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Sarah Palin Trademarking the Palin Brand
Hubris knows no limits when it comes to the Palin clan. How do Sarah Palin® and Bristol Palin® sound to you? Get used to it. The Palin family lawyer, Thomas Van Fein, has filed an application on behalf of each of them to the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
Sarah Palin’s application (serial # 85170226) was registered on November 5, 2010, just three days after the midterms, while Bristol’s (serial # 85130638) was filed on September 15, 2010, a few days before her appearance on Dancing with the Stars on September 20. It turns out there are some problems with the applications and the Palins have six months to respond. Not surprising that Ms. Attention-to-Detail would leave a few i’s undotted and t-s uncrossed; that will become a part of the Palin legacy.
As Suzi Parker at Politics Daily writes, “Sarah Palin has become an industry.” Let’s face it, this all began when she achieved instant celebrity status during the McCain campaign. Arguably, she was more interested in showcasing herself at the time than she was playing for a win. Sarah Palin’s motto was clear even then: “I love me some me.”
She’s been all about generating income ever since. She quit the low-paying guv’s job to write books and become a public speaker. She tweets, she talks to the world from some remote holy mountain on Facebook when she is not slaughtering moose with poorly-aimed shots. She is engaging in self-approbation on a grand scale, not seen since the Pharaohs, doing Sarah Palin’s Alaska on TLC.
Her daughter has even gotten into the act – single mother, abysmal failure at abstinence, appearing on Dancing with the Stars and then charging thousands of dollars to tell kids not to do what she did as a spokeswoman for Candie’s Foundation. Do they Palin women know how to rock or what? They’re living the American dream.
At this point, they more closely resemble Ann Nicole Smith than they do genuinely important people – celebrities only because they’re celebrities, not because they’re known for any accomplishments. Quitting as governor? Losing a presidential election when you had God on your side? Losing on Dancing with the Stars?
No, if anything, the Palin’s seem more like a prosperity ministry directed at themselves than anything else.
She may well be a political force (a debatable point), even a king-maker of sorts, but her candidates tend to lose – Sharron Angle, Christine O’Donnell, Joe Miller…she is at odds with the Republican Party, doesn’t hold office, and polls demonstrate over and over again that the American people loathe her, making the likelihood of her ever again holding office seem remote at best.
But as Suzi Parker points out, “She has become a brand — and she’s trying to protect it by trademarking her name.” A brand. Even Saint Ronald wasn’t a brand. But Sarah Palin is a brand?
If so, the Palin women are a self-perpetuating brand, because that seems to be their raison d’être.
Entertainers might trademark their names to keep people from cashing in on their names or likeness but politicians don’t do it. Barack Obama isn’t trademarked. Neither is Mike Huckabee, or Tim Pawlenty or Mitt Romney. But then, those men aren’t in it for the money. They’re politicians. Sarah Palin left the nitty gritty for the bright neon lights and glitz, the bling.
Sarah Palin wants to be rich and famous, she wants power without responsibility, and she loves herself just a little more than is healthy. It’s unappealing enough in an athlete so see that kind of narcissism; it’s unacceptable in someone who pretends to care about the average American and in the common good, because the only good Sarah Palin is genuinely interested in is her own.
And as everyone knows (well, maybe not Sarah Palin) the gods punish hubris. Even victorious Roman generals weren’t so overcome with hubris that they didn’t let a lowly slave whisper into their ears that “all glory is fleeting.”
Something Sarah Palin ought to remember before she starts collecting for a statue on the Capitol Mall.