Friday, August 21, 2015


Whatever you think of Mr. T-Rump, the man is brilliant when it comes to imagery and media manipulation. Recently I have noticed that at many appearances and media events he wears a ball cap with his campaign slogan emblazoned on it.

Without any style his tacky cap bears a message encapsulating what he intends to do. The cap style itself appears to be a cap worn more by polyester-clad country club golfers than by baseball players. It reminds me of the one that festooned the head of real estate developer Al Czervik in Caddyshack. Coincidence?

The cap projects Mr. T-Rump's words without him needing to speak them. A billboard if you will. The cap has some simple words on it, in an easy to read font. It is the type of cap anyone can buy online and even have custom made with whatever words you would like at let's say, a county fair for about twenty bucks. No style, no design, no logo is present. No doubt his campaign will some extra pocket change selling these.

Today I heard him say he has trademarked the words "Make America Great Again". This means nobody, especially not another candidate will be able to use those words in print or broadcast media. He congratulated himself on his own genius in coming up with his original slogan as well as having it trademarked. I watched him say so live on television yesterday. He is very good at congratulating himself in public every few minutes.

Not so fast Mr. T-Rump. I've seen these words used before and I have an example.

Decades ago I came across a campaign button that seemed unusual. Most campaign buttons are static while this one was Xographic. Xography is an old method of printing an image in such a way that when placing a lenticular screen on top of it allows a viewer to see more than one image. When I was a kid I had a plastic Hopalong Cassidy plastic wallet that had one of them glued to the front. We called it a "wiggle picture".

The campaign button was so unique I kept it all these years for two reasons, it was a wiggle picture and it contains an image of one of my favorite people ever. So I have pinned the button on one of my ball caps to demonstrate two things, the wiggle picture and the originator of the same slogan being used by Mr. T-Rump.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery they say. And it's doubtful that Ronaldus Maximus Magnus or his handlers ever thought of trademarking the slogan. Licensed apparel had yet to be marketed with any legal savvy in the early 80's. I doubt that many will recall the previous use of the slogan and most were born after it was used.

Since I know a lot about trademark usage from my ad agency days Mr. T-Rump should have his attorneys get on it if they haven't already. To secure trademark protection beyond government approval any usage MUST be accompanied with a "™" visible and adjacent to all published usage until full registered trademark status has been accomplished. In that case a "®" will accompany any visual or verbal usage. Without it it can and will be challenged, if anyone has the brass to challenge it. In the corporate world it happens more of the than most will ever know.

IMHO Mr. T-Rump knows full well where that slogan came from and has not only shamelessly stolen repurposed it but trademarked it as well. Coincidence?

I have no problem with him ripping it off using it. In fact I like him more as time goes on.

It appears that I am not alone.


Dan from Madison said...

Trump is a bombastic asshole but he really does say a lot of good things.

Terry from Crown Point said...

My hat says "What difference, at this point, does it make?"TM

Anonymous said...

Brother Trump is the right man to have at this stage of the campaign...fearless at the podium, he's forcing the GOP slate to up their games, sharpen their talking points and think strategically. He may be a successful businessman -- and God bless him for that -- but he lacks the discipline and temperament for the Presidency.

Cheeze Kopf