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My favorite far, far, far right publication is the graphic novel series The Punisher. The Punisher doesnít believe in reading people their rights, in jury trials or any of that other sissy stuff. When The Punisher catches a bad guy, usually a drug dealer, he just kills him. I bring this up because in a recent addition to the series, called The Barracuda, the bad guy is loosely based on Kenneth Lay of Enron fame.If, like me, you enjoy a good meatball revenge fantasy, if you like reading comics, and if you donít mind your comics violent, sexy and grim, you might enjoy this book. If not, I have just wasted your time.
The Punisher is better than most of the books in this genre because The Punisher has a satisfying intellectual toughness. The Punisher knows what he is doing is wrong. He knows he is going to hell and chooses to do it anyway. He doesnít pretend what he is doing is legal and he doesn't whine. He breaks the law and then takes the consequences like a man.For the record, I believe in the rule of law, in Miranda warnings, in jury trials and all that other sissy stuff. The Punisher never gets his facts wrong and, with a single exception Iíll mention below, never harms the innocent. Until we can say the same about our police, I want our accused to have those and other rights. There but for the grace of God or whoever is in charge go you and me. On the other hand, I also believe that white-collar criminals, including Mr. Lay and his evil minions, typically get off way, way too easy. And so, I enjoyed seeing their surrogates killed. A character flaw, but my own.
Garth Ennis, the writer of this volume, doesnít know enough about Finance or Enron, unfortunately. He doesnít understand that with the exception of those who were also corporate officers, the stockholders were victims, too. The Punisher kills the stockholders, which takes some of the fun out of the story.
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