The controversy about the Keystone XL pipeline intrigues me for many reasons. It seems to so clearly depict the many intellectual failings of the left. No matter how badly people need jobs and no matter how badly we need to import less oil from our enemies, nothing seems to be worthy of being done to address these serious problems. The Keystone XL pipeline controversy seems to epitomize the President’s antipathy to energy production and private investment. Neither sky-high gas prices nor the prospect of thousands of new jobs can dissuade him from his greentopia fantasy.
It seems typical of the left that the perfect must by the enemy of the good. No pipeline can be 100% safe (nothing can), but in the left’s desire for some perfectionist utopia, worthwhile projects need to be sacrificed regardless of how much they would benefit real people who don’t share their utopian fantasies. Here’s a suggestion. People who don’t want to use the oil from the Keystone XL pipeline can drive a Nissan Leaf and leave the rest of us alone.
Not building the pipeline has consequences, like an alternative pipeline being built westward in Canada so the oil can be shipped to China. Could that pipeline ever leak or could a tanker on the west coast ever spill oil? Apparently those risks don’t matter, never mind the national security implications of China securing a source of Canadian oil and the US snubbing a good neighbor and ally (which seems to be Obama’s diplomatic forte). This is the trifecta of Obama’s policy objectives. He opposes private job creation, he opposes oil and gas production and he snubs a good ally. What more could he want?
From what you might hear on the nightly news you would think that the pipeline was the worst thing ever. Think Love Canal or Three Mile Island. But then you don’t believe the nightly news, do you? Look at the map below (from the website themoreyoudig.com). What you will notice is the abundance of pipelines already crossing the Ogallala aquifer, 20,000 miles worth, actually.
The Keystone XL pipeline will run from Canada all the way to North Texas. The pink area on the map shows the Ogallala aquifer with over 20,000 miles of other pipelines crossing over it.
Maybe we need to inject some common sense.
I’ll go out on a limb and hazard a guess. I am willing to speculate that a brand new pipeline built with modern technology is a lot safer and better for the environment than many of the existing pipelines already out there. Doesn’t the tradeoff between risk and reward favor building new infrastructure? Obama’s so-called “stimulus” package was supposed to promote infrastructure development wasn’t it? (Actually, the answer is no, it was a bailout for his leftwing unionized constituencies) This pipeline can be built with private money, will create jobs and will be a tax paying operation. To most of us in the real world these are good things; to President Obama, not so much.
Gas prices are pushing $4/gallon in Northern Virginia and are already higher than that in other parts of the country. Doesn’t anyone in the Obama administration realize that new sources of oil and gas need to be brought online so that there is supply to meet future demand?
Maybe I am the one who is being utopian.