Al-Gorezeera cashes out all his carbon credits

GOODY TWO SHOES: In a 2006 USA Today commentary Hoover Institution research fellow Peter Schweizer noted that for all his inveighing against fossil fuels, Al Gore did not scruple to sell his family's stock holdings in Occidental Petroleum, and made oodles of money from an oil company that was "mired in controversy over oil drilling in ecologically sensitive areas." Opps! ... he did it again, selling his struggling Current TV network to al-Jazeera, which is owned and financed by Arab oil cartel member Qatar.

Fossil fuels “accounted for more than half of Qatar's 2010 GDP, according to estimates by Qatar National Bank,” which gives the emirate “the largest per capita carbon footprint in the world” – an inconvenient truth that was “omitted from the email announcing the deal, sent to Current TV staff” by CEO Joel Hyatt, who founded the little-watched cable network with Al Gorezeera and two other partners in 2005, The Independent (London) reports.

“It’s reeking with irony,” corporate governance expert Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, tells The Washington Post, adding, “It seems to be at least a paradox in terms of his positions on sustainability and geopolitics.” But instead of focusing on al-Gorezeera’s hypocrisy The New York Times lauds  the deal for fostering “diversity in journalism.” Really. Apparently, this “diversity” doesn’t extend to ideology, The Wall Street Journal reports:

Hyatt said they agreed to sell to al-Jazeera in part because "al-Jazeera was founded with the same goals we had for Current," including "to give voice to those whose voices are not typically heard" and "to speak truth to power." Other suitors who didn't share Current's ideology were rebuffed. Glenn Beck's The Blaze approached Current about buying the channel last year, but was told that "the legacy of who the network goes to is important to us and we are sensitive to networks not aligned with our point of view," according to a person familiar with the negotiations.

Commentary notes that “the fact that Gore sees Al Jazeera as a good match for his brand of American liberalism speaks volumes about the nature of that set of beliefs”:

At the beginning of his career Gore was seen as the leader of the next generation of Scoop Jackson Democrats. That Al Gore would never have gotten into bed with Al Jazeera. But in his current incarnation as hypocritical environmental huckster and profiteer he seems to reflect the way the left has abandoned the principles that once united Democrats and Republicans on foreign policy. While conservatives and liberals have plenty to argue about, one would have hoped that they would be united in their revulsion against the kind of bias that Al Jazeera exemplifies. If indeed there is a connection between Al Jazeera’s views and contemporary liberalism, there is a sickness on the left that ought to trouble all Americans.

Yeah, well, the staffers at Current TV aren’t too happy about the sale to al-Jazeera, either, saying that al-Gorezeera has “no credibility,” New York Post reports:

“He’s supposed to be the face of clean energy and just sold [the channel] to very big oil, the emir of Qatar! Current never even took big oil advertising – and Al Gore, that bulls***ter sells to the emir?” …

The displeasure with Gore among the staff was thick enough to cut with a scimitar.

“We all know now that Al Gore is nothing but a bulls***ter,” said the staffer bluntly. ...

“Al was always lecturing us about green. He kept his word about green all right – as in cold, hard cash!”

Perhaps these kids never read “Animal Farm” in school – after all, it was written by a dead white male who hated fascism, communism and socialism – as well as political correctness, the enabler of totalitarianism. Al-Goreeera, as so many hypocritical liberal politicians before him, has left behind a slew of disillusioned young people whose idealism he raped and threw away like a used tissue. At least a couple of them will rise from the ashes of their bitter discontent with clear enough vision to become neocons.

Al Jazeera plans to shutter Current and start an English-language channel, with newscasts from both NYC and Doha, Qatar, which raises other troubling issues, according to Commentary:

Al Jazeera’s Qatari funding also raises other questions for Current TV. While foreign, authoritarian government-funded networks aren’t required to register under the Foreign Agent Registration Act, they often act as propaganda arms for their respective regimes … Al Jazeera is no exception, pushing an editorial line that supports the ruling emir’s interests, along with a clear anti-Western and anti-Israel slant.

This op-ed by The Wall Street Journal’s Gordon Crovitz cites Middle East Quarterly’s description of al-Jazeera’s editorial mission: “to inflame Arab resentments in its promotion of anti-Americanism, Sunni sectarianism and, in recent years, Islamism” – and gives examples that will make your hair stand on end.

Al-Gorezeera will pocket roughly $70 million to $100 million of the $500 million al-Jazeera will fork over for Current TV – which is “a sevenfold increase from the $71 million that Gore and his partners paid for the predecessor company in 2004,” The Washington Post reports. A final irony: al-Gorezeera and his partners “were eager to complete the deal by Dec. 31, lest it be subject to higher tax rates that took effect on Jan. 1,” The New York Times reports. Rich liberals insist that they want to “pay their fair share” in taxes, so al-Gorezeera no doubt takes comfort in the terms not being finalized in time to shield some of his oil and gas windfall from higher taxes.

Editorial Note: Post has been updated to include comments by Current TV staffers about the sale to al-Jazeera.

 

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