When I was told I'd be on the Fox News Channel's "Fox & Friends" debating Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. about the contentious issue of oil consumption and Barack Obama's refusal to consider offshore drilling or nuclear energy, I really looked forward to the exchange. After all, how many times does one have a chance to have a frank and open exchange with one of the true high priests of the shrill global warming crowd?
Meeting him in the Fox News Channel's green room before the appearance, I began to have some concerns. I'm the kind of guy who likes to have a little friendly banter, even with someone I disagree with. Mr. Kennedy pretty clearly does not, at least not with me. I asked him how his uncle Ted was doing, joked about us being invited to be on the "early morning" shift that day (our appearance aired at 6:15am), and did everything I could to try and establish that, contrary to the way many liberals believe, a conservative like me doesn't have any horns or fangs.
He wasn't buying it.
To describe Mr. Kennedy as aloof might be the understatement of the century. The Kennedy family might be a lot of things, but for RFK, Jr., "warm and fuzzy" doesn't exactly come to mind.
And the ice didn't thaw much once we got out onto the set and began the segment. The host directed the first question to him and he launched into a fairly lengthy monologue that reflected his many years of leading the "let's go green" brigade.
When he got to the part about how the United States should be more like countries like Iceland and Costa Rica in terms of energy conservation, I couldn't take it any more. As I finally got to speak my mind about the scare tactics of Kennedy's disciples on the loony left -- those who bellow about carbon footprints, a "planet in peril", the evil Republicans like me who believe in drilling in just about every square inch of our country so that we don't have to pay 10 dollars a gallon some day -- the look of rage on Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.'s face was priceless.
If I thought he didn't like me much in the greenroom, he positively loathed me out there in that TV studio.
Click here to see the segment. I think you'll enjoy it.
And I realized that this is a man who is probably rarely, if ever, challenged in public or private. The global warming hysterics don't just offer opinions and beliefs about greenhouse gases and the like. These are people who speak as if they belong to a cult.
Yet many of them are hopelessly hypocritical.
As angry as Kennedy was with me, I decided not to remind him of his well-publicized opposition to wind-powered turbines near the Kennedy compound at Cape Cod, Massachusetts because it would spoil the view.
I really thought he might become unhinged.
This week on my radio show, I interviewed Drew Johnson of the Tennessee Center for Policy Research. It seems Mr. Johnson and his organization decided to do a little digging into the emperor of the global warming crowd, Tennessee's own Al Gore.
The leftist world has thrown countless rose petals at the feet of the failed presidential candidate over his relentless and aggravating campaign to scare everyone into thinking the planet is about to explode any day now into a big ball of fire because of our SUV's and double-plied toilet paper.
But the award-winning former vice-president was busted over the energy-guzzling mansion he lives in with his wife, Tipper in the Nashville area. Perhaps you remember seeing the internet sensation, "A Tale of Two Houses." One house, a modest ranch-style home, featured tons of energy-efficient features and cutting edge technology; the other, just a nice, big, ordinary mansion that soaked up electricity like a sponge does with water. The punchline? The modest, energy-smart ranch is owned by President Bush in Crawford, Texas. The energy-obnoxious mansion is owned by one Albert Gore of Nashville, Tennessee.
So what's the grand poo-bah of the "planet-in-peril" crowd to do? Clearly embarrassed by "A Tale of Two Houses", Gore spent a bunch of money installing solar panels, a geothermal system, new windows, and other supposedly efficient measures.
A year after he made the eco-friendly changes, Drew Johnson and his group decided to check out the Gore household electric bill. Their findings: in the year AFTER all these fancy changes were made, the Gores actually consumed 10% more energy than before. They pay thousands and thousands of dollars a year on their electric bill, enough to power hundreds of average American houses.
The rank hypocrisy of the global warming fanatics is simply galling.
I suggested that the Tennessee Center for Policy Research should commit to a new project: tracking just how many trips Gore has taken on big, fat, energy-guzzling private jets in order to give speeches for which he pulls down 100 thousand dollars -- or more -- a pop.
You see, there is simply no defending the preferred mode of travel for many of the celebrity crazies who lecture us about carbon credits. Do you think these folks are willing to give up their mansions and private jets in order to "save the planet?"
It's not going to happen.
I've come to the conclusion that many of these people are mentally ill. They won't accept any rational opposition, scientific or otherwise, that refutes the global warming theory. Drew Johnson reported that after his organization first revealed Al Gore's electric bill to the general public, his group received a number of death threats. Their computers were hacked. Phoned obscenities were common.
I guess violence, vandalism, and profanity go hand-in-hand with the type of people who brag about driving around in a go-cart that they plug into their garage every night.
Sen. John McCain is obviously correct in calling for off-shore drilling, harnessing nuclear power, and abolishing the federal gas tax. Sen. Barack Obama is obviously wrong in opposing off-shore drilling, nuclear power, and, like any good liberal, loves the federal gas tax.
Could this presidential election really be up for grabs?