Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Post no pranks

Oh, you guys.

The Yes Men are at it again, putting 100,000 fake copies of the New York Post on the streets of that city the day before a United Nations climate change summit. It's full of some very un-Post-like stories on the subject.

I'm always amused by their shenanigans: posing as business or government officials and/or creating phony websites to get their points across. My personal favorites are the fake stories about Dow Chemical and the Bhopal disaster as well as the "National Petroleum Council rep" who revealed secret plans for converting victims of any global disaster into oil ('Vivoleum'). Out of laziness, I'll just point you at their Wikipedia page --which has already been updated to reflect their latest theater.

I have to admit that I'm a sucker for pranks like this. They have more wit and panache than a treefull of your usual activists, which also guarantees at least 15 minutes of fame for each stunt.

Here's their press release and home page. The real NY Post carried an Associated Press Story quoting the company statement "Witless Spoof in Flawless Format,"

The faux Post is actually an entertaining read, and essentially factual as far as I can tell (I like the one about the carbon footprint of U-2's world tour). It just loads soooo darned slooow. Maybe their website doesn't have the bandwidth to handle as much attention as they've probably gotten.

I was about to say...

The National Snow and Ice Center tells us they think the Arctic sea ice melted about as much as it's going to this year on Sept. 12, 2009, and NASA's Earth Observatory kindly sent me this image. That's the third lowest ice coverage on record they tell us (topped by 2007 and 2008). One of the reasons I'm not a flat-earther about climate change, though I think some of the advocates get a bit extreme.

It looked like the Northwest Passage might be open (I droned on about that last year), and I was looking for stories on the subject. Somehow I got detoured on the information highway and ended up with the Yes Men.

The Northwest Passage? Didn't see anything official, though evidently a few people made it through on the less favored southern route. I'm sure NASA will remind me again next year at about this time.


bigsoxfan said...

Chuckling, here.. Nice grab, Ken, I caught last years issue, but this one flew by until now. Ten K issues, that must have been a decent sized printing bill. I am so looking forward to the read once the initial rush wears off.
I've been following the maritime news on the gcaptain blog (not an advertisement, just a link for maritime activities) Apparently, the germans are finishing up a delivery in russia and are bringing the ship back through the passage. Also, a pair of Royal Marines took a rowing vessel through. Seventeen foot at waterline, so I'm thinking they were up close and personal with the NW passage. That is it from my readings. Between the potential damage from ice, catastrophic damage from being jammed in, and the usual concerns about russian transit right fees I'm doubtful the passage will become a regular thing, at least until the effects of global warming cover Saipan up to the site of Hamiliton's resteraunt, at which time your interest in the topic will be moot at best. I haven't conversed with him for a while, but one of my Harpoon buddies Dale Hillier is the xo on a canadian frigate with duty up there. Google him and he will tell you the story of the northwest passage in more depth.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

That ice cap is the smallest on record for ---just how long have they been keeping records?

Yeah, those satellite photos from 56 million years ago are pretty interesting all right.

KAP said...

I'm more interested in how the climate is changing now, Bruce. Practically, an open Northwest Passage would have a huge impact on shipping lanes, settlement and development. It probably wasn't open from the 16th-19th centuries when all of those explorers were scattering their ships and their bones about the Arctic. Also, as a lad I was fascinated by the idea.

Anyway, you can read the science without drinking the Koolaid. Birds and bees, flowers and trees are all moving their territories northward. Malaria can be found further north. Some French are planting Champagne grapes in the South of England-- which had a thriving wine industry from about 1100-1300. The climate is always changing, we just have to deal with it one way or another.

Oh thanx for the NW Passage newsletter; that's what I was originally looking for.

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