Front Page















Champagne Socialist
April 1, 2004

By James L. Hirsen, J.D., Ph.D.
contributor to

In addition to touring with Coldplay and tending to wife Gwyneth Paltrow, Chris Martin is making a name for himself on the celebrity green scene.

Martin indicated in the past that he wants to use Coldplay's fame for political causes. He referred to himself and his band-mates as "champagne socialists."

Last year, along with Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters and 3-D of Massive Attack, Martin assisted in saving the world from global warming and the like by planting some trees. The eco-rockers planted a forest in Bangalore, India.

On another part of the globe, Chris's dad, Anthony, applied to build 160 houses on a protected environmental site in Exeter, England.

Exeter locals temporarily stopped the development using legal maneuvers, but to keep his construction on track, Anthony Martin is going to the British High Court.

It funny how champagne socialists tend to be the offspring of caviar capitalists.

Meanwhile, whiskey left-winger, Willie Nelson, a guy who's well-known for his songwriting skills, has gotten into the letter writing biz. The country music legend recently penned a note to the president.

No, he wasn't looking for a gig at the IRS. And he wasn't offering an apology for his endorsement of Kucinich, either.

In his letter, Willie asked Bush to weigh in on the question of whether a large piece of rural land should become a Navy landing field. To date, two lawsuits have been filed against the Navy to stop the field.

The 33,000 acres in question are located in Eastern North Carolina. Since the property is mostly farmland, one might expect that the twanging president of Farm Aid was expressing concerns on behalf of the agricultural community. But in this effort, Willie donned an environmentalist hat and went to bat for the birds.

A group of them fly around nearby Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. The spot is a winter getaway for thousands of tundra swans and snow geese. Chris Martin and company haven't planted any trees there as yet.

Nelson fears that Navy pilots might buzz some of the birds and maybe even bump into them. So he's urging the president to tell the Navy to go elsewhere.

Puerto Rico was probably not on Willie's list of suggested places. But a charming site in Exeter, England may be available soon.

Reproduced with the permission of . All rights reserved

Copyright © 2004
James L. Hirsen, J.D., Ph.D.

All Rights Reserved