DMZ America Podcast #90: Two In-the-Know Cartoonists Analyze “Dilbert” Creator Scott Adams and His Racist Rant

Professional cartoonists Ted Rall (Left) and Scott Stantis (Right) dig deep into the dumpster fire started by “Dilbert” cartoonist Scott Adams, who used his YouTube channel and Twitter account to espouse apparently racist views that got his once-huge comic strip decimated by cancellations across the nation over the course of a few days. Ted and Scott dive into the fraught waters of this cartoon-world controversy, first analyzing whether the context of what Adams was saying differed from the news coverage. Ted shares his personal and professional interactions with Adams. Scott contextualizes the effect on syndication and the newspaper business from his vantage point as a long-time comic strip artist himself. Could Adams be suffering from a cognitive disorder or early onset Alzheimer’s? Is he evil or just weird? Does the punishment (in this case, being dropped by most of his client newspapers), fit the crime? Finally, Ted, a former newspaper syndicate executive at the company that distributed “Dilbert,” reveals how he and his colleagues would have handled the imbroglio and what Adams’ current syndicate will likely do going forward.



  • Interesting view from, a blog by a computer science professor & electronic voting expert, and a UCLA American history professor. It’s about how the question in that poll was asked:

  • And the latest I heard, he knew what he said would create this controversy. Maybe he is tired of being a cartoonist, so instead of retiring he’s going out in a blaze of publicity and rancor.

  • Jason Yungbluth – Cartoonist with Attitude – has had a couple of You-Tube run-ins with Scott Adams over the years (hilarious at least for people with a fatalistic streak).

    Here is his takedown:

    My own $0.02 is that Ted is right and while there may be a method to his madness, Scott Adams seems to have been losing his sense of reality over the years – as he is chasing the elusive human connection online.

    Sadly, Twitter responses and You-Tube comments are quite real and are arguably felt more directly than newspaper accounts of what happened in Charlottesville, what the President said about it, how racialized groups of people actually are sharing a city, etc.

    This problem has been turbo-charged during the pandemic, especially for people who rely on online channels professionally: one could watch one journalist after another slowly drift towards saying – and coming to believe – whatever seems to work best with the audience at any given moment. Even or perhaps especially when this becomes delusional and hateful content. Even though their investigative work and/or analysis had previously been rigorous.

    Needless to say, this also includes a number of cartoonists on the liberal left whose range has shrunk to submitting variations of the same Anti-Trump cartoon.

  • Yeah, if Adams was sardonic, I could see that. there is no sarcasm/satire/irony comprehension etc. among younger people it seems these days…unfortunately. Gen X people are largely fans of sarcasm. Oh well. Maybe the youngins will grow in wisdom and understand irony etc.

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