A print ad featuring a retouched photo of Tony Blair has stirred controversy in the U.K., which was no doubt what its creators, NO2ID, had in mind. The black-and-white effort shows the PM with a barcode mustache and includes the copy, “I.D. cards have worked well in Europe before.” NO2ID insists the ad was simply meant to evoke the fascist 1930s era in general. The Advertising Standards Authority (always keen to smack down junk-food promos aimed at children) has concluded that “although the ad may have been distasteful to some, it was unlikely to be seen as making a serious comparison between Tony Blair and Hitler, but instead as highlighting a lobbying group’s opinion that ID cards should not be introduced because of the threat to civil liberty.” Ohhh—he’s supposed to be Hitler?! I never would have guessed. Next time they should make it more obvious. Maybe Photoshop a swastika onto his lapels and say it’s a stylized Union Jack. Now that should ignite some animated conversation over Cadbury Crunchies and Burger King fries.
—Posted by David Gianatasio