Clinton “Relieved” by World Expo Sponsors

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Hillary Clinton was less awed than “relieved” at the sight of the brand-centric U.S. pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo over the weekend.

According to the New York Times account of her visit, the U.S. Secretary of State (and future Secretary of Defense?) toured the pavilion’s “Citibank– and Pfizer-sponsored theaters, gauzy eight-minute videos featuring representatives from Chevron, General Electric, and Johnson & Johnson, environmentally friendly features sponsored by Alcoa, and a gift shop with licensed merchandise from Disney.”

Asked by a reporter what she thought, Clinton replied, “It’s fine. Can you imagine if we had not been here?” She also met with Indra K. Nooyi, the CEO of PepsiCo, and dined with other major sponsors.

America’s participation in the 2010 World Expo had been “in jeopardy because Congress restricts the spending of public money on world’s fairs,” until major brand sponsors stepped up to the plate.

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