Saturday, April 30, 2016

100 Years Ago in the Funnies

After so many installments of war and turmoil, Slapstickback Saturday this week takes a lighter look back at the papers 100 years ago today by turning to the Chicago Sunday Tribune funny pages.
I must apologize, however, for the casual racism running rampant in the cartoons of the day.

We start with "Hans und Fritz," one of the iterations of Rudolph Dirks's Katzenjammer Kids strip. In the April 30, 1916 episode, the captain essays to deliver a chimpanzee to the "cannibal chief" by motorcycle. "I take him der chimp for a present, und dot's der finish of der monkeyshines," he exposits. "Maybe der chief von't know vitch is vitch," chortles Hans. Or Fritz. I don't know which is which, either.

Dirks was 7 when his family emigrated from Heide, Germany to Chicago; in the 1890s, he moved to New York to begin drawing "The Katzenjammer Kids" for the Hearst's New York Journal (soon followed by his younger brother and fellow cartoonist, Gus). He parted company with the Journal over his request to take a year off to travel to Europe with his wife. Hired by Pulitzer's New York World, Dirks had to go to court to win the right to continue drawing his characters under the new title here.

"Hans und Fritz" would soon be renamed "The Captain and the Kids" as America entered the war and things German weren't considered so funny.

Dirks is credited with one of the innovations in the above strip that you may not even have noticed: the lines behind a moving object to indicate speed.

I know next to nothing about Penny Ross and her cartoon, "Mama's Angel Child." Gus the chauffeur credits axle grease as the hair tonic that gave him his long locks. Hilarity ensues.

You will notice that each of these cartoons fills a full page in the Sunday color funnies section. Mind you, those pages were a good deal larger those of than any newspaper you'll find on the newsstand today; broadsheets shrank during the shortages of World War II, again in the 1970's, and even further in the 21st Century.

"Bobby Make-Believe" was drawn by Tribune cartoonist Frank O. King. Current events intrude on the funny pages yet again with Bobby's fantasy of fighting off marauding Mexicans.

King came to the Tribune in 1909 from the Minneapolis Times, drawing a series of short-lived strips including "Bobby Make-Believe." The premise and pacing take their cues from Winsor McKay's "Little Nemo in Slumberland," but are more down-to-earth than McKay's wild flights of hallucinogenic fancy.

In addition to "Bobby Make-Believe," King was drawing another full-page cartoon for the Sunday Tribune at this point, "The Rectangle," a black-and-white collage of cartoons connected only by a common theme. In 1918, the collage included the first installment of "Gasoline Alley," which would go on to be a multi-generational saga and King's claim to greatness in the comic strip pantheon.

Finally, "Old Doc Yak" by Sidney Smith, starring a talking goat, is based on a character Smith had created for the Chicago Examiner from 1908 to 1911. In this episode, Smith employs Frank King's speed lines as Yak pursues a speeding motorist.

In the last weekday episode of "Old Doc Yak" on February 10, 1917, Doc Yak and his family moved out of their home, wondering who would live there after them. Smith answered the question on February 12, as Andy and Min Gump moved in to stay for the next 42 years. "Old Doc Yak" continued only on Sundays until June 22, 1919; in his final appearance, Yak sold his car to the Gumps, and with it his page in the Sunday funnies.

Friday, April 29, 2016

The Empire Strikes Back

I usually save this sort of thing for Saturday, but I have something else planned for tomorrow.
The Advocate, April 29, 1916
I did want to follow up on last week's Slainteback Sathairn, however, and today is the centennial of the quashing of the Easter Rising in Ireland. Above is the front page of the April 29, 1916 Advocate, a weekly newspaper of the Irish in New York City, still reporting "Rebellion Spreading in Ireland."
The Chicago Daily Tribune, April 27, 1916
In keeping with this blog's gay slant, here's the LGBT connection with the Easter Rising. Sir Roger Casement, an Irish sympathizer, was captured by British forces during the failed attempt to ship guns from Germany to the Irish rebels.

Casement had worked with Henry Stanley (the guy famous for saying "Dr. Livingston, I presume") in the Congo (Zaire). He documented human rights abuses, up to and including murder, by the private army created in the Congo by Belgian King Leopold II to force the locals to work in the King's rubber plantations. He investigated similar abuses in Peru of the Putumayo Indians, and was knighted by the British crown in 1911 for his efforts.

Retiring from the British consular service in 1913, Casement was a founder of the Irish Volunteers, and met with German diplomats at the outbreak of World War I to funnel German arms to Ireland. 900 Mauser rifles made it to the rebels in July, 1914, but the British were able to intercept the April, 1916 shipment and sink the ship.

Suffering from malaria, a disease he was never able to completely shake from his days in the Congo, Casement was arrested in County Kerry and imprisoned in the Tower of London. A petition urging clemency was circulated by such luminaries of the time as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and George Bernard Shaw; to counter this, the British released Casement's "Black Diaries," detailing a series of sexual encounters with young men in 1903, 1910 and 1911.

Whether genuine or forged, the Black Diaries essentially quashed support for Casement among Irish and American Catholics. Casement was convicted of treason, stripped of his knighthood, and hanged on August 3, 1916. Ireland now has a military airfield named in Casement's honor, even though he wouldn't have been allowed to march in the Ancient Order of Hibernians St. Patrick's Day Parade until very recently.

The Duluth Herald, April 29, 1916
In closing, here's the May 5 edition of The Advocate. You can embiggen these images all you want, but the resolution of my original source wasn't good enough to read the copy anyway.
The Advocate, May 5, 1916

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Q Toon: Goodnight, Sweet Prince

I'm a little late to the Prince Tribute Cartoon Wake, but it was about time I drew something that didn't have anything to do with North Carolina's bathroom bill.

Prince had, shall we say, a complicated relationship with the LGBT community. He sang, "Am I black or white? Am I straight or gay?" and "I’m not a woman, I’m not a man; I am something that you’ll never understand."  He rejected stereotypical cisgender norms, performing in androgynous but highly sexual outfits, eyeliner and blush.  Becoming for a time The Artist Formerly Known As Prince, he created as his identity "Love Symbol #2," Prince logo.svg, an amalgam of the male and female symbols with a horn through it. It all made him an inspiration to queer Black Americans who didn't identify with the White American depictions of what it means to be something other than straight.

Nevertheless, Prince was most definitely and openly 100% heterosexual. If you bought "If I Was Your Girlfriend" expecting it to be some kind of anthem for Queer Nation, that's not what you got.

Did he oppose marriage equality? Maybe yes. Maybe no.

So I guess what I'm getting at with this cartoon is the enigma that was Mr. Nelson, Prince, Prince logo.svg, Camille, Joey Coco, or Alexander Nevermind, however you thought you knew him. "I am something that you'll never understand," indeed. He made a whole movie about "Purple Rain" that runs nearly two hours; and yet does anybody know what that really means?

At least it provided that basis for half of the Prince tribute cartoons out there, my own included. The other half, of course, drew crying doves.

Sure, I'd have liked to avoid referencing the same song as so many others, but I didn't find any hook out of my favorite Prince tune, "Mountains," which wasn't popular enough to be easily recognized, anyway. A cartoonist friend of mine derided one outlier, Henry Payne's cartoon showing a little red Corvette zooming through the Pearly Gates; but heck, Payne not only draws for the Detroit News, he's their Auto Critic. He takes any opportunity to draw cars in his toons. And I give him props for not referring to the same two songs the rest of us used.

Now, if the persistent rumors that pain killers were involved in Prince's death, we can all crank out cartoons quoting "I Would Die 4 U."
Prince logo.svg
P.S.: If you want to get snooty about this stuff, I'm seriously not getting the purpose of Gary Markstein's, um, cartoon? here... I mean, a collage of celebrity tweets? What even qualifies that as a cartoon at all? How do you justify slapping a copyright notice on that? Do you know how many ideas I've rejected on this topic alone because I saw someone else post them on the internet before I could draw them?

Saturday, April 23, 2016

100 Years Ago: A Midwestern Perspective

I'm kicking things off this Sláinteback Sathairn with a large (nearly half a page) ad in the April 23, 1916 Chicago Tribune for their own editorial cartoonist, John T. McCutcheon.

"For more than 20 years he has been the favorite of the Chicago public," the ad boasts. "Thousands of Tribune readers look for McCutcheon's cartoon first, and the war headlines second." After touting his experience dodging bullets in various war zones and interviewing citizens and diplomats, the ad concludes, "He often says more in a single cartoon than many writers can say in a whole page of type. ... Don't miss them. You'll be behind the times if you do."

You hardly see that kind of promotion for the staff editorial cartoonist these days unless he's just won a Pulitzer Prize. (Congratulations, Jack Ohman!) Why, in most papers, you hardly see a staff editorial cartoonist at all.

McCutcheon's cartoon on the front page that day considers the prospect of America joining the Great War, the idea that our troops might be sent anywhere around the globe being quite novel back then. For someone with experience dodging bullets, he makes war seem like quite the jolly adventure:
John McCutcheon for the Chicago Tribune, April 23, 1916
"Looking Forward"

On the Tribune's editorial page that day is a cartoon by J.N. Ding for the Des Moines Register with the midwest's other prominent Republican cartoonist's thoughts on preparedness -- the topic of a great many cartoons of the period -- and a the prevailability of cooler heads.
J.N. Ding for the Des Moines Register, April, 1916
"Place Your Bets Now"

C.F. Naughton was a less prominent cartoonist, drawing for the front page of the Duluth Evening Herald. He doesn't seem sympathetic to either the Republican/Progressive former President Theodore Roosevelt or the Democratic incumbent President Woodrow Wilson in this next cartoon.

Bill Clinton and Harry Truman may have remained active in party politics, and Jimmy Carter continued to work for human rights and election monitoring around the world; but I don't think there has been any President since T.R. so eager to meddle in affairs of state after leaving office.
C. F. Naughton for the Duluth Evening Herald, April 24, 1916
Roosevelt: "Right or wrong, I'm Agin' You."

Naughton labels Roosevelt "Copperhead," originally the term for northern Democrats who opposed the Civil War. In the top panel, Roosevelt urges Wilson to declare war on Germany; in the bottom panel, he complains "What are you trying to do? Get us into a war with Germany?" Yet, in neither panel does Wilson seem to be set to "do something."

Meanwhile, rebels in Ireland (then still wholly a part of the United Kingdom) attempted to take advantage of England's entanglement in the continental war, issuing the "Easter Declaration" of an Irish Republic on April 24. Several days of violence followed in the streets of Dublin. Germany attempted to send weapons to the Irish, but the shipment was intercepted. Still, Naughton exaggerates the German connection with the "Made in Germany" ribbon on his cat:
C. F. Naughton for the Duluth Evening Herald, April 28, 1916
Germany: "Scratch Him, Kittie!"

England managed to put down the Easter Rising by the end of the month at the cost of 500 casualties on all sides. Thousands more were arrested and imprisoned or sent to internment camps, and the seven signers of the Easter Declaration were executed.

I was interested to find out how John McCutcheon and the Chicago Tribune handled the Easter Rising, what with their pro-Allies stance vs. the significant Irish population in town. But while Ireland rated banner headlines all week, McCutcheon appears to have taken the week off (that April 23 advertisement notwithstanding). When he returned to the front page the next Sunday, a speech in Chicago by Teddy Roosevelt overshadowed the failure of the Irish revolt as far as McCutcheon and the Tribune were concerned.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Q Toon: Bands on the Run

You can tell that I was drawing this cartoon Sunday night; on Monday, I would surely have included Boston and Pearl Jam among the list of concert cancellations. Other acts canceling shows in North Carolina over HB2 include Mumford & Sons, Cindi Lauper, and Cirque du Soleil.

It's not just those liberal elite rock artistes; businesses from PayPal to Deutsche Bank to the NBA to the Community Transport Association of America are canceling plans to expand in the state or to hold their conventions there:
Combined, says the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, the passage of HB2 has cost the area $3.1 million in event revenue that would have been generated over the next few years. GRCVB President and CEO Dennis Edwards says that other groups are also raising concerns.
As much as I appreciate all this support from these artists, movers and shakers, I do have some concern that the locations being hurt most are the cities (Charlotte in particular) who have been trying to be progressive and lgbt-friendly, only to have their efforts outlawed by the exurban and rural Republicans in the state capitol who don't cotton to those city folk managing their own affairs. Until ConAgra and Edwin Jones Investments refuse to do business in the state, these boycotts have little effect on the folks in Hayseed Corners and Woodleyvale Heights.

(Perhaps's Denial Of Service will be more effective 'round those parts.)

The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists announced this week that we are going full speed ahead with this fall's convention at Duke University.
"Other groups and companies are boycotting because that is the only way they can express a political opinion," said Adam Zyglis, the 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner for Editorial Cartooning, and current president of the AAEC. "Expressing an opinion is precisely what we do, so I say we should go to the heart of the controversy and speak out on this issue."
By the way, speaking of drawing my cartoon on Sunday night, I had HBO's Confirmation on while I was at my drawing board — with my head down in my work, I can't say I was watching the show — and I have to mention how spot-on Greg Kinnear's Joe Biden was. He may not look a lot like the then-Senator from Delaware, but he had the voice down to a "t."

Monday, April 18, 2016

This Week's Sneak Peek

There's a darkness at the edge of town, Rosalita, and I'm countin' on a miracle.

Tune back in later this week for the rest of our E Street shuffle.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

This Week in the Mexican Revolution

Salidaback Saturday takes another look at what editorial cartoonists were drawing 100 years ago this week, starting with another cartoon by Sidney Greene published on the same day as the greatly exaggerated report by Mexican Officials above, 100 years ago today:
Sidney Greene for the New York Evening Telegram, April 16, 1916
"Woodrow at Work"

Beclickenating to embiggenify, you'll see that President Wilson is juggling items representing Mexico, German U-boats, the Democratic Party, the Army and the Navy, and "unpreparedness."

The next four cartoons are from Oscar Edward Cesare's work for the New York Sun. "Saluting the Flag," showing Pancho Villa exulting near tombstones reading "Columbus, N.M." (see my March 26 post) and "Veracruz," was drawn for the April 10 edition; this image is from the original drawing at the Library of Congress.
Oscar Cesare for the New York Sun, April 10, 1916. 
"Long Live Liberty!"

In "Line of Succession," appearing in the April 15 edition, the cartoonist turns his attention to the precariousness of Mexico's Provisional President Venustiano Carranza. Carranza stands over the body of deposed President Victoriano Huerta, while Álvaro Obregón, "Gonzales" (perhaps Pablo González Garza), Emiliano Zapata and a presumed line of others come up behind him, daggers drawn.
Oscar Cesare for the New York Sun, April 15, 1916. 
"The Line of Succession"

In this April 17, 1916, cartoon below, Cesare prematurely predicts the overthrow of the Carranza government. Carranza would instead be elected Mexico's President the next year. (He did come to a violent end, however, shot to death on May 21, 1920 — there is dispute whether he was assassinated or committed suicide during the attack. And he was indeed succeeded as President by Obregón, who would eventually also be assassinated; although Cesare neglects in the above cartoon the fact that Obregón had lost his right arm in a bomb blast in 1915.)
Oscar Cesare for the New York Sun, April 17, 1916. 

Meanwhile, returning to 1916: Swedish-born Cesare (1885-1948) would lose his job at the Sun later that year when a new owner (a man who earned the epithet "the Executioner of Newspapers") decided that his newspaper didn't need no stinking cartoons. Cesare would go on to draw for the New York Post, New York Times, New York World and Harper's Weekly. Abandoning the more precise pen-and-ink style popular with many editorial cartoonists up to that point (Sid Greene being one example), Cesare's work here shares a looser, sketchier style with such contemporaries as Boardman Robinson and Rollin Kirby. As printing technologies improved, he went on from brush and grease pencil to employ washes and halftones.
Oscar Cesare for the New York Sun, April 18, 1916. 
"The Great Divide"

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Q Toon: Keeping the Kids Safe

It should be noted that the state legislator in this week's cartoon is begin facetious from Frame One. The statute of limitations on Former Speaker Hastert's alleged sexual assaults expired decades ago. He was convicted of circumventing banking rules in order to pay hush money to one of his victims. He paid $1.7 million to a student whose groin he barely remembers having merely brushed in order to treat a pulled muscle, if you buy his defense.

Then there is the weird story of the leather recliner Hastert positioned in the locker room so that he could watch his wrestlers while they showered. Don't bother trying to imagine how he explained that expense to the school administration; school athletic departments have always gotten considerably more deference than, say, the English department.

Nevertheless, the deal with the recliner was pretty ballsy. I remember that after gym class at my junior high school in the 1970's, we had to parade through a shower room, towels held up above the spray, while the gym teacher stood on an raised platform enclosed by a wall that came up about his chest-level in the center of the shower room, watching to make sure that we were actually getting wet or something.

There were whispers that our coach was enjoying the show more than necessary, but at least he had to stand up. He wasn't relaxing comfortably in an overstuffed La-Z-Boy.

Coming back to the present, Rep. Jeremy Durham (R-Natcherly), a vocal co-sponsor of the Bathroom Bill speeding through Tennessee's state legislature, has just been found to have a habit of sexually harassing women who have the misfortune to work in his vicinity. The allegations are so numerous that the Secretary of State has issued an official warning that "Representative Durham's alleged behavior may pose a continuing risk to unsuspecting women who are employed by or interact with the legislature." The Speaker of the Tennessee House Beth Harwell has banished Durham from his office, exiling him to an office across the street.

No word on whether he gets to take his La-Z-Boy recliner with him.

Monday, April 11, 2016

This Week's Sneak Peek

I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.
I wouldn't say I was stuck in a rut.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Ten, Twenty, Thirty

The old calendar on the wall tells me that it's Snickerback Saturday yet again, and I haven't got a theme I'm raring to fulminate about. So, for no reason in particular, I'm hauling out cartoons I drew ten, twenty, and thirty Aprils ago.

Starting with the oldest:
In April of 1986, the House passed a bipartisan bill supported by the Reagan administration and pushed by the National Rifle Association (but opposed by law enforcement officers) to repeal many parts of the Gun Control Act of 1968. The Senate had already passed a similar bill ending federal control on the sale and transport of rifles and shotguns and creating the "gun show loophole." The McClure-Volkmer Act further protects dealers from federal prosecution unless authorities could prove "willful" violation of remaining gun laws, and prohibits any state or federal government from keeping "any system of registration of firearms, firearms owners, or firearms transactions or disposition."
By this point in April, 1996, the presidential primaries had settled on the major parties' nominees. President Clinton had no significant opposition for the Democratic nomination; that the Republicans would nominate Kansas Senator Bob Dole did not come as a surprise. The Republican nominee-apparent did, however, present a challenge in one part of the world:
With this cartoon from April, 2006 we tie together sex and an oblique tangent off the first cartoon's theme of terrorism:

In order to cast DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff as Moe of the Three Stooges, I employed a cartoon cliché for depicting surprise and shock.

The Brian Doyle scandal was one of those quickly forgotten peccadilloes of the George W. Bush administration. Amid the ineffectual response to Hurricane Katrina and some careless treatment of an envelope containing white powder, the Press Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security was caught soliciting sex from minors on the internet. Doyle, 55, was found guilty of seven counts of using a computer to seduce a child and sentenced to five years in Florida state prison for inappropriate e-mails he sent to an under-cover officer posing as a 14-year-old girl.

While researching the background of the 1986 cartoon above, I happened to run across a letter to the editor in the April 21, 1986 issue of Time magazine from a 20-year-old Delavan lad who would someday become governor. I draw no conclusion from this and have no snide remarks to make; I simply share it for the sake of trivia:

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Q Toon: Mississcrimination Comes to a Head

Good Lord, people, this is the third week in a row I've had to come up with something about anti-LGBT "religious freedom" laws. States are passing them faster than I can draw them: this week, it was Mississippi, with Kansas also putting a bounty on transgendered students trying to take a bathroom break at school.

Lawmakers in Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, Tennessee, and (no surprise) Wisconsin have also hopped on the transbashing bathroom bill bandwagon.
For measures requiring that bathrooms be sex-segregated, the lawmakers needed to decide how, precisely, they would define biological sex. They used a range of definitions, and in two the definition was tautological (“as biologically defined”)
Other bills got a lot more specific. Thirteen specified that chromosomes should be taken into account to define sex, but only Indiana’s House Bill 1079 was detailed enough to say that a female was defined as someone with “at least one X chromosome and no Y chromosome” and that males included everyone with “at least one X chromosome and at least one Y chromosome.”
A friend tells me that he heard a caller in to one of those right-wingnut talk radio shows (and really, is there any other kind?) voice his support of this sort of legislation because he wanted his daughter to be able to use a public ladies' rest room without some guy waving his junk around at the next urinal.

I'll just give you a moment to think about that one.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Report from the Polls

Today was Spring Election Day in Wisconsin. Primary election for the presidential race, and general election for many state and local offices.

My habit is to vote on the way to work in the morning; I had an 8:00 appointment this morning, so I showed up at the polls at 7:40 to find two lines (A-L, M-Z) leading from the hallway into the polling booth room. The M-Z line appeared shorter, but that was only because the M-Z table was further from the door.

My wait was only five minutes, but everyone I've spoken with this afternoon reports that their lines have been longer. My husband voted this afternoon, when the line extended back beyond the table where the person telling voters which line to get into was seated. Still, the lines in our village were nowhere near as bad as the lines in urban polling places.

National pundits find it remarkable that Cruz and Sanders are polling so well in this state. Wisconsin media skew conservative (a recent Washington Post blog post calling the Milwaukee J. Sentinel "left-leaning" showed that the writer hadn't read the Sentinel in decades), and talk radio was unanimous preaching their Vote Cruz To Stop Trump line. Whether Governor Snotwalker's endorsement of Cruz convinced anyone to vote for him, or Scotty was just following the prevailing right-wing winds is up for debate -- but I suspect the latter is true.

I think Sanders appeal among Democrats can be traced to the Republicans who came to power here in 2010 and crammed their agenda down our throats -- in marked contrast to the agonizing and futile attempts by President Obama to appease Republicans on health care, fixing Bush's wrecked economy, or scheduling a state visit to Indonesia. Incrementalism doesn't sell well among Wisconsin Democrats who see nobody on the Republican side open to reason.

I just hope that some of these millennials Feeling The Bern have taken some time to check out some of the other races on the ballot, particularly that for our Supreme Court. If JoAnne Kloppenburg can't beat the anti-gay, anti-contraceptive shill for Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce Rebecca Bradley, liberals might as well stop trying to elect any independent thinker to the court.

Locally, thanks to the Republican micromanaging gerrymanderers in Madison, my local school board went from nine seats at large to nine district representatives this year; and as a result, I had no choice in my district's school board race. The woman running as the sole candidate on my ballot may very well be a nice, intelligent and thoughtful civic-minded individual; but I seriously considered refusing to vote for her as the only way to protest having my voice in school board matters taken away.

Not that Madison Republicans would listen.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Saturday, April 2, 2016

100 Years Ago: Third Party's Over

Here's an editorial cartoon by Sidney J. Greene for the New York Telegram 100 years ago today, April 2, 1916:
To explain: in 1912, former President Teddy Roosevelt made a third-party run for the presidency as the candidate of the Progressives, also known as the Bull Moose Party. He won more votes than the Republican nominee, incumbent President William Howard Taft, but the election went to Democrat Woodrow Wilson -- ending two decades of Republican administrations.

Here the cartoonist depicts Roosevelt and his Bull Moose returning to the Republican fold in 1916 (apparently you could get away with "the same old bull" in a family newspaper even then). The other two figures in the cartoon are Republicans Elihu Root and Henry Cabot Lodge.

Roosevelt's return to the Republican Corral left open the question of whether the remnants of the party would settle with the Democrats or Republicans, here represented by their 1916 presidential nominees, President Wilson and Charles Evans Hughes, who had resigned his seat on the Supreme Court to run for President.
I can't find a signature on this cartoon, but the style suggests W.A. Carson.
Most Progressives returned to the Republican Party, with a few exceptions. Wisconsin's Bob LaFollette continued a valiant effort to revive the Progressive brand, receiving 17% of the national vote (and winning his home state's electoral votes) as the Progressives' presidential nominee eight years later.

As we face the prospect of a Republican split producing a third party candidacy again this year, it is hard not to notice how little success third parties have had electing presidents since the Civil War. Dixiecrats and Progessives bolted the Democratic Party in 1948, and Harry Truman won anyway. George Wallace left the Democrats to run under the American Independent banner in 1968, helping throw the election to Richard Nixon. John Anderson left the Republican party to run as an Independent in 1980, and it didn't hurt Ronald Reagan in the least.
Dream on, Younger Self. That is so totally not happening.
And in none of those cases were those third parties a significant factor in the elections that followed. The third party that might possibly have had a chance of catching on, Ross Perot's Reform Party, succeeded in winning the Minnesota governorship in 1998; but once Perot took himself out of the running, it nominated such a repulsive presidential candidate in 2000 that it promptly fizzled away into vapor.

On the other hand, its 2000 nominee had more of an effect on the outcome of the election than this guy did: