The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'che'
There is now a Richard Stallman as Che Guevara T-shirt, perfect for wearing to copyfighter meetups, showing your free-software/Creative Commonist sympathies and/or taking the piss out of over-earnest Penguinistas.
US discount store chain Target has withdrawn a line of CD cases with Che Guevara's image, after
the Cuban government sued for copyright violation socialists protested at the commercialisation of his image critics protested at the glorification of an architect of totalitarianism:
"What next? Hitler backpacks? Pol Pot cookware? Pinochet pantyhose?" wrote Investor's Business Daily in an editorial earlier this month, citing the Guevara case as a model of "tyrant-chic".
Using copyright law to crush criticism isn't the exclusive domain of multinational corporations and the Church of Scientology: the Cuban
dictatorship people's democracy (you know, the Another World that they tell you Is Possible) has successfully sued Reporters Without Borders for using the icon of Che Guevara in a poster criticising Cuba's persecution of journalists; as such, the image has been banned in France. The image in question may be found here.
Mind you, it's not exactly like Che (a doctrinaire Marxist/Leninist who sent thousands of "counter-revolutionaries" to the firing squad and established the apparatus of state repression in Cuba, and not the mellow left-libertarian dude many people could imagine sharing a joint with) would be spinning in his CIA-dug grave at the injustice of this lawsuit. (via MeFi)
Surprise, surprise: after September 11, a number of Hollywood films which had been made were shelved as unpatriotic. These films included those which projected negative images of the US military.
And then there were not one but two Che Guevara biopics planned, one starring Antonio Banderas. On September 10, 2001, with Communism having all but collapsed as a threat, it was safe to pander to baby-boomers' '60s radical nostalgia by rehabilitating one of the (now safely commodified) icons of their wild youth. Then the planes hit, and the projects got scrapped to make room for Jerry Bruckheimer patriotic thrillers and safely escapist fantasy flicks.
(The identity of heroes/villains in films can be telling; for example, there's Four Feathers, which glorifies the British Empire (which can be seen as a rather prestigious model to proponents of a a global American empire) and its doings in the Middle East, only a few years after pre-9/11 film The Patriot painted the British as the original Nazis (somewhat slanderously, apparently). I wonder whether we'll see any metaphorical films about straight-dealing, heroic apple-pie Romans (played by Ben Affleck or Brendan Fraser) doing battle with treacherous, Taliban-like Visigoths.)