Celebrities drive me crazy, they really do. They drive most people crazy in various ways, I guess, but my problem is the down time when they're not singing their songs or acting in their movies. That's when they're out to prove what great planetary citizens they are.
Either they (or their publicists) come up with the most idiotic statements, which for the most part are totally at odds with their opulent lifestyles. They like to give us advice, which they don't even come close to following themselves. For instance, here's Barbra Streisand, a golden throat no doubt, sounding off about how "everyday Americans can help in this fight... by filling up the air in their tires, replacing older light bulbs [with] newer, energy-saving ones, driving a hybrid vehicle, carpooling, bringing your own bags to the grocery store, installing low-flow shower heads, unplugging unused appliances and recycling."
Let's leave aside what "filling up the air in their tires" means, and move right on to the fact that, according to an eyewitness quoted in the New York tabloids, Streisand insists on keeping her New York apartment frigidly air-conditioned (to 42 degrees!) even when she's in California. And yet she took the time to tell the little people to turn their own air-conditioner thermostats to "78 degrees when you're at home and 85 degrees when you're out." Her annual lawn watering bill is reportedly $22,000 in parched California.
That's just the beginning. Sheryl Crow proposes "a limitation be put on how many squares of toilet paper can be used in any one sitting -- only one square per restroom visit, except, of course, on those pesky occasions where two or three could be required."
Crow is probably better than most, but her carbon profile from constant touring is enough to boil the planet on its own. She touted the use of a biodiesel bus on the road for the Stop Global Warming tour, but doesn't mention the entourage following along in no less than 13 gas-guzzlers.
John Travolta found the time to lecture on the perils of global warming, but owns five private jets (one a Boeing 707). His travel in 2006 produced 800 tons of carbon emissions, 100 times that of an average citizen, according to the Carbon Trust.
Harrison Ford (who is on the board of Conservation International) had a Gulfstream jet (just like Oprah), but now gets by with a smaller Cessna Citation. And speaking of private planes, rock singer David Crosby (the father of Melissa Etheridge's baby) brags about his environmental commitment in his two autobiographies, then waxes rhapsodic about the joys of owning an airplane to get to gigs -- much less down time that way, he said.
Wife-of-Sting Trudie Styler, another pious green who talks about her "20 years of fighting for the rights of indigenous people" and goes on and on about rain forests, is also a frequent flier -- she took a private jet to a White House Correspondent's dinner when there were scads of New York to Washington commercial flights.
One of the prime hypocrites is actress Jennifer Aniston, who said, "I take a three-minute shower. I even...brush my teeth while in the shower." This is the same Jennifer Aniston who shills as a spokeswoman for Smart Water, a water product in plastic bottles whose ads have scared people about the safety of the tap. For a list of other celebrities who pitch bottled water, click here. Doesn't Justin Bieber make enough money without hawking Vitaminwater?
Here's an easy target: Paris Hilton. She said, "Driving hybrid cars is the new way to go. Anybody can do it, no matter how old." C'mon, Paris, you mostly ride in limousines. And the car she's driving (and wrecking) in this video is a Range Rover:
Celebrities talking about hybrids while driving big SUVs include Streisand, Gwyneth Paltrow and Cameron Diaz. But their other car is a Prius. Want to see the short-showered Aniston driving a 12-mpg Range Rover, just like Paris? Here you go.
One thing about celebrity actors is that they're amazingly good at sounding sincere. Here's Adrian Grenier of Entourage getting all warm and fuzzy about the Clinton Global Initiative:
But the thing is, he plays a character on the show who--accurately--depicts celebrities as doing charity work for selfish reasons. He (Vince, the character) drives a Ferrari but does rain forest PSAs because his handlers tell him to. Grenier, the real guy, starred in a Planet Green reality show that took a decidedly superficial view of environmental activism. So is he sincere in that video? Hard to say, but we'd believe him even if he wasn't.
I could go on, but this is like shooting fish in a barrel.