Rage Against the Machine may be a hard-hitting rap rock group with thunderous beats and indignant lyrics, but the anger is only a means to express a compassionate political point of view. So you can imagine how pissed they were when right-wing UK politician Nigel Farage jacked the band’s name for his Farage Against the Machine podcast. Now, RATM have issued a cease and desist against the conservative LBC digital radio station host demanding he change the show’s name and disassociate himself from the group.
In documents obtained by The Blast, Rage’s attorney, Howard King, states Farage use of the band’s name and logo without their consent constitutes unlawful exploitation. In particular, King says that the“implication of any endorsement by our client of you or your policies is particularly abhorrent.”
A co-founder and former leader of the conservative UK Independence Party, Farage has become an outspoken anti-immigration and European Union critic, as well as (surprise, surprise) a Fox News contributor. Obviously, these aren’t the kind of beliefs Rage Against the Machine would want themselves associated with, and they let Farage know it. “As you should know, RATM has publicly denounced the type of right-wing ideology you espouse for decades,” reads the cease and desist notice. “Your anti-immigrant rhetoric, lack of social compassion and barely disguised racism and xenophobia are the antithesis of what RATM stands for.”
The letter continues, suggesting a different target for Farage’s “trolling:”
“Thus, your surprising attempt to associate yourself with RATM is wholly inappropriate and completely inexplicable, unless it’s part of some kind of bizarre cleansing ritual. Whatever the motivation, please stop. Stop using RATM’s name and logo, change the name of your podcast and find some other target to troll. We suggest President Trump.”
Something tells me Farage Against the Machine wasn’t what RATM had in mind when they were talking about “Guerrilla Radio”.