Photo: drivenbyboredom The “culture jamming” prankster troupe The Yes Men contributed to the Climate Week excitement in New York City this morning by distributing fake copies of the New York Post. The illicit special edition of the tabloid warned that climate change could unleash heat waves, flooding, and other disasters over the next decades.
The fake paper (also online) contains actual non-fake information, the group says:
Although the 32-page New York Post is a fake, everything in it is 100% true, with all facts carefully checked by a team of editors and climate change experts.
“This could be, and should be, a real New York Post,” said Andy Bichlbaum of the Yes Men. “Climate change is the biggest threat civilization has ever faced, and it should be in the headlines of every paper, every day until we solve the problem.”
The group says nearly a million copies were distributed by more than 2,000 volunteers.
The fake Post’s cover story (“We’re Screwed”) reports the frightening conclusions of a blue-ribbon panel of scientists commissioned by the mayor’s office to determine the potential effects of climate change on the City. That report was released in February of this year, but received very little press at the time. Other lead articles describe the Pentagon’s alarmed response to global warming (“Clear & Present Disaster”), the U.S. government’s sadly minuscule response to
the crisis (“Congress Cops Out on Climate”), China’s alternative energy program (“China’s Green Leap Forward Overtakes U.S.”), and how if the US doesn’t quickly pass a strong climate bill, the crucial Copenhagen climate talks this December could be a “Flopenhagen.”
And there’s one bona-fide non-prankish plain-old-journalism scoop:
One article (“Carbon counter counts New Yorkers as fools”) reveals that Deutsche Bank – which erected a seven-story “carbon counter” in central Manhattan – not only invests heavily in coal mining companies worldwide, but has recently entered the business of coal trading itself.
Not bad. Does this mean it takes a fake newspaper to get out the real version of the news, with the urgency the story requires?
Here’s the group’s video: