Monday, June 1, 2009

The WTO Is Doomed

I just watched the documentary The Yes Men, and I am impressed. It's not a great documentary, but the spirit of it cannot be denied. In a nutshell, two guys put up a satire website for GATT, and people from around the world contact them thinking they are the WTO. They, as any self-respecting citizen should, take full advantage of this and act as WTO representatives at various conventions and whatnot throughout the planet.

I'm a huge fan of pranks. Pranks change people's perspective on the world. They change people's lives. Pranks with a political/social subtext are even more impressive as they can really open people's eyes to the problems of the world. In that sense, this movie is incredible.

I had read about the Yes Men in various publications and books before, so I did not go into the film blind. To watch audiences' reactions to them was a treat, however, and that's not something you can adequately experience in a written piece. It's amazing how few people question what is going on around them.

I've been known to play a prank or two in my time. Some have been fairly large, but nothing on the scale these guys did. For that I am impressed. If I could pull off something that huge, I would. That fact that these guys did it in front of "the enemy" (in some cases) means even more.

If you can take any lesson from this movie, it is pull pranks whenever you can. Expose people for what they are, and have fun doing it. The people in control of us lose power when we laugh at them. In fact, it does more damage to laugh at them then to shoot them. It's our duty to cut them down to size, and if we can do it with a smile, we've won.

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