Mr. Global Warming himself, Al Gore, is the star witness today in the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing Democrats’ cap-and-tax global warming bill.
The bill -- recently introduced by Reps. Henry Waxman (D-Hollywood) and Edward Markey (D-Kennedywood) -- is labeled the “American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009,” which is as Orwellian a name as the “Employee Free Choice Act,” which is of course the way to deny secret ballots to employees in union elections.
This bill should be named the “Al Gore Enrichment Act. ”
House Republicans will have a chance to do better than their Senate colleagues did in January, when no tough questions were asked.
Here are a few questions Gore should answer in the hearing tomorrow:
1. You are a partner in the venture capital firm of Kleiner-Perkins and a co-founder of the United Kingdom-based investment firm of Generation Investment Management, each of which stands to gain financially from greenhouse gas regulation. Please describe any other financial interests that you have in any other businesses that stand to profit from greenhouse gas regulation.
2. In October 2008, the New York Times Magazine featured a cover story on how Kleiner Perkins had invested $1 billion in 40 companies that would profit from new environmental and energy laws and regulations. What will be your share of any profits from these ventures?
3. How much of your own money have you contributed to Kleiner-Perkins, Generation Investment Management and other businesses that stand to profit from greenhouse gas regulation? If you have not contributed significant amounts of your own capital to these businesses, what, then, is your role in them? Are you a lobbyist? Are you the face of their public relations efforts? Is your job to run around scaring politicians and the public into enacting greenhouse gas regulation?
4. Is Kleiner-Perkins’ business plan to have you press for legislation and regulation favorable to its clients in order to make them more attractive and available for sale to the public, at which time Kleiner-Perkins would cash out, leaving the public invested in not-ready-for-prime-time companies that have dubious financial prospects and that are dependent on taxpayer subsidies?
5. Your co-founder with Generation Investment Management is former Goldman Sachs partner David Blood. Goldman Sachs is lobbying for global warming legislation and is a part owner of the Chicago Climate Exchange, where carbon credits from cap-and-trade legislation would be traded. Do you or Generation Investment Management stand to benefit in anyway from these relationships?
6. Generation Investment Management’s web site says the firm provides investment advice to clients. Who are Generation Investment Management’s clients and how do they stand to profit from upcoming environmental and energy legislation and regulation? Will these clients share their profits with you and/or Generation Investment Management?
7. When you left public service in January 2001, your personal net worth was perhaps $2 million. In 2007, your personal net worth was reported to be on the order of $100 million. How much of this fortune is related, directly or indirectly, to your advocacy of legislation to reduce “global warming”?
8. When you testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in January, why did you not disclose to the Committee and to the public your relationships with Kleiner-Perkins and Generation Investment Management? Generation Investment Management’s web site says, “Integrity and honesty are the bedrock of our business. We demand the highest ethical standards in our work and in our personal lives.” In light of this statement, how to you explain your failure to inform the Senate Committee of your financial conflicts of interest?
9. You travel all over the world in jets and limos, own a houseboat, use 20 times more electricity than the average American, and stand to make a fortune that most millionaires would envy. Yet you tell Americans to downsize their lives, such as by limiting their travel, using less heat and air conditioning, and drying their clothes outside on a clothesline. Describe for us, in detail, your personal “carbon footprint.”
10. If you are wrong about humans causing catastrophic global warming, will you give all the money you “earned” from your alarmism back?