WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry optimistically discussed expanding American coal exports to Ukraine and other energy matters during a lengthy phone call this month with a Russian prankster who Perry thought was Ukraine\”™s prime minister.
Perry actually was talking with comedians known in Russia for targeting celebrities and politicians with audacious stunts, Energy Department spokeswoman Shaylyn Hynes said in a written statement.
Pranksters Vladimir Krasnov and Alexei Stolyarov are sometimes called the \”Jerky Boys of Russia,\” after an American duo who put out recordings of their prank phone calls in the 1990s. They have made faux calls to British singer Elton John, who thought he was speaking to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and others.
\”These individuals are known for pranking high-level officials and celebrities, particularly those who are supportive of an agenda that is not in line with their governments. In this case, the energy security of Ukraine,\” Hynes said.
During the 22-minute call on July 19, Perry, whose department oversees the U.S. nuclear weapons program, discussed a range of topics in a business-like tone, including sanctions against Russia and helping Ukraine develop oil and gas. Read the rest of this article here.
Exclusive interview: Journalist behind prank on Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is on the ballot in New York’s 26th congressional district
Ian Murphy has been at the lonely work of gonzo journalism for a while now, but it’s only recently that he’s achieved a level of national notoriety from his perch atop New York publication The Buffalo Beast. Others might call it infamy.
Well, Murphy has a new project: He’s running for Congress.
When Gawker published shirtless photos that New York Republican Congressman Chris Lee sent a woman he contacted on Craigslist, Murphy didn’t see red like so many other voters living in New York’s 26th congressional district. He saw green.
Today, less than two months out from a special election, Murphy has secured a place on the ballot as the Green Party’s nominee: a nod he won by a unanimous vote.
In his candidacy announcement, Murphy sits by a fireplace smoking a pipe, reading off his hand (à la Sarah Palin) and intentionally flubbing his talking points for laughs.
These days, with the invention of caller ID and text messaging, it seems that prank calls have more or less fallen by the wayside. But I’m not ready to surrender this classic joke just yet; too many hours in my life have been spent trying to decide who to call and which prank to pull. So for all you wide-eyed, greenhorn, wannabe pranksters out there, here are a few tips on how to transform yourself from a refrigerator runner to a master.
First, let’s review the tools of the trade. There’s the phone, and, well, that’s pretty much it “” but you do have to worry about how you use it. You’ll want to mask your voice with a modulator app, like Funny Call from iOKi. This will make you sound like anything from Rebecca Black to a chipmunk. Now that your voice is anonymous “” and hilarious “” you’ll need to know three simple rules before you call. Continue reading “A Prank Call Instructional”
Move over, Vinny from Queens. There’s a new radio call-in king — and he’s dialing from the White House.
President Obama played a prank on his friend, outgoing Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, phoning Kaine’s radio show as “Barry from DC” to gripe about traffic.
The ruse didn’t last long, as Obama quickly said, “Well, Governor Kaine, this is actually the president of the United States calling. I have some questions about traffic in northern Virginia. But rather than go there, I’d just like to say how proud we are of your service.”
A stunned Kaine said his happiest moment as governor came when Obama was elected president with Virginia’s help.