It’s an inspiring story: Chris Cox, a “chainsaw sculptor” from South Carolina, decides to start mowing the lawn and picking up trash at the National Mall last week, as furloughed federal employees have been unable to maintain the grounds. His actions go viral across social media, and a group of concerned patriots (who happen to be Tea Party-affiliated) are inspired to come to the Mall to help. Eventually, the grass is spotless and everyone goes home happy.

The only problem: the Mall appears to have been immaculate to begin with. Aaron Black of Occupy Wall Street was there Saturday during the Fix Up DC rally, which found Glenn Beck, Republican Utah Senator Mike Lee, the conservative nonprofit Freedomworks, and the Tea Party Patriots yammering about “equal justice” and “freedom,” while asking attendees to help clean up the lawn (and tweeting about it a lot). But Black says the Mall was already clean when they started picking.

He sent ANIMAL the footage above, which, after a confrontation between Black and Senator Lee, shows vast, trashless expanses of green as far as the eye can see.

While people are unable to go to work, thanks largely to foot-dragging by far-right Republicans in the House, the Tea Partiers are patting themselves on the backs at a meaningless PR event. Keep up the good work, guys!

(Video: Aaron Black)