Presidential Pork Kills Keystone

John Ransom
Posted: Mar 09, 2012 12:01 AM

56 Senators voted in favor of a plan yesterday that would allow the Keystone pipeline to go forward by cancelling the bureaucratic roadblocks put up by the Obama administration/world-wide bus tour.

“The 56-42 vote came after President Barack Obama called Democratic senators to lobby them to oppose the 1,700-mile Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry tar sands oil from western Canada to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast,” reports FoxNews.

“Even so, 11 Democrats sided with Republicans to sidestep Obama's rejection of the pipeline and allow the $7 billion project to go forward.”

Yet, despite the majority vote, Senate rules apparently require a 60-vote supermajority to create jobs in this country. And according to Democrat Party rules, any vote to create jobs also has to have a massive, wasteful, multi-trillion dollar appropriation attached to it. This rules out Keystone.

With that in mind, it’s time for voters to begin to ask the most obvious question: What quid pro quo is Obama promising members of Congress, to stall the pipeline and the immediate, well-paying jobs that go along with it?

And only the congresstrons who were on the phone with Obama can really answer what Obama promised them in return for their votes.

Reports CNN:

For their part, congressional Republicans blasted the president for twisting the arms of fellow Democrats.

"By personally lobbying against the Keystone pipeline, it means the president of the United States is lobbying for sending North American energy to China and lobbying against American jobs," House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said at a news conference.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, said Obama is "out of touch" on the issue.

"At a moment when millions are out of work, gas prices are skyrocketing, and the Middle East is in turmoil, we've got a president who's up making phone calls trying to block a pipeline here at home," he said. "It's unbelievable."

So tell us, Mr & Mrs. Senator what the president offered you.

Instead of shipping jobs directly to U.S. by shipping oil through Keystone, the Democrats presumably prefer the new triangle-slavery route. Canada ships oil to China, China creates jobs, US imports dollars fromChina to pay for entitlement programs to support people who don’t have jobs here domestically.   

There are many contrasts that the GOP can use to go after Obama on the economy.

None present such a black and white contrast as the dispute about the black, tar-sands crude that Canada would like to ship through the US to refineries on the Gulf via the Keystone XL pipeline. The dispute isn't about the environment, is about creating 10 million U.S. jobs.

The State Department gave preliminary approval to build the Keystone pipeline late last summer, saying that it posed no significant environmental risks. But like a lot of things with this administration, it was a case of the left hand not knowing what the left-wing was doing.    

Instead of allowing the project to go through, along with the hundreds of thousands of jobs it would create, Obama sided with whack-job environmentalists who raised bogus fears that oil spills could pollute the aquifer that lies underneath its path.

Ok, he only apparently sided with them.

He actually did what Obama likes to do best when pandering to… whomever. He bravely told the rest of us that for right now he wouldn’t approve the pipeline, but he might change his mind. Oh, and if we try to rush him to make a decision, we’ll all be very, very sorry.

The Senate vote was an attempt by the GOP and 11 Democrats to show the rest us just how sorry Obama really is. 

The pipeline could ultimately supply about a million barrels of Canadian oil to the US per day and 400,000 US jobs, most of them almost immediately.

But instead, the president, who has been railing against Congress for not passing another expensive jobs bill, and talks about income equality like it’s the most pressing issue of the day, just killed 400,000 American jobs that would battle income inequality in the most productive sense by providing ordinary Americans with the opportunity to earn some income.  

And despite everything the Obama administration has done to slow down domestic development of oil and gas resources, the oil and gas sector is one of the fastest growing jobs markets in a very anemic job market. While other sectors are shedding jobs, oil and gas is hot.

“The use of new drilling techniques to tap oil and gas in shale rocks far underground helped add 158,000 new oil and gas jobs over the past five years,” writes the Wall Street Journal “and economists think that it has created even more jobs in companies supplying the energy industry and in the broader services industry.”

“This is probably the biggest stimulus we have going,” Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy and Economic Research told the WSJ.

According to the Journal “$145 billion will be spent drilling and completing wells this year, up from $13 billion in 2000.”

While it’s estimated that Canada may have as much as 2 trillion barrels of oil in reserves, “the U.S. Geological Survey estimates the [US] has 4.3 trillion barrels of in-place oil shale resources centered in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, said Helen Hankins, Colorado director for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management” according to the Associated Press.

4.3 trillion barrels is 16 times the reserves of Saudi Arabia, or enough oil to supply the US for 600 years.

We know that Obama has multiple motives for killing the pipeline. 

We know for example that Obama’s imperiled presidency rides on his ability, first, to rally his own base, since no one else supports him. That means pandering to the enviro-whackos in the White House and beyond.

We know too that Obama majority shareholder Warren Buffett stands to benefit from any agreement to scuttle the pipeline because Buffett’s railroad will end up carting any Canadian heavy if Canada decides to sell oil to US refineries despite the Keystone ban.

As I have pointed out all along, the Keystone issue isn’t about the safety of a pipeline route.

Obama and enviro-whacko friends know that if they allow Canadian tar sands oil to be developed via the Keystone pipeline, that the US will also start to develop their own tar-sands and shale oil. The US contains well over 600 years of known reserves and that would allow the US to be a net exporter of oil. If that happens, the green economy ruse that the left has sponsored, already reeling from bankruptcies and cronyism, would collapse. It would show that there is no shortage of oil and “green” energy can not compete with fossil fuels.

The only thing left then for those bitter climate clingers would be the shoddy science of Global Something-or-Another.  

Oil from tar sands, reports the BBC on the Keystone decision, “is so plentiful that full-scale development would seriously delay the transition to low-carbon alternative fuels,” which is the holy grail of the left.

Full scale development of tar sands can only be stopped by taxing oil out of existence, like was tried with cap and trade.  Cape and trade was never about trying to cool the earth. It was about giving "green" technologies a competitive advantage over fossil fuels that free markets won't concede.    

The Atlantic echoes the theme:

The Keystone XL is merely on hold, and oil from all sorts of other "dirty" situations continues to flow into our gas tanks…. We need to stop fighting oil development project by project -- and instead focus on passing a Low Carbon Fuel Standard (which could make the Keystone XL economically unviable).

And the New York Times goes further, stating: “Far more important to the nation’s energy and environmental future is the development of renewable and alternative energy sources. This is the winning case that Mr. Obama should make to voters in rejecting the Republicans’ craven indulgence of Big Oil.”

And since the New York Times wrote the Obama strategy memo disguised as the op-ed above, Obama’s been sticking to the script.

And offering Democrats lots of big carrots along the way. 

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