Friday, 11 August 2017

"Energy Hog" Al Gore: New Film Flops, But He’s Still Living Large

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Al Gore, whose energy-squandering Nashville home earned him an "energy hog" rating, has a hypocritically large carbon footprint. This, along with the public's fear fatigue over global warming fright-peddling, may account for An Inconvenient Sequel bombing at the box office.

 

Despite huge help from the liberal-left establishment, Al Gore is having big trouble selling tickets to his new global warming apocalypse film, An Inconvenient Sequel. Unlike the original 2006 film rant (which also garnered him Nobel and Oscar prizes), his latest offering has been a bomb at the box office since its release on July 28. The former vice president, who has been jetting around the globe to promote the new “documentary,” was given friendly coverage by the BBC to preach his global warming gospel and bash President Trump during a tour-stop in London on August 10.

However, as London’s Daily Mail noted, the movie is “clocking in at just 15th place — six spots under where the original was at this point in 2006,” and Gore’s box-office woes are not likely to improve. CNN provided a special Townhall segment featuring a fawning interview of Gore by Anderson Cooper. Other networks and media organizations, likewise, lavished millions of dollars' worth of friendly, free publicity. It hasn’t seemed to help.

Some of the reason for the lackluster film performance may have to do with the messenger. Al Gore has packaged himself as a preacher/prophet with a moral, messianic message. Indeed, he has repeatedly said global warming is “a moral and a spiritual issue.”

Do What I Say, NOT What I Do

The website for his film calls on visitors to take the “PLEDGE TO #BEINCONVENIENT,” which includes a pledge to: “Use my choice to switch my home/business/community/university to 100% renewable energy.” But don't expect Mr. Gore to inconvenience himself or interrupt his lavish lifestyle. You see, Preacher Al does not practice what he preaches, and his monumental hypocrisy has many erstwhile acolytes suggesting that he is an embarrassment as a spokesman, and ought to be excommunicated from the Church of Green. In his BBC interview, Gore claimed that current climate catastrophes — storms, hurricanes, droughts — are right out of the Book of Revelation. But the revelation he has to worry about is dealing with his mammoth carbon footprint.

Just as An Inconvenient Sequel was hitting the theaters, a new think tank report came out showing that Gore, who is calling on everyone else to sacrifice, sucks more than 20 times more energy off the grid than the average American family — for just one of his luxury homes! And some months his energy consumption has soared to 34 times the average family usage.

After picking up a Nobel Peace Prize for his environmental work in 2007, Gore solemnly stated in an interview from Norway: "The only way to solve this crisis is for individuals to make changes in their own lives.” However, Al Gore’s carbon-hog lifestyle shows he believes that the commandment to change is “For thee and not for me.”

The details of Gore’s energy guzzling can be found in a new report from the National Center for Public Policy Research titled "Al Gore's Inconvenient Reality." The report, authored by Drew Johnson, examined records of energy usage at Gore’s colonial-style 20-room mansion in the posh Belle Meade section of Nashville, the eighth-wealthiest neighborhood in America according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 

The Gore mansion, with five bedrooms, eight full bathrooms, and two half-baths on a 2.09-acre lot, was purchased by the Gores in 2002 for $2.3 million. Among the details revealed in "Al Gore's Inconvenient Reality" are these points:

• The past year, Gore's home energy use averaged 19,241 kilowatt hours (kWh) every month, compared to the U.S. household average of 901 kWh per month.

• Gore guzzles more electricity in one year than the average American family uses in 21 years.

• In September of 2016, Gore's home consumed 30,993 kWh in just one month — as much energy as a typical American family burns in 34 months.

• During the last 12 months, Gore devoured 66,159 kWh of electricity just heating his pool. That is enough energy to power six average U.S. households for a year.

• From August 2016 through July 2017, Gore spent almost $22,000 on electricity bills.

• Gore paid an estimated $60,000 to install 33 solar panels. Those solar panels produce an average of 1,092 kWh per month, only 5.7% of Gore's typical monthly energy consumption.

Gore Earns “Energy Hog” Rating

The Gore mansion consumed 22.9 kWh per square foot during the past 12 months, more than four times what an energy efficient home should use, according to Energy Vanguard, a company devoted to making homes more energy efficient. Homes that consume more than 20 kWh of electricity per square foot per year earn Energy Vanguard's worst rating: "energy hog." Gore qualified for that dubious distinction.

But Gore’s “energy hog” mansion scandal is only part of the story. As Johnson observes in his report, Gore’s Tennessee mansion energy consumption is all the more staggering when one considers that Al is presumably living there alone and part-time. The Gores’ four children are grown and do not live at the home. Al and Tipper Gore separated in 2010 (but apparently never divorced), and Tipper lives in a luxurious ocean-front villa in Montecito, California (alongside Hollywood celebrity neighbors Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, and Drew Barrymore) that the couple bought in 2010 for $9 million.

Al Gore has another luxury town home at the St. Regis Tower in San Francisco’s ritzy waterfront area. According to Liveinsf.com, a site that specializes in luxury real estate, the St. Regis Tower provides “spectacular views of the city and bay.” Moreover, the website continues, “Amenities at the building include 24-hour room service, butler service, a fitness center, spa, lap pool, even a world class restaurant that's been receiving rave reviews.” Butlers, spa, room service — nice, but a little plushy, no? Where's all the sacrifice?!

Then there is the Gores’ historic family farmhouse and property in Carthage, Tennessee. Added to all this are all of Preacher Al’s globe-hopping, carbon-spewing private jet and limo trips to Davos, Switzerland (to hobnob with the billionaire titans of the World Economic Forum); Cannes, France (to hobnob with his Hollywood celebrity pals); New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, and on and on.

As to be expected, the “green” Fake News establishment has, for the most part, ignored Al Gore's Inconvenient Reality, essentially giving the hypocritical preacher a free pass on his blatant betrayal of the core dogma he prescribes for everyone else. Gore has plenty of enviro pals in the media who rushed to his defense, of course, offering rationalizations for his sins of omission and commission. One of the most ludicrous attempts in the rationalization genre comes from the New Republic’s Emily Atkin, who penned a convoluted and confused argument titled “Al Gore’s Carbon Footprint Doesn’t Matter.” “Should prominent climate advocates be expected to live a carbon-neutral lifestyle?,” Atkin asks. “Are they hypocrites if they don’t? Right-wing critics would have you believe so — that these moralizing elitists are making rules for the public that they themselves don’t have to follow. This has a powerful appeal, especially today. But ultimately the argument is deceitful faux-populism, and the real hypocrites here are the purveyors of it.”

Yes, according to Atkin and The New Republic, it is not Al Gore but the critics who point to Al Gore’s hypocrisy who are the real hypocrites that deserve scorn. She avers that the profligate opulence of the green-minded plutocrats — she names actor Leonardo DiCaprio and Tesla carmaker Elon Musk, besides Gore — are beyond critique. They are exempt because the are doing "good."  According to Atkin, "people like Gore are using their wealth for good," regardless of the fact that they are squandering natural resources that they insist we must forego, or at least "reduce, reuse, recycle." The clincher, she knows, for many of her readers is that Gore has received a benediction and dispensation from the high priest of global warming, Michael "Hockey Stick" Mann. "'He's devoted his life to making sure we act in time to avert a global climate crisis,' the climate scientist Michael Mann told me," Atkin wrote. 

According to Atkin, “the hypocrisy charge simply doesn’t hold up to scrutiny.” How so? The New Republic writer offers two disingenuous arguments: 1) Al Gore compensates for his promiscuous energy usage by buying “carbon offsets”; and 2) he and other “green” celebrity energy wastrels are not asking you and me to sacrifice while they splurge. Ergo, their energy use may be wasteful (even deplorable) but they are not hypocritical, she argues.

Let’s look first at the carbon offset issue, to which there a number of possible responses. Tellingly, Atkin is quick to accept Gore’s claim that he compensates for his energy squandering with “offsets,” which even many environmentalist have criticized as meaningless, ill-defined (or undefined), worthless, and fraught with fraud. Essentially, a “carbon offset” involves a buyer (usually an individual, corporation, or government entity) who reduces his “carbon footprint” by buying “X” dollars-worth of “offsets” that supposedly reduce “X” tons of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere. The offsets are commonly investments in wind farms, solar farms, forest replantation, and the like. Aside from the fact that most of these alleged offset projects are heavily subsidized by taxpayers and many don’t even exist (they are “planned” projects that never get past the drawing board and promotional phases), Al Gore has never provided proof that he has actually invested in verifiable offsets, even though critics have been requesting this evidence for years.

Atkin blithely passes over this matter in a very dishonest and hypocritical way. First, she poisons the well with a quote from a Gore spokesman who affixes the “climate denier” smear on those questioning Preacher Gore’s practices. Atkin writes: “’Climate deniers, funded by the fossil fuel industry, continue to wage misleading personal attacks on Al Gore as a way of trying to cast doubt on established climate science and distract attention from the most serious global threat we face,’ Gore’s communications director, Betsy McManus, told me in an email.” She admitted that McManus “didn’t dispute Johnson’s claims of Gore’s energy use,” but quoted McManus as claiming “Vice President Gore leads a carbon neutral life by purchasing green energy, reducing carbon impacts and offsetting any emissions that cannot be avoided, all within the constraints of an economy that still relies too heavily on dirty fossil fuels.”

And the proof of this? Atkin says “McManus did not respond to a request for evidence of Gore’s offsets. But let’s set aside the dispute over Gore’s carbon footprint.” Yes, let's just set this inconvenient point aside. How convenient! This seems like a rather biased and cavalier dismissal of a key point in the Gore-Atkin argument, does it not? After all, if Gore is receiving absolution for his “carbon sins” is it not reasonable to ask for proof of his contrition and commitment to reform? But Atkin gives him a free pass on this.

Emily Atkin is not the only “journalist” who let’s Gore skate by on this issue. CNN’s Jake Tapper, who can be a relentless Rottweiler when grilling conservatives and global warming “deniers,” was a pathetic poodle when Gore offered his usual non-response to criticism of his verified “Energy Hog” status.

Gore told Tapper: “I live a carbon-free lifestyle to the maximum extent possible.”

Really? “A carbon-free lifestyle to the maximum extent possible”? I refer the reader to the study above, which noted that Gore’s solar panels provide only 5.7 percent of his Tennessee mansion’s “Energy Hog” diet. What about the other 94.3 percent? With all of his millions, 5.7 percent is the "maximum extent possible" he can achieve? He says we just have to believe him when he says that is all covered by unverified “offsets.” Atkin, Tapper, and other journalists are content to take this as gospel. (Julia A. Seymour at NewsBusters provides a worthwhile examination of Al Gore’s deceptive offset claims here.)

Among other obvious omissions and coverups, Atkin pointedly ignored Al Gore's enormous conflict of interest in promoting the global carbon credit scam, in which he has been heavily invested for years, along with many of the world’s wealthiest investors and Wall Street institutions. He has already profited handsomely from his environmental activism and he stands to make even more immense profits from the carbon offsets scam he is so evangelically promoting. There is at least one other important point regarding Gore’s energy hypocrisy and the offset issue that we should briefly address. Even if Gore were to produce evidence that his entire extravagant lifestyle — all of his homes, properties, and high-flying adventures — is compensated 100 percent by genuine CO2 offsets, he would still be a colossal hypocrite. Why? Because he and the other uber-wealthy climate activists can afford to indulge in costly, symbolic gestures, such as carbon offsets and “alternative” energy sources that cover only a fraction of their usage. The average, struggling American family does not enjoy that luxury.

This brings us to Atkins’ second argument mentioned above. She makes the fantastic claim that “climate change advocates who don’t live a carbon-neutral lifestyle aren’t hypocrites because, for the most part, they’re not asking you to live a carbon-neutral lifestyle. They’re asking governments, utilities, energy companies, and large corporations to increase their use of renewable energy so that you can continue to live your life as you please, without contributing to global warming.”

That is a very deceitful dodge and it is difficult to imagine that Atkin doesn’t realize it. In the same CNN interview mentioned above, Al Gore tells Jake Tapper: “But the point is, our whole country and our entire world has [sic] to change.”

And Al Gore wants to dictate the kind of change expected of every American and every inhabitant of our world. As Alex Newman reported recently for The New American, Al Gore is now flogging an incredibly costly and onerous scheme cooked up by a cabal of investors and bureaucrats dubbing themselves the Energy Transition Commission (ETC). Their plan to regulate and tax human CO2 emissions will only cost humanity $15 Trillion says Gore. He, of course, is also one of the most vocal backers of the UN’s Paris climate accord, which Danish climate researcher Dr. Bjørn Lomborg has noted, according to the UN’s own data and calculations will cost humanity over $100 Trillion (see here and here.)

In addition to the fact that Al Gore and his crony-capitalist pals at the ETC and the big Wall Street investment firms stand to profit enormously from this arrangement they have designed and promoted, there is the unassailable fact that energy costs for the average American will “skyrocket,” to use President Obama’s term. The tax-subsidized alternative energies Gore & Company are selling cannot replace fossil fuels anytime soon, and efforts to force them on us through economic penalties such as “carbon taxes,” “carbon credits,” and “carbon pricing” will fall disproportionately on the poor and middle class, while Gore, DiCaprio, Musk, and the other demigods of the climate alarm choir continue flying high, unaffected by the policies they’ve fastened on the rest of us mere mortals.

With The New RepublicNew York Times, CNN, CBS, NBC, and the rest of the Fake News "watchdogs" providing cover, Gore obviously expects that his hypocrisy will escape wide notice and that he will be able to continue profiting from, and receiving accolades for, his shameless charade. But, in a hopeful sign of the waning influence of the leftist corporate media, even with all the protection and promotion they have provided him, theatergoers still are not rushing out to buy his latest scam.

Photo of Al Gore: AP Images

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