Yes Men punk TPP and US Trade Ambassador with fake "Corporate Power Tool Award"

US Trade Ambassador Ron Kirk was in Dallas to kick off a corporate power-event to drum up support for the foundering, secretive Transpacific Partnership, a secret treaty that builds on the work of ACTA to establishing punishing copyright laws that include mandatory surveillance and censorship. The Yes Men crashed the gala, taking the podium to present Kirk with a "Corporate Power Tool Award," which he tried to accept, but his minders from the Secret Service wouldn't let him.

The first action began when a smartly-dressed man approached the podium immediately after the gala's keynote speech by Ron Kirk, U.S. Trade Representative and former mayor of Dallas. The man (local puppeteer David Goodwin) introduced himself as "Git Haversall," president of the "Texas Corporate Power Partnership," and announced he was giving Kirk and other U.S. trade negotiators the "2012 Corporate Power Tool Award," which "Haversall's" partner held aloft.

The crowd of negotiators and corporate representatives applauded, and "Haversall" continued: "I'd like to personally thank the negotiators for their relentless efforts. The TPP agreement is shaping up to be a fantastic way for us to maximize profits, regardless of what the public of this nation—or any other nation—thinks is right."

At that point, the host of the reception took the microphone back and announced that the evening's formal programming had concluded. But Mr. Haversall confidently re-took the microphone and warmly invited Kirk to accept the award.

Kirk moved towards the stage, but federal agents blocked his path to protect him from further embarrassment. At that point, a dozen well-dressed "delegates" (local activists, some from Occupy Dallas) broke into ecstatic dance and chanted "TPP! TPP! TPP!" for several minutes until Dallas police arrived.

Party ends badly for U.S. trade reps, federal agents (via David Akin)


  1. This so demonstrate how dressing in a suit and tie enables one to do things that showing up in denim or leather would get a immediate security response to. And that is why the worst criminals wear suits.

  2.  Ron Kirk is a former Mayor of Dallas, Texas who seemed unable to chair a city council meeting without creating a ruckus by cutting off other council members he disagreed with in mid-sentence.  He was succeeded by alternative-newspaper, muck-racking reporter Laura Miller who showed that it was indeed possible to have a civil city council meeting where everyone got their say and still get city business done.

    Ron Kirk is not missed.

  3. Somehow, when Cory Doctorow describes something as “foundering”, hope springs anew.  

  4. More of this, please.

    Funny (in a sad way) how few comments this post provoked.

    Git Haversall = Savage Thrill

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