War Is Over, if You Fake It
November 13, 2008
Over a million copies of the New York Times are currently in circulation across the country, spreading the word that, among other things, the Iraq War has ended, a cap on executive paychecks has been set, and a free university education is now free for all Americans. The only problem is, they aren’t actually published by the newspaper, and the stories are fake. On close inspection, one will discover that the prank paper is dated as being from July 4th, 2009, and that the famous motto of the Grey Lady has been replaced by “All the news we hope to print.”
According to Democracy Now! and the Telegraph, the people behind the joke call themselves the Yes Men; they are responsible for many other hilarious but meaningful pranks, including posing as Exxon suits at the 2007 Gas and Oil Exposition, where they suggested human corpses should be turned into fuel.
This is the sort of subversive work I love. You can read an online edition of the pretend paper here. I’m still reading through it, but so far it’s wonderful, especially the faux admission by Thomas Friedman.