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Proving That 'Activism Works,' Obama Vetoes Keystone XL


Proving That 'Activism Works,' Obama Vetoes Keystone XL

Lauren McCauley, staff writer

After years of fierce environmental campaigning against the well-monied fossil fuel industry, President Barack Obama on Tuesday vetoed a Congressional bill approving the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.


Just more Kabuki theater from ObamaCon, Wizard of Guile. This pipeline will be approved in the end, either by him or by his predecessor. He knows that and so do we. There are already sections of it under construction.

Invest in shale oil. It’s the only future our misbegotten species has. Look around. Everything you see, hear, taste, touch or feel is based on the petroleum paradigm. Until there is not a drop left or a clean lung full of air to breath, we will continue to exploit fossil fuel. At this point, the alternative is a complete collapse of our despicable “civilization.”


“Mobilizing to get the government to respond to the will of the people and do something about the corporate decimation of the world is based on the idea that the government and the corporations are separate entities, that corporations only influence those in government. Please consider for a moment how this strategy works (and if it works) if they are NOT two separate entities. If the government is filled with people from these industries then they are not in fact influenced, and likewise will not be swayed by demands from the people. They are acting in their own interest and that action includes first and foremost silencing the voices of those who would expose them. If there is any capitulation on their part, is it only to appease and pacify the people – to allow them a sense of victory specifically to lessen their resolve? For example, if the Keystone XL Pipeline is stopped will it be a victory? I imagine it will be celebrated as such, but will this victory serve to roll back the climate crisis or just keep from making it that much worse? No steps forward is three steps back… Manufactured crisis is seductive strategy – desperately chasing every new threat can distract from the larger issue. I have heard this issue roundly referred to as Capitalism – I’m just going to call it profit.”


Let us see…
Foreign oil producers extracting the world’s dirtiest oil.
Building a pipeline with foreign made steel.
Foreign companies taking Tribal lands and American family farms by Eminent Domain
Shipping the oil across the US so that it can then be exported.
One more nail for the Environment Apocalypse.
No economic justification based on the price of oil.
Massive subsidy required in the form of a liability release, just like was done for nuclear plants.
Thirty-Five NEW JOBS!
The US gets to keep all of the spilled oil in its waterways.

Obama will certainly reverse his decision once he realizes these facts.


Another grandiose but meaningless headline by CD.



Yes, Obama did this to pacify the people, and most important to Obama, to get people to think the Dems are better than the Repubs—which they are not. The two corporate parties march to the command of wealthy psychopaths.

“Our” government is not ours. Our "Representatives’ do not represent us. They vote as directed by the above mentioned wealthy psychopaths. We need to add to our Constitution a definition of the meaning of the word representative. In 1776 it was understood to mean that the person sent to Congress to vote in the name of the people of the district had to vote as directed by the living breathing people who were registered to vote in that district. This,sadly, is no longer the case. Those in Congress today do not heed the voice of the people. We need a clean sweep of Congress to get rid of all of them and start over with people with morals and ethics. These new Representatives will vote as directed by their constituents. That would be DIRECT DEMOCRACY and it is badly needed in our nation in order to create a government that is in fact, of the people, by the people and for the people.


Evolution includes knowledge. Extracting the remaining fossil fuels is the foolhardy option. The time is overdue to embrace renewable energies along with reducing demand for materials, motors and mobility. Solutions are a difficult and complex process, damage control will take decades, but ladder parts are readily available and it is time to build and step up.


All of the cynical and skeptical comments above (and surely to follow) duly noted. A bit of not-so-bad news in an endless stream of dysfunction and decay is welcome. And no, it isn’t over.


One cannot know the mindset or motivation; one can only see the action. But there is history and there is context. I interpret this veto not as a finality and not as a step on a path that leads to the hoped-for rejection that those who take joy in the veto see or expect or wish. This appears to me to be a two-pronged political move. On the one jhand, the president opposes publicly and ridicules and demonizes Republicans in Congress. On the other hand he increases the admiration of persons who are sold on his inherent good intentions, and he elevates further their opinion of Democrats. There yet remains the only decision that matters, approval or rejection of the actual project, and there has been plenty of time and an abundance of evidence to say NO if that had ever been his conclusion. The well-intentioned liberal is played like a fish on the line and murmurs all the way to the net how pleasant and nourishing he finds the bait.


The Utter Folly of the Keystone XL Pipeline Project and Tar Sand Petroleum Production
By John M. Bachar, Jr.
Emeritus Professor of Mathematics
California State University Long Beach
The Congress, the Media, and an overwhelming majority of the US population are abysmally ignorant of Facts 1 and 2 just below (estimate: 99% do not know them).
If these two Facts were known by these bodies, it would easily lead to killing the Keystone project forever.
Fact 1. The Energy Information Agency (EIA) published a table that shows the U.S. daily petroleum consumption (in millions of barrels of petroleum per day – MBD) by sectors from 1950-2013. The three sectors covered are: Residential/Industrial, Electric and Transportation.
In 2013, the Transportation sector consumed 13.2 MBD (= 4,818 million barrels per year), and all three sectors consumed 18.9 MBD.(= 6,898.5 million barrels per year).
If the Keystone XL Pipeline is built and 830,000 barrels of Tar Sands crude (the dirtiest oil on Earth) flows daily from Alberta to the Texas refineries on the Gulf Coast, it will take 15.9 YEARS to accumulate enough fuel to fulfill the US Transportation sector needs for JUST ONE DAY!. To meet the ONE DAY needs of all three US Sectors it will take 22.8 YEARS!
Fact 2. In 2013, there were over 253 million vehicles on US roads, and they consumed 134 billion gallons of gasoline and diesel. Thus, the average annual consumption per vehicle was 530 gallons.
When a 42 gallon barrel of crude is refined, 19 gallons of fuel is produced. Thus, if the Keystone XL pipeline is ever completed, then the 830,000 barrels daily would produce 365 x 19/42 x 830,000 = 137.049 million gallons of fuel per year. This is only 1.02% of the annual requirement of 134 BILLION gallons that is needed! Thus, the Keystone supply would only meet the annual needs of ONE VEHICLE OUT OF EVERY THOUSAND VEHICLES!


Over a period of over six years, a vast number of scientifically based articles have been written by experts about Tar Sand Oil and its production, the effect on all of society, the horrendous record of the rapacious destruction and toxic poisoning of gigantic regions of pristine wilderness and land (by 2030, the area of the disemboweled Boreal forests will equal the area of Florida and exceed the area of England as well as the Amazon Basin), the huge infestation of pollutants into the atmosphere, the massively damaging effects on the environment and climate change, and the deleterious health effects on human, animal and biological life.

All of this dictates that the project should be squelched immediately. The project is utter folly. If passed, the engorged, rapacious Big Oil vultures will accelerate the disembowelment of our pristine environment. Allowing Keystone to be completed is akin to aiding and abetting vicious criminals.
For much, much more, see absentlinks.com


I’m happy with this tidbit of news, though I don’t trust the corporate owned politicians to follow through and do the right thing.

What America needs now are water pipelines crossing the nation to help deal with flooding and serious drought now plaguing us because of global warming induced climate change. That would also create lots of “jobs” and give future generations a bit more hope.


If shale oil is the only thing propping this so-called civilization up, then I would far rather see it come crashing down into a thousand pieces than create one more “sacrifice zone” in this nation or on the planet!


More treachery by political fraud Obama. Sound and fury while he readies his pen for fast track approval of TPP. The ultimate triumph of fascist hegemony and the end of individual and personal rights. As I watch the Wisconsin dairy farmers struggle against Satan Walker and the Kochtopus pipeline of death. Nebraska is fighting the same battle as NY will soon.


Meanwhile, your fishing lure appears to be one that’s stuck upon the duopoly issue and the sportscaster mindset: which is worse, the Dems or the Repugs? style. Keeping consciousness glued on the illusory “race” is just another play that keeps “fish on the line.”


Back to basics: Oil. Obnoxious rush hour traffic. Global economy. World-wide wage-slavery. Violent reprobates committing merciless atrocities. Entertainment. Luxury travel. Homeless neighbor kids going crazy.
I dread only the return of the Bush dynasty, Jebbie, sure to leave worse conditions behind,
rolling his eyes as if he didn’t plan it.

Oil. Energy. Transport. Get Walker for cancelling the Talgo project.
Finest passenger trains in the world. Made in USA during/after WWII.
Would’ve ‘halved’ the cost of California HSR.

Keystone XL Pipeline KILLER argument in opposition:
== Pipe to Dakota Bakkan fields ==

Reduces demand for off-shore drilling in Gulf.
Reduces hazards of rail transport and terminal operations.
Safety upgrades to existing petro facilities.
Fuels find more domestic uses.
Questions Keystone XL Pipeline investment priority.
Who makes money off that dumbass Keystone Pipeline?
Warren Buffett, hiding mis-management of BNSF,
paying public broadcast institutions to advertize how BNSF
isn’t seemingly mismanaged or does care when oil train explosions make the news.


Ok, I HAD to reply to this since it’s the top comment. This is probably the most pessimistic, glass half empty kind of way to look at the whole relationship between people and oil. I don’t disagree with you that at present, we are very dependent on oil. However, I have seen enough statistics to know that green energy is one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy right now. If everyone in history had looked at problems like slavery and women’s right to vote the way that you are looking at this one, we would be in WAY worse shape than we are now.

In regards to the Keystone XL pipeline, don’t think it’s the first major industrial project to get started and never finished either because of legislation or because there was no guarantee of financial return. President Obama is sending a message to the people that if they act, he will listen. And if he listens, then there is a chance that his SUCCESSOR will also listen. We do not know who that will be yet so it’s too early to even speculate as to what side of the climate change issue they will be on.

Try not to see only the dark side of things. There are many people working very hard to do the right thing and solve the problems we are facing today. I have faith in my fellow man that one day we will make a better world. We are still a very young species and we have a long way to evolve.


“Obama has said he will not approve a project that significantly increases U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide.”

Bingo - the pipeline will not increase US emissions of CO2 -


while im glad for the victory over the miscreants such as the koch brothers and t.bone etc. it still puzzles me why the president for ‘change in america’ took six years to come alive. i gave him four years to play his politics (to get reelected) but squarely two years were wasted. he will never be forgiven for his drone activity both home and abroad. and the killing of u.s. citizens (awlaki and son) who should never have been forced into exile from the u.s. (thanks F.B.I. and read ‘dirty wars’-jeremy schahill) it will expose obama on steroids compared to bush. activism works?? that question needs to be taken up on many more issues not just an obvious and more than ridiculous pipeline. blame it on canada for enticing the greed of the ignorant. (just a joke)


i don’t think you meant to write “predecessor”. Bush came before Obama and isn’t quite dead yet. Billery will probably be Obama’s successor and I shudder to think of it (good chance for WWIII with the looney, money grubbing, self-centered lady). Obama has to deal with a Repub House and Senate that are probably not too keen on nixing the pipelines from hell. I too think this is show on the part of the war president. He knows it will eventually pass without his help. Otherwise Mr. jangels, I’m as pessimistic as you are regarding the consequences of the human destruction of our wretched little planet, pacing around an inconsequential sun in our inconsequential solar system.


Activism coupled with massive sustained uprising will get answers. The rich are afraid of the people power however they will show strong opposition to it by employing overwhelming police power but if people don’t back down and keep coming back they will change their ways quickly.