February 8, 2012

NYT’s Nocera: Obama Rejected Keystone Pipeline ‘Because He Had to Politically’

On Monday (appearing in the print edition on Tuesday, New York Times op-ed columnist Joe Nocera gave President Barack Obama a pass for rejecting the Keystone Pipeline. In the process, he also complained about “the way our poisoned politics damages the country,” and, in a revelation which shouldn’t but did surprise him, learned that far-left environmentalists want to stop all tar sands development and not just the pipeline. Imagine that.

Here are several paragraphs from Nocera’s column (my comments are in italics):

… I realize that President Obama rejected Keystone because, politically, he had no choice. My guess is that, in his centrist heart of hearts, the president wanted to approve it. But to give the go-ahead before the election was to risk losing the support of the environmentalists who make up an important part of his base. (And where were they going to go? — Ed.)

I also understand that the Republican decision to force Obama’s hand was a political stunt, allowing them to denounce his decision during the campaign. As Jennifer Steinhauer put it in The Times recently, “Republicans are framing Keystone as an urgent jobs and energy project at a time of high unemployment and creeping gasoline prices.” (Uh, because it is “an urgent jobs and energy project at a time of high unemployment and creeping gasoline prices” — Ed.)

… Surely, though, what the Keystone decision really represents is the way our poisoned politics damages the country. Environmental concerns notwithstanding, America will be using oil — and lots of it — for the foreseeable future. It is the fundamental means by which we transport ourselves, whether by air, car or truck. Where do we get that oil? Mostly from countries that don’t like us, like Venezuela, which has the world’s second-largest oil reserves. (But the President doesn’t seem too concerned about that. — Ed.)

… As it turns out, the environmental movement doesn’t just want to shut down Keystone. Its real goal, as I discovered when I spoke recently to Michael Brune, the executive director of the Sierra Club, is much bigger. “The effort to stop Keystone is part of a broader effort to stop the expansion of the tar sands,” Brune said. “It is based on choking off the ability to find markets for tar sands oil.” (Where have you been, pal? — Ed.)

This is a ludicrous goal. If it were to succeed, it would be deeply damaging to the national interest of both Canada and the United States. But it has no chance of succeeding. (As long as Obama is in the White House, you can’t rule it out — Ed.)

Nocera wraps by writing that “at least one country in North America understands where its national interests lie. Too bad it’s not us.” Oh, we know where our interests lie, Joe. President Obama either doesn’t know, doesn’t care, or is hostile to our interests. Which do you think it is, pal?

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

Latest PJ Media Column (‘One Decent Jobs Report Doesn’t ‘Fix’ Things’) Is Up

It’s here.

It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Friday (link won’t work until then) after the blackout expires).

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Left on the cutting room floor: The Establishment Household Survey tells us that the increase in seasonally adjusted full-time employment slowed down last month, increasing by only 70,000 compared to the 700,000-person increase in part-timers (which probably should be spread over the previous 12 months).

More pertinent is the track record of the economy in generating/destroying part-time and full-time jobs since the POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy began:

FTandPTemployment0508to0112

No matter how you look at this chart, Obama, if true to his word that “if I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition,” would not be running for reelection.

Scoreboard: Santorum Has the Most Wins (Update: And Almost Doubled Romney’s Number of Votes Last Night)

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:31 am

Looking at all GOP primary results thus far (ignoring performances of candidates who have dropped out):

GOPprimariesThru020712

Don’t bring that “Missouri doesn’t count” garbage in here.

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UPDATE: Focusing on the percentages of the vote won in each state having a primary or caucus thus far (with free bonus columns excluding Nevada, just because I feel like it, and showing last night’s average), it’s clear that the credibility of any claims to “inevitability,” which were bogus anyway, have utterly vanished:

GOPprimaryPercents020712.png

Yes, I know Romney has the most votes thus far, but in a combination of large and small states with primaries and caucuses, that’s not as important as considering the individual performances (weighting for population would be nice, but not for now). And Romniacs who want to play the number-of-votes game should know that Rick Santorum whipped up on their guy by about 187,000 to 95,000 last night, just inches short of doubling up on him.

UPDATE 2: Erick Ericksen (bolds are mine) —

Mitt Romney had a horrible, horrible night. Early yesterday, Mitt Romney’s campaign called Missouri a “beauty contest” and said to focus on Colorado. We did. Wow.

I’ve said since Sunday that yesterday would be the first day of voting that Mitt Romney’s “poor” comment to Soledad O’Brien would have an impact. It typically takes a week for comments like that to be digested by voters. Six days after Romney opened his mouth, Rick Santorum swept the night.

From Missouri to Minnesota to Colorado the Republican electorate sent a very clear signal — they want conviction over electability. They do not like Mitt Romney. They see Santorum as authentic. They see Mitt Romney as a fraud. Rick Santorum swept the races. Romney, the front runner, got crushed by conservatives.

The pattern has held up from Iowa to South Carolina to Florida to Nevada to last night. In every county that saw increased turn out, Not Romney won. In counties with decreased turnout, Romney won most often, but not always.

The real winner last night is CPAC – the conservative political action conference. At the end of this week, Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich will, in that order, address the crowd. Conservatives in the heartland last night rejected Mitt Romney as inauthentic. CPAC will be a must win speech for Romney.

I don’t see why CPAC is that important, because Objectively Unfit Mitt Romney can’t possibly seen as authentic by any reasonable observer.

Wednesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (020812)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 8:05 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.

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Positivity: Peruvian bishop says Church will always reject abortion

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 7:45 am

From Lima, Peru:

Feb 7, 2012 / 06:04 pm

The president of the Peruvian bishops’ conference says the Church will always defend life and reject abortion even if this stance conflicts with society.

In remarks to CNA on Feb. 6, Archbishop Salvador Pineiro Garcia Calderon stressed the importance of “proclaiming life from its beginning to its end” and said that fidelity, fertility and the education of children in love seem like concepts from the past.

He said the Church would always resist abortion in all its forms, including abortion for alleged health reasons, “no matter how much they to try to justify it by saying the baby is sick or deformed.”

Local groups as well as some government officials have been stepping up efforts over recent months to pressure the country to legalize what’s being called “therapeutic” abortion.

“I know I am going against the flow and it would easier for me to teach the contrary, but I would only receive cheap applause in return and I would not be a follower of Jesus,” the archbishop said.

“To snuff out life is the saddest of sins. It harms the soul because it means taking the life of an innocent being.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.