Monday, March 19, 2007

Rinky Dink A Mine Fulla Zinc

Al Gore's fiscal interests in one of the most polluted mines in the country are coming back to bite him in the ass. Can you say hy-poc-racy? I knew you could. From the WSJ Opinion Journal:

The media are finally catching up with Al Gore. Criticism of his anti-global-warming franchise and his personal environmental record has gone beyond ankle-biting bloggers. It's now coming from the New York Times and the Nashville Tennessean, his hometown paper that put his birth, as a senator's son, on its front page back in 1948, and where a young Al Gore Jr. worked for five years as a journalist.

Like a drunken sot arising from a week long binge, the NY Times scrapes the dried snot off its upper lip, pulls its urine stained trousers up from below its knees and finally remembers that it is a newspaper that is allegedly reporting, well, news.

Last Tuesday, the Times reported that several eminent scientists "argue that some of Mr. Gore's central points [on global warming] are exaggerated and erroneous."

*Belch* The Times then orders another round or six, pukes on the beer nuts and slides off the stool. And while it is again relieving itself contentedly into its trousers:

The Tenessean reported yesterday that Mr. Gore received $570,000 in royalties from the owners of zinc mines who held mineral leases on his farm. The mines, which closed in 2003 but are scheduled to reopen under a new operator later this year, "emitted thousands of pounds of toxic substances and several times, the water discharged from the mines into nearby rivers had levels of toxins above what was legal."

Looks like the Times and Al Gore both have problems with nasty discharges. I'm looking for a company that sells dead trout offsets.

Uncle Al won an Oscar for his movie, "An Incontinent Inconvenient Truth" where at the very end of the movie, Gore asks the audience,"Are you ready to change the way you live?" Al sure did. He buys offsets, or rather, he has the people at Generation Investment Management buy them for him.

Mr. Gore's office responded by claiming that the Gores "purchase offsets for their carbon emissions to bring their carbon footprint down to zero." But reports that Mr. Gore doesn't purchase carbon offsets with his own resources, and that they are meaningless in terms of global warming.

Meaningless, pointless, useless - that just about describes carbon offsets. The more you think about it the less sense it makes.

The offset purchases are actually made for him by Generation Investment Management, a London-based investment firm that Mr. Gore co-founded, and which provides carbon offsets as a fringe benefit to all 23 of its employees, ensuring that they require no real sacrifice on the part of Mr. Gore or his family. Indeed, their impact is also highly limited. The Carbon Neutral Co.--one of the two vendors that sell offsets to Mr. Gore's company, says that offset purchases "will be unable to reduce greenhouse gas emissions . . . in the short term."

But there's no time!! Gore is Agent Jack Bauer of Frothing Moonbat Central. These people and their incontinent truth are literally shitting themselves over the prospect of massive global flooding unseen since the last time Ted Kennedy relieved himself while swimming in the pool at the Y.

No time! It's already too late! But the Carbon Neutral Company, "If You've Got Carbon, Then Clean Out Your Blowhole" even has a carbon calculator designed to relieve you of worry, guilt and assets. Even though we'll all drown, fry or whatever before one offset cancels one snowflake I'll be breaking my ass to shovel next year.

The Times quoted Don Easterbrook, an emeritus professor of geology at Western Washington University, as telling hundreds of experts at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America that "I don't want to pick on Al Gore. But there are a lot of inaccuracies in the statements we are seeing, and we have to temper that with real data." Mr. Easterbrook made clear he has never been paid by any energy corporations and isn't a Republican.

That's okay. Al Gore has never let a fact get in his way, or a dollar get out of his way for quite some time.

Then there is the Gore zinc mine. Mr. Gore has personally earned $570,000 in zinc royalties from a mine his father bought in 1973 from Armand Hammer, the business executive famous for his close friendship with the Soviet Union and for pleading guilty to making illegal campaign contributions during Watergate. On the same day Al Gore Sr. bought the 88-acre parcel from Hammer for $160,000, he sold the land and subsurface mining rights to his then 25-year-old son for $140,000. The mineral rights were then leased back to Hammer's Occidental Petroleum and the royalty payments put in the names of Al Gore Jr. and his wife, Tipper.

Sounds like another retirement plan. And I don't begrudge the man a penny of that. His daddy wanted him and Tipper to have a little something to fall back on and that's just fine and dandy. But don't get all in our faces about pollution when you can go fishing in Al's river and pull out a three headed catfish that has a glow-in-the-dark pecker.

The Gore mines were no small operations. In 2002, the year before they shut down, they ranked 22nd among all metal-mining operations in the U.S., with total toxic releases of 4.1 million pounds.

Four million pounds of toxic releases. That's over 2,000 tons of poison Al has allowed to be dumped into Tennessee rivers. I won't hold my breath until the Times publishes this story. But if a republican was responsible for this? We'd never hear the end of it.

A new mine operator, Strategic Resource Acquisition, is planning to reopen the mines later this year. The Tennessean reports that just last week, Mr. Gore wrote SRA asking it to work with a national environmental group as it makes its plans. He noted that under the previous operator, the mines had, according to the environmental website Scorecard, "pollution releases from the mine in 2002 [that] placed it among the 'dirtiest/worst facilities' in the U.S."

Well Al, I hope you enjoy the Oscar sitting up on your mantle 'cause you sure won't enjoy where I'd like to put it. But it would at least shut one of the holes that you pollute from.

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