So much information is coming out about the curious decision by LCMS leadership to pursue legal action against Issues, Etc. after they claimed the show was canceled solely for financial reasons — and that they wanted to resolve the cancellation peacefully.
Anyway, one commenter raised two interesting points:
1. The public rationale for cancelling Issues, Etc. was to curtail deficit spending. Have all fees of LCMS legal counsel related to retaining rights to the name Issues, Etc., been waived? That is, are the synod’s lawyers working pro bono? Surely, in the synod’s current financial crisis, no synodical funds have been used in this quest to regain rights to the name.
2. Why is the synod trying to regain rights to the name? That is, what are the synod’s specific plans for using the name Issues, Etc., in the future?
As to the first, the Patent and Trademark Office has a schedule of hearings and filings that stretch into March 2010. There are four attorneys that I know of who are working on this issue for the LCMS. The billable hours are certainly already significant. It’s interesting that the LCMS feels that this is a good use of funds.
As to the second, the LCMS has already stated that it has no intention whatsoever of resurrecting Issues, Etc. The Trademark Office doesn’t grant trademarks to be held, but not used. How do they plan to use it? Have the BOD and the President’s office decided to launch a new radio show? And, if so, how does that jibe with their original claims that this was not a political firing?