He's using a modern form of indulgences in order to avoid doing the penance that global-warming activism demands of others. It means that the very rich can continue to suck up energy and raise the price and the demand for electricity and natural gas, while families struggle with their energy costs and face increasing government regulation and taxation.Apparently, two nights ago Al Gore was awarded an Oscar for his "documentary" about Global Warming. And while accepting it, a film was playing telling how to save energy and reduce everyone's carbon footprint. And he was surrounded by a bunch of people, just like him, who also have huge carbon footprints. I saw a picture of him with several others including Laurie David, who had gone on with Barbara Walters to discuss ways to reduce energy consumption, etc.
But what has to be remembered here is that these are the rich living big, living in big houses, flying private jets, and taking limos around. And they are lecturing the rest of us to save energy by taking mass transit, using compact florescent bulbs, and unplugging appliances when not in use.
And you ask how do they get away with this hypocrisy? Because they, or at least Al Gore, offset their carbon footprint by buying carbon offsets. Yes, they spend extra money so that they can splurge on energy usage - in Gore's case using about 20 times the national average to power his mansion.
In other words, they are purchasing Carbon Indulgences. They are sinning, and purchasing indulgences for their sin. And this is little different from the indulgences bought by the rich during the Middle Ages that forgave them from sinning and the granting of which helped spark the Reformation.