Ed Driscoll

Obama Joker Artist Unmasked

Mark Milian of the L.A. Times’ “Top of the Ticket” politics blog writes that The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist is a 20 year old college student from Obama’s home turf of Chicago:

When cryptic posters portraying President Obama as the Joker from “Batman” began popping up around Los Angeles and other cities, the question many asked was, Who is behind the image?

Was it an ultra-conservative grassroots group or a disgruntled street artist going against the grain?

Nope, it turns out, just a 20-year-old college student from Chicago.

Bored during his winter school break, Firas Alkhateed, a senior history major at the University of Illinois, crafted the picture of Obama with the recognizable clown makeup using Adobe’s Photoshop computer software.

Alkhateed had been tinkering with the program to improve the looks of photos he had taken on his clunky Kodak camera. The Joker project was his grandest undertaking yet. Using a tutorial he’d found online about how to “Jokerize” portraits, he downloaded the October 23 Time Magazine cover of Obama and began digitally painting over it.

Four or five hours later, he happily had his product.

As Bill Whittle notes in a new video at PJTV on the semiotics of political symbolism, Obama as the Joker is a great piece of graphics, but Bill suggests an even better one for mass consumption. And why not? Andrew Breitbart writes that those who’ve built their support using Saul Alinsky’s methods will watch it crumble when the same methods are used on them.

Incidentally, if you’re a looking for a meme that would be fun to watch go viral, check out whom David Horowitz notes Alinsky attributed as “the very first radical.”

Update: Moe Lane notes, “Obama Joker artist a Palestinian-American Kuchinich supporter:”

Although he likes Republican ideals on domestic issues. Also note: he didn’t add the ’socialism’ bit; that was whoever-it-was that sent the thing viral. Also: dislikes Obama, cool with socialism, and thinks that the original ‘Hope’ artist is two-faced.

Stories like this are why I love this country. We are simply too big and too majestic to be fettered by any requirement of a narrative that makes coherent sense.