Friday, March 2, 2007

More Power To You

Our nation's voracious appetite for energy has the former veep urging all of us to diet. Yet in the quest to go electrically lean and clean, some pay to play.

BEST NON-ACTOR IN A NON-SUPPORTING ROLE. Al Gore could set a better example for himself, according to the Tennessee Center for Policy Research.

From the TCPR's press release:
Last August alone, Gore burned through 22,619 kWh-guzzling more than twice the electricity in one month than an average American family uses in an entire year. As a result of his energy consumption, Gore's average monthly electric bill topped $1,359.

Since the release of An Inconvenient Truth, Gore's energy consumption has increased from an average of 16,200 kWh per month in 2005, to 18,400 kWh per month in 2006.
But hold on. The Tennessean has the proverbial rest of the story, which shows Gore is trying to make amends through the wallet.
Electric bills obtained by The Tennessean, however, showed that Gore is paying a premium on his bills to be part of the “green power” program. Gore purchased 108 blocks of “green power” for at least each of the last three months, according to a summary of bills from Nashville Electric Service.

That’s a total of $432 a month spent to pay extra for solar or other renewable energy sources. NES power – outside this program -- is derived largely from coal, which emits carbon, a green house gas.
We're glad Gore can afford to be green. Does he desire the rest of us to cough up more, too?

IT'S NOT NICE TO FOOL WITH MOTHER NATURE! Petmedsonline, of all places, lists several examples of man messing around with nature, including Killer Bees:
Thirty five years after it was introduced into Brazil and escaped from a breeding experiment, the killer bee arrived in Texas, and was spreading north. During its migration the bee has killed hundreds of people and has caused a falloff in honey production.
But it did help Killer Bee Guy Reed Booth of Bisbee.

FORGET PARIS. In mid-February the Associated Press declared a press blackout on Paris Hilton, according to the New York Observer:
“Next week,” entertainment editor Jesse Washington wrote in an e-mail memo obtained by The Transom, “the print team is planning an unconventional experiment: We are NOT going to cover Paris Hilton.

“Barring any major, major news, we are not going to put a single word about Paris on the wire,” the memo continued. “If something does come up, big or small, we encourage discussions on whether we should write about it.”

The results of the experiment, naturally, will be fodder for a future A.P. story. “Hopefully we will be able to discuss what ‘news’ we missed,” read the memo, which could have used some stern copy-editing, “the repercussions of our blackout for AP both editorially and business-wise, and most importantly the force that cause the world to be fixated on this person who, despite her shallow frivolity, represents an epochal development in our culture.”
The Lightning Round has adopted a similar policy towards Britney Spears, and we encourage others to do the same.

IN-TERROR-GATION. Fort Huachuca, located not far south of your Lightning Round's home base, is where many military interrogators hone their craft. Others are learning from the anything-goes style of Jack Bauer on Fox's 24, according to Newsweek:
The Pentagon told NEWSWEEK last week that it didn't know anything about the tactics used on "24," nor had it heard the allegations of their impact. "Humane treatment of detainees is and always has been the [U.S. Department of Defense] standard," said Lt. Col. Mark Ballesteros. But former U.S. Army specialist Tony Lagouranis, who left the military with an honorable discharge in 2005 and has since spoken out about the abuse of Iraqi prisoners there, says the use of tactics like those featured on TV was common during his 2004-2005 Iraqi tour. According to Lagouranis, his unit tried out similar tactics after watching torture scenes on television and DVD. He has since teamed up with Human Rights First, and recently met with the producers of "24" as part of an effort to have them be more "responsible" in their portrayal of torture scenes.
How does one torture responsibly? We sure as heck wouldn't leave it to Fox.

NOTES ON A SCANDAL. The husband of celebrated late classical pianist Joyce Hatto revealed he played listeners by releasing CD's which contained slices of other keyboardists' work.

From the AP:
"It is self-evident that I have acted stupidly, dishonestly and unlawfully," William Barrington-Coupe wrote in a letter acknowledging the fraudulent recordings, which he said he produced without his wife's knowledge while she was dying of ovarian cancer.
Barrington-Coupe says he inserted the other bits to mask the grunts of his wife, who was suffering from ovarian cancer at the time she made the recordings. The fraud fell apart when a listener with iTunes noticed one recording by Hatto was misidentified as another's. Turns out, the computer was telling the truth.

A record company executive who oversees one of the lifted recordings plans no legal action against Barrington-Coupe:
"The guy is 76, he has a heart condition -- well, he says he has a heart condition -- and I can't see what, apart from revenge, it would give anyone," he said.
We recall what it did to Milli Vanilli.

SHE'S CURED! In our last episode, we detailed the hiccup histrionics of Jennifer Mee -- the larger problem being the media attention, not the hiccups itself. We're pleased to report the hiccups have stopped. And so, we hope, have the calls from talk show bookers.

One of our colleagues suggested Mee was faking it. C'mon... she's no Meg Ryan.

No comments: