Jam a Brand, Fan a Brand

Hardly a week passed after Donald Trump was sworn in as President when the tribute videos began pouring in from all over the world. Maybe you’ve seen some of them. They are just great. Fabulous. All of them. I mean it. So many that NPR lost track of some of the best ones when they reeled them off back in February. But you know NPR. Such losers. Should stand for Not Progressive Reporting.

One of the best tributes, which NPR overlooked for some odd reason was Iran’s. So, ICYMI, as a public service Progressive Pilgrim Review presents it here.

Video “Introductions” from European and other nations welcoming Trump’s ascent are conveniently laid out at everysecondcounts.eu. Click a region on its world map, and then click the country to display its tribute video (just a bit tricky for those who slept through their geography lessons in middle school).

Almost forgot. NPR also missed a HUGE tribute video that you really must see. It’s Russia’s.

From its splash screen on, Russia’s introduction (produced by the German arm of RTV) struts its stuff and polishes their brand to poke us in our myopic eyes. Too bad it doesn’t feature more similarities between our two countries—bullying leaders, over-endowed armed forces, corrupt oligarchs, pussycat legislatures, and secret policing. So I guess spreading that awareness is up to us.

All these foreign videos have the same purpose—to jam Trump’s “America First” brand by inverting its memes. To address the current emergency we can follow suit. Check out this primer from the redoubtable Naomi Klein, author of No Logo and Shock Doctrine, that’s posted at Writers Resist.

It’s one of several dozen on that site issued by assorted resistance cadres, along with pages that feature art, prose and poetry meant to open eyes and stiffen spines. Writers Resist was set up shortly after the Election of Broken Hearts. Its proprietors, a rag-tag army of creative types, have this mission statement.

Besides the insurgent videos that give voice to the movement, Writers Resist also helps one forge connections to grassroots groups working for political, social, and economic change, racial equality, women’s and LGBTQ rights, and provides links to progressive sources of information. They welcome suggestions for for other resources to feature, so pile on and get involved.

And so, why not put virtual pen to virtual paper to give Writers Resist a piece of your mind they can share? Short-handed as they are, WR more than likely will take up whatever rant you send them so long as it’s germane to the struggle, grammatical, and coherent. C’mon, do it. Don’t pretend you have nothing to say about extracting us from our political pickle jar. Or at least like them on Facebook, for goodness sake.

Also know that you are welcome to post disestablishmentarian texts right here at Progressive Pilgrim. Bottom line: if you want to be a player, quit pacing the floor muttering profanities and talk to us. Or, you could skip the middlemen and go downtown with a baseball bat and proceed to smash the state. It’s your choice, whatever best suits your brand. And speaking of which, the USA is the greatest brand ever. The best, huge, bigger than Trump’s. Let’s keep it that way. Give voice to how great America could be if it weren’t peddling and profiting from death and destruction and misery.

Art © by Kiki Suarez

We’ve all seen TV commercials featuring inpirational images along the lines of Bald Eagles, the Liberty Bell, DC landmarks, purple mountain majesties, amber waves of grain, and of course that Grand Old Flag. Ask yourself: Why should we cede patriotism to corporatists and alt-hole “patriots” who use hidden persuaders to guild their brands? Anyone can play that game. Branding doesn’t have to be dissembling or opportunistic. The values your brand stands for are what’s important, and there’s nothing tawdry about branding them if you’re not being mercenary. Dedicate your brand to making America great by fulfilling whatever collective values you assert. Express solidarity with the victims of its excesses. Demonstrate that the milk of human kindness needs no artificial growth hormones. Become a “mad man”  manufacturing memes that express the kind of America you want to see. Then ask Writers Resist or Progressive Pilgrim to post them. Shoo folks over there to try to take it to the next level. Collaborate with any activists you feel an affinity with to build a brand for a movement. Movements make us stronger together, but only if they inspire enough to take off and go somewhere. So do your part to show us where that place is.


Author: admin

I'm an ex-this-and-that, including software developer, computer graphics researcher, geospatial analyst, market manager, and technical writer, who now writes full-time when not reading, running a household, foraging for edible mushrooms, pushing progressive politics, or volunteering fsomewhere. I live near Boston with my wife, daughter, two cats and two old cars.