Reading The Pictures: A Crude Salute

08/06/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

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1.  I guess it's a lot easier to pump offshore drilling while standing in dusty, dry, late-summer Bakersfield, especially the week after a cancelled photo-op on a Gulf rig coincided with a massive, local oil spill.

2.  In the midst of a U.S. occupation of an oil-rich Persian Gulf country (initiated under false pretenses), conservatives obviously don't get the irony of having their presidential nominee and wife billboarding militarism while standing next to an oil derrick.  Given John's worn NAVY hat and Cindy's sparkly rhinestone USMC pin (not to mention the stars-and-stripes), I guess the only real question here is whether the Army is feeling left out.

3.  And then, if you check this piece at the NYT, you'll understand the only thing this photo is about is ... skin cancer.

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(image:  Mary Altaffer/AP.  Red Ribbon Ranch Oil Lease, San Joaquin Facilities Management Inc., July 28, 2008. Bakersfield, Calif)