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2022 Year in Review: The best of Auchter's Art

Freelance political cartoonist John Auchter's art and commentary speaks to the issues impacting Michigan thoughtfully and creatively. Here are some of his most popular works from 2022.

Good intentions turned evil

Please note: I am going to accept my $400 per insured vehicle refund check from the state unreservedly and with a clear conscience. As should anybody who has been paying (almost certainly overpaying) into the catastrophic injury fund these many, many years.

Are you insulted?

In a tweet last Sunday, Meshawn Maddock, the co-chair of the Michigan Republican Party, labeled Pete Buttigieg, the U.S. transportation secretary, former officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve, and a gay man, a "weak little girl." Some people were offended. Some even called for her immediate removal. All that is understandable but not likely productive. It certainly was not outside the typical bounds of Maddock or the Michigan Republican Party, so it wasn't surprising. Frankly, offending somebody is often exactly what they are aiming for.

The abnormal race for Attorney General

I have for some time been trying to figure out a way to illustrate the unique circumstances of this year's race for attorney general in Michigan between the current office holder, Democrat Dana Nessel, and Republican candidate, Matt DePerno.

The brutality of humanity

There are no pointed accusations or suggested solutions (and certainly no laughs) in this week's cartoon. It's a simple lament. We human beings have been doing terrible things to each other for 2,000 years. (Longer actually, but the last 2,000 have been particularly well documented.) The general consensus, of course, is that it's wrong, but that doesn't seem to stop it.

Some cranks running for school boards

Almost six years ago, I drew a cartoon about Betsy DeVos being nominated as the Secretary of Education for the Trump administration. This cartoon is very different from that cartoon, but as far as my comments go, I pretty much have the same thing to say — like DeVos, many of the folks running for school boards this fall are cranks.

Learning lessons

My daughter is going back to school with the intention of becoming a counselor/therapist, specifically for teens and young women. She is smart, perceptive, and deeply empathetic, so I have no doubt she will be wonderful at it. I also have no doubt that she will be needed. (Actually, my only concern is that it will be overwhelming.)

Irony is dead

It's important to note that editorial cartoonists are responsible for pointing out political hypocrisies that we see, and not for fully documenting all that exist. This is because, one, there are obviously way too many to document. And two, not all political hypocrisies resonate the same way.

We have the best experts — and ignore them

I was listening to the Smartless podcast episode with author Michael Lewis as the guest. Lewis wrote Moneyball, The Big Short, and many other books that have been made into movies. He is known for his thorough research and ability to uncover compelling, important stories that others just don't see.

Where did Robert Regan come from?

I'm loathe to give Robert “RJ” Regan any more media oxygen than he's already gotten. But he is likely going to be my state representative in a couple months, so I felt compelled to say something.

Understanding the whole story

This story about apparel company, Carhartt, wasn't necessarily big news this week, but it's the one my brain found interesting. So, yeah, I apologize for my characters needing to explain it in the cartoon. I spent considerable time trying to interest myself in something that would be more snackable, but, you know how it is with brains sometimes.


John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. His views are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management, or its license holder, the University of Michigan.