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5:19am on Sunday the 16th of June
HERE'S AN EXCERPT FROM THE ENCYCLOPEDIA I'M NOT WRITING
Humor offset

From Treacherpedia, the fictional encyclopedia

A humor offset is a type of frivolity redistribution presented as a service that intends to reduce the net humor emissions of individuals or organizations indirectly, through proxies who reduce their laffs and/or increase their absorption of giggles. The intended goal of carbon offsets is to combat global chuckling.

A wide variety of offset actions are available; blogging at News Hounds is the most common. Renewable frowning and irony conservation offsets are also popular, including self-righteousness trading credits. The appeal of becoming "humor neutral" has contributed to the growth of voluntary offsets, which often are a more cost-effective alternative to reducing one's own comedy consumption.

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Apologies to everybody out there who believes deeply in carbon offsets! I'm still not really clear on the technical details of how those are supposed to work, but here's how Wired described them in May '06:
The Gores and all the employees of Generation [Investment Management, his "ecofriendly investment firm"] lead a "carbon-neutral" lifestyle, reducing their energy consumption when possible and purchasing so-called offsets available on newly emerging carbon markets. Gore says he and Tipper regularly calculate their home and business energy use - including the carbon cost of his prodigious global travel. Then he purchases offsets equal to the amount of carbon emissions they generate. Last year, for example, Gore and Tipper atoned for their estimated 1 million miles in global air travel by giving money to an Indian solar electric company and a Bulgarian hydroelectric project.
So, people like Al Gore and Arianna Huffington can live in huge, energy-sucking mansions and fly around in private jets spewing out all the carbon emissions they want, as long as they throw even more of their money around and pretend it's helping the environment. Kind of like plenary indulgences, but with more religious fervor!
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