Wednesday, November 09, 2005

First "Limosine Liberals", Then "Gulfstream Environmentalsits," and Now This...
from the mind of  ME=mc^2.

The new fashion these days among society's elites seems to be what I like to call "conspicuous environmentalism." And it's naturally good fun to find examples of hypocrisy among the adherents of conspicuous environmentalism, particularly if they happen to be hyper-wealthy. Analogous to limosine liberals, Michael Crichton has coined the term "Gulfstream Environmentalists."

So for your amusement, consider the case of Larry Page and Sergey Brin -- the two cofounders of Google Inc. According to a story in Friday's Wall Street Journal, the two drive environmentally friendly hybrid vehicles and their company gives employees $5,000 if they buy hybrid gas-electric cars, for example. Mr. Brin also recently invested in a $550-million fund to help finance projects that reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. "We've worked very hard to make sure our [net] impact on the environment is positive," Mr. Page says.

However, the duo recently purchased an aircraft for their own personal use. And it's not even a Gulfstream. They bought a Boeing 767!

Flying a used 767 would cost at least $13,000 per flight-hour, compared with $7,850 for a Gulfstream V.

According to the story in the Wall Street Journal, "people in the aviation industry familiar with the planned interior say it will have a sitting area, two staterooms with adjoining lavatories and a shower. Farther aft will be a large sitting-and-dining area. At the rear will be 12 to 16 first-class seats for guests or employees and a large galley." Oh, and of course inflight internet access.

Mr. Page says "part of the equation for this sort of machinery is to be able to take large numbers of people to places such as Africa. I think that can only be good for the world."

Isn't that wonderful.


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