- The Washington Times
Wednesday, July 11, 2018

British politician Nigel Farage is facing pressure from Rage Against the Machine to change the name of his podcast, “Farage Against the Machine.”

An attorney for the defunct rock group sent a cease and desist order to the pro-Brexit parliamentarian on Tuesday demanding he immediately stop using the band’s name and logo in connection with his weekly podcast.

“As you should know, RATM has publicly denounced the type of right-wing ideology you espouse for decades,” lawyer Howard King wrote on behalf of the band, The Blast first reported. “Your anti-immigrant rhetoric, lack of social compassion and barely disguised racism and xenophobia are the antithesis of what RATM stands for.

“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,” he continued. “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.”

Mr. Farage did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

Formed in Los Angeles in 1991, Rage Against the Machine won Grammy Awards in 1997 and 2001 for the songs “Tire Me” and “Guerrilla Radio,” respectively.

Widely recognized for their left-leaning politics — “Tire Me” was written “to celebrate the death of Richard Nixon,” RATM vocalist Zach de la Rocha said during a 1994 performance held a month after the former Republican president’s passing — the group’s attorney told Mr. Farage’s representatives that the podcast “brazenly and unlawfully exploits our client’s name and logo,” adding that the “implication of any endorsement by our client of you or your policies is particularly abhorrent.”

“In the event the foregoing is not crystal clear, demand is hereby made that you immediately cease and desist from using RATM’s name and logo, including by changing the name of your podcast and ceasing and desisting from all promotion, marketing, and advertising of the podcast using our client’s name or logo- which falsely associates you, your colleagues at LBC and Fox, and your far-right political views with RATM,” his letter ends.

Rage Against the Machine released its most recent studio album, “Renegades,” in 2000, and the group has been on an unofficial hiatus since 2011. Guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk formed Audioslave in the interim with late Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, and more recently they launched a project in 2016, Prophets of Rage, featuring rappers Chuck D and B-Real of Public Enemy and Cypress Hill, respectively.

Mr. Farage, 54, is the former leader of the U.K. Independent Party. He was one of the main backers of the “Brexit” referendum that passed in June 2016 and subsequently campaigned in the U.S. in support of President Trump near the end of the latter’s 2016 election campaign.

“Farage Against the Machine” debuted in March, drawing a rare rebuke from Rage Against the Machine at the time through the band’s official Twitter account.”

“This pissweasel IS the machine – peddling the sort of inane, blame-heavy [expletive] that the guys in @RATM have been raging against since day one,” the band said previously.

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