For several years NewsBusters has been informing readers of Nobel Laureate Al Gore's profit motive as it pertains to his advancement of global warming hysteria.
This included the presentation of a video of the former Vice President disclosing in March 2008 what investments he's personally made in companies that will benefit from any legislation designed to curb carbon dioxide emissions.
This admission garnered virtually no mainstream media coverage from global warming obsessed press members when it was first uncovered last April.
So great is their devotion to this cause that when Gore was asked about his financial interests in pending cap and trade legislation at a recent hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Committee (video embedded right), his heated exchange with a representative from his home state went completely ignored by America's television news divisions until conservative radio host Laura Ingraham and Climate Depot's Marc Morano discussed it on Friday's "O'Reilly Factor" (video and transcript embedded below the fold followed by additional comments on the subject):
(If embed isn't functioning, video is available here.)
LAURA INGRAHAM, GUEST HOST: In the "Personal Story" segment tonight, it seems that being green does pay big time. Just ask Al Gore. Mr. Global Warming was worth about $2 million or so when he left office in 2001. But after eight years of tirelessly working to save the world, the planet, he is reportedly worth, get this, a whopping $100 million. His financial windfall came up at last week's Capitol Hill hearing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MARSHA BLACKBURN, (R) KY: Is the legislation that we are discussing here today -- is that something that you are going to personally benefit from?
AL GORE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT: If you believe that the reason I have been working on this issue for 30 years is because of greed, you do not know me. I have been willing to put my money where my mouth is. Do you think there is something wrong with being active in business in this country?
BLACKBURN: I am simply asking for clarification of the relationship.
GORE: I am proud of it. I am proud of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Did she get the question actually answered? With us now, Marc Morano, he is the executive editor of climatedepot.com. Marc, that was kind of a hot hearing with Al Gore and the congresswoman. Tell us what we need to know about Al Gore's relationship to a business that will seek to profit off of any kind of cap and trade legislation.
MARC MORANO, CLIMATEDEPOT.COM: As you mentioned, Al Gore went from $2 million up to $100 million according to Bloomberg.
INGRAHAM: He did a lot of things, though. Speaking .
MORANO: Speaking, other investments. Absolutely. Yes. I also think he is motivated beyond money. He is an ideologue. He is a committed believer. It is not there he -- it is not fair to say he's doing it for the money. But this is big business in Washington. There are four climate lobbyists for every member of Congress. That's how bad it's gotten.
But Al Gore, she mentioned the law firm Kleiner and Perkins. Al Gore is a partner in a firm which vested $1 billion in 40 different firms. When government mandates come down the road, this is going to increase the company's business and portfolio and the amount of profit, Al Gore, according to Dick Lindsen (ph), one of the scientists at MIT who Al Gore has criticized. Al Gore wants to become the first carbon billionaire. And he is poised to do it. He has the Alliance for Climate Protection. He has his other groups in the U.K., Generation Investment Management. Both of these groups, one has pledged to spend $300 million to promote a climate - promote government policy that will force carbon markets and carbon trading where Al Gore is essentially either a founder or a partner in a whole wide range of groups, including in Chicago and in the U.K., stock market carbon trading, where he is poised to benefit incredibly. As much as he's made now is going to be piker league compared to what he is going to make in five years if all these new carbon trading mandates go through.
INGRAHAM: It reminds me of the GE joint venture that GE is going to be involved with or is involved with that also - GE will make billions perhaps if cap and trade goes through. THE FACTOR has been over this but there should be an advisory on the screen anytime the report on cap and trade because of their interest in the ultimate outcome of the legislation.
Look, I agree with you. Al Gore is -- he was wealthy before. I am not sure that is the motivation. That is not the point here. The point is there is personal interest that he did not want to talk about it for good reason, I think.
MORANO: The promotion of man made climate fear -- Some estimates have been up to 50 billion since 1990 spent for the United Nations foundations. NBC gave Al Gore something like 75 hours free TV time, 75 hours for his live birth concert, I believe it was. There is all kinds of ways he is benefiting.
INGRAHAM: That's still going on?
MORANO: The bottom line is, the money is all on the side of promotion. Exxon Mobil gets excoriated for $19 million allegedly given to skeptical groups. Well, one USDA farm grant of $20 million to study how farm odors contributed to global warming exceeded all the money the largest oil company has ever been accused of getting. This is big business. The environmental groups are just chomping at the bit for what is about to happen. He who controls carbon controls life. It is a bureaucrat's dream to control carbon in Washington.
INGRAHAM: And don't call it cap and trade. Call it global warming tax.
MORANO: Global warming tax. Absolutely.
INGRAHAM: Marc, great to see you.
MORANO: Thank you.
Readers are advised to review Morano's post and transcript of this segment which includes links to all the points he made during his discussion with Ingraham.
With that in mind, it is indeed fascinating that despite the attention Gore gets from his fans in the media whenever he's in front of a camera, this exchange with Blackburn went so ignored.
After all, for the past several years, any time oil executives were dragged in front of Congress to explain why gas prices were so high, the profits of their companies as well as their own personal compensation were always front and center. Ditto when Wall Street bank and brokerage firm executives testified to Congress since the financial crisis began AND when those in the automobile industry were so summoned.
In fact, such pompous and self-aggrandizing attacks on greed and personal financial gain were always guaranteed to make it onto the evening news programs as well as the front pages of newspapers from coast to coast.
Yet, when a former Vice President is asked on Capitol Hill about his personal financial connection to pending legislation, that's not newsworthy.
Gore's supporters in the press and the liberal blogosphere would defend this omission by claiming he has no personal financial connection, and that therefore makes it a red herring.
This, of course, is absurd, as Gore himself disclosed his investments in March 2008:
AL GORE: There are a lot of great investments you can make. If you are investing in tar sands, or shale oil, then you have a portfolio that is crammed with sub-prime carbon assets. And it is based on an old model. Junkies find veins in their toes when the ones in their arms and their legs collapse. Developing tar sands and coal shale is the equivalent. Here are just a few of the investments I personally think make sense. I have a stake in these so I’ll have a disclaimer there. But geo-thermal concentrating solar, advanced photovoltaics, efficiency, and conservation.
As Gore spoke these words, pictures of electric cars, windmills and solar panels appeared in multiple slides on the screen with company names at the bottom such as Amyris (biofuels), Altra (biofuels), Bloom Energy (solid oxide fuel cells), Mascoma (cellulosic biofuels), GreatPoint Energy (catalytic gasification), Miasole (solar cells), Ausra (utility scale solar panels), GEM (battery operated cars), Smart (electric cars), and AltaRock Energy (geothermal power).
Please bear in mind that he didn't say that his non-profit had a stake in these investments as he told Blackburn on April 24. He said, "I have a stake in these so I’ll have a disclaimer there."
When was he telling the truth: last March in front of a conference in Monterey, California, as he was recommending to attendees how they should invest their money, or when caught off guard by a member of Congress?
Shouldn't so-called journalists have been interested in this, especially given a March 6 article by Bloomberg:
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore left the White House seven years ago with less than $2 million in assets, including a Virginia home and the family farm in Tennessee. Now he's making enough to put $35 million in hedge funds and other private partnerships.
Gore invested the money with Capricorn Investment Group LLC, a Palo Alto, California, firm that selects the private funds for clients and invests in makers of environmentally friendly products, according to a Feb. 1 securities filing. Capricorn was founded by billionaire Jeffrey Skoll, former president of EBay Inc. and an executive producer of Gore's Oscar-winning documentary film on global warming.
Add it all up, and not only did Gore himself admit last year that he has personal investments in green companies that will benefit from cap and trade legislation, but he apparently has a $35 million investment in "hedge funds and other private partnerships" that invest "in makers of environmentally friendly products."
Seems to debunk Gore's claim that his investments in such entities are exclusively through his non-profit organization.
And what of those investments? Should they be exempted from press scrutiny? After all, it's his non-profit. He controls the funds.
Furthermore, by moving any income and/or profits that he makes from his connection to the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers as well as capital gains from his investments into his non-profit, he completely avoids taxation on them while still retaining complete control.
As I have maintained from my first article concerning this matter, it is not my suggestion that Gore is doing anything wrong. Instead, as the left and their media minions boldly eschew profits and wealth-creation whilst always assuming those involved in such endeavors are doing so illegally and/or immorally, why does the Global-Warmingest-in-Chief get a pass?
For more than six years we've been told by the left and their media minions that former President George W. Bush went to war in Iraq -- risking American lives no less!!! -- to assist his buddies in the oil patch as well as Vice President Dick Cheney's former employer Halliburton.
For more than four years we've been told that oil and gas prices are high because of the greed of executives in that industry. Since the financial crisis began last September, we've been told it was all the fault of greedy bank and brokerage firm executives.
Yet, when legislation that will cost Americans billions nay trillions of dollars is being discussed, the motives of a man that has ADMITTED his investments will benefit are not even remotely questioned by these same anti-capitalist and anti-free market journalists.
Before answering, consider the following statement Gore made to Blackburn on April 24:
I've been willing to put my money where my mouth is. Do you think there's something run with being active in business in this country? I'm proud of it.
To be sure, I don't think there's anything wrong with someone being active in business in this country. But for years, Democrats and their adoring press have depicted such activities as being greedy, and in the current pro-socialist environment, downright un-American.
With that in mind, I can't for a second imagine oil company or Wall Street executives getting a pass from the media after dismissing a member of Congress with such a comment, and don't understand why Gore did.