“An act of national insanity”

Via Dan Friedman in email, a piece by Robert Samuelson excoriating President Obama for his decision on the Keystone XL Pipeline, in the WaPo no less:

ObamaContemptPresident Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico is an act of national insanity. It isn’t often that a president makes a decision that has no redeeming virtues and — beyond the symbolism — won’t even advance the goals of the groups that demanded it. All it tells us is that Obama is so obsessed with his reelection that, through some sort of political calculus, he believes that placating his environmental supporters will improve his chances.

Aside from the political and public relations victory, environmentalists won’t get much. Stopping the pipeline won’t halt the development of tar sands, to which the Canadian government is committed; therefore, there will be little effect on global-warming emissions. Indeed, Obama’s decision might add to them. If Canada builds a pipeline from Alberta to the Pacific for export to Asia, moving all that oil across the ocean by tanker will create extra emissions. There will also be the risk of added spills.

Now consider how Obama’s decision hurts the United States. For starters, it insults and antagonizes a strong ally; getting future Canadian cooperation on other issues will be harder. Next, it threatens a large source of relatively secure oil that, combined with new discoveries in the United States, could reduce (though not eliminate) our dependence on insecure foreign oil.

Finally, Obama’s decision forgoes all the project’s jobs. There’s some dispute over the magnitude. Project sponsor TransCanada claims 20,000, split between construction (13,000) and manufacturing (7,000) of everything from pumps to control equipment. Apparently, this refers to “job years,” meaning one job for one year. If so, the actual number of jobs would be about half that spread over two years. Whatever the figure, it’s in the thousands and thus important in a country hungering for work. 

What this country needs to be hungering for is the end of this Presidency.  Nothing else politically is as important.

Obama must go.

Wizbang Weekend Caption Contest™
Biden has foot-in-mouth moment . . . again.
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  • jim_m

    Every would be dictator is fueled by dreams of personal superiority and inerrancy.  obama believes that he is creating a better country by tearing down the very institutions that have made it great for over 200 years.  He will not be satisfied until he destroys this nation’s economy and the very fabric of society.  Reelect him for 4 more years and we will probably have him for another 10-20.

  • John H

    Silly conservative. You are obviously to dumb to realize the brilliance that is Obama. Once the energy department’s research into capturing the farts of unicorns is complete, there will be millions of jobs in unicorn fart harvesting and all our energy will be supplied forever. Any moment now that research will be completed and then you will see. In fact, the research was probably already completed and they are just waiting to release it during the GOP convention to win the news cycle. The you will see hoe your silly pipe dreams stack up against the brilliant reality which is Obama and the unicorn farts.

  • LiberalNightmare

    When gas hits $5.00 a gallon this summer – thank an environmentalist.

  • Jwb10001

    Obama said himself that under his plan energy costs would necessarily skyrocket……  it’s a promise he’s decided to keep.

  • I thought that this post’s title referred to Obama’s election in 2008.

  • I wish I could say I was surprised at this, but I’m not.  Why would Obama pass something that (a) wouldn’t directly help his cronies while (b) it would piss off the “America Last” environmentalists?

  • The sickest and most perverted part is, even Canada knows that the pipeline will be approved in the next term no matter who wins, but they can’t act like they know, so they have to negotiate with China to sell the oil.  China is ROFL – they know they won’t actually get any oil directly from Canada from the talks, but enjoy the show.

    • Commander_Chico

      This is political theater.  It will not be approved next term – it will be approved in a couple months, timed for maximum political benefit.  As usual, Obama wants to have it both ways.  He will say that the deadline prevented careful consideration, then say “after careful consideration” it’s approved – after the deadline.

      That way Obama gets to half-ass it with all – his preferred MO.

      • Jay

        Also, Boehner owns stock in all of the industries that want the pipeline.  But that probably won’t come to light here.  Obama is a conservative and his next term is going to be worse.

        • Commander_Chico

          “Conservative” and “liberal” are meaningless terms.  The only winning ideology is that of power.  Both Obama and his Republican opponents are committed to the power of the few over the many.

        • herddog505

          Are you implying that the ONLY reason ANYBODY wants to build this thing – and the ONLY reason that Barry is against it – is because it will line John Boehner’s pocket???

      • jim_m


        Canada is not going to wait for obama to get his head out of his ass.  He is arrogant enough to think that everyone is stumbling over themselves to do business with him, but he is the only one who thinks that way.  The Canadians will sign up with China and our closest ally and largest trading partner will develope a closer relationship to what is probably our most dangerous enemy thanks to obama. 

        We are very unlikely to get a second chance to get this oil.  obama is losing an opportunity that will likely not come again for at least another generation.  I know that he expects to still be President at that time but the rest of us have other hopes.

        • Commander_Chico

          We shall see.  Mr. Genius, FYI, there are no long-term supply contracts in the oil trade.

          Also FYI, they are not going to build a pipeline to China. If Keystone is not built, it will be piped to the Pacific Coast, where it can be shipped by supertanker to China, Japan, and yes, the Continental USA, just as Alaskan oil is now.

          Oil is a fungible good traded on world markets. I don’t think Keystone matters much as a matter of oil markets. As an industrial project providing jobs, maybe.

          But do I get to tell you “Chico told you so” if it’s approved in June or July?

          • jim_m

            Yes, there are no long term supply contracts but the incentive to construct a pipeline to the US goes away once you’ve built one to your western coast so you can sell it to the Chinese and load it into Chinese tankers off of BC.

            The point of Keystone is that it eliminates the necessity of the shipping and greatly reduces transportation costs. Or are you saying that obama is ok with Canadian oil as long as it is at a high enough price not to offend the oil ticks?

  • MichaelLaprarie

    I can’t think of a better example of Obama’s utter cluelessness about how to lead, and how to inspire a nation.  This episode should also serve as a “final answer” to Rachel Maddow’s silly rhetorical question from a year or so ago – could we build the Hoover Dam today?  The answer is obviously “no.”

  • 914

    When Barry E Neuman talks, the unemployment line increases exponentially..

  • GarandFan

    Too bad none of Barry’s campaign bundlers have stock in Keystone.  It would have sped up the approval process substantially.  Maybe Keystone should drop by the Oval Office with a stuffed envelope.

  • Olsoljer

    This is good.  It will probably lose him a sh*tload of democrat and individual union votes, as well as exposed him for the contemptible liar he really is.

    • Hank_M

      I have a feeling that some behind the scenes deal was made or will be made with the unions to secure their votes. They are, after all, easily bought.

      As for exposing Obama as a liar, that will be up to the repub nominee.

  • ackwired

    Pandering to his base.