Above It All


Back in 1989, during her trial for tax evasion, one of Leona Helmsley’s former employees quoted her as saying “We don’t pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.”

Helmsley was a super-rich New Yorker who richly deserved her title: the “Queen of Mean.” As reported by Forbes, “In her heyday, she was as big as Donald Trump or Kim Kardashian.” After a trial that generated enormous media attention, Helmsley was convicted of tax evasion and spent about 21 months in prison.

Although Helmsley died in 2007, her attitude about “little people” lives on today.

It can be seen by looking at the travel predilections of four of the richest people on earth, two of whom are giving hundreds of millions of dollars to groups like the Sierra Club, Rocky Mountain Institute, Climate Imperative, and others that are pushing for bans on gas stoves, as well as policies that will impose regressive energy taxes on the poor and middle class. Indeed, at the same time these climate aristocrats are preaching about the need to take drastic action on climate change, they are flying around the globe in private jets that burn staggering amounts of jet fuel and emit thousands of tons of carbon dioxide every year.

Topping the list of these high-flying hypocrites is former New York City mayor and multi-billionaire Michael Bloomberg, who has been aggressively pushing for action on climate change for a decade. In 2014, he was named the United Nations’ special envoy for cities and climate change. In 2018, he was appointed the U.N.’s special envoy for climate change. In 2019, while running for the White House, Bloomberg said “We have to start working as hard as we can building a 100% clean energy economy because the alternative is just too bad for all of us.”

In 2021, Bloomberg penned an op-ed for USA Today with Prince William that was headlined “We’re in a race to save Earth from climate change.” The article touted the new Earthshot Prize which is aimed at, among other things “building a waste-free world and fixing our climate.”

Read the rest of this piece at Robert Bryce Substack.

Robert Bryce is a Texas-based author, journalist, film producer, and podcaster. His articles have appeared in a myriad of publications including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Forbes, Time, Austin Chronicle, and Sydney Morning Herald.

Images: courtesy Robert Bryce Substack