The politics of chocolate and Trump’s kiss of death for Liz Truss

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There just isn’t enough petty revenge in international trademark law.

If, for example, I was working for discount retailer Lidl — which, despite repeated job applications, has yet to happen — I would be planning retribution on a grand scale in the wake of the chocolate bunnies court ruling of last week.

As you may have seen, a Swiss court ruled that the foil-wrapped chocolate bunny made by premium chocolate maker Lindt & Sprüngli (you can see why they just use Lindt on the packaging as Sprüngli sounds like an infection) deserves protection from copycats, including one made by Lidl.

As a result, the German discount retailer has been ordered to stop selling its version of the rabbit-shaped confectionery and to destroy all its remaining stock.

Now, the word “destroy” hopefully doesn’t mean throwing the bunnies in the bin, or letting Jürgen in the warehouse eat them all. The chocolate can surely be melted and used again in a different shape, say a middle finger to be waved in the general direction of Swiss judges, or formed into the letter FU LINDT.

Jonathan Drucker, a former general counsel at Belgian chocolate maker Godiva told the New York Times that Lindt was “an 800-pound gorilla in the chocolate industry.” So maybe they could turn the Lidl bunnies into an 800-pound chocolate gorilla?

Speaking of chocolate, in the U.K. the pound has been devalued by Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng to such an extent that the Mars bar is now the official currency.

And at the Conservative Party conference, Business Secretary and haunted pencil Jacob Rees-Mogg called for “freedom for chocolate oranges.” 

Railing against his own government’s new rules restricting where shops can display junk food, Rees-Mogg urged shoppers to move chocolate closer to the checkout.

“May I encourage people as a passive protest to move the chocolate oranges to the checkout counter,” he told a packed room at a conference fringe event. “Freedom for chocolate oranges is what I say.”

Speaking of orange, the mangled apricot hell beast himself, Donald Trump, has given his backing to the job Truss is doing as British prime minister (a job, lest you forget, that pretty much everyone else has described as a dumpster fire, if that dumpster was full of soiled nappies and fish guts).

“I have a feeling she might be right,” the golfer and sometime ex-president said of Truss’ near-universally panned tax cut plans on somehow still-going broadcaster GB News.

Trump also said Truss seemed “very nice, very good,” and claimed she had received “a great send-off from the queen” — therefore seemingly implying that the queen was merely holding on until Truss was in post before dying.


“Last one to ruin the economy is a loser.”

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Paul Dallison is POLITICO‘s slot news editor.