Last week, readers of Maddow Blog were the first to suggest that the creator of the racist Tea Party Comix might be the same person selling them on eBay. So far as we can tell, that seller, Tom Kalb, runs a store called Caveman Comics, in Mesa, Arizona.
I wrote to Kalb and asked him to talk to us about the Tea Party Comix. On Sunday, he told us he has stopped selling them on eBay. "As far as 'who-dun-it?', if I knew I wouldn't tell you or anyone," Kalb wrote. "I'm not into hurting people." (Full text, after the jump.)
Ethan Persoff, who posted the first three issues of Tea Party Comix on Comics with Problems, tells us he also heard from Tom Kalb, right after he posted the third issue last week. Persoff
redacts the name and includes a redacted screenshot and full text, including: "[P]lease see my caracature of Janet Napolatano in Tea Party Comix #2!"
Persoff's done a lot of digging. You'll see below that Kalb asked us about a particular page showing a kid wearing an Alan Keyes T-shirt. Persoff's got that posted, along with screenshots from Kalb's eBay sales.
I'm still hoping Kalb will talk to us about the Tea Party Comix, which I still think are racist. I want to hear what he has to say, and I've told him as much. Before I contacted Kalb, I bought the series from him on eBay, hoping they might contain a clue about the creator's identity. Assuming the comics show up -- and Kalb's got a 100 percent positive rating on eBay -- I'll share anything that seems noteworthy. We still don't know whether Kalb identifies with the Tea Party movement. Talking Points Memo got a denouncement and a denial from Tea Party leaders.
Meanwhile, here's this from Persoff: "If these were published in a forum like National Lampoon in the 1970s we'd likely applaud it as daring and hilarious. And I know a lot of people who agree with me. So there is space in this discussion for appreciating Tea Party Comix, even if they're possibly the most racist looking things since, say, Clean Fun Starring Shoogafoot Jones."
From Tom Kalb:
Excuse the delay, but it is hard to respond to someone who suggests that you "did" something and calls you a "racist" and asks for a "discussion" all in a few sentences.
I am no longer selling them on Ebay or anywhere. I do not consider them "racist", and probably over one hundred million other Americans wouldn't consider them "racist". In YOUR circles I'm sure everyone does. ..Should the artist have portrayed him as a "Greek God"? I'm sure even then, it would be "racist" to many. He is the President, and EVERY President has been portrayed in an unflattering light by cartoonists who are against that president's policies.
FYI, I am pretty sure that leftist bloggers have still not posted the page with the kid handing out Tea Party Comix, who happens to be wearing an "Alan Keyes 2008" tee shirt. OR the "Luke Cage" comics in which the HERO is black.... You tell ME, is it TRUTH you are looking for, or is at an agenda you wish to attend to?
I understand, this is what you do and who you are. And why I hesitated to respond at all.
I only responded because you were a "customer", and I am old fashioned that way. I am no longer selling the item because it offends "some", and I never had enough of them to make any real money anyway.
As far as "who-dun-it?", if I knew I wouldn't tell you or anyone. I'm not into hurting people.
You are free to edit this as you will. Hopefully you are not as "evil" as I think you may be. I myself listen to Rush Limbaugh, Dennis Prager, Michael Savage, Mark Levin and others EVERY day, so you can understand MY trepidation....
Let's leave it at that, I have a business to attend to, a sick dog and and aging mother. I have NO interest in internet debate. -Tom Kalb