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Humor Negro in the Crisis Zone (International New York Times)

MADRID — Spain’s economic and political crisis has gotten so bad that even the horsemen of the apocalypse are out of work. And they ought to be in demand

A recent comic in the delightful satirical magazine Mongolia depicts a caped skeleton astride a horse and wielding a flimsy trident.  He is spoiling for a city to “destroy.” But a portly, hatted citizen stops him on the way to inform him that he’s arrived too late.

“The bank has already done the job for you,” says the citizen. Late to his own party, the exasperated harbinger of doom rides off under the punch line: “The horsemen of the apocalypse remain unemployed.

Spaniards are increasingly turning to humor not only to help cope with the dark economic forecasts, but also to make sense of how this grim state of affairs has come to pass. The most trenchant critiques of the present political deadlock rely on humor to make citizens confront the roots of the current malaise.

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