Chicken Little cries all the way to the bank: Al Gore believes that life as we know will be coming to an end in three years, but in the meantime, Gore is richer than Mitt Romney, according to The Wrap:
Post-vice presidential life has been very good to Al Gore.
Thanks to the $500 million sale of his liberal news station Current TV to Al Jazeera this month, Gore now has a personal fortune of $300 million, Forbes magazine estimates. That puts him ahead of Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney, whose estimated $230 million left him vulnerable to charges that he was out of touch with the common man.
Not to mention vulnerable to this classic macaca-esque drive-by hit piece from the Washington Post this past October: “Mitt Romney is worth $250 million. Why so little?”
It’s a big number, but frankly, it seems low. Given the industry in which he made his fortune (private equity), the era when he made it (the 1980s and 1990s) and the wealth of his peers in that business (mostly billionaires), Romney should be worth a good bit more than that.
Why isn’t he?
In contradistinction to the Post concern-trolling Romney, what does that Journolist-tainted paper think about Gore’s sudden cash influx? Mazel tov, Al!
After the Supreme Court turned him out to pasture, Gore did begin doing the kind of work that his friends had always thought suited him best; with his pointer and slide-show, he traveled the country teaching and preaching — and explaining the threat of global climate change.
He’s been well and rightly compensated for doing so — rewarded with an Oscar, a Grammy and a Nobel Prize, among other things — and while lecturing us on our carbon footprint, has also made a fortune in various investments. There’s nothing wrong with getting rich, either, mind you, or in turning a turkey like Current TV into a big payday; on the contrary, doing well by doing good is a nearly universal goal.
But now, of course, he and his partners have sold Current for $500 million to Al-Jazeera, the state media company of Qatar, which has the largest per-capita carbon footprint of any country in the world, and is financed by the dirty fossil fuel business Gore so abhors.
How does raking in $100 million petrodollars fit with his life’s mission? In an interview last year, he said the goal of “reducing our dependence on expensive dirty oil” can really only be understood in light of the “main reason for doing this, which is to save the future of civilization.” Is that all?
Though the deal’s been widely criticized on the right, most of my progressive friends have a more tolerant attitude towards the transaction: “After what happened to him,” in the recount of 2000, one friend remarked, “I’d forgive him almost anything.”A politically active environmentalist, too, was taking the news in stride: “I don’t think the community is too upset,” he said. “My personal sense is he got a good deal.”
But beyond that, why isn’t the radical environmentalist “community” upset? If you truly share Al’s formerly stated beliefs that global warming was “an Ecological Kristallnacht,” and that we only had ten years to save the planet, why aren’t you furious at Gore selling out the cause to Big Oil? Especially since, as the Post tacitly confirms, now that Al has declared “Mission Accomplished,” there is no environmental cause left.