2.27.2007

Big Fat Phoney

This has been getting a lot of play on drudge and Instapundit but I still feel the need to share an observation. A friend of the family built a 7000sqft+ home in Wisconsin a few years ago. Despite being over 3 times larger than my house (2200sqft) his average monthly energy costs are only 60 percent more than mine ($200 vs $125). His house is well insulated, has good windows and I’m assuming a decent furnace/AC unit but it’s by no means a “green” home with the 3ft mud and straw walls and whatnot. For Gore’s home in much milder Nashville to be using over $1000 in natural gas and $1300 in electricity per month is absolute insanity however many carbon offsets, cfl’s and token solar panels he buys. This is the lifestyle of an energy company profiteer (he is!) seeking to assuage guilt over excess not the worlds most famous environmentalist. It reeks of the elitist hypocrisy: “rules are for the little people”.

I’ll recycle (come on, Kansas screams landfill) and get a Prius when Gore gives up the outdoor hot tubs and the dual Sub Z’s. Till then I’m going to continue pursuing my dreams of having 10 hp for every year I’m alive (I’ll make it). I’ll just plant a tree and get one of those solar cell phone charger thingies.

UPDATE: The Heinz-Kerry’s have also jumped onto the “save the earth” hypocrisy fad. They just wrote this book about:

The environment, and the movement that grew up to protect it, is under attack--concerted and purposeful [!!!].

Of course the Kerry’s are thinking globally but acting locally:

But soon it was clear that maintaining Heinz's property would need more water. So she and her neighbor, Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn, applied for a permit to build a pipeline and take water from the Big Wood River, which is adjacent to her property, up the hill to water her lawn and maintain her landscaped greenery. But the county had just passed a new policy and ordinance preventing that type of transfer.

Marti Bridges, then-water policy head for Idaho Rivers United, told the Boston Herald at the time that the amount of water Heinz and Wynn wanted to divert would fill ten large municipal swimming pools each year, a volume that she said "could be the difference between a fish population making it through summer during spawning or rearing."

Mmm’kay maybe not…but of course Teresa Simões-Ferreira Heinz Kerry is more equal than the unwashed commoners this book is being marketed to.

Based on the leaders the educated left currently holds en vogue I secretly suspect that in their heart of hearts they do not believe in the workers-of-the-world-unite populism they evoke so readily. FDR, Kennedy, Gore, Kerry…Clinton was an aberration (and I’m not certain he’s that idolized). I think on some deep, dark, unacknowledged level they want to be courtesans of King Louis 14th where they can let live the fantasy there are betters to aspire to and where power is gained through cultural and political influence rather than merit. If the left had any real understanding of the wealthy in this country they’d see that it’s much more mundane and populist than anything they would find in academia or Hollywood. They reject this reality of course because it would mean they are owned by their intellectual and cultural inferiors.


UPDATE:
To see just how unevenly the news media holds democrats and republicans accountable to charges of hypocrisy, in six months count how many stories there are about Al's house and compare it to the number of stories about Dick Cheney having lesbian daughter. As of today NPR alone has done 7 stories on this otherwise unremarkable person while right now Al is getting a pass.

2 comments:

Joe said...

What do you mean that a "real understanding" of wealth is much more mundane?

Are you saying that billionaire republican CEO's are more like an average worker than billionarie democract CEO's?

I don't know enough rich people to agree or disagree with that, but it seems pretty specious to me.

Andrew said...

Are you saying that billionaire republican CEO's are more like an average worker than billionarie democract CEO's?

Dontcha think it’s a little simplistic to define a population of over 2.9 million (US millionaires or >) by less than 371(US billionaires) extreme examples?

The basis for my statement was the book “The Millionaire Next Door”. It’s a scholarly attempt to understand the true nature of wealth in this country. The most counterintuitive finding in the book was that the overwhelming majority of people that “own” this nation acquired their wealth from rather mundane tasks like dry cleaning, construction and franchising. They became wealthy not from ridiculous income but rather by being thrifty (doctors and lawyers typically have very poor net worth despite big incomes for example). They take infrequent vacations, live in modest houses, drive often used, boring American cars, send their kids to state schools and give….quietly. These are not the people that academics typically come into contact with. They deal with a more garish minority of the super wealthy and those who want to be seen with their names on buildings; which I suppose leads to a kind of understandable contempt but to put all wealthy in this box is ignorance just the same.