Thank you New York Times. The out-of-town paper has noticed something that’s been irking me for weeks: Obama’s slogans, campaign themes, image, and logo have been co-opted by corporations and plastered all around the District. Obama is on buses, Metro cards, the radio and TV. Ikea has a new slogan: “Change Begins At Home.” There’s also a hot sauce, a hope-and-change necklace, and trading cards. Plus Obama toilet paper, soap, and candy bars. Visit any of our local airports and you will find a kiosk or three selling anything and everything with Obama’s face on it.

The biggest offender is Pepsi. Slate made a case over the summer that Obama was the Pepsi candidate. But Pepsi appears to have tweaked their red-white-and-blue yin-yang and has adopted words like “hope” and “optimism” for its bus and TV ads. Only Pepsi spells it “optimismmm.” Or something like that. Cool.

I marvel at what Pepsi would have done with McCain’s “America First” slogan. But anyway. You just know Sarah Palin will be appearing in a painful Superbowl ad. Probably something for Viagra or Crystal Meth or Crystal Light or GED classes or LensCrafters.

ABC’s Jake Tapper has the full scoop. Pepsi has a name for its new campaign—the Pepsi Optimism Project (PoP—sorry PoP). Tapper writes:

“Last month, Pepsi commissioned a Pepsi Optimism Project (POP) survey, which concluded that those whom they dub ‘Millennials’ (people born between 1980 and 1990) remained, ‘confident and optimistic” despite “a failing economy, employment woes and countless other concerns.’…

Pepsi also has plans to have a big presence in Washington, D.C. next week during the inauguration. The company has teamed up with The Creative Coalition to hold an inaugural ball. A spokesperson from Pepsi said that during the week they will continue it’s brand re-launch around the ideas of hope, positive change, and active participation though forums out-of-home communications, and TV.

Is this change we can believe in?”

No, it is not.