Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Al Gore Does it Again

Not content with his 10,000 square foot mansion in Belle Meade, Tennessee, former Vice President Al Gore just purchased a 6,500 square foot, ocean front mansion on 1 ½ acres in Montecito, California. His new villa includes a swimming pool, spa and fountains, a wine cellar, family room, terraces, six fireplaces, five bedrooms, and nine bathrooms.

His father, the populist Al Gore, Sr., rose from poverty to become an esteemed United States Senator.

The son, Al Gore, Jr. went to Harvard, entered the family business of politics, rose to the Vice Presidency, and is now a multi-millionaire.

America is great.

It’s still the land of opportunity.

Upper mobility works.

I do not begrudge him his success. Nor do I envy him.

This is America.

We all wish our children to out-succeed us.

But when he lectures, indeed hectors us, then he becomes an insufferable bore.

And when he regales us with bogus data, such as the infamous hockey stick, he plays the fool.

And when he becomes an energy hog, his hypocrisy takes us back to Animal Farm. All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others.

Al Gore won an Oscar and Nobel for “An Inconvenient Truth”.

As had been widely reported, his mansion in Belle Meade was an energy hog. The mansion consumed almost 221,000 kwh in 2006, over 20 times the national average.

The natural gas bill for his mansion and guest house averaged $1,080 per month.

His total gas and electricity bill for 2006 was about $30,000.

In partial justification, he and Tipper both work out of the mansion. In other words, they have home offices and, I presume, take appropriate income tax deductions. That means the taxpayers are footing some of those energy bills.

Al Gore subsequently installed 33 solar panels, a rainwater collection system, and 7 geothermal wells on the property. He also pays a premium for renewable electricity.

He purchased carbon offsets for his carbon footprint, but through a company he partially owns.

And now comes Round 2 in Montecito.

Life has been good to Al Gore, Jr.

Going green, touting green, and the green flows to Al.

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