For years you could not stand those smug, holier-than-thou environmentalists who felt they corned the market on moral superiority. Well, consider yourself a good judge of character. The Daily Caller brings us the story:
When Al Gore was caught running up huge energy bills at home at the same time as lecturing on the need to save electricity, it turns out that he was only reverting to “green” type.
According to a study, when people feel they have been morally virtuous by saving the planet through their purchases of organic baby food, for example, it leads to the “licensing [of] selfish and morally questionable behaviour”, otherwise known as “moral balancing” or “compensatory ethics”.
Do Green Products Make Us Better People is published in the latest edition of the journal Psychological Science. Its authors, Canadian psychologists Nina Mazar and Chen-Bo Zhong, argue that people who wear what they call the “halo of green consumerism” are less likely to be kind to others, and more likely to cheat and steal. “Virtuous acts can license subsequent asocial and unethical behaviours,” they write.
You always knew that those environmentalists who sneered down their noses at you because you didn’t put your recycled glass and plastic at the curb every week and drove an SUV instead of a Prius were like arrogant jerks. Now there’s a study to prove it.