GOP sees roadblock to Keystone pipeline – Washington Times

Truck hauling 36-Inch Pipe to build Keystone-C...

GOP sees roadblock to Keystone pipeline – Washington Times.

Calls for environmental review limited to rerouted section

By Sean Lengell – The Washington Times

Capitol Hill Republicans say yet another environmental impact study of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline is unwarranted and nothing more than a stall tactic by the Obama administration that threatens the project.

The State Department announced Friday it had ordered a new study because the Canadian firm TransCanada revised its proposed Canada-to-Nebraska pipeline to avoid Nebraska’s environmental sensitive Sandhills. In January, President Obama rejected the company’s previous bid because he said more time was needed to vet alternative routes.

The Republican lawmakers say the new review should be limited only to the new 88-mile rerouted section in Nebraska, not the entire 900-plus mile route from the Montana-Canada border to Steele City, Neb. – a move they say is unnecessary in light of an exhaustive four-year study of the project completed last year.

The “notice from the Department of State seems to be yet another obstructive tactic designed to appease a narrow constituency,” said Sen. John Hoeven, North Dakota Republican. “The environment does not change in the nine months since the issuance, nearly a year ago in August, of the final environmental impact statement. That document concluded that there are ‘no significant impacts.’ “

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, Michigan Republican, said that expanding the review to the entire route would entangle the project in needless red tape and delay the creation of thousands of new jobs the project promises.

“With its proposed supplemental review, the Obama administration is taking yet another step farther away from energy security and job creation,” he said.

The State Department said its primary goal is to review the pipeline’s proposed new section, an effort to be undertaken by an outside reviewer in conjunction with the state of Nebraska. The agency also said it will take another look at last year’s impact study to see if anything has changed. The study is expected to take six to nine months.

TransCanada says reviewing the entire project is unnecessary because the previous study showed that it “would have a degree of safety over any other typically constructed domestic oil pipeline under current code.”

“The final review should focus solely on the realigned route that avoids the Nebraska Sandhills,” TransCanada President and Chief Executive Russ Girling said. “The rest of the Keystone XL route remains the same. The geology of the route remains the same. The environmental conditions remain the same. Nothing else has changed.”

Some environmentalists also are upset because they say the new review won’t consider possible climate change impacts of the pipeline, which would begin in the tar sands of Alberta, Canada.

“The tar sands industry is linked to greenhouse gas emissions,” said Jane Kleeb, executive director of Bold Nebraska, a liberal advocacy group opposed to the pipeline. “In an honest assessment they’d realize that actually, no, this is not good for the environment.”

Meanwhile on Capitol Hill, the Keystone pipeline threatens to derail a long-term bill to fund federal transportation projects. House Republicans have pressed to include the pipeline in the measure, while most Democrats in both chambers are adamant on leaving it out, saying it’s unrelated.

The issue also continues to haunt presidential politics. One the biggest applause lines on Republican Mitt Romney’s ongoing six-state bus tour through the Rust Belt and Midwest has been his repeated vow to “get that pipeline in from Canada – even if I have to build it myself.”

*Seth McLaughlin contributed to this report.

Canada Leads the Way on the Pipeline No-Brainer – Tea Party Nation

Canada Leads the Way on the Pipeline No-Brainer – Tea Party Nation.

By Alan Caruba

“Their goal is to stop any major project no matter what the cost to Canadian families in lost jobs and economic growth. No forestry. No Mining. No oil. No gas. No more hydro-electric dams.”

That was Canada’s Natural Resources Minister, Joe Oliver, speaking on January 9, 2012 and he might have been saying the same thing about special interests and the Obama administration in America. With refreshingly plain speech, Oliver criticized environmental organizations, both in Canada and in the U.S., saying they “threaten to hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological agenda.”

Canada is bringing common sense back into style. A June 3rd Washington Post article reported that “The government of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is rewriting the nation’s environmental laws to speed the extraction and export of oil, minerals and other materials to a global market clamoring for Canada’s natural resources.” Moreover, it has “added provisions to an omnibus budget bill that would revamp the way the government reviews the environmental impact of major projects, regulates threats to fisheries, and scrutinizes the political activities of nonprofit groups.”

What is instructive is the way Canada is now leading the way against the obstacles that the environmental organizations on both sides of the border have imposed on the development of energy and other sectors of the nation’s economy. The centerpiece of this development for the moment is the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

The Harper government has also proposed the repeal of the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act, part of the global warming hoax that would require huge reductions in so-called greenhouse gas emissions. It is seeking changes to other federal laws such as the Fisheries Act, the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, and Species at Risk Act.

Also under scrutiny is the proper role of non-profit organizations and “charities” that engage in blatant political activities. In typical fashion, the Sierra Club website on Monday claimed that Harper is trying to “steal tax-exempt status from charities that stand up to Big Oil.” Another environmental organization, Friends of the Earth, devotes its website to efforts to block the construction of “the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline from Oklahoma through Texas to the Gulf Coast.”

Every effort in the United States to ensure the provision of energy, whether from coal, oil, natural gas or nuclear power, continues to be assaulted by the huge environmental propaganda machine that currently sees the defeat of the pipeline as crucial to its anti-energy agenda.

On January 18, Americans were astonished to learn that President Obama had formally rejected a bid by Canadian energy company, TransCanada, to build a $7 billion oil pipeline that would link the tar sands of Alberta to refineries on the Gulf of Mexico. In a time when the U.S. economy is suffering loss of jobs, the project would normally be a no-brainer.

However, opponents of the pipeline are a virtual who’s who of environmental organizations and a torrent of lies has poured forth from them regarding the project. The American Petroleum Institute estimates it will create 10,000 U.S. jobs next year with an anticipated 45,000 jobs by 2015 and close to 85,000 by 2020.

Among the lies put forth by militant environmentalists is that the environmental impact studies and securing the permits necessary for the pipeline were “rushed.” In truth, it took three years, four months, and five days up to the day TransCanada first filed the permit request to begin construction.

Obama repeated this lie, blaming Republicans for preventing “a full assessment of the pipeline’s impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment.” The Obama administration had, in fact, reviewed more than 10,000 pages of environmental studies and the State Department had twice concluded that all requirements had been met!

By contrast, in 1974, the TransAlaskan Pipeline was approved by Congress in just about a year and it was built in less than three years despite being more environmentally and technically challenging.

Congressional Democrats and Republicans have been so angered by the president’s decision against the pipeline that in mid-April the House passed a short-term transportation bill that would facilitate the next stage of the oil pipeline. The bill passed 293 to 127, with 69 Democrats supporting it. It was the fourth time the House had passed a measure to expedite the stalled project, one of which failed in the Senate by a narrow vote when the president personally lobbied some Democrats to vote against it.

Let’s tip our hat to the Canadians who have concluded that environmental lobbies, think tanks, and charities are doing more to harm Canada’s interests by means of the environmental treaties and laws they have worked so hard to impose on that nation and ours. We Americans could learn a valuable lesson from our neighbors to the north.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

Contempt of Obama – Tea Party Nation

19SFG Special Forces soldier Christopher Speer...

19SFG Special Forces soldier Christopher Speer being unloaded at Bagram Airbase after sustaining head injuries from a grenade thrown during a firefight in which Omar Khadr was captured. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Contempt of Obama – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Judson Phillips

The left is always whining that Obama is the President and we should respect him.  The obvious question is, if the standard for respect is being elected, where was respect for George W. Bush?

 Now the Obama Regime is doing something that not only does not deserve respect, it deserves our contempt.

 What is it?

The Obama Regime wants to help free a convicted killer.  But this guy is not just any convicted killer.  His name is Omar Khadr.

 A few years back, Khadr became a minor liberal cause célèbre.  What did he do to earn this respect from the treason wing of the American political spectrum?

 He killed an American soldier.

 Khadr killed an American soldier in Afghanistan.  Khadr was a Canadian who at age 15 was an Islamic terrorist in Afghanistan.  He was captured after shooting it out with American forces and killing Sergeant Christopher Speer.  Khadr threw a grenade that killed Sgt. Speer.

 The international left was looking for an excuse to try and embarrass America about holding international terrorists at Guantanamo and they found their poster child in Khadr. 

 Khadr was sentenced by a military jury to 40 years in prison.    Despite the fact that Khadr was able to engage American forces and kill one American soldier, Khadr was given a generous plea bargain, which called for another year of custody at Guantanamo and then he could apply to transfer to Canada. Perhaps one of the most disturbing parts of this arrangement is the fact that the American government agreed to allow Canadian law to govern Khadr’s release.

 Although Khadr was sentenced to 40 years in prison, in Canada, he is automatically eligible to be considered for parole after serving one third of his sentence.  He is automatically paroled after two thirds of his sentence. 

 Canada has not wanted to take Khadr, and who could really blame them?   But now the Obama Regime is pushing Canada to accept him.

 Why in the hell are they doing that and what are they thinking?

 Khadr is now 25.  He is an international terrorist.  His father was a close associate of Osama Bin Laden

 Let him rot!

 In short, the Obama Regime does not think the killing of an American soldier is worth much.

 If Obama were a real American he would value the life of an American soldier much more than that of an Islamic terrorist.  It says a lot about the Obama Regime’s priorities that they want Omar Khadr released to Canada and probable parole as quickly as possible. 

 Khadr will probably be released to Canada and paroled.  Perhaps after that Obama can go on a tour in Pakistan and Afghanistan, where Khadr lived and apologize to Islamists that we imprisoned someone who killed an American soldier.

Obama’s Oily Pipeline Lies – Tea Party Nation

Obama’s Oily Pipeline Lies – Tea Party Nation.

By Alan Caruba

The President’s trip last week to Cushing, Oklahoma, was nothing more than the opportunity to stand in front of a stack of oil pipeline sections and lie some more about the Keystone pipeline. His contempt for the intelligences of Americans was on full display.

A pipeline section that did not require his approval or involvement was touted as “a priority.” His delay of the Keystone pipeline from Canada was passed off as based on his concern for “the health and safety of the American people.”

The safety of oil pipelines is well established. There is an extensive network; 55,000 miles of crude oil trunk lines in the U.S. and another estimated 40,000 miles of small gathering lines located mostly in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Wyoming that gather oil from wells both online and offshore and connect to the larger trunk lines.

Obama thinks most Americans are so dumb that a photo and a short televised news report in front of pipeline sections will convince them he and his administration have been leading the effort to ensure domestic oil is available.

He is wrong. He is the stupid one.

By the end of the week, Rasmussen Reports released the results of a poll in which “Voters continue to believe the United States is not doing enough to develop its gas and oil resources, and strongly support offshore drilling. Most also still think going ahead with offshore drilling is likely to bring down the price of gasoline at the pump.” Of those polled, 62% favored offshore drilling.

The Governor of Oklahoma, Mary Fallin, when asked about Obama’s speech, said, “President Obama’s rhetoric is matched with a policy record that is aggressively anti-energy and continues to stifle economic growth in Oklahoma and throughout the nation.” Gov. Fallin said Obama should “reexamine his polices, not deliver more speeches taking credit for the accomplishments of others.”

That, however, is standard operating procedure for Obama. Either he blames anything and everything that goes wrong on someone or something else, or he takes credit where none is due. What is one to expect from a President he was given a Nobel Peace Prize within months of taking office in order to pump up a virtually invisible resume? No doubt the Nobel committee will be giving out free pizzas to all who attend future ceremonies.

In January, when Obama announced the delay of permits to the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada—a major trading partner and ally—Tom Pyle, the president of the Institute on Energy Research, called the decision “unconscionable.”

“With more than 1.7 trillion barrels of recoverable oil under our soil,” said Pyle, “we have enough oil to fuel our present needs for the next 250 years.” The addition of the Canadian oil will further ensure future energy requirements will be met.

It isn’t just the President who lies. Members of his administration do so all the time. During a White House press conference in March Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said that oil and gas production had increased on federal lands.

It has declined and increases in oil production have come primarily from privately owned land. On federally controlled lands, oil production since 2010 has dropped by eleven percent and gas by six percent. Revenue from lease sales for exploration and extraction is 250 times less than during the last year of the Bush administration.

This is an administration that re-authorized a moratorium on offshore drilling and imposed an embargo on oilshale development while at the same time wasting billions on so-called green energy “investments.” The Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, gave himself an “A” for the job he’s done thus far even as the cost of gasoline at the pump climbs toward $4 and higher.

Secretary Chu’s own department’s Energy Information Administration recently reported that the oil industry paid some $35.7 billion in corporate income taxes in 2009, the latest year for which data are available. According to The Wall Street Journal that is about 10% of non-defense discretionary spending. “All told, the government rakes in $86 million from oil and gas every day—far more than any other business.”

Voters would, indeed, have to be as stupid as Obama thinks they are if they reelect him in November.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

Obama’s Pipeline is Always Half Full of It – John Ransom – Townhall Finance Conservative Columnists and Financial Commentary

keystone pipeline

keystone pipeline (Photo credit: shannonpatrick17)

Obama’s Pipeline is Always Half Full of It – John Ransom – Townhall Finance Conservative Columnists and Financial Commentary.

The Democrats under Obama are bankrupt of ideas.

And Obama’s latest ineffectual shot at having it both ways on energy is the moral equivalent of declaring Chapter 13 bankruptcy on energy-policy.

You see, Obama’s newest, bestest commitment to energy security for the US is in touring the half of the Keystone pipeline that’s being built without his permission. That’s because the part of the pipeline under his control isn’t being built because it was denied a building permit by none other than BHO himself

“The Obama administration denied a permit for the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada,” reported the LA Times in January, “leaving the door open for the builder to reapply this year but prolonging a bitter political fight that has raged for months and energized each party’s political base.”  

That’s right. He denied the part of the pipeline he controlled, but wants credit for the part he can’t kill off.

Geez: It sounds a lot like his Middle East policy.  

“The president stages a photo-op in Oklahoma to take credit for the portion of the Keystone XL pipeline that doesn’t need his approval,” writes Investors Business Daily “and for oil production on private and state lands beyond his jurisdiction.”

IBD calls it a Potemkin Village photo-op.

It’s more like a Potemkin Village president.

The façade looked great, but as we now know, there’s nothing behind the cardboard cutout that’s Obama, but a vast, arid wasteland.  

Somewhere in Russia a village is missing a president. 

“This is like a governor personally issuing a fishing license,” Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner said according to BusinessWeek. “This portion of the pipeline is being built in spite of the president, not because of him.”

Now being fair to Obama, he wants you to know that he has no problem with the portion that’s half a pipeline. No; it’s just the whole pipeline that’s he has a problem with.  

As long as the pipeline, like Solyndra and the Chevy Volt, doesn’t actually produce anything useful, Obama will be just fine with it.

We can confidently look forward to the day when Obama gets to announce that work on the pipeline will be temporarily suspended permanently pending “free and fair elections” in the United States, just as the Chevy Volt suspended production due to lack of suckers, and Solyndra suspended production due to lack of government guaranteed dollars.

Then we’ll be able to add the pipeline to the long list of Obama initiatives that didn’t actually accomplish anything: a stimulus program that worked only when Congress made the president stop spending money; healthcare reform that raised prices rather than lowered them; energy policy that made energy supply more volatile and cost more; jobs bills that produced no jobs; loan guarantees that ended up being all guarantee and no loan repayment.

Since late summer Obama has been trapped in the box Hillary Clinton made for him when her State Department gave the initial approval for the pipeline. Because the pipeline stretches between Canada and the US- some still consider Canada a separate country and not the 57th state (I’m looking at you Barack)- the State Department needed to give the first A-O.K.

And A-O.K. they did: “The State Department gave a crucial green light on Friday to a proposed 1,711-mile pipeline that would carry heavy oil from oil sands in Canada across the Great Plains” reported the New York Times last summer, “to terminals in Oklahoma and the Gulf Coast.”

The State Department then tossed the hot potato into Obama’s lap, who then  tossed it back to Hillary Clinton, who then tossed it back to Obama, who then- surprise!- blamed Republicans for rushing him into a decision.

“Well, we fought and won World War II in less time than it’s taken so far to evaluate this project,” said Rep. Joe Barton of Texas, according to CNSNews about the 40 month delay in approving the pipeline. “I mean, with all due respect, it is an insult to the American people to say that you need more time.”

Well, yeah. That’s because the war was fought with the object of winning.

What Obama’s object is, only he knows.

The GOP will surely see the pipeline as half empty, while the enviros will surely see the pipeline as half full.

And Obama will do what he does best: nothing.

May he get full credit for it.

STEWARD: Voodoo environomics – Washington Times

STEWARD: Voodoo environomics – Washington Times.

Fantasy replaces reality in Obama’s green economy

By H. Leighton Steward – The Washington Times

President Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline wasn’t, as he claimed, based on science or the environment. It certainly wasn’t based on sound economic policy, either. The decision was, in fact, the product of voodoo environomics: a destructive blend of bad science based on fear-mongering and manipulated research, the bad economics of green-job fantasies and “starve the beast” energy politics.

At the very heart of voodoo environomics, of course, is the much-hyped theory linking man-made carbon dioxide (CO2) and climate change. Without the world’s policy focus on CO2 emissions, climate-change alarmists would be robbed of the ammunition they need to change and control human behavior via draconian energy policies. They also would be robbed of the substantial financial support needed to continue their biased research.

When adopted as official government policy, voodoo environomics can wreak havoc on the economy and represents a double whammy for working Americans. The admitted goal of CO2-slashing schemes such as “cap and trade” is to jack up the price of energies like gasoline and coal to make expensive alternative energies more competitive financially. Of course, their proponents hope you don’t realize that it’s ordinary Americans who are stuck paying higher prices for utilities and gasoline.

But the hit working Americans take under voodoo environomics doesn’t end with higher utility bills and gas prices. In bowing to environmental extremists in rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline project, Mr. Obama has abandoned working Americans – or should I say unemployed Americans in search of good jobs?

In fact, Mr. Obama managed the rare feat of uniting business and labor, with both crying foul over this senseless decision. Jay Timmons, CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, decries the loss of 20,000 direct jobs and another 118,000 spinoff jobs that would have resulted from Keystone. Standing next to him, Terry O’Sullivan, head of the Laborers’ International Union of North America said, “Blue-collar construction workers across the U.S. will not forget this [decision].”

The application of voodoo environomics also puts style over substance. Mr. Obama’s rejection of Keystone XL won’t stop the extraction of oil from Canada’s oil sands – the primary objective behind the pressure to kill the project. Canada will proceed without pause in exploiting its oil sands, regardless of what American politicians or environmental extremists say or do.

Anti-Keystone activists also point to the need to protect the Ogallala Aquifer, which encompasses parts of eight states and underlies a portion of the proposed route of the pipeline. But reviews of the thousands and thousands of miles of oil and natural-gas pipelines over the Ogallala, some of which have been transporting oil for more than a half-century, show no contamination of the aquifer.

What the decision does do is ensure that oil won’t be shipped and refined by Americans and likely will go to other nations, particularly China. This may sound like hyperbole, and I wish it were. But Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in lambasting Mr. Obama’s rejection of Keystone, said Canada would look to China to sell the oil.

America’s energy insecurity is moving into a dangerous new phase, while our economy remains anemic and unemployment systemic. Rather than strengthening America’s energy position with a close ally and neighbor like Canada, Mr. Obama has increased our dependence on energy supplies from less friendly nations that ensure little or no environmental safeguards.

The negative impact of this decision doesn’t end there. America’s risk exposure to dangerous energy disruptions stemming from global hot spots just went up. Such disruptions – for instance, those that could result from the crisis brewing in the Strait of Hormuz – would be a disaster for working Americans and a significant national security crisis for the nation.

The phantom gains and real losses stemming from voodoo environomics are starting to be realized. America needs more opportunities, not lost opportunities.

H. Leighton Steward is a geologist and retired energy-industry executive. He is chairman of Plants Need CO2.

The GOP Can Add 10 Million Jobs and $15 Trillion to US Economy without Spending a Dime – John Ransom – Townhall Finance

The GOP Can Add 10 Million Jobs and $15 Trillion to US Economy without Spending a Dime – John Ransom – Townhall Finance.

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.  

So Canada’s prime minister has decided to look for a new partner for their oil.

“Harper’s second official trip to the Middle Kingdom comes at an important juncture in Canada-China relations,” writes Canada’s National Post “and will help dictate the Conservative government’s economic and foreign policy with the Asian superpower for years to come. The prime minister is courting China as a customer for Canadian natural resources — insisting it’s in Canada’s national interest to send oil and gas to Asia — and looking to sew stronger economic ties with the world’s fastest-growing economy.”

Never will an Obama administration be accused of shepherding the “world’s fastest-growing economy.”

You wanna grow debt quickly?

Sure they are your guys.

But on the economy?

Turn to the much more reliable capitalists in Communist China. That’s at least the message from Stephen Harper.

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.

As I have pointed out all along, the Keystone issue isn’t about the safety of a pipeline. 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.  And along the way, the U.S. would create at least 10 million new U.S. jobs, keeping around $500 billion per year here at home. Over twenty years that would be an additional $12.5 trillion in GDP even at a modest 2 percent growth rate. At 4 percent the numbers are closer to $15.5 trillion.     

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.    

Building out the infrastructure to drill and transport that oil just from the Rocky Mountains in the US could supply literally millions of jobs for American workers, while supplying literally millions of barrels of oil per day, repairing our energy security for the next century. But moist importantly it would repair our economy.

I mean we went to war to protect the supply of oil coming from Libya for Europe.

Couldn’t the GOP at least first go to work making sure Keystone provides work for Americans?

That’s an issue to go to war over.

How to Murder a Superpower – Tea Party Nation

How to Murder a Superpower – Tea Party Nation.

By Alan Caruba

It is the crime of the century that America, home to some of the world’s greatest reserves of coal, natural gas and oil, is being deliberately destroyed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior as they do everything in their power to restrict access and drive energy producers out of business.

It is common sense that a nation that cannot produce sufficient electricity to turn on its lights and power its manufacturing sector will be destroyed if current Obama administration regulations and actions continue. Our vital transportation sector and all others that utilize petroleum-based products will suffer, too.

While President Obama babbles about millionaires and billionaires, everyone will be impoverished by the loss of jobs and revenue our energy sector produces now and can produce in the future.

This isn’t an “energy policy.” It’s a “no-energy policy” and it is a guarantee of economic disaster.

Obama’s decision to reject a permit for Canada’s XL Keystone pipeline is just one example. It is a job-killer and a revenue-killer. There are thousands of pipelines serving America’s energy needs and the XL Keystone pipeline would ensure that Canada’s own vast energy reserves would flow to America. It is one of our key trade partners and Obama has slapped it in the face.

In early January, Ken Salazar, the Secretary of the Interior, announced a new 20-year, million-acre ban on uranium mining for federal lands in Arizona, despite the fact that these lands hold the highest-grade of known uranium deposits in the United States. It is an outrage that a new GOP-Congress will have to overturn if the nation is to be assured of sufficient uranium to power its nuclear plants and for weapons development. If the ban remains, these uranium resources would be inaccessible until 2023!

Tom Pyle, president of the Institute for Energy Research said that Salazar’s announcement “further compounds a man-made energy crisis that has been planned and executed in Washington, D.C.

At the same time we are learning of enormous natural gas discoveries that can reduce our energy bills and turn sleeping little towns into boomtowns, environmental organizations have launched a vast propaganda campaign against “fracking”, a technology that has been safely used for more than fifty years. Their claims about dangers to the nation’s supply of fresh water are baseless. Their claims that fracking has caused earthquakes in Ohio are absurd.

Need it be said that the Environmental Protection Agency has turned its eyes on fracking and is working on a report due later this year that will likely call for harsh crackdowns on its use and more regulations to throttle the expansion of natural gas extraction?

The EPA has just released a report of those power plants that top the list of its regulation of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. There is no basis in science to justify the reduction of CO2. Indeed, since it is a gas on which all vegetation depends, much as oxygen is vital to all animal life, reducing it would impair great crop yields and healthier forests.

These regulations are based on the global warming hoax that blamed CO2 for warming the earth. That is utterly false. The Earth is currently in a perfectly natural cooling cycle and the climate of the Earth is almost entirely based on the Sun—solar radiation—along with the actions of oceans, clouds, and even volcanic activity that spews tons of particulates into the atmosphere.

Coal-fired power plants account for fifty percent of all the electricity generated in the United States. Fifty percent! And yet the EPA is determined to shut down dozens of them providing that vital factor in the lives of all Americans and the economy, nor does this take into account the billions that energy producers have spent to upgrade their technology to reduce emissions.

The Obama administration fuel economy agenda, a call for 54.5 miles per gallon ignores simple physics. There is a finite amount of energy a gallon of gas can generate. If you dilute it with ethanol as is currently required, you get even less mileage. The administration is trying to circumvent Congress by issuing standards based on regulating “greenhouse gas emissions”, but there is no need for this. It is a false argument. The Center for Automotive Research says that the proposed new standards would cause the retail price of average motor vehicles to increase by more than $11,000.

Americans and the nation’s future are being victimized by Obama administration policies. The 18th annual Index of Economic Freedom, was released on January 12th by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal, measures the many factors that contribute to the economic health of a nation—things like property rights, regulatory efficiency, open markets, free trade and labor policies.

Economic freedom is declining worldwide as governments try to spend their way out of the global recession. The United States fell to 10th place. In 2009 it ranked 6th, in 2010 it was 8th, and in 2011, it was 9th.

We are witnessing the deliberate murder of a superpower.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

Obama in Fantasy Land – Derek Hunter – Townhall Conservative

Obama in Fantasy Land – Derek Hunter – Townhall Conservative.

This Tuesday, when President Obama delivers his State of the Union Address, we can count on it to be filled with the same platitudes, anecdotes, false promises, cooked stats and tenuous connection with reality we find in everything the man does. It will be a laundry list of progressive fantasy, couched in populist rhetoric and designed to make middle-class Americans think he has something more than the zero connection and concern for them he has.

President Obama doesn’t give a damn about the middle class, jobs, the economy or much of anything that distracts from his progressive agenda. But what do you expect from someone who shows such contempt for the nation’s pastime as to wear “mom jeans” when throwing out the first pitch at the All-Star game?

I’m kidding about “mom jeans,” of course, though only mostly. But about the contempt…not at all.

Last week President Obama went to Disney World – returning to his home country of Fantasy Land to deliver a speech about the need to boost tourism. Tourism is hurting, there’s no doubt about that. But taking a vacation is hardly a priority when you’re unemployed, and for the unemployed, Mr. Obama smacked them across the face with a dead fish.

The administration announced he would block the Keystone XL pipeline, a plan to move oil from Canada to refineries on the Texas Gulf Coast. The green left hates it because…well, it’s real energy rather than the “green” energy racket they love to milk for government subsidies. If it’s good for humans, you can count on these people to oppose it unless they’re lining their pockets with tax dollars or preparing to profit from forced customer base through regulation.

The pipeline would have meant jobs, good jobs, lots of them … but it seems, as Vice-President Joe Biden so artfully put it, that three-letter word that is President Obama’s No.1 priority – J-O-B-S – isn’t as much a priority as pleasing the cronies he desperately needs for his reelection.

How many jobs? Conservatives say a lot; progressives say not so many. I’m no engineer, but trenches from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico don’t dig themselves, and that pipe won’t magically appear once it’s dug – nor will it maintain itself. So, more than 100 but less than the millions who have lost jobs since President Obama took office. But creating some jobs beats creating no jobs, which is what President Obama chose when he took the side of his “green” elite friends against normal American workers.

Unions wanted the pipeline, too. They like jobs, as long as they’re union jobs. And they are an important part of the progressive brigade. But they cashed out their payoff in the so-called stimulus bill. If they want more of our money to cover their unsustainable, bloated pensions they’re going to have to wait until a second term.

The president was required by law, as part of the payroll tax agreement, to make a ruling on the pipeline by Feb. 21. He called this date “rushed and arbitrary” and said on Wednesday this is part of why he decided against the pipeline. Originally, President Obama had planned to push the decision off until sometime after Nov. 6, a date that is neither “rushed” nor “arbitrary.”

In other words, he wanted to play politics with a critical decision about America’s enemy future. He wanted to wait until after the election, so he wouldn’t anger either group of supporters, Congress forced him to pick one to offend. He went with the one who got the bigger payoff already and, therefore, would be less likely to withdraw support before the election.

So, it was in Fantasy Land this week, where he went to tout the importance of tourism, that President Obama chose to announce a decision that denies jobs to tens of thousands of Americans and compromises our energy security. Those jobs will not be “created or saved,” will not be filled by people who will take their families to Disney World this year and will likely go to China or elsewhere unless we rethink.

It’s fitting President Obama shut down Main Street USA to give his speech at Disney World. He’s been shutting down Main Streets all over the country, from day one. And he’ll continue to do it if he is re-elected. Disney went back to normal after Barack Obama left, but our country will take much longer to recover. We need to start that recovery on Jan. 20, 2013. To borrow a phrase from the president, “We can’t wait.”

NORTON: Obama chooses American decline – Washington Times


Truck hauling 36-Inch Pipe to build Keystone-C...

Image via Wikipedia

NORTON: Obama chooses American decline – Washington Times.

By Gale NortonThe Washington Times

Which nation will be the world’s leading superpower a few decades from now? I fervently hope it is the United States, and I have great faith in American ingenuity. But the Obama administration’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline is a reminder of why our No. 1 position is in jeopardy.

The Keystone XL pipeline would bring oil from the Canadian oil sands and North Dakota’s Bakken Formation to U.S. refineries on the Gulf Coast. The pipeline has been in the regulatory approval process since 2008. Its eight-volume environmental impact statement was produced following myriad studies, hearings, public comments and reviews by multiple agencies and each of the states along the route.

However, the Obama administration decided the proposal had not been studied enough. It delayed a decision in November. Congress responded and gave President Obama 60 days to make the simple determination of whether the pipeline was in the “national interest.”

This seems like a truly simple determination. Iran is threatening to blockade the 20 percent of the world’s oil supply that flows through the Strait of Hormuz. The American economy is struggling from high unemployment. The volatility of oil prices, reflected in periodic spikes at the gas pump, is a threat to productivity. A privately funded pipeline project that would create tens of thousands of jobs while helping stabilize America’s energy supply clearly seems to be in the national interest.

Instead, the Obama administration found that a bureaucratic desire for more study outweighed the rest of the national interest.

The door is now open for Canadian oil to go to China. Canadians are already considering an alternative pipeline from the oil sands region to Canada’s West Coast, so oil can be transported on tankers to China. China will be happy to step in and gain long-term commitments to acquire the oil supply. Once those commitments are made and a West Coast pipeline is started, it may take years before new or expanded oil sands facilities again make oil available for U.S. markets.

The United States has, in essence, surrendered its place at the front of the line to purchase Canadian oil.

Even from an environmental perspective, the Obama decision is a loser.The world’s second-largest oil resource will continue to be produced. Instead of a straightforward pipeline to the U.S., the oil will travel by tankers across the Pacific. U.S. fuel requirements will be filled by oil tankers crossing the Atlantic. Jobs that could have been here will be overseas.

The ramifications for business investment in the United States are even more disturbing. The Keystone decision tells investors that the U.S. has an unpredictable business climate. Companies can invest years and many millions of dollars to seek permits and, ultimately, be stymied by politics.

Contrast our approach with China‘s. China astutely has assured its future supply of oil and other energy resources. Over the past decade, the Chinese have gone around the world negotiating long-term supply deals. The U.S., instead, has rejected an oil supply laid at our doorstep. Which nation is making better preparations to be the superpower of the future?

Gale Norton was secretary of the interior in the George W. Bush administrtion. She is president of Norton Regulatory Strategies.