The XL Keystone Pipeline: One Shitty Idea

The Keystone PipelineThe keystone pipeline will be used to transport tar sands form Canada, down throughout the middle of the USA to the Gulf of Mexico.  The main defenses proponents of the keystone pipeline use are that it will provide energy independence and boost the economy with job growth.   The high end estimation of jobs created is 20,000, the more conservative number 5,000 – 6,000, and this only for a two year period.  Maintenance will be required at times, but this is not something that will electrify the economy in any way shape or form weighed against the negative implications we’ll explore.

The Keystone Pipeline:  The Wealthiest Corporations Will Get Richer And The Rest Of Us Will Get More Pollution

Many naturally assume that these companies will turn out record profits, and in doing so create new jobs and pay more taxes to help solve our deficit problems.  But how much tax revenue can we expect to fill our government’s coffers from this pipeline?  And following that, where will this tax revenue be distributed?  Judging by the current state our corporate sponsored government, I would say tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, and perhaps some hand outs to the largest corporations.

Record Breaking Profits In The Oil Industry Does Not Create Jobs, Just Bigger Bonuses

What will these job creators  do with with all this extra wealth?  To put it plainly, it’s easier to earn a fortunate through investing and paying a mere 20% on capital gains than to build new infrastructure and hire more employees.  There fact that a corporation gets more profit, or subsidies, does not incentive it to build infrastructure and hire Americans.  For that there requires demand, but there’s not enough wealth in the middle and lower classes to create the demand necessary for companies to expand domestically.

It’s Not About Energy Independence For America, Nor About Job Creation

There’s one more barrier, perhaps the most significant, to  this pipeline truly benefiting our economy.  These are multinational corporations, they are not patriotic to the American people’s interests.   They’re concerned with profit margins.  They will do business all over the world, which will not also drastically reduce any revenue the US gets from the fact we’re allowing a massive pipeline to cross through people’s private property throughout the country, but means this will do very little, if anything at all, to move us in a sizable step towards energy independence.  Quite simply, the oil companies will sell their wares abroad to avoid paying taxes to the American Government and to find a cheaper labor force.

Environmental Disasters And Climate Change:  Adding Insult To Injury

The biggest concern I have, beyond the fact it won’t help America’s economy in any appreciable way, is the environment on two fronts.  The first is the immediate concern about the pipeline leaking at any point in its grand adventure through the heartland of the United States.  The second concern is the effect utilizing these tar sands will have on climate change, given the mass amounts of C02 released into the atmosphere, dwarfing any other petroleum found  and refined for energy consumption.

Why Is The Transportation, Refining, And Utilization Of Tar Sands A Particularly Shitty Idea?

Tar sands, or by their technical name, bituminous sands, are a source of petroleum, but they consist of loose sand, pieces of sandstone and naturally occurring sand, clay and water.  The technology they’ll be using to pipe this stuff down from Canada isn’t cutting edge; why waste money on potential liabilities from an environmental disaster, which should one come to pass, will be less expensive to deal with than taking the steps necessary to better ensure the safe passage of the tar sands across that long cross country stretch.  That of course is the amoral logic of most any corporation, and without government regulations to keep their ambitions in check, we should expect nothing else.

Powerful Rhetoric From Obama May Not Equate to Strong  Action:  Thanks To Citizen’s United, The Winds Of Favor Seem Unceasingly In Favor Of Corporations

Oil is big business, they’re among the most profitable of corporations in the world, global reception or not.  They even get billions in tax subsidies from US Government under the farce that it’s an incentive for them to keep doing what’s already making them enormously wealthy.  Obama, as is his form, spoke movingly at the State of the Union Address concerning climate change, but I remain unconvinced.  This is a critical issue, climate change is happening already, and this project alone would hasten the runaway green house gas effect.

Under Obama’s Watch More Oil Has Been Drilled Than on W’s.

It seems Obama is as beholden to the interests of the oil companies as was George W Bush, but even if his intentions are true, the Congress is virtually useless and despicable, and the Senate now impotent due to constant filibustering.   The democrats own the senate, but you need 60 votes to pass a bill in the senate if it’s filibustered, and they don’t have that many democrats.  But you can count on the republicans to work as a well oiled machined to deny bill after bill.

I Would Count It A Near Miracle If Obama, In The End, Does Not Allow For The Construction Of  The Full Keystone Pipeline

The President can give executive orders, but it may well be a politically perceptual price he’s not willing to pay.   Clearly I’m not optimistic on the matter, but I’ll be overjoyed to be wrong.  Once done with this article, check one out at Politifact.  As you’ll see, though Obama has previously impeded the keystone pipeline, parts of it are already underway, and there’s good reason to think he’ll cave to the republicans, as we’ve seen many times in the past.

Here’s a video interview from RT that goes into some depth on specifics I did not cover.  The independent media outlets tend to be less biased by business inerests, and while you can watch CNN, CSPAN, MSNBC, or FOX all you like, their motives will be heavily in favor of corporations, and will parrot misleading statements about job growth and energy independence.

The last video is an interview on the TYT network with activist Bill McKibben.   Hopefully the subject will have interested you enough to take note how it’s discussed in the media, and decide for yourself whether this is the US’s ticket to energy independence and job growth, or an invitation for environmental disasters, on the local and global scale alike.

 

Leave a Reply