WTO Subversion: Yes!
June 22, 2005

I saw "The Yes Men" tonight... a cool documentary mocking the WTO.

Being a spoof website of the WTO leads to invites to various media ops; onward to various impersonations and media pranks.

Verbose: "A comedic documentary which follows The Yes Men, a small group of prankster activists, as they gain world-wide notoriety for impersonating the World Trade Organization on television and at business conferences around the world. The film begins when two members of The Yes Men, Andy and Mike, set up a website that mimics the World Trade Organization's--and it's mistaken for the real thing. They play along with the ruse and soon find themselves invited to important functions as WTO representatives. Delighted to represent the organization they politically oppose, Andy and Mike don thrift-store suits and set out to shock unwitting audiences with darkly comic satire that highlights the worst aspects of global free trade. Down with the elite-created dehumanizing neoliberal capitalistic order!"

Here's an example of their final prank, their announcement of the disbanding of the WTO, which spilled over into both the Australian and Canadian Parliaments:

May 24th, 2002:
"Mr. John Duncan (Vancouver Island North, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, there is a big difference between a respectful distance and a stick in the eye.

After a protracted and detailed review of current trade policy, the World Trade Organization has decided to effect a cessation of all operations to be accomplished over the next four months, culminating by the end of September. The World Trade Organization will reintegrate as a new trade body the trade regulation organization.

Will the government inform Canadians what impact this will have on our appeals on lumber, agriculture and other ongoing trade disputes?"

Too bad it wasn't true...