Communists for Intellectual Property


This is a bit old, but I don't think it's been mentioned on Hit & Run yet: Che Guevara's children are irked by the unauthorized use of the Argentina-born Cuban revolutionary's name and likeness on products such as T-shirts, posters, coffee mugs, refrigerator magnets, and vodka:

Aleida Guevara, the eldest of Guevara's four children by his second wife, Cuban revolutionary Aleida March, said the commercialization of her father's image contributed to tension between rich and poor in some countries.

"Something that bothers me now is the appropriation of the figure of Che that has been used to make enemies from different classes. It's embarrassing," she wrote during an Internet forum sponsored by Cuba's government ahead of what would have been her father's 80th birthday on June 14….

"We don't want money, we demand respect," wrote Guevara…

But Cuba's communist government also has worked hard to make money off of the revolutionary's image, stocking tourist shops with T-shirts, postcards and other trinkets bearing his face and three-letter signature.

Here's a win/win proposal: The Cuban government can retain all rights to Che's name and likeness if it lets Cubans freely own, transfer, and use other kinds of property.

Michael Moynihan on the cult of Che here. Kerry Howley on the commercial sullying of Genghis Khan's good name here and here

[Thanks to John Kluge for the tip.]