A mere few hours ago, it was announced by the Obama administration that the Keystone XL Pipeline project will not receive the State Department approval that it needs. Many of the gentle readers of this blog may not know that the Keystone Pipeline is already in service, brought online in June 2010. The question at hand is whether or not that pipeline will be expanded, as demonstrated on the photograph accompaning this post (courtesy of the State Department).
The details will be covered by all the news outlets, and you can discover them easily enough. There are certainly valid concerns with regard to such a major project. Safety is one. Environmental protection is another. The fact that the extension would cross over one of our nation’s most important sources of water is also a vital factor (it’s called the Ogallala Aquifer, or the High Plains Aquifer and although it’s below ground, it’s fairly close to the surface as aquifers go).
No responsible citizen would throw away the nation’s clean water supply or the safety of a town or even wish to purposefully destroy wildlife. But must we be so brazenly stupid? The State Department has been looking at this idea for three years, and despite the permissions granted on local and state levels, and despite other federal departments signing off on it, the State Department has backed down. Mr. Obama cites an “arbitrary deadline” imposed by Republicans in the extension deal agreed to in December on the payroll tax cut.
Let’s be honest here. Mr. Obama’s adminstration has made this decision entirely as an election-year bonus to the extreme environmental wing that continues to support the Democrat party. If you do a Google search on the Keystone Pipeline, it won’t take you long to discover a whole host of websites warning us about things like dirty oil, deadly carbon footprints, and those evil machines known as combustion engines. The goal of the extremists is one thing: they want an economy that is not based on oil.
You know what? I’d be delighted with that, too. Probably most Americans would. Let’s run our cars and factories on rainwater, used cat litter, or old newspapers. It’s fine with me. The problem is that we can’t. Our economy’s lifeblood is oil. And sadly, we’re increasingly at the mercy of foreign sources that are not only undependable, but also undefendable. Even worse, the Obama administration has done nothing but extend this awful reality by refusing to allow us to take more advantage of the reserves that are under our very feet, or available next door from friendly neighbors.
Those nations who would rejoice to see our demise are increasingly controlling the oil while we are increasingly controlling less. For a president who campaigned on the need for more peace in the world, he’s acting very stupidly indeed. If anything, he’s setting us up for the next global conflict.
But, hey, he’s keeping the extremists in his political base happy. Political party always trumps patriotism, right?