June 6th, 2007 at
3:49 pm by
A: Depends. Do you mean the double vinyl version, the standard CD or the CD/DVD configuration?
With Wilco's decision to license new music to Volkswagen
, there's been a bit of knee-jerktastic reaction on the worldwidewebby thing
, and in the midst of such hysteria, Jeff Tweedy's brother-in-law Danny Miller
writes, "from the outcries I’ve seen on several sites, you’d think Wilco had licensed “She’s a Jar” to sell Kraft mayonnaise, “Nothing’s Ever Gonna Stand In My Way” to hawk Viagra, or “I’m the Man Who Loves You” to promote the North American Man-Boy Love Association."
I was waiting to see how long it would take the increasingly hysterical fans on the Wilco site to mention Volkswagen’s checkered past. It happened on page 11 of the thread and then flared up big time. Yes, Volkswagen was a large German company that obviously had ties to the Third Reich during World War II. It’s not a history that they hide nor is it one that they stress (to do so would be marketing suicide). Of course there is no connection today between the Volkswagen Company of America (the sponsors of the current spots) and National Socialism but I’ll leave it at that—I have no interest in becoming an apologist for the past moral failings of Volkswagen or any other company. On the other hand, if I was meting out judgment, I might hurl even more at the American companies that got into bed with the Nazis in the 1930s and 40s such as the Ford Motor Company which was headed by the vile anti-Semite Henry Ford. I’d also ponder the cowardice of the Jewish movie moguls in Hollywood who were so worried about offending the lucrative German market after Hitler first took power that they would make it a point to always show Germans in a good light and to avoid making films with Jewish themes. And how about the questionable wartime activities of the Coca-Cola company as it exploited its successful German market even during the war?
Excellent points all around, sir. Everyone is entitled to make his or her own decision about which companies they support (hey, like ours!) and what is or isn't morally defensible. And while I personally have no quarrel with Wilco being paid by Volkswagen (just so long as they got paid a bundle — helps the rest of us trying to establish market value), I would encourage everyone reading this to boycott the Ford Motor Company. True, the Henry Ford Era was a long time ago, but the company continues it's association with a contemporary figure almost as virulent — Toby Keith.