“I’m John McCain, and I Never Approved of Squat”

John McCain is denying responsibility for an ad run by the RNC on his behalf last fall. Evidently he did not approve of that commercial, though the judge is not buying it, and is allowing Jackson Browne’™s suit for infringing on his song ‘œRunning on Empty.’ The GOP wankers should have tried using Browne’™s ‘œRosie.’

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

In last fall’™s election campaign the GOP used an ad in Ohio that ripped off the Jackson Browne golden oldie, ‘œRunning on Empty.’ The point they were trying to get across was that the Obama campaign energy policy would leave us without gas, or something like that. Jackson Browne was offended by the ad, and has sued all of the above, John McCain, the RNC, and etc. Turns out John McCain’™s defense is that he never approved the use of the song. The man helped write the campaign laws, for Christ’™s sake, and he can’™t take personal responsibility for this kind of bungling? Here’™s his defense, from Wired.com:

I was not involved at all in any way in the writing, creation, production, distribution or dissemination of the video, nor do I have any knowledge whatsoever of how this video was written, created, produced or disseminated or who was involved in any aspect of the writing, creation, production, distribution or dissemination of the video. I was completely unaware that this video even existed until I was informed of it after this lawsuit was filed.

The judge didn’™t buy it.

Despite McCain’™s claims of being a hapless dupe for his party, U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner said (.pdf) the RNC and McCain were so intertwined ‘” what the judge called an ‘œagency relationship’ ‘” that McCain stays in the case. The judge wrote that, even if McCain’™s statement were true, ‘œonce an agency relationship is established, the principal is liable for the acts of her agent, even if the principal does not expressly authorize or instruct her agent to take any action.’

The judge also did not agree with the Republicans and McCain that Browne’™s lawsuit was bogus. Among other things, the judge kept the lawsuit alive to give the defendants a chance to demonstrate how using about 20 seconds of the song in the commercial was a fair use.

Yes, persons running for political office are responsible, just like we are, for using and paying for the artistic products they want to emply to back their own ambitions.

In the interest of full disclosure, my son goes to sleep quite well to Jackson Browne’™s ‘œJamaica Say You Will.’ I have not played ‘œRosie’ for him.

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009 by Richard Blair |

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