The April Fool Archive

Interview With President Carter    (April Fool's Day - 2001)

Michael Enright, host of the Sunday Edition of the Canadian Broadcasting Corpation's radio program This Morning, interviewed former President Jimmy Carter on the air. The interview was about softwood lumber, since Carter had recently written an editorial piece in the New York Times criticizing Canada's heavily subsidized lumber industry. However, the interview took a turn for the worse when Enright began telling Carter to speed up his answers. Then Enright asked, "I think the question on everyone's mind is, how did a washed-up peanut farmer from Hicksville such as yourself get involved in such a sophisticated bilateral trade argument?"

Carter seemed stunned by the insult. Finally he replied, "Excuse me? A washed-up pig farmer? You're one to talk, sir. Didn't you used to be on the air five times a week?" The tone of the interview did not improve from there. Carter ended up calling Enright a "rude person" before he hung up. Enright then revealed that the interview had been fake. The Toronto comedian Ray Landry had been impersonating Carter's voice.

The interview generated a number of angry calls from listeners who did not find the joke funny. But the next day the controversy reached even larger proportions when the Globe and Mail reported the interview as fact on its front page under the headline "Wood chips fly over lumber." The editor of the Globe and Mail later admitted he hadn't realized the interview was a hoax because it was "a fairly strange issue and a strange person to choose as a spoof."
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