The BAG readership often cites how America has no news magazines — that the originals were grabbed up long ago at the corner of Hollywood and Kitsch. At key points, however — when the national attention span pauses to focus on one significant, and usually dramatic thing — these cultural billboards still have their place and impact on the political narrative.
(Or a negative impact –when they turn a political earthquake into nothing.)
If you haven’t seen it around the ‘sphere, take a look at the cover TIME did after the Republican’s stampeded in ’94. And, if you have seen it, look at it again. In nine days, I haven’t seen any stormin’ donkeys, any steamrollers, any locomotives, have you?
Out of anger and solace, The BAG took a remedial crack at the TIME cover — two cracks, in fact. You can view the other version on the sister-post at Huffington.
Regarding this TIME-ly excuse for an election cover, by the way, Greg Sargent has an interesting critique (TIME Magazine’s Cover Touts Victorious “Center” — But Matching Story Doesn’t Assert Anything Like That) of both the illustration and the lead article. Regarding TIME’s thesis, Greg says:
Dems didn’t win simply because their candidates were moderates or centrists. They won because they had good candidates — some of them moderate, and some of them quite liberal. …And again, nowhere in the piece does Klein describe the election as a victory for the center.
Regarding the visual, Sargent’s take (which I find a quite plausible in a world where quality is Job 2 … after the sacred maxim “Get There First”) is that TIME created the cover before it actually knew the election results!
(illustration/Arthur Hochstein. November 20, 2006. Cover. time.com)