" (Israeli slang for unfair insider connection) to get you a 10% discount!! You can have a prayer said for you (or a loved one) daily in Jerusalem, the site of the Holy Temple! You can arrange for reciting of Kaddish (memorial prayers) and more. Your pipeline to Holy Jerusalem, with a Discount for Dry Bones fans!! You MUST check this one out. Click on Holy City Prayer Society

...And may your prayers be answered.


Friday, July 13, 2007

Pasteur in Politics. . .

Dry Bones cartoon: To stop the spread of Islamist terrorism we need to stop the spreading of the Islamist Ideology.
An antiSemitic, antiFemale, antidemocratic, fascist movement is now challenging Western civilization around the world. Any intelligent defense of democracy would require that we investigate, analyze, and try to understand the appeal of this poisonous movement.

Captured terrorists provide us with an opportunity to study the phenomenon up close... But apparently neither Israel, America, Europe, or India have yet come to recognize that fact. The holding pens of America's Gitmo facility and Israeli prisons should be laboratories for the study of these zombified "True Believers". They have not. Instead they have become organizational centers for IslamoFascists.

Will the West come to understand (before it's too late) that we can't win an ideological war without confronting the enemy ideology?

So what do you think?


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Thursday, July 12, 2007

Jordan Steps Out (1988)

1988 Dry Bones cartoon - Jordan relinquishes the West Bank.
Today's cartoon is from 1988. It was published a couple of days after King Hussein announced that the Kingdom of Jordan was stepping out of the West Bank mess.

Interestingly, the current news is that some Palestinians are asking the Jordanians to step back in. The issue arose when:

"Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas signaled that he wants Jordan to dispatch to the West Bank a military unit under Jordanian command that is made up of his own Palestinian Fatah loyalists.

The Palestinian force, known as the Badr Brigade, would bolster Abbas's security in the wake of rival Hamas' conquest of Gaza.

Jordan says it condones deploying the troops. Yet it also insists it has no intention of meddling in a Palestinian power struggle, or of assuming any type of protectorate role in the West Bank.

“We shouldn't read too much into this,” said chief Jordanian government spokesman Nasser Judeh. Deploying the force in the West Bank “shouldn't be seen as Jordan taking up a security or any other role” in the Palestinian territories." -more


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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sherlock Investigates

Dry Bones cartoon: Shelock investigates the Islamist doctors' bombing plot.
Sherlock Holmes has been used as a symbol of clear, deductive thinking and logical deduction. When I was a kid, growing up on some fairly tough Brooklyn streets, when someone stated the obvious he was put down with a disparaging "No sh-t, Sherlock". In these days of political correctness stating the obvious is often a "no-no".

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

A Simple Proposal (1977)

1977 Dry Bones cartoon - PM Menachem Begin writes to President Jimmy Carter.
I got lazy again and decided to just run a "30 years ago this month" cartoon. So is this depressing or not? Thirty years later and the United States still refuses to move its embassy to our capital city. Thirty years later and we still have to respond to Jimmy Carter's wacko ideas and pronouncements.

* * *
A loyal reader has given former President Carter a cute, mafia-style nickname. I can't get it out of my head. It's like an annoying melody that you can't stop humming. Whenever I think of Carter these days the moniker pops up. I'm going to share it with you. Sorry. He refers to the 39th President of the United States as Jimmy One-Term.

There, now it's stuck in your head!

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Playing Poker

Dry Bones cartoon: The Saudis drop the 'Saudi Peace Plan'.
It's now five months since the Saudi-negotiated peace between Hamas and Fatah. At the time I posted a cartoon called Palestinian Fairy Tale

Are the Arab regimes now crumbling in the face of Persion expansionism and the setting up of Iranian puppet clients in the region like Hamas and Hizbullah? Will the Saudis now back off and try to protect their butts by appeasing Hamas ...and dumping the idea of the Saudi brokered "Peace Plan" for Israel?

According to a Reuters report:

JERUSALEM, July 4 (Reuters) - "Israel believes an Arab peace initiative is on hold because of Saudi objections to Western efforts to isolate Hamas Islamists, officials said on Wednesday.

The 2002 plan promoted by Saudi Arabia and revived in March, offers Israel normal relations with Arab states in exchange for its withdrawal from all territory captured in the 1967 Middle East war.

Although Israel has said it could never consider, on security and demographic grounds, a return of Palestinian refugees or a full pullout from the occupied West Bank, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has pointed to what he termed positive aspects of the proposal.

The initiative "is on hold, nobody is advancing it," one of the Israeli officials said.

The officials said some Arab countries, notably Saudi Arabia, opposed U.S.-supported efforts to isolate Hamas following its defeat of President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah group in Gaza last month.

An analysis circulated among Israeli Foreign Ministry officials and obtained by Reuters said Saudi Arabia "had distanced itself from direct involvement in the Palestinian issue". -more

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Friday, July 06, 2007

A Simple Truth

Dry Bones cartoon: Our countries fight terrorists as if they were simply criminals. We seem, not yet, to understand that we are in an ideological war.
I cringe every time I hear the phrase "War On Terror". The "terrorists" that are attacking the West are the soldiers of the Islamist movement. We know it. But we don't say it.

In World War 2 the Free World faced the Axis powers of Germany, Italy, and Japan. We were not bound by Political Correctness to avoid saying the name of our enemy. And somehow, in that reluctance to name our enemy, we find ourselves ignoring the ideology being spread by him through religious teachings and incitement. We insist on platitudes like "Religion of Peace" to avoid examining the threat that our civilization now faces.

Our countries fight terrorists as if they were simply criminals. We seem, not yet, to understand that we are in an ideological war. A war based on ideas and beliefs. We won't start winning that war until we are ready to battle against those ideas and beliefs. It's a simple truth. That's what I think

What do you think? Are we ignoring the real war?
Can we win an ideological war without fighting its ideology?

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Thursday, July 05, 2007

The Day After (1979)

1979 Dry Bones cartoon - The day after July 4... Entebbe Day!

July 5, 1979.

Twenty eight years ago today.
Back then the Dry Bones cartoon had six panels, not four.
Back then I drew Mr. Shuldig without pupils in his eyes.
Lots of things have changed in the close to three decades since then.
One thing, for me, has not.

Today, July 5th, is still the day after Entebbe Day!

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Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Their Next Generation

Dry Bones cartoon: Palestinians use Mickey Mouse to poison the minds of their next generation.
Wanna' see for yourself? Wanna' see the episode of the Palestinian children's show where the mouse becomes a martyr for the kids to emulate? Once again we are in debt to the translators at MEMRI for bringing us a subtitled video of what is being broadcast. To see for yourself just click on
MEMRI video
MEMRI video

* * *
Oh and as to the punchline about the show's producers going on to introduce Bambi... There's this piece by Reuters headlined:

Hamas TV to replace "martyred" Mickey Mouse lookalike

GAZA (Reuters) - "A Hamas television station that last week killed off a Mickey Mouse lookalike who urged children to fight against Israel will use other famous characters to further their Islamist agenda, station officials said on Monday.

The host of the children's show 'Tomorrow's Pioneers', Farfur, dressed in a full body-suit to resemble the Walt Disney cartoon character. The character was beaten to death in the show's final episode last week by a character posing as an Israeli.

Farfur and a female co-host instructed their young viewers on Hamas's militant brand of Muslim piety and urged children to support armed resistance against Israel.

Mohammad Saeed, the director of production at Al-Aqsa Television, told Reuters the station would use other famous cartoon characters in future shows.

'Farfur was a story alive and he has turned into another story as a (martyr),' Saeed said."

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Entebbe Day (1977)

1977 Dry Bones cartoon - celebrating Entebbe Day.
I drew this cartoon exactly thirty years ago. July 4th 1977. It was the first anniversary of that amazing, daring rescue at Entebbe Airport. The operation had not only snatched the hostages out of their place of captivity, but had also dragged the country out of the dark depths of despair.

Here's the cartoon that I'd done the year before, when the rescue took place.

For info about the Entebbe raid... and to see actual 1976 TV coverage of the event click here.

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Monday, July 02, 2007

Mr. Sharpie

Dry Bones cartoon: Olmert surrenders at Sharm, avoids having to fight a war first.

I called this cartoon/posting Mr. Sharpie. Here in the blogosphere, the columnist has to think up his/her own headlines.

Back in the world of paper-based newspapers, writing the headlines was the job of the headline writer. This was because headlines had to be written to "fit" the physical space allocated to the piece. i.e. is it a one-column head, two column head, what font size is being used... . Different papers had different styles... i.e. humorous, straight-forward, etc. Headline writers on papers that I worked for always seemed like crossword puzzle freaks to me. It's because, in the search for the proper "fit" it was common to hear a headline writer call out for help with requests like "I need a short word for organization."

For many years, my studio was in the Jerusalem Post building in Jerusalem. In addition to headline writers there was a translation department. Ads which were running in the Hebrew press often would be sent to the Post to be run in English translation. Other ads, taken in English by the Post would be translated and sent on to be run, in parallel, in a Hebrew paper. Thus the need for a room of translators. One day I happened to be in the room when I heard a translator call out for help. To this day I remember that moment which happened thirty years ago. The request was "How do you say efficiency In Hebrew?" After a moment of silence came the response. "Dag B'Yam."

* * *
For those of you who don't speak Hebrew, "Dag B'Yam" means "a fish in a sea".

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Sunday, July 01, 2007

Sunday Mail: July 1, 2007

Letters Fron Dry Bones Posting a cartoon every weekday leaves no room for me to simply share news, ideas, and other stuff with you, so here's a new Dry Bones feature called: 'Sunday Mail: Letters from Dry Bones'.
Letters Fron Dry Bones
Item One: Our Secret Angel.
As I mentioned before, we're in the middle of building a massive, online research library archive of Dry Bones cartoons. Because the cartoons have been commenting on events since January 1, 1973, the library will enable scholars, students, activists, and others to see history as it was lived, rather than as it is being re-written.

If things go well, we will soon be looking for beta testers. I'll let you know.

The costs and expenses associated with the building of this historical library are being funded by a generous and anonymous American donor who has also contributed the funds that allow your impoverished cartoonist to pay his rent and avoid relocation to a cardboard box. He is our secret angel.

Letters Fron Dry Bones
Item Two: Seeking a Grant For Dry Bones.
Since its start, back in 1973, the Dry Bones goal has always been to build our community, preserve our history, defend democracy, and to promote the enjoyment of our culture.

In August of 2005 I tried an experiment. The experiment was to see if the cartoons could "work" online. The experiment proved successful. The blog has become hugely popular and the cartoons are circulating through the blogosphere. This coming August we will celebrate two years of the Dry Bones Blog.

But the blog has expanded to consume my every waking hour! Remember the movie "Little Shop of Horrors"? Remember Audrey, the giant man-eating plant in the basement... demanding to be fed? "Feed Me, Seymour" it croaked, and do you remember poor Seymour Krelborn, the shnuk who kept it alive, feeding it his own blood? A new bandaid every day on each freshly sucked-dry finger?

So here's the deal. I'm looking for a foundation, an organization, or a private donor who sees the Dry Bones Blog as worthy of support. I need an annual grant to support me in this work. If you, or someone you know, can connect me with such a grant-giver please email me at: blog(at)mrdrybones(dot)com

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