Former Vice President Al Gore, who sold Current TV to Al Jazeera a few weeks back, is about to make a round of TV appearances. The appearances are ostensibly tied to the release of his new book The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change, but viewers should expect the Current TV sale to play a big part in the conversations.
The appearances are particularly interesting, as Gore trashes television news in the book, as noted by New York Times book reviewer Michiko Kakutani.
He also complains that “virtually every news and political commentary program on television is sponsored in part by oil, coal and gas companies — not just during campaign seasons, but all the time, year in and year out — with messages designed to sooth and reassure the audience that everything is fine, the global environment is not threatened, and the carbon companies are working diligently to further develop renewable energy sources.”
Such remarks serve to remind the reader of a business deal Mr. Gore recently made that has ignited charges of hypocrisy and greed: selling Current TV (a channel he helped to found in 2005) for an estimated $500 million to Al Jazeera, the influential Arab news giant, which is financed by the government of oil- and gas-rich Qatar. Mr. Gore, who will reportedly make about $100 million from the deal, describes Al Jazeera in this book as “feisty and relatively independent.”