Obama Phanatics

by Michael Schaffer | October 31, 2008

Philadelphia's World Series victory on Wednesday night is good news for at least one sector of this swing state's economy: Sales of t-shirts, hats, trinkets, and commemorative baseball kitsch. And today, when some one million people are expected to watch the Phillies parade down Broad Street, is that industry's version of the Friday after Thanksgiving. With not championship of any sort since 1983, and no tradition of moderation or subtlety in any aspect of sports fanhood, the throng should buy up anything in sight. Which is convenient news for, oh, a presidential campaign whose supporters have a knack for creative, unauthorized branding. Hours after the championship, the tables Barack Obama's campaign has set up around central Philadelphia had added a few new buttons to the standard array of position statements and campaign paraphernelia: One with the Illinois Senator's face and the words "Go Phillies," and an inspired item with the same Obama image and a phrase inspired by one of the team's postseason heroes: VictorIN08. (I couldn't find any McCain tables near the parade route, so can't report on whether the GOP is appropriating the name of any other Phillies hero for his own campaign).

--Michael Schaffer

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