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Six years ago, Al Gore got involved in a little cable channel called Current TV, and he used his influence and some salesmanship to get some of the big cable systems to carry it. Even so, it's been pretty insignificant.
Most would call it a failure. Except somehow, he's been able to sell it to Al Jazeera for five hundred million dollars. Of that, he'll keep about a hundred million, which will push his personal fortune over three hundred million.
That makes him the wealthiest former Vice-President, or even President, in U.S. history. And that's making everybody mad.
Republicans think he's a hypocrite because he sold his company to a network owned and controlled by Qatar, an oil-rich country whose leaders scoff at his global warming crusade. And Democrats are upset because…well…he's rich now. Richer than Mitt Romney! And one of their own getting rich like this is, at the very least, embarrassing!
You'd think Gore would get some credit for getting Al Jazeera to pay so much for a channel that almost nobody believes is worth it. But I don't really have a problem with this deal.
It's not illegal. Cable systems don't have to carry the channel. And even if they do, it's just one more voice in the world debate.
Be honest. If you had the chance to sell a crummy channel for five hundred million dollars to somebody in an oil-rich country, wouldn't you?