Of course it should be built, but I disagree with Republicans who think the politics of this are bad for the President--e.g., our friends at Powerline. Obama's premise is that he has either lost the economy/jobs issue, or it can be at least neutralized by improving unemployment numbers. In any case, he absolutely must have the enviros with him. Once again Obama shows he is much more clever at politics than his decent but often impulsive opponents.
Update: Joel Kotkin's two economies (regulatory NIMBY and dirty manufacturing) analysis supports my point.
I think there is a third economy not mentioned by Joel Kotkin.
[Nimby vs. Labor (It's freakin' WWII)] vs. the Cynics.
I would like the count myself among the cynics.
Hinderaker makes an outrageous claim about 500k jobs!
If I were to make my own outrageous claim I would say that once completed the pipeline would only require 100 jobs for maintenance, and via some efficiency gains would actually probably result in a net loss of jobs, on the macro level. Ironically just to flip tables on the narrative, I would think the pipeline might be environmentally sound, as the jobs lost would be in alternative forms of fossil fuel consumption (transportation). If we quit shipping oil by truck, and instead used mules, we would probably net 500k jobs.
I like my own outrageous claim, and hardly consider it less scientific.
Also technically and this is one reason why Obama does poorly among the progressives... If you translate the criticism of Bush...(he placed ideology ahead of science), In practice that means defering to the judgement of the "technocrats/experts".
Here the "technocrats" at the secretary of state issued a report (that they claimed was rushed, recommending the pipeline be delayed). Obama (who seems to view the executive position as that of a judge) rarely employs ideology to second guess facts and details compiled by administrative agencies.
The agency said it should be delayed, and unless you want to second guess the process(which Obama does in part by saying that it wasn't on the merits), it should be delayed.
This view of governance is probably why "progressives" of a certain stripe never seem to get what they want on the military front. None of the experts in that field are really progressive.
Still these probably enjoy being taken seriously, and are glad they don't have to fabricate "powerlinish" projections to serve ideology that end up haunting them (see Mitch Daniels on Iraq).
It turns out when you listen to your experts you can even kill Osama. This isn't leg work that Obama did, but then again both in terms of blame and praise, very little is.
The blame and praise economy is "Nimby v. Labor"(in the context of the pipeline. Inflated claims on both sides that don't quite live up to scrutiny.) The jobs claims are completly bogus. The claim with the most merit is building a pipeline to relieve a bottleneck at Cushing, something that Obama addresses in his concuring opinion affirming the judgement of the State Department.
"In the months ahead, we will continue to look for new ways to partner with the oil and gas industry to increase our energy security –including the potential development of an oil pipeline from Cushing, Oklahoma to the Gulf of Mexico – even as we set higher efficiency standards for cars and trucks and invest in alternatives like biofuels and natural gas. And we will do so in a way that benefits American workers and businesses without risking the health and safety of the American people and the environment."
Obama's premise is actually that he has lived up to his promise to put "science" ahead of ideology. In a majority of cases he is going to rubber stamp what the agencies recommend.
If the state department had came out a different way on the issue (which he seems to indicate would have been possible if given more time) see, "arbitrary nature of deadline" language, it is possible he would have came out for the pipeline.
If he had came out for the pipeline(which would have also helped the bottleneck at Cushing problem) then the language of his statement would only have been modified slightly.
Obama is clever at politics? Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.
He stops the Keystone Pipeline, which in fact will cause more greenhouse gases due to shipping the oil to China now, and then leaves the next day for Disney World.
Come one get real Ken Thomas. The guy is clever at nothing.
Best quote of the day: Gingrich may be a into open marriages and a switch hitter, but a least he is screwing a woman and not America.
I like this quote: Mitt Romney is the only Mormon in the race, but Newt Gingrich is the only polygamist.
Yep Gingrich maybe a polygamist - he and Bill Clinton have lot in common, but the one thing that separates Gringrich and Clinton is the rapist title - Clinton gets that one hands down.
Ken Thomas says that the current president "must have the enviros with him" in the next election.
Honestly, if the current president had approved the pipeline, does anyone think there would be the slightest possiblity of the enviros sitting out the election? Or that his take of campaign cash would be significantly reduced?
The current president (may his name be blotted out and forgotten, though it probably won't) did not need to do this for political reasons. In fact, he might have picked up some swing votes if he had approved it. He did it because he and his advisors share the ideology of the lunatic wing of the environmental movement. Just as they share the ideology of just about every other leftwing "activist" group within the Democratic coalition.
That is what's really scary about the man, his administration and the Democratic party as presently constituted.
Which more deserves the Brasidas award--Obama or Gingrich?