Skip to main content

Jack Lew: The signature that goes 'boing'!

By Mike Peters, Special to CNN
updated 12:32 AM EST, Sun January 13, 2013
HIDE CAPTION
Mike Peters' view
Mike Peters' view
Mike Peters' view
Mike Peters' view
<<
<
1
2
3
4
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • President Obama has nominated Jacob "Jack" Lew for Treasury secretary
  • Treasury secretaries sign U.S. currency bills; check your dollars out
  • Jack Lew's loopy signature looks like a "boing," telephone cord or maybe curly fries

Editor's note: Mike Peters is a Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist and the creator of the award-winning and long-running comic strip "Mother Goose and Grimm."

(CNN) -- Take some bills out of your wallet. Read the signatures. What do you have?

I've got a couple of Henry Paulsons, some Robert Kimmitts and a Stuart Levey. But now, the currency of the greatest nation on Earth will carry a scribble that has been variously described as curly fries, a phone cord, a bendy straw or simply the "Boing!" sign from a comic strip.

That's the signature of Jacob "Jack" Lew, President Obama's nominee for secretary of the Treasury, and it has lit up the blogosphere.

Mike Peters
Mike Peters
Could you read that signature without the name next to it?  Could you read that signature without the name next to it?
Could you read that signature without the name next to it?Could you read that signature without the name next to it?
Slinky as signature: What does it mean?

So instead of going crazy because the Cabinet is in sore need of a binder full of women, what the "boing" is going to do to our money is the big deal.

I know a guy who is a great artist, and his signature is mainly a straight line interrupted by a bump in the middle, which could have been caused by someone accidentally hitting the table. But he is an artist and can do what he wants.

I also know people who have had their 1040 tax returns rejected by the IRS for a boing-style signature.

Is it possible that our Treasury secretary could have his tax returns go awry because of his penmanship? Could the Chinese start rejecting the almighty dollar because they think the boing looks too weird? Or could his signature mean something else in Chinese, like "We will bury you" or "This is Monopoly money"?

Jack Lew is a Harvard-Georgetown, really smart type of guy, and God knows we probably owe him a lot. He's been a good chief of staff in just keeping the birthers out of the Oval Office so Obama could govern.

But please, Mr. Lew, retire the boing. After all, "Lew" is only three letters long.

Follow us on Twitter @CNNOpinion

Join us on Facebook/CNNOpinion

The opinions in this commentary are solely those of Mike Peters.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 12:26 PM EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
The death of Douglas McAuthur McCain, the first American killed fighting for ISIS, highlights the pull of Syria's war for Western jihadists, writes Peter Bergen.
updated 6:42 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
Former ambassador to Syria Robert Ford says the West should be helping moderates in the Syrian armed opposition end the al-Assad regime and form a government to focus on driving ISIS out
updated 9:21 AM EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
Ruben Navarrette says a great country does not deport thousands of vulnerable, unaccompanied minors who fled in fear for their lives
updated 9:19 AM EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
Robert McIntyre says Congress is the culprit for letting Burger King pay lower taxes after merging with Tim Hortons.
updated 7:35 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
Wesley Clark says the U.S. can offer support to its Islamic friends in the region most threatened by ISIS, but it can't fight their war
updated 7:26 AM EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
Jeff Yang says the tech sector's diversity numbers are embarrassing and the big players need to do more.
updated 4:53 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
America's painful struggle with racism has often brought great satisfaction to the country's rivals, critics, and foes. The killing of Michael Brown and its tumultuous aftermath has been a bonanza.
updated 4:19 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
Ed Bark says in this Emmy year, broadcasters CBS, ABC and PBS can all say they matched or exceeded HBO. These days that's no small feat
updated 3:19 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
Rick Martin says the death of Robin Williams brought back memories of his own battle facing down depression as a young man
updated 11:58 AM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
David Perry asks: What's the best way for police officers to handle people with psychiatric disabilities?
updated 3:50 PM EDT, Mon August 25, 2014
Julian Zelizer says it's not crazy to think Mitt Romney would be able to end up at the top of the GOP ticket in 2016
updated 4:52 PM EDT, Mon August 25, 2014
Roxanne Jones and her girlfriends would cheer from the sidelines for the boys playing Little League. But they really wanted to play. Now Mo'ne Davis shows the world that girls really can throw.
updated 12:29 PM EDT, Mon August 25, 2014
Peter Bergen and Emily Schneider say a YouTube video apparently posted by ISIS seems to show that the group has a surveillance drone, highlighting a new reality: Terrorist groups have technology once only used by states
updated 5:04 PM EDT, Mon August 25, 2014
Kimberly Norwood is a black mom who lives in an affluent neighborhood not far from Ferguson, but she has the same fears for her children as people in that troubled town do
updated 5:45 PM EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
It apparently has worked for France, say Peter Bergen and Emily Schneider, but carries uncomfortable risks. When it comes to kidnappings, nations face grim options.
updated 1:27 PM EDT, Tue August 26, 2014
John Bare says the Ice Bucket Challenge signals a new kind of activism and peer-to-peer fund-raising.
updated 8:31 AM EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
James Dawes says calling ISIS evil over and over again could very well make it harder to stop them.
updated 9:05 PM EDT, Sat August 23, 2014
As the inquiry into the shooting of Michael Brown continues, critics question the prosecutor's impartiality.
updated 6:47 PM EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
Newt Gingrich says it's troubling that a vicious group like ISIS can recruit so many young men from Britain.
updated 10:50 AM EDT, Thu August 21, 2014
David Weinberger says Twitter and other social networks have been vested with a responsibility, and a trust, they did not ask for.
updated 7:03 AM EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
John Inazu says the slogan "We are Ferguson" is meant to express empathy and solidarity. It's not true: Not all of us live in those circumstances. But we all made them.
updated 8:23 AM EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
Retired Lt. Gen. Mark Hertling says he learned that the territory ISIS wants to control is amazingly complex.
updated 3:51 PM EDT, Wed August 20, 2014
Cerue Garlo says Liberia is desperate for help amid a Ebola outbreak that has touched every aspect of life.
updated 1:42 PM EDT, Thu August 21, 2014
Eric Liu says Republicans who want to restrict voting may win now, but the party will suffer in the long term.
updated 11:38 AM EDT, Thu August 21, 2014
Jay Parini: Jesus, Pope and now researchers agree: Wealth decreases our ability to sympathize with the poor.
updated 8:00 AM EDT, Thu August 21, 2014
Judy Melinek offers a medical examiner's perspective on what happens when police kill people like Michael Brown.
updated 6:03 PM EDT, Tue August 19, 2014
It used to be billy clubs, fire hoses and snarling German shepherds. Now it's armored personnel carriers and flash-bang grenades, writes Kara Dansky.
updated 1:27 PM EDT, Wed August 20, 2014
Maria Haberfeld: People who are unfamiliar with police work can reasonably ask, why was an unarmed man shot so many times, and why was deadly force used at all?
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT