What the heck is a wine cave? Is it a cave sculpted by the drip, drip, drip of all the wine spilled, splashed and spit into the Napa Valley dirt? Has the Gallo Refinery sprung a leak? And if you licked the tip of a stalactite hanging from a wine cave's ceiling, would it present earthy notes of blackberry, leather, licorice, chamomile and Marion's lemon-meringue pie? Actually, an enormous chandelier with 1,500 Swarovski crystals hangs in the wine cave frequented by Humble Mayor Pete. But don't lick those! Swarovski crystals are very expensive shards of man-made lead glass.
It's not cost, of course. Slapping solar panels on the roof is a trivial expense for the rich. But other than adding a Tesla or two to their vehicle fleet, most "people of means" just can't be bothered. Well, there's always the moral approach, the appeal to intergenerational responsibility...all right, come on, stop laughing. What about this? Maybe the secret to changing the dirty, fossil-fuel burning ways of the ultra-rich is to inconvenience them. Man, they hate that! Waiting in lines, being put on hold. Not being sufficiently sucked up to. Having to walk to the wine cave, then arriving late and missing the kale-encrusted sea bass sliders washed down with a $900 bottle of Pouilly-Fuisse. That's life for most of us; it's agony for the extremely well-heeled.
This dynamic played out during the recent outbreak of wildfires in California. To prevent blazes caused by sparking from powerlines, PG&E instituted precautionary power outages to various communities irrespective of their income levels. Hence, people in some of the richest enclaves found themselves without electricity, and without a say in the matter! Within days -- as outraged Masters and Mistresses of the Universe sat in the dark, as the most delicate vintages suffered without the coddling of their wine fridges -- orders for solar panels and battery units shot up in WealthyTown.
Simply put, we must inconvenience them into doing the right thing. A future blog will further explore how to go green by goosing the rich.