A disgraceful Keystone decision delay

Thomas Lifson
The Obama administration signaled its shame* over a nakedly political decision to indefinitely delay the Keystone Pipeline by burying the news on Good Friday afternoon. The decision was bought and paid for by wealthy green ideologues and green energy rent-seekers, anxious to cash in on subsidies for solar panels, windmills, and other expensive projects that are guaranteed a positive return by taxpayer money. Politico:

The Obama administration says it is indefinitely extending its long-awaited review of the Keystone XL pipeline — providing a Good Friday jolt to one of the president’s most wrenching environmental decisions.

The move could easily push President Barack Obama’s final decision past the November election. (snip)

the delay drew immediate scorn from pipeline supporters on both sides of the aisle in Congress. Republicans derided it as a “shameful” concession to “radical activists,” while Democratic Senate energy Chairwoman Mary Landrieu called it “irresponsible, unnecessary and unacceptable.”

Polling indicates a majority of Americans support construction of Keystone, and even a plurality of Democrats:

Labor unions strongly favor the high-paying construction and maintenance jobs that would be created. National security would be enhanced, our enemies abroad like oil supplier Venezuela would be hurt, and even carbon, particulate matter, and hydrocarbon emissions would be reduced, and truck and rail transportation would be replaced by safe and efficient pipeline conveyance of North Dakota and Canadian crude to American refineries.

It is a slam dunk decision. But a handful of wealthy interests place their own ideology (oil is bad!) and self interest (give me more green subsidies!) above the national interest and popular will. And Obama is catering to the plutocrats, not the people.

That is why Keystone is delayed and probably killed, at least until Obama is replaced.

It is time for Republicans to take a lead from Harry Reid’s book and make the name Tom Steyer as public as the Ko9ch Brothers have become.  Andrew Restuccia in Politico:

Liberal billionaire Tom Steyer is laying plans to go big in the 2014 election.

The former hedge fund manager is hoping to spend $100 million — $50 million from his personal fortune and $50 million from other donors — to make climate change a top-tier issue in the election, The New York Times is reporting.

A person close to Steyer confirmed the $100 million figure to POLITICO but cautioned that it is not a ceiling.

Now is the time for The Washington Post to make partial amends for its disgraceful publication of an article making a factually incorrect case that the Koch Brothers stand to benefit from the Keystone pipeline (they would be hurt by it), and publish a serious investigation of Steyer and other green investors who have profited and stand to profit even more by blocking Keystone.

*Note: some may claim that Obama has no shame, but I am using the term as anthropologists do, in distinction from guilt. Guilt reflects an internalized value, whereas shame is a matter of public appearances, a an avoidance of receiving public approbation as opposed to an inner sense of inappropriateness.

The Obama administration signaled its shame* over a nakedly political decision to indefinitely delay the Keystone Pipeline by burying the news on Good Friday afternoon. The decision was bought and paid for by wealthy green ideologues and green energy rent-seekers, anxious to cash in on subsidies for solar panels, windmills, and other expensive projects that are guaranteed a positive return by taxpayer money. Politico:

The Obama administration says it is indefinitely extending its long-awaited review of the Keystone XL pipeline — providing a Good Friday jolt to one of the president’s most wrenching environmental decisions.

The move could easily push President Barack Obama’s final decision past the November election. (snip)

the delay drew immediate scorn from pipeline supporters on both sides of the aisle in Congress. Republicans derided it as a “shameful” concession to “radical activists,” while Democratic Senate energy Chairwoman Mary Landrieu called it “irresponsible, unnecessary and unacceptable.”

Polling indicates a majority of Americans support construction of Keystone, and even a plurality of Democrats:

Labor unions strongly favor the high-paying construction and maintenance jobs that would be created. National security would be enhanced, our enemies abroad like oil supplier Venezuela would be hurt, and even carbon, particulate matter, and hydrocarbon emissions would be reduced, and truck and rail transportation would be replaced by safe and efficient pipeline conveyance of North Dakota and Canadian crude to American refineries.

It is a slam dunk decision. But a handful of wealthy interests place their own ideology (oil is bad!) and self interest (give me more green subsidies!) above the national interest and popular will. And Obama is catering to the plutocrats, not the people.

That is why Keystone is delayed and probably killed, at least until Obama is replaced.

It is time for Republicans to take a lead from Harry Reid’s book and make the name Tom Steyer as public as the Ko9ch Brothers have become.  Andrew Restuccia in Politico:

Liberal billionaire Tom Steyer is laying plans to go big in the 2014 election.

The former hedge fund manager is hoping to spend $100 million — $50 million from his personal fortune and $50 million from other donors — to make climate change a top-tier issue in the election, The New York Times is reporting.

A person close to Steyer confirmed the $100 million figure to POLITICO but cautioned that it is not a ceiling.

Now is the time for The Washington Post to make partial amends for its disgraceful publication of an article making a factually incorrect case that the Koch Brothers stand to benefit from the Keystone pipeline (they would be hurt by it), and publish a serious investigation of Steyer and other green investors who have profited and stand to profit even more by blocking Keystone.

*Note: some may claim that Obama has no shame, but I am using the term as anthropologists do, in distinction from guilt. Guilt reflects an internalized value, whereas shame is a matter of public appearances, a an avoidance of receiving public approbation as opposed to an inner sense of inappropriateness.