When I lived in NY, my roomie and I used to go to Other Music all the time. It seemed like every other day they would have a new bootleg disc of Lee Renaldo and Steve Shelley playing some crazy 72-minute freakout jam. It was as if we were always chasing these shows ("look! This was recorded last Tuesday!") but never found any.
Those were like what sonic youh was SUPPOSED to sound like.
Not the same thing. The old record sleeve wasn't capital-A art; reusing it here is totally different from the Paul Gardner scenario. This is a forgotten piece of ephemera put into a new context, not fine art scanned, autotraced and passed off as Tuffys work.
I do agree that there's a double standard maybe, but SOME people have just blatantly stolen artwork and said "I made this". Yeah, those people would have been crucified - and deservedly, because they have a history of stealing shit. Tuffy is one of the best designers we have, and I see a huge difference between reuse and theft - a line he doesn't cross.