I’m not a huge William Powers fan, but this column — about the reaction to the reaction to that Pat Oliphant cartoon of the sadistic nun and little Mel Gibson — gets it exactly right:
Do you ever wonder why political cartoons have lost the magnetism and drawing power they once had, why they’re no longer part of the political conversation? There aren’t many Pat Oliphants left in America, you see, and the ones we have are so troublesome, so… costly.
And really, why offend people when you can make them happy? Why shock when you can calm and soothe? Why divide when you can unite? If the newspaper industry had a theme song, it would be that old Coke jingle: I’d like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony. More and more, it’s doing just that.