Monday, October 24, 2005

The White House Peels an Onion

With hurricane relief running smooth as silk, Harriet Miers skating toward nomination, and Iraq all peaceful and quiet, the fine folks at your White House have gotten down to some serious business: Firing off a cease-and-desist order to The Onion.

The Onion, which bills itself as "America's Finest News Source," is actually one of the greatest sources of parody and satire on the Internet. But it seems that with all the stress over possible indictments, the lawyers in your White House can't take a joke.

They've fired off a letter telling Onion staffers to quit using the Presidential Seal (right) when making fun of the President and company.

"I'm surprised the president deems it wise to spend taxpayer money for his lawyer to write letters to The Onion." -- Editor in Chief Scott Dikkers quoted in the New York Times
The Onion uses a picture of the President and the Presidential Seal when it makes fake versions of the President's Weekly Radio Address.

The lawyers say federal law bars private commercial enterprises -- engaged in turning a profit -- from using the Presidential Seal. They worry that someone might mistake the image as the President endorsing the Onion or the fake radio speech or some such thing.

The Onion is pretty sure most people can tell it's a joke. That it's not real.

But hey, we're talking about the White House. The guys who thought the reports on WMDs in Iraq were serious. (Romenesko)

1 comment:

Adam said...

That's pretty funny. I guess we know where the White House's priorities are. If it goes to court, The Onion will win easily. You can use trademarks in satire.