Monday, April 09, 2007

Moral of the Story

Warmer-in-Chief Al Gore tells us the fight against climate change is a moral crusade and encourages us all to do our part. The great German philosopher Emanuel Kant established a process known as the Categorical Imperative to help in determining what could be considered ‘moral.’ Essentially, that which is to be moral must be something we could will that everyone could do in similar fashion and we would still consider it moral in that it served the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Apparently, Gore’s morality applies only to other people and not himself.

It would take twenty years for most of us to use as much energy as Gore does in one year at his primary residence. Yet he is always on his soapbox telling the rest of us what we need to do to save energy. “It’s not that hard to do” he says while flying all over the earth telling the rest of us not to fly. He tells us to forgo use of fossil fuels while his family fortune has come from Occidental Oil Company. He preaches environmental sanctity while the zinc mine on his property paying him hundreds of thousands of dollars in royalties is ranked one of the most polluted and toxic sites in the country. When the term hypocrite was coined they must have had Al Gore in mind. What an incredible charlatan.

Gore claims his extravagant energy use is “carbon neutral” because he uses clean energy and buys carbon offsets. Then it turns out he “buys” his offsets from Generation Investment Management which is a firm he founded and receives the “offsets” as a form of compensation. The company doesn’t offer the offsets itself, but rather invests, for profit, in so-called “Green” companies that do. Essentially, Gore buys stock in his own company and then claims that its returns are carbon offsets.

What would Kant say? If all of us performed as Gore does, consuming energy extravagantly and buying indulgences from others to forgive our own excesses (and who would these people be if all of us were behaving like Gore), would our actions still be considered moral? I guess just like his “legal” responsibilities at the 1996 Buddhist Temple fundraiser where he was soliciting, and collecting, money from Chinese communists he would sincerely look us in the eye and claim “there is no controlling moral authority.”

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