'Howard's vision for Australia' by Alan Moir, the Sydney Morning Herald, 2007


This is a cartoon by Alan Moir showing Prime Minister John Howard as Lord Nelson, peering through a telescope from the wrong end. On the telescope is written 'Vision for Australia'.

Educational value

This cartoon references an event in 1801, the year in which Nelson destroyed the Danish Navy at the battle of Copenhagen. During the battle he was sent a signal to break off action by Admiral Sir Hyde Parker. Nelson put his telescope to his blind eye and said to his Flag Lieutenant, 'You know Foley I have only one eye. I have a right to be blind sometimes. I really do not see the signal.'

Political cartoons have a long history in Australia, and remain one of the most popular forms of political commentary. Though caricatures and satirical illustrations appeared in some of Australia's earliest newspapers, it was not until the 1830s that they became a frequent and respectable feature of the print media. Publications such as the Melbourne Punch, the Sydney Punch, the Bulletin featured both caricatures and cartoons, and it was through these publications that political cartoons became a popular element of the Australian press.

Alan Moir is an editorial cartoonist for the Sydney Morning Herald. He has also worked for the Bulletin and the Courier-Mail.

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