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Al Gore, who made hundreds of millions of dollars off promoting his thoughts on "global warming", accused President Obama of having "failed" to act to stop warming.  (Source: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty images)

Mr. Gore, who recently bought his fourth luxury mansion, uses carbon like there's no tomorrow. But he says he's actually "carbon neutral" thanks to carbon credits he buys from his own company.  (Source: coldwell banker previews via real estalker)

White House officials insist Mr. Gore's accusations are untrue and that the President hasn't "failed" to address climate change.  (Source: AP Photo)
Wealthy investor-cum-advocate continues to be one of the global warming movement's noisiest voices

United States President Barack Obama must be feeling a bit like his predecessor, George W. Bush, when it comes to the topic of climate change.  President Bush was criticized by Democrats as being too weak on climate change.  At the same time, more extreme elements of his party criticized his efforts like CAFE revisions for supposedly being too heavy-handed.  Likewise, President Obama has been criticized by Republicans for being to heavy-handed on climate change, but has been criticized by extreme members of his own party for being too weak.

Taking to the pulpit in a rambling 8-page online editorial in the magazine Rolling Stone, former Vice President and Nobel Prize winner Al Gore delivered perhaps the most stinging criticism yet against President Obama.  Entitled "Climate of Denial", Gore speaks on behalf of the latter contingent -- extreme elements of the Democratic party -- in lashing out at the President saying he has "failed" to do his part to advert the climate crisis.

I. A Question of Credibility

It's a widely known fact that Al Gore makes over $100,000 for speaking appearances.  In 2007 Fast Company estimated a speaking date with Mr. Gore would cost you a cool $175,000 USD.

In his global warming "documentary" An Inconvenient Truth, Mr. Gore claims to have given at least 1,000 speeches, meaning that he's likely earned in excess of $100M USD.  And there's the profits from that documentary as well -- Mr. Gore likely earned a tidy cut of the film's almost $50M USD box office gross [source] and $31M USD in DVD sales [source].

That's not too shabby for a man who was once written off as too boring to become president.

And then there's Mr. Gore's alternative energy climate firms such as Kleiner Perkins and Generation Investment Management LLP.  According to reports, Mr. Gore is poised to become the "world's first carbon billionaire", thanks to these investments.

Mr. Gore defends these holdings, stating, "Do you think there is something wrong with being active in business in this country? I am proud of it. I am proud of it."

He's also been forced to defend his palatial living quarters, which are far from carbon-neutral [source].  In 2007 his 20 room, 8 bathroom mansion used as much electricity in a month as the average American household did in a year. The Gore manor also devoured a very sizable amount of natural gas a year.  In 2010 he bought a fourth mansion -- an even more extravagant abode [source].

And that's not to mention the companies private jets that he's used over the years to promote his "anti-warming" efforts [source]. (Mr. Gore contends that he's never owned a jet personally so this doesn't count.)

Faced with ever present criticism over his apparent green hypocrisy, Mr. Gore says he lives "carbon neutral" by purchasing a wealth of carbon credits to offset his lavish lifestyle.  But reports indicate Mr. Gore is really just paying himself -- his credits allegedly come from Generation Investment Management, a London-based company with offices in Washington, D.C., for which he serves as chairman. [source]

In legal cases justices are supposed to recuse themselves from matters where they have a vested interest.  But Al Gore is no judge and he doesn't seem ready to recuse himself of this debate in which he has a massive vested interest in anytime soon.

Mr. Gore does have the honor of a Nobel Peace Prize, along with United Nations International Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) embattled chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri, for what it's worth, though.

II. Obama -- "Weak" on Climate?

Al Gore attacks Obama in a piece he writes for Rolling Stone he comments:

President Obama has thus far failed to use the bully pulpit to make the case for bold action on climate change. After successfully passing his green stimulus package, he did nothing to defend it when Congress decimated its funding.
...
Without presidential leadership that focuses intensely on making the public aware of the reality we face, nothing will change.

Mr. Gore contends it wouldn't damage the President politically to get "tougher" on climate, writing:

Many political advisers assume that a president has to deal with the world of politics as he finds it, and that it is unwise to risk political capital on an effort to actually lead the country toward a new understanding of the real threats and real opportunities we face. Concentrate on the politics of re-election, they say. Don't take chances.

All that might be completely understandable and make perfect sense in a world where the climate crisis wasn't "real." Those of us who support and admire President Obama understand how difficult the politics of this issue are in the context of the massive opposition to doing anything at all — or even to recognizing that there is a crisis. And assuming that the Republicans come to their senses and avoid nominating a clown, his re-election is likely to involve a hard-fought battle with high stakes for the country.
...
But in this case, the President has reality on his side. The scientific consensus is far stronger today than at any time in the past. Here is the truth: The Earth is round; Saddam Hussein did not attack us on 9/11; Elvis is dead; Obama was born in the United States; and the climate crisis is real. It is time to act.

The attack sent the White House press department into a panic.  They rushed to point out the 960 metric tons yearly saved by the President's Recovery Act that set "aggressive new joint fuel economy and emissions standards for cars and trucks."

States White House official Clark Stevens in a written response, "The President has been clear since day one that climate change poses a threat domestically and globally, and under his leadership we have taken the most aggressive steps in our country’s history to tackle this challenge."

Mr. Gore dismisses anyone who questions that global warming is real, man-made, and "destroying the climate balance that is essential to the survival of our civilization" as a "polluter" or "idealogue".  It's a strategy that promises huge profits for Mr. Gore -- and one that he claims to firmly believe in from an altruistic perspective as well.

One thing's for sure -- this won't be the last time Mr. Gore will be spotted beating the drum of the global warming movement and noisily opening his mouth as a self-proclaimed expert on climate change.


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RE: who cares
By mikeyD95125 on 6/23/2011 3:51:43 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah Al Gore is a self serving A-hole, but you do know that human activity is causing very real changes in the climate of the planet, right?

I see a lot of people on this website put up posts claiming that human carbon emission as well as other forms of pollution have no impact at all. The research, and common sense proves otherwise.


RE: who cares
By JW.C on 6/23/2011 4:43:06 AM , Rating: 3
Humans do not have any substantial impact on the earths climate. Please educate yourself and stop buying into the flawed "research" that you are pointing to. It has been proven that the SUN and not man or the tiny amount of CO2 we put into the atmosphere is the cause for climate change.

Carbon dioxide accounts for less than ten percent of the greenhouse effect, as carbon dioxide's ability to absorb heat is quite limited.

Only about 0.037 percent of the Earth's atmosphere consists of carbon dioxide. Nitrogen, oxygen, and argon constitute about 78 percent, 20 percent, and 0.93 percent of the atmosphere, respectively.

Most of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere does not come from the burning of fossil fuels. Only about 14 percent of it does. That is NOT enough to affect global temps!


RE: who cares
By AnnihilatorX on 6/23/2011 6:42:53 AM , Rating: 3
I don't pretend to know whether man made global warming is real or not. But I'd personally want to see emission from burning fossil fuel cut, and move on to cleaner energy sources. Even if warming is not caused by fossil fuels, I'd love to see the other types of pollution especially air pollution being cut down.

You quoted only 14% of CO2 in the atmosphere is from burning of fossil fuels. You know that half of the CO2 emitted is absorbed by the ocean? That made the fact that we contributes to 28% of extra CO2 in circulation? And there is significant evidence that, never mind the warming at the moment, coral reef ecosystems are under extreme pressure due to the rise in acidity due to CO2 dissolved in ocean.

I agree that carbon dioxide alone does not account for all the warming. You realize that water vapor, which is also significant in warming contribution, is also a significant product of the combustion of fossil fuel?

I don't like your attitude that you seem to know it all. You said it's proven the sun is the [major] cause of climate change. The fact is this is not proven. It's very debatable. Several papers has the contribution figure quoted as anywhere from 7%-50%, Benestad and Schmidt even argue that in 20th century the sun is only accountable for 7% of the warming. I am not saying they are correct, I am merely saying the issue is highly debatable.

quote:
# ^ Benestad,, R. E.; G. A. Schmidt (21 July 2009). "Solar trends and global warming". Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres 114. Bibcode 2009JGRD..11414101B. doi:10.1029/2008JD011639. http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2009/2009_Benestad_... "the most likely contribution from solar forcing a global warming is 7 ± 1% for the 20th century and is negligible for warming since 1980.".
Scafetta, N.; West, B. J. (2007). "Phenomenological reconstructions of the solar signature in the Northern Hemisphere, surface temperature records since 1600". J. Geophys. Res. 112: D24S03. Bibcode 2007JGRD..11224S03S. doi:10.1029/2007JD008437. http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2007JD008437... as PDF
Moberg, A; Sonechkin, DM; Holmgren, K; Datsenko, NM;
Karlén, W; Lauritzen, SE (2005). "Highly variable Northern Hemisphere temperatures reconstructed from low- and high-resolution proxy data". Nature 433 (7026): 613–7. doi:10.1038/nature03265. PMID 15703742. http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/moberg2005/mob...
Wang, Y.-M.; Lean, J. L.; Sheeley, Jr., N. R. (May 2005). "Modeling the Sun’s Magnetic Field and Irradiance since 1713". The Astrophysical Journal 625: 522–38. Bibcode 2005ApJ...625..522W. doi:10.1086/429689
http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/full/10.1086/... )
Scafetta, N.; West, B. J. (2006). "Phenomenological solar signature in 400 years of reconstructed Northern Hemisphere temperature record". Geophys. Res. Lett. 33: L17718. Bibcode 2006GeoRL..3317718S. doi:10.1029/2006GL027142. http://www.agu.org/journals/gl/gl0617/2006GL027142...


Your argument on atmospheric relative composition of the gases was pointless? If only 0.037% of the human population are millionaires, does that mean their contribution to society is negligible?


RE: who cares
By gmyx on 6/23/2011 7:41:43 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
I don't pretend to know whether man made global warming is real or not. But I'd personally want to see emission from burning fossil fuel cut, and move on to cleaner energy sources. Even if warming is not caused by fossil fuels, I'd love to see the other types of pollution especially air pollution being cut down.


While I don't believe that we are the main reason behind GW, I believe we are a contributing factor. Having said that, reducing emissions will have long-term heath impacts by reducing air-borne pollution and particulate matter.


RE: who cares
By Arsynic on 6/23/2011 9:19:22 AM , Rating: 2
This idea is on the right track. We all want cleaner air and cleaner water and want to use less fossil fuels. We don't have to make up fantastical lies to get people to get onboard. Those reasons are good enough for the average American to become eco-aware and do their part.


RE: who cares
By kraeper on 6/23/11, Rating: -1
RE: who cares
By SPOOFE on 6/23/2011 7:04:19 PM , Rating: 4
For every good cause, there's someone that takes it too far.

I grew up in LA during the '80s. I remember going for a half-mile walk and coming up with smoggy lungs, struggling for breath.

I'm all about nixing the pollution. I'm not exactly Mr. Rugged Outdoorsey type, but I enjoy a good hike or day trip to the mountains or desert or what-have-you. I think it's great that these exist, and I fully support the national/state park system and such.

With that in mind: I dislike having someone try to toy with my opinions and try to tie "general pollution concerns" with the doomsday prophecies or oft-exaggerated "the Himalayas are melting" nonsense of the anthropogenic climate change movements. The evidence showing the dangers of arsenic in the groundwater is clear; the evidence hovering around the Global Warming crowd is murky, inconsistent, and rife with politicization. We cannot derive much conclusion from it one way or the other. Unfortunately, I can't think of a way to get the politics out of the study so we can develop a clear picture.


RE: who cares
By twhittet on 6/23/2011 5:59:14 PM , Rating: 2
Ha - you think the average American gives a crap? I want to drive WHATEVER I want and it should use as MUCH gas as I can afford, cuz it's my damn money, keep your rules off me! Clean air kills jobs! The average American wants everything for nothing. I see that from plenty of posters here. Common sense would tell you reduced emissions is good people and the environment - global warming or no, but the "average American" just wants $1 gasoline for his SUV, to drive 3 hours total every day to work and back because he wants a huge house in the suburbs rather than actually living close to work.


RE: who cares
By B on 6/23/2011 2:54:12 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You realize that water vapor, which is also significant in warming contribution, is also a significant product of the combustion of fossil fuel?


Do you realize that 92 quadrillion gallons of water evaporate out of the oceans every year? Luckily there's the water cycle and the water condenses out of the atmosphere within a week to ten days.


RE: who cares
By 0ldman on 6/23/2011 11:21:43 AM , Rating: 2
I meant to hit 'worth reading' but my coffee hasn't kicked in yet this morning.

The numbers they're giving out for CO2 is quite comparable to telling people you just increased a homeless man's income by 3,000%. He's got a penny, you gave him $30. This is a windfall... that he can eat a couple of meals with.


RE: who cares
By nafhan on 6/23/2011 5:28:46 AM , Rating: 2
"Human carbon emissions" - you mean the stuff that every human (and animal) produces with every exhalation? The stuff that's at low to moderate levels historically in the Earth's atmosphere? Fighting pollution is great and everything, but claiming "carbon" as a pollutant has lead to a lot of wasted money IMO.


RE: who cares
By AnnihilatorX on 6/23/2011 6:50:42 AM , Rating: 2
Well arguably not. Warming aside, cutting pollution directly cuts CO2 and vice versa. Energy generating combustion process readily used by human with soot particles and other form of pollutants has CO2 as by products, with the only exception of extremely simple hydrocarbon such as methane where complete combustion is nearly guaranteed (no soot). So I don't care whether it's in the name of CO2 or air particulates, I'd love to see cars running not on fossil fuel.


RE: who cares
By nafhan on 6/23/2011 8:24:56 AM , Rating: 2
Your statement... I agree with. Reducing smog/soot and actual pollutants associated with dirty combustion is definitely worth doing. I was specifically talking about the pointlessness of cutting carbon emissions for the sake of cutting carbon emissions.


RE: who cares
By Ghost42 on 6/23/2011 11:32:12 AM , Rating: 2
Plant more trees..


RE: who cares
By Kurz on 6/24/2011 10:32:28 AM , Rating: 3
We already have very clean air compared to the beginning of the industral revolution.


RE: who cares
By MrBlastman on 6/23/2011 10:49:23 AM , Rating: 2
I'm lactose intolerant. As such, I'm a liability to Earth and everyone on it. As many extreme liberals would suggest--if something is a threat to our planet, it is bad, therefore, it must be eliminated.

Watch out, mass exterminations of lactose intolerant humans are coming...

I think I'll go drink another glass of milk now that I mention it. Ahhh... Is that ducks I hear quacking? Hmm... there another one. Is it getting warm in here?

As Duke Nukem would say to Al Gore (if Duke were real), "Your ass, your face... What's the difference?"


RE: who cares
By Skywalker123 on 6/24/2011 2:36:52 AM , Rating: 1
You're lactose intolerant? welcome to the club, most humans are. How is that a liability to Earth or anyone except dairy producers?


RE: who cares
By Reclaimer77 on 6/23/2011 8:27:05 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
but you do know that human activity is causing very real changes in the climate of the planet, right?


No, actually we don't know that. And if it is, we don't know to what extent. We need scientific proof before we start claiming there's a "crisis", and right now we just don't have it.

quote:
The research


Gore's "Hockey Stick" was proven false, it deliberately massaged data to arrive at the conclusion. Last year we had Climategate, in where it was proved that every major study was tainted, because almost all Climate Change studies used their data. So in actuality, there is very little if any research that proves "Climate Change" even exists, much less is caused purely by man.

quote:
well as other forms of pollution have no impact at all.


Obviously every living thing on Earth causes SOME impact. That's not the debate here. Of course man, as the worlds most populated and dominant life form, causes ecological impacts. There's no way to change that. But the planet is not fragile, and we have been getting "greener" since the 1960's. Environmentalists want it to happen overnight, that's just not rational.

The issue is whether or not man is causing irreparable and life-threatening damage to the climate and Earth. Despite scare tactic after scare tactic, the science just does not support this claim. Global warming was a hoax, in fact, the Earth got cooler!


RE: who cares
By Iaiken on 6/23/2011 10:02:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
in fact, the Earth got cooler!


Actually, you can't say for sure either way as the solid empirical data only goes back to the 1800's.

So within recent history (relevant to us alive today), the temperature has risen from the median by around 0.5 degrees.

http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/recenttc_...

Unfortunately, the changes are so small that relying on inaccurate historical records and estimates based on soil samples (which can be off +/- on either the temperature and time scales) are virtually useless when working with such small degrees of gradual change.

It's always been my position that we can't factually say either way beyond what solid data we have, and that the solid data we have is not a large enough body from which an accurate conclusion can be drawn.


RE: who cares
By JediJeb on 6/23/2011 1:15:10 PM , Rating: 4
This is exactly what the climate change preachers do not want to admit.

Also if you look at what they were saying back in the 90's then we should already be seeing huge changes in ocean levels on the scale of having much of New York flooded, but it hasn't happened. We should also have already seen much of our farm lands turned into deserts, which hasn't happened yet either. Their exponential rise in temperature that they have predicted has turned into a barely noticeable change in the last 10 years with a slight cooling taking place at some periods.

The Earth has been warmer in the past and I believe it will be warmer in the future than it is now. That has never led to the destruction of everything, and in fact at some of those time it has led to vast improvements to life on Earth. What we should be doing now is not wasting money trying to stop the inevitable, but studying how to adapt to whatever change will come. If we gamble that it is man caused and it is then we win, if we gamble it is man caused and it turns out to be a natural phenomena then we lose because we will not be ready to adapt.


RE: who cares
By tayb on 6/23/2011 8:41:09 AM , Rating: 3
Why don't you just admit that you have absolutely no clue. Because you have absolutely no clue.

There has been so much lies and so much manufactured and false data by the people trying to shove the idea of man made climate change down our throats that it is difficult to take real scientific evidence seriously any longer. The truth is that NO ONE, and I do mean absolutely NO ONE, has any idea what, if any, impact humanity is having on the environment or whether the supposed increase in atmospheric temperatures have ANYTHING to do with the actions of us driving SUVs.

I think it's a great idea to push alternative fuel sources, alternative forms of energy, and electric cars but it's not because I fear for the environment. It's because I fear for the world my children will grow up in if we can't climb our way out of a mound of $14,000,000,000,000 in debt and become self sustainable without a horrible reliance on foreign oil.

And why in the world would I possibly take someone serious who is one of the worlds biggest hypocrites? Even if he WAS buying carbon credits and becoming "neutral" that doesn't justify his actions. He's a hypocrite. A horrible hypocrite. Do as I say not as I do. As far as I am concerned anything that comes from his mouth should be completely ignored as complete nonsense or an attempt to generate more revenue. Either way it couldn't possibly be worth a damn.


RE: who cares
By fic2 on 6/23/2011 12:59:06 PM , Rating: 4
Carbon offsets - paying other people to not pollute so that you can.
My extreme analogy - having a child so that you can legally kill someone else.


RE: who cares
By JediJeb on 6/23/2011 1:17:36 PM , Rating: 3
Extreme, but more accurate than most are willing to admit.


RE: who cares
By JediJeb on 6/23/2011 1:19:59 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
And why in the world would I possibly take someone serious who is one of the worlds biggest hypocrites? Even if he WAS buying carbon credits and becoming "neutral" that doesn't justify his actions. He's a hypocrite. A horrible hypocrite. Do as I say not as I do. As far as I am concerned anything that comes from his mouth should be completely ignored as complete nonsense or an attempt to generate more revenue. Either way it couldn't possibly be worth a damn.

If Al Gore tore down his mansions tomorrow and began living in a tent, then I might take him more seriously. If someone really has a passion about something then they will act on that passion. Seems Mr. Gore's passion is making money, not saving the environment.


RE: who cares
By SPOOFE on 6/23/2011 3:12:20 PM , Rating: 2
Tent, nothin'. Let's see him use no more than double what George W. Bush's mansion in Texas uses. This ain't no Dubya rah-rah, just saying that if you're using more juice than an oil man you probably shouldn't be talking about about "going green"...


RE: who cares
By Reclaimer77 on 6/23/2011 6:48:39 PM , Rating: 2
Dude Al Gores's yacht uses more energy than W's whole ranch lol.

Cause, you know, every environmentalist needs his own 100+ foot personal mega yacht. That's how you hug the ocean and save whales!


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