Oil and Politics


The Democrat Party, led by Barack Obama, is obstructing the flow of oil

Political pressure is one of the major influences on the price of oil.  Democrats in Congress need to have an endless series of crises to solve.  The United States has plenty of oil, but much of it has been placed off-limits by the Democrats in Congress and (years ago) in the White House.  To allow more drilling here at home would have the effect of lowering gas prices at the pump.  That would make the (Republican) President look like a problem solver, and the Democrats can't afford to have that happen.

Democrats and environmentalists are co-dependent.  Democrats pretend that only they care about environmental issues, and environmentalists help to maintain public pressure by creating an endless series of environmental crises for the government to solve.  Unfortunately, the federal government almost never solves any problem.  Problems keep bureaucrats employed, so real solutions are out of the question.  For example, the Environmental Protection Agency was established by President Nixon at a time when air and water quality in this country was really poor in the big cities.  Now that those problems have been all but eliminated (airborne lead has been reduced by over 99 percent), the EPA is still around, looking for more and more minute problems to solve.  Other agencies are the same way, and now there are hundreds of busy-work bureaucrats.

New subsection:  The use of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for political gain.

Related page:  Lies about energy production.



Union threatens retribution for House Dems opposing Keystone.  A top building trades union is launching a midterm-election assault on House Democrats who oppose construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.  A letter distributed Friday [4/11/2014] by the Laborers' International Union of North America (LIUNA) to the districts of 27 House Democrats calls for union members to make sure their representative "feels the power and the fury of LIUNA this November."  Their crime:  signing a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry last month urging him to reject Keystone, which would carry oil sands from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries.

LNG Exports: 'A Good-Faith Test' for President Obama.  The environmental Left is on the attack, and the target now is not ExxonMobil, or the Kochs, or the Keystone XL pipeline, or fossil fuels, or the efforts of the world's desperately poor to escape grinding poverty, or plastics, or indoor plumbing, or those who fail to worship Gaia, or any of the other usual suspects.  Instead, it is President Obama, urged last month in an open letter by 16 environmental groups to prevent the exportation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and to make a commitment to keep "most of our nation's fossil fuel reserves in the ground, in line with the recommendations of most of the world's leading climate scientists."

When will Obama make the call on Keystone XL pipeline?  Like a blockbuster movie that never quite arrives, President Obama's decision on the Keystone XL oil pipeline has been "coming soon" for years.  He has been weighing whether the project should be built since he first entered the Oval Office, and rationalizations for further delay are thin on the ground.

Obama's Indefensible Pipeline Punt.  In 2010, the United States imported about 46 percent of its total crude oil consumption (and 49 percent of all petroleum products) and hence Canada supplied about 8 percent of America's crude oil, almost every twelfth barrel.  The existing Keystone pipeline carries crude oil from the Athabasca oil sands in Alberta to Illinois (since June 2010) and to Oklahoma (since February 2011) and its capacity is about 30 percent of Canada's total crude oil exports to the United States (or almost 600,000 barrels a day).  Its extension, Keystone XL, has been under consideration since 2009 and it received the approval of Canada's National Energy Board in March 2010.

Crude (Oil) Politics.  The Obama administration has been punting a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline for five years now, and there's no sign the president's kicking leg is getting tired.  At various junctures in this endless drama, the White House has effectively overruled or ignored its own State Department, which in 2011 concluded that the pipeline extension poses "no significant impacts" on the environment and in 2014 basically shot down all of the supposed drawbacks.  The White House response to this most recent green light was to keep the car in neutral, warning that Keystone XL will go forward only if the president determines "it does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution."

Has Putin Ended the Green Movement in Europe?  Wind farms do not have the capacity of keeping the central heating thermostat at a sensible level, leaving Putin's new Cold War seeming literal as well as metaphorical.  The EU in 2013 prepared an "Association Agreement" with the Ukraine with a view to granting them membership to the EU.  Putin's response to this cozying up was the de facto annexation of the Crimea.  The first energy casualty is the South Stream project, a gas pipe line under construction connecting Russian gas to the EU.

Feds give initial approval for Oregon facility to export natural gas.  Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle for weeks have been pressing the Obama administration to expedite permits for natural gas exports, claiming it would send a powerful message to European allies, and Russia, which last week annexed the Crimean Peninsula.  Even if immediate changes might not do much to help Ukraine and other Eastern European nations in the short term, advocates argue they would send a message that Russia's energy grip on the region will eventually weaken.

Build the Keystone Pipeline, Already!  President Barack Obama frequently says he wants to turn the economy around, put America back to work, produce more energy, improve public safety, and open new markets to goods stamped "Made in the USA."  If he truly believes this, he will end the delays and approve the Keystone XL pipeline.  Of all the opportunities arrayed before him, the 1,179-mile Alberta-to-Texas Keystone XL pipeline (KXL) is the most "shovel-ready."  In fact, it awaits only a presidential phone call or signature to slash bureaucratic red tape, streamline the permitting process, and create construction and manufacturing jobs.  Some 40,000 jobs, in fact — more than half as many as were created nationwide last December.

The Democratic Civil War Over Energy.  A split is growing in the Democratic Party, one that ought to rival the divisions on the right that the headlines trumpet.  Greens are increasingly bitter about President Obama — annoyed that he's dropped climate legislation, scaled back green subsidies, ignored fracking.  They've channeled their frustration into the fight against Keystone, warning that they'll turn their significant money and resources against Mr. Obama's party if the president approves more "dirty oil."  Since this president cares about nothing so much as winning elections, he's sat on the pipeline for five years.

Environmental groups tell Obama natural gas exports undermine climate goals.  Environmental groups fired a shot Tuesday [3/18/2014] in the growing discussion about natural gas exports as they urged President Obama to block new export terminals on climate change grounds.  The flashpoint is a $3.8 billion Dominion Resources-proposed export facility in Cove Point, Md., on the Chesapeake Bay, which the groups are rallying to prevent as a burgeoning effort to prohibit exports of fossil fuels. [...] Republicans, with some Democrats, are pushing the Obama administration to expedite export approvals as a means to reduce Russia's grip on energy supplies in Central and Eastern Europe, a position it uses to wield political influence.

How the Greens Help Putin in Crimea Incursion.  The Russian economy is highly dependent on oil and gas exports, and reducing Russian oil and gas exports would be the most direct way to cause pain to the Russian leadership.  However, Europe is heavily dependent on Russian gas and oil, particularly gas.  Six European Union countries — Finland, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Bulgaria — are 100 percent dependent on Russian gas.  Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Slovenia and Greece depend on the Russians for more than 50 percent of their gas.  The countries in the EU did not need to be in this position, because the EU has plenty of gas reserves that could be economically tapped using hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.  Because of the environmental lobby, though, the EU has allowed itself to become dependent on foreign energy sources — particularly Russian.

Unleash American Energy.  House Republicans have a worthy suggestion to protect Ukraine and increase the West's leverage there:  Deregulate American energy production and encourage oil and gas exports.  The Department of Energy has been reluctant and slow to approve permits for shipping natural gas overseas, for instance, which the market demands from the U.S. for the first time.  Crude-oil exports remain illegal.  Energy production on federally owned lands has been dropping.

US energy security threatened by prairie chicken and sage grouse.  The Obama administration seems hell-bent on sabotaging domestic energy production, one way or another.  As James Freeman writes in the Wall Street Journal, "Delaying approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, maintaining export limits and discouraging refinery construction haven't stopped a revolution that will soon make the United States the world's largest producer of crude oil."  But the administration, goaded by radical environmentalists, has a new weapon to curtail production: more endangered species. Washington may add a record 757 new species to the endangered list by 2018.

Dems grapple with dilemma on Keystone XL pipeline.  Wealthy party donors are funding candidates who oppose the project — a high-profile symbol of the political debate over climate change.  But some of the party's most vulnerable incumbents are pipeline boosters, [...]

Rand Paul: U.S. Anti-Energy Policies Empower Russian Aggression.  The Obama administration's anti-energy policies empower Russia aggression and take away America's ability to respond, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) explained in a Time magazine editorial.  Paul said America has all the means to deter and punish Russian military aggression without the use of American military force but the Obama administration has taken important economic weapons off the table with its anti-energy policies.

Unions: Keystone review 'reeks of politics'.  Union leaders joined with the nation's largest oil and gas lobby on Tuesday to demand that President Obama approve the Keystone XL pipeline.  Building trades union leaders have long backed the pipeline, arguing it would create thousands of construction jobs and boost the economy.  But many of them have been muted in their criticism of President Obama, for fear of opening a rift with the White House over the controversial project.  That seemed to change on Tuesday [3/11/2014], as the presidents of building trade unions linked the delay of Keystone to broader anger at the administration within the labor movement.

Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia.  The expansion in volumes of oil and gas produced by hydraulic fracturing is taking experts and politicians by surprise, with profound consequences for US geopolitics, and even Europe's reliance on Russian gas.

Job Destroyer.  Does the president have a clue about what creates jobs and what kills jobs?  Based on the evidence from his five years as president, the answer is no, he doesn't. [...] His environmental policies are relentless job killers.  The crackdown on the coal industry has come at the cost of tens of thousands of jobs.  Approval of the Keystone pipeline would lead to thousands of new jobs, but Obama has balked.  So too would the opening of federal lands to natural gas production, just as it has on private lands.

The Editor says...
The writer of the article immediately above seems to presume that Mr. Obama's destruction of the economy is merely the result of his hapless incompetence — ignoring the very real possibility that Obama's actions and their results are intentional and malicious.  Mr. Obama probably knows very well "what creates jobs and what kills jobs," and is doing the opposite, because his goal is to increase and perpetuate dependence on Big Brother.

Poll: 65 percent support Keystone construction.  Sixty-five percent of people support the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline between the United States and Canada, a new poll finds.  A Washington Post-ABC News poll released Friday [3/7/2014] shows only 22 percent are opposed to the project.  The poll shows there has been little movement in support or opposition to the pipeline in the last year.  A Pew poll last April found 66 percent backed construction.

New Post-ABC News poll: Keystone XL project overwhelmingly favored by Americans.  Americans support the idea of constructing the Keystone XL oil pipeline between Canada and the United States by a nearly 3 to 1 margin, with 65 percent saying it should be approved and 22 percent opposed, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.  The findings also show that the public thinks the massive project, which aims to ship 830,000 barrels of oil a day from Alberta and the northern Great Plains to refineries on the Gulf Coast, will produce significant economic benefits.  Eighty-five percent say the pipeline would create a significant number of jobs, with 62 percent saying they "strongly" believed that to be the case.

Pipeline protesters arrested at White House.  They chanted 'climate justice now' and carried signs with slogans such as 'don't tarnish the earth' in an effort to persuade President Barack Obama to reject the pipeline.

The Editor says...
What is "climate justice," and where is the evidence that someone has "tarnish[ed] the earth?"

Keystone XL is Proof Obama Opposes U.S. Economic Growth.  It's taken nearly five years, but Americans are finally aware that President Obama is opposed to anything that contributes to the economic growth of the nation. [...] The most dramatic example is Obama's five-year delay of the implementation of the Keystone XL pipeline that would safely transport oil from Canada to refineries on the Gulf Coast.

Rail cars used to ship oil are 'unacceptable public risk,' NTSB official says.  Rail tank cars being used to ship crude oil from North Dakota's Bakken region are an "unacceptable public risk," and even cars voluntarily upgraded by the industry may not be sufficient, a member of the National Transportation Safety Board said Wednesday [2/26/2014].

Former Obama Scientist Now Favors Approval of Keystone XL Pipeline.  Marcia McNutt, former head of the U.S. Geological Survey under President Barack Obama until 2013 and now top editor at Science magazine, is no longer opposed to the approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline.  "I believe it is time to move forward on the Keystone XL pipeline to transport crude oil from the tar sands deposits of Alberta, Canada, and from the Williston Basin in Montana and North Dakota to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast," McNutt wrote in a Feb. 21 editorial in the magazine.

Boxer warns Keystone will cause cancer.  Sen. Barbara Boxer wants to add a new element to the Keystone XL oil pipeline debate: its effects on health.  The California Democrat claims negative health effects from the proposed pipeline's development were ignored by the State Department's environmental impact review.  "The Environmental Impact Statement was woefully inadequate when it came to exploring human impacts of the pipeline," Boxer said Wednesday [2/26/2014] at a press conference held with Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and anti-Keystone XL activists and environmentalists.

California Democrat Says Keystone Pipeline Would Cause Cancer And Heart Disease.  California Senator Barbara Boxer has come up with yet another reason to kill the Keystone XL Pipeline Project.  According to the senator, the pipeline would lead to increased serious illness in America.  In a Wednesday [2/26/2014] press conference held with with Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), anti-Keystone XL activists and environmentalists, Boxer said the pipeline would add pollutants to the air that would increase the likelihood of people getting cancer or heart disease.

Nebraska law that allowed Keystone XL struck down.  A Nebraska judge Wednesday [2/19/2014] struck down a state law that allowed Gov. Dave Heineman to approve the route of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, a decision that could significantly delay the $5.3 billion project.

Democrats Who Oppose Keystone XL Pipeline Own Shares in Competing Companies.  Democrats who oppose the Keystone XL pipeline have thousands of dollars invested in direct competitors to the company looking to build the pipeline, public records show.  A recent environmental assessment by the State Department was seen as a step toward the pipeline's approval, but Sen. Tim Kaine (D., Va.) remains opposed to its construction.

Environmentalists do billionaires' bidding in fight against Keystone pipeline.  You would think the mere fact that these activists find themselves on the same side of an issue as billionaires might be cause for some soul-searching.  It's as though cognitive dissonance, like critical thought, washes over them then quickly recedes, like it has somewhere better to be.  Activists have as much of a chance at stopping the march towards U.S. energy independence as they have in affecting global climate cycles with a PowerPoint presentation by Al Gore.  The only question worth asking here is, "Cui bono?" Who will ultimately profit?

AFL-CIO: Bring on the natural-gas exports, Keystone XL.  Big Labor's support for the Keystone XL pipeline has been on the books for a long time — theirs is one of the fissures in the progressive coalition that has turned the project into such a giant politicized headache for the White House — but I am a little surprised by the apparent endorsement of natural gas exports.

The Obama impact statement.  [Scroll down]  The truth is, no one needed an environmental-impact statement to know this.  The Canadians are determined to develop this oil; the only question is whether they will transport it down through the United States or ship it to China.  In mid-January, Canada insisted President Obama make a decision, with its foreign minister saying his country "can't continue in this state of limbo."  In short, the only one who needed this report was the president — because it was his excuse for putting off a decision until after the 2012 elections to appease the green wing of his party, which opposes all fossil fuels.  He did so even though Keystone is supported by another important Democratic constituency, the unions, whose members stand to gain jobs.

State Dept.: Not Building Keystone Pipeline Could Increase Greenhouse Gas Emissions.  Not building the 875-mile Keystone XL Pipeline could result in the release of up to 42 percent more greenhouse gases than would be released by building it, according to the State Department.  Not building the pipeline "is unlikely to significantly impact the rate of extraction in the [Canadian] oil sands or the continued demand for heavy crude oil at refineries in the United States," the department noted in a long-awaited environmental report released January 31st.

Keystone report from State Dept. puts common sense back in the pipeline.  Environmentalists have drawn a line in the sand on the Keystone XL pipeline.  It's the wrong line in the wrong sand, far away from any realistic assessment of the merits — as yet another government analysis has confirmed.  It's past time for President Obama to set aside politics and resolve this bizarre distraction of an issue.

The Fact-free Opposition to Keystone XL.  Contrary to opponents of Keystone XL, the pipeline would have virtually no effect on global warming, and the world is not experiencing more frequent and extreme climate-related events.

Obama's basketball strategy on Keystone XL.  Affordable power dissolves liberal fantasies.  White House wise men insist on spending the public's money to promote retro power plants such as windmills, which went out of fashion with the Industrial Revolution.  Eliminating the Keystone XL Pipeline, which would take cheap crude from the oil sands of Canada down to the Gulf Coast of Texas, is nevertheless a liberal priority.

The Big Stall.  The Keystone Pipeline, which has been studied for more than five years, will be studied some more.  A State Department study was generally thought to be the conclusive and it has now been delivered.  But we are told by the White House chief of staff, Denis McDonough, that there is more studying to be done.

Boehner blasts Obama for delays on Keystone.  Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Tuesday criticized President Obama for not approving the Keystone XL pipeline, calling it a simple decision.  Boehner railed about Keystone during a press conference after being asked if the oil-sands pipeline was too "complex an issue to attach" to legislation raising the debt ceiling.  "Complex?  The Keystone pipeline is complex?" Boehner said.  "It's been under study for five years!  "We build pipelines everywhere in American everyday.  Do you realize there are 200,000 miles of pipelines in the United States?

Without Keystone, oil trains may cause 6 deaths per year — US State Dept report.  Replacing the Keystone XL pipeline with oil-laden freight trains from Canada may result in an average of six additional rail-related deaths per year, according to a U.S. State Department report that is adding to pressure for President Barack Obama to approve the line.

White House tempers expectations of Keystone XL boosters.  The White House quickly hemmed the expectations of advocates of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline who cheered a long-awaited State Department environmental review that appeared to inch the project closer to approval.  White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said on a pair of political talk shows that the agency's finding that the Canada-to-Texas pipeline wouldn't greatly affect climate change is just one piece of information for the eventual decision President Obama will make.

Report: Keystone Pipeline Will Not Worsen Climate Change.  The threat of environmental damage was a major hurdle to the pipeline's approval. [...] Anti-pipeline foes are now effectively out of excuses.  The pipeline has shown to be quite popular among Americans of both parties, and the environmental effects have been shown to be a non-issue.  The pipeline is expected to create upwards of 2,000 jobs.

White House says Keystone report not final step as pressure mounts for action.  A new environmental assessment from the State Department that raised no major environmental concerns on long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline isn't the last step in deciding whether the pipeline can be built, the White House said late Friday [1/31/2014].  The long-delayed pipeline got a major boost as it cleared a major hurdle toward approval, a serious blow to environmentalists' hopes that President Obama will block the controversial project running more than 1,000 miles from Canada through the heart of the U.S.

Keystone XL oil pipeline clears significant hurdle.  The long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada moved a significant step toward completion Friday [1/31/2014] as the State Department raised no major environmental objections to its construction.

State Department report finds no major climate impact from Keystone XL pipeline.  The State Department concluded in its final environmental assessment issued Friday [1/31/2014] that the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would be unlikely to alter global greenhouse gas emissions, but officials cautioned that they are still weighing whether the project would meet the test of President Obama's broader climate strategy.

Pipeline boost? Keystone XL report may disappoint project's foes.  The State Department is expected to release an environmental analysis on the Keystone XL oil pipeline on Friday [1/31/2014] that may disappoint environmentalists and opponents of the proposed project, according to individuals briefed on the matter.  Congressional sources, though, made clear that the analysis is not the final word, and the review process could continue to drag on.  Sources familiar with the report said it does not give a "specific recommendation" — and other agencies will still be asked to weigh in.

Fellow Democrats press Obama to approve Keystone, following environmental report.  President Obama is facing increasing pressure from Senate Democrats to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline, following the release Friday of a State Department report that raised no major environmental concerns.  "Today's Environmental Impact Statement confirms what Alaskans already know — there are ways to safely and responsibly diversify our domestic energy supply," said Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska. "Move this project forward."

Obama Running Out of Reasons to Reject Keystone XL.  President Barack Obama is running out of reasons to say no to Keystone XL, the proposed oil pipeline that's long been looming over his environmental legacy.

How one Nebraska farmer killed Keystone.  The case for TransCanada's proposed pipeline from the Alberta oil sands, through America's heartland, to refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas was simple:  the Texas refineries depended on declining supplies of "heavy" crude oil from Mexico and Venezuela.  The landlocked oil sands had growing, cheap supplies of the kind of crude in which the refineries specialized.  All that was lacking was the pipeline to get it there.

Obama's Keystone Dithering.  Nowhere has President Obama's legendary indecision been on more vivid display than in his bizarre dithering over the Keystone XL pipeline, which would move crude oil from the oil sands of Alberta, Canada, to Gulf Coast refineries some 1,700 miles to the south.  The southern leg of the pipeline, from Oklahoma to the Gulf, began operating last week.  But the northern end has been in limbo for five years.  Last March Obama assured Senate Republicans that a decision on Keystone would be made before the end of 2013.  We are still waiting.  One more broken promise.

Greens blast Obama as oil flows through southern Keystone leg.  Oil shipments on Wednesday began to flow through Keystone XL's southern leg.  TransCanada announced the start of oil deliveries to Gulf Coast refineries on Wednesday morning [1/22/2014].  The shipments run from Cushing, Okla. to Nederland, Texas

Bakken Crude More Dangerous to Ship Than Other Oil, U.S. Says.  Crude oil produced in North America's Bakken region may be more flammable and therefore more dangerous to ship by rail than crude from other areas, a U.S. regulator said after studying the question for four months.

Pipeline map
Canada Is Tired Of Obama's Keystone XL Pipeline Delays.  President Obama continues to drag out a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline.  Meanwhile, the Canadians have been standing by while the administration dithers.  Now they're tired of waiting.

Barack Obama's Presidency Is A Complete Failure By His Own, Self-Imposed Standards.  How many times has President Obama told us that he is "fighting for the middle class"? [...] If President Obama is "fighting for the middle class," why doesn't he approve the Keystone Pipeline?  Building and maintaining the pipeline would provide thousands of good paying jobs.  So would refining and selling the oil and gas from the Gulf Coast refineries where the pipeline would deliver the Canadian crude.  Moreover, that plentiful supply of low cost energy from a long time, reliable ally would support hundreds of thousands if not millions of additional good paying jobs in the American economy.

An uncertain year ahead for the Keystone XL pipeline.  There is no scenario in which Canada leaves all that oil in the ground, and no reason the world should want them to.  It's going to move eventually, and it would be best for America if it moved here, through the safe and efficient Keystone pipeline.  Unfortunately, [Russ] Girling is just about the only one who seems confident the pipeline will get across the U.S. border.

Moving Crude by Railcar Stalls on the Track.  Companies that thought they had found a relatively easy way to move crude from the booming oil fields of North Dakota to the West Coast are encountering obstacles.  Half a dozen companies are trying to build rail terminals on the coast of Washington state to receive trainloads of crude from the Bakken field in North Dakota.

Podesta: Climate game changer.  Environmental groups believe John Podesta will be a force for change on climate issues at the White House. [...] Three key areas Podesta and the climate team will work on are Environmental Protection Agency rules on existing power plants, developing a comprehensive methane strategy and developing new fuel economy standards for heavy-duty vehicles.  While Podesta's full portfolio won't be known until he arrives next year, an administration official said he'll probably spend time working with the Department of the Interior on its regulatory policies.  That's likely to include administration decisions about how to lease out federal lands and which energy development and mining projects to permit.

Fracking boom frees the US from old oil alliances.  [Scroll down]  Saudi Arabia has increased production to match, keeping prices stable, but new fields being developed in neighbouring Iraq and the rise in importance of gas have also made its role less vital.  And now all that Iranian oil may sooner rather than later end up back on the market.  Some suggest Saudi Arabia might cut its production, hiking world prices, as a retaliatory action.  But even were it to do so — and it has given no indication of it — it might itself be the worst victim.  Saudi has some slack to reduce its own income from oil and keep its budget in the black, but not so much.

Keystone to the Kingdom.  [John] Podesta is joining the administration for one year as White House counselor specializing in energy policy.  And despite the fact that he has done more than any other unelected official to shape the policies of cap-and-trade and green energy subsidies, and to employ and place the talent that has attempted to implement those policies during the Obama presidency, the White House assures us that he will never, never have any say in whether the Keystone Pipeline, slow-walked by this president for years, is approved or denied.

Obama's appointment of Keystone XL opponent John Podesta to White House could mean pipeline rejection.  President Obama's appointment of Democratic adviser John Podesta, an opponent of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline, to the White House could foretell a rejection of the controversial Canada-to-Texas pipeline, environmental groups said Tuesday [12/10/2013].  Podesta, former President Bill Clinton's chief of staff and the man who headed Obama's transition team, is leaving the top post of the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank, for a new White House role focusing on climate change.

More Pipelines in the Pipeline.  Environmentalists continue to resist pipelines such as the Keystone XL, even though pipelines result in fewer spillage incidents and personal injuries, and in a substantial cost advantage, when compared to road and rail.

The Coming Oil Wars.  Accidental wars only happen in the movies.  What's happening now in the East China Sea is a calculated Chinese provocation that could lead to war. [...] War for oil isn't new.  When Japan attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941, its principal grievance was the American decision to cut off most of its oil supply.

Court declines to block big oil pipeline.  A big pipeline carrying oil from tar sands crosses many states and is opposed by environmental groups that warn of potential dangers.  Sound familiar?  No, not Keystone XL.  It's the Flanagan South Pipeline, proposed to carry oil between Illinois and Oklahoma.  And in a new decision, a federal judge has declined the environmental groups' request to stop the project with a preliminary injunction.

Obama should approve Keystone and encourage more pipelines.  President Obama has delayed approval of TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport Canadian oil to U.S. refiners on the Gulf of Mexico.  Canada is the major trading partner of the United States, and it is beyond surprising that the Keystone XL pipeline has not been approved.  A new report from the Energy Policy Research Foundation by Director of Upstream and Midstream Research Trisha Curtis describes the costs of America's fragmented infrastructure.

Interior chief Sally Jewell says Obama will go around Congress on national monuments.  Department of Interior Secretary Sally Jewell vowed that President Obama would use executive authority to create more national monuments to protect lands if Congress doesn't pass legislation to do so.  "If Congress doesn't step up to act," Jewell said during a speech at the National Press Club in Washington, "then the president will take action." [...] Congress hasn't approved a new national monument or park since 2010, with Republicans charging that the White House is keeping too much federal land off limits to oil and gas development.

Interior Secretary: Obama Will Use Executive Powers to Conserve Lands.  President Barack Obama will use his executive powers to protect more mountains, rivers and forests from development if Congress does not act to preserve such wild spaces, the U.S. Interior Secretary said on Thursday [10/31/2013].

The Editor says...
Mr. Obama couldn't care less about wide open spaces, camping and hiking in the wilderness, or expanding national parks.  His goal is to choke off the supply of domestic oil and cripple the U.S. economy.

Obama orders government to prepare for impact of global warming.  President Obama issued an executive order Friday [11/1/2013] directing a government-wide effort to boost preparation in states and local communities for the impact of global warming.  The action orders federal agencies to work with states to build "resilience" against major storms and other weather extremes.  For example, the president's order directs that infrastructure projects like bridges and flood control take into consideration climate conditions of the future, which might require building structures larger or stronger — and likely at a higher price tag.

The Editor says...
By now it should be obvious:  Obama's goal is to make everything more expensive.  Electricity, gasoline, medical insurance, and, as we see here, everything else.  In order to justify preparations for the "impact of global warming," Mr. Obama would have to prove that there is (or will be) any global warming, and prove that one or two degrees of warming would be hazardous.  Neither he nor anyone else will never accomplish such a goal.  As usual, Mr. Obama is meddling in everybody's business for no reason except to impede capitalism.

Gore: The Keystone XL pipeline is "ridiculous," an "atrocity," a "threat."  Self-titled "environmentalists'" recalcitrance on acknowledging the reality that Canada's oil sands are coming out of the ground — regardless of whether or not the Keystone pipeline's northern extension is built — truly knows no bounds.  It's only too bad they don't seem to realize that terrestrial pipelines are the relatively cleaner, safer, and more environmentally friendly method of transport for oil, natural gas, and petroleum products, and that by blocking the pipeline, they're probably doing more environmental harm than good in the long run.

Failing to Build Keystone Pipeline is Criminal Negligence.  America in 1970 had 315 refineries sprinkled across the nation and the U.S. imported 72 million gallons of crude oil per day, but by 2006 environmental restrictions had shrunk America's number of refineries to 105 and we were importing 587 million gallons per day.  In percentage terms of U.S. supply, imports grew from 20% to 65%.  In 2006, almost a third of U.S. total supply of oil was imported from the unstable Persian Gulf.

Why OPEC No Longer Calls the Shots.  Forty years ago, on Oct. 17, 1973, the world experienced its first "oil shock" as Arab exporters declared an embargo on shipments to Western countries. [...] The Prudhoe Bay oil field was discovered in Alaska five years before the crisis.  Yet opposition by environmentalists had prevented approval for a pipeline to bring the oil down from the North Slope — very much a "prequel" to the current battle over the Keystone XL pipeline.

Using 'Sue and Settle' to Thwart Oil and Gas Drillers.  Last week the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and an environmental advocacy group agreed to a legal settlement that will place nine species — including the Panama City crayfish, moccasinshell mussel and boreal toad — on the fast track for placement on the endangered species list.  It is only the latest of many such listings.  The Center for Biological Diversity has petitioned Fish and Wildlife to designate some 250 species as endangered since 2008.  Many of CBD's petitions — and lawsuits — are still in the pipeline.  About 97% of the species that are designated as endangered never move off the list.

Rich, Arrogant, and Stupid.  [Scroll down]  We have put off-limits huge supplies of oil and natural gas — a trillion barrels by some estimates — everywhere from Alaska to the Gulf of Mexico.  The only development going on is on private lands in states that, unlike California, do not put up punitive regulatory barriers to exploration and exploitation.  Obama has intensified this bizarre behavior.  He has blocked the Keystone pipeline, and his federal Bureau of Land Management has just reduced by two-thirds the 1.3 million acres George Bush set aside for development in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming.

Keystone Kops.  Keystone's five-year review has taken "far longer than any other cross-border pipeline project and more than twice as long as it will take to build the pipeline," Building Trades president Sean McGarvey said.  Lucian Pugliaresi, president of the Energy Policy Research Foundation, declared at the hearing, "It's not something that should have created all this furor."

The Keystone XL Pipeline and the Truth.  The proposed construction of the Keystone XL pipeline has long been polarized on a number of issues.  Hysteria abounds, with junk science everywhere we look — driven in no small measure by the desire to shut down development of northern Alberta's oil sands via constraining Canadian oil export markets, as well as some apparent anti-Americanism.

American energy booming despite Obama's policies.  Oil, natural gas and coal production in this country are at record levels.  But this is despite Obama's policies, not, as he implied, because of them.  Oil, natural gas and coal production are zooming upwards on private land, but plummeting on government lands.

Canadian PM offers Obama possible climate action to secure Keystone deal.  Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has written to President Obama to say that he is prepared to work on a joint plan between the two countries to reduce carbon emissions, in an attempt to secure approval of the Keystone XL pipeline project, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Friday [9/6/2013].

Is Keystone Doomed To Be a Historical Footnote?  As 2013 rolls on from summer into fall there is still no end in sight to one of the great energy impasses of the year — will the Keystone XL pipeline ever be approved, or is it fated to become a historical footnote? [...] Keystone needs approval from the State Department because it crosses the Canadian-U.S. border.  The debate on whether it is a good idea or not has seemingly been endless and a decision may not now be made until 2014.

Calling it Treason.  We could have walked away from the Middle East already and left them to their own savagery, but the president insists that we remain inextricably tied to their historical need to kill each other so that we can overpay for oil, both monetarily and with American lives.  Thus, as technology enables us to break free of dependence upon Middle East oil, our president bends over backwards to ensure that never happens.

Decision on Keystone in danger of being delayed until 2014.  The State Department's decision on the Keystone XL pipeline is in danger of being pushed into 2014.  State's internal watchdog on Friday [8/23/2013] said it won't complete until January a review of allegations that the department hired a contractor with a conflict of interest to review the pipeline project.

IHS: Rejecting Keystone Will Have Little to No Impact on Greenhouse Gas Emissions.  A new study from IHS, a prominent, independent energy research firm, says that a thumbs down from President Barack Obama on the Keystone Pipeline would have minimal to no impact on U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.  It found that "Venezuelan heavy oil — and Venezuela — would be the number one beneficiary of a negative decision on Keystone."  The new findings may figure prominently in the fight over the pipeline, which the administration is expected to render a decision on in September.

Keystone XL project could harm wildlife, Interior Department says.  The letter from the Interior Department grimly catalogs many ways Keystone XL could harm wildlife:  "species displacement, increased predation rates and predator travel lanes, increased nest parasitism, vehicle collisions with wildlife ... invasive plant species, increased wildfire risk, lower wildlife density, increase in collisions with power lines and electrocutions on power poles ... and increase in poaching."

The Editor says...
Count on the LA Times to present slant a story about environmental impact in favor of the anti-energy left.  The new pipeline may cause some temporary local disturbances, but every highway and power line in the country (and most other human activity) probably has similar effects.  The Interior Department's concern about "collisions with power lines" is especially specious, since (1) power lines already exist on or near the pipeline's proposed route, and (2) they don't seem to be concerned about all the animals being killed by windmills.  The government will never be big enough to micro-manage all the plants and animals in the continental U.S., and there is no need to try.  Plants and animals have always adapted to any changes made by man.

Nebraska trial could delay Keystone XL pipeline.  While environmentalists, energy executives and elected officials across North America await the State Department's critical decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, a little-noticed trial scheduled for next month in Nebraska could spell problems for the $5.3 billion project.

Obama's perverse notion of fairness.  In President Obama's world, "fairness" seems to be of overarching concern. [...] He opposes robust exploitation of our conventional energy resources — oil, coal, natural gas — and nukes because these industries symbolize parts of America that he resents.  He would have us believe that he obstructs the domestic production of oil and the Keystone XL pipeline — despite the jobs and economic growth they promise — because of his commitment to the environment.  But according to his own false environmental theology, environmental assaults are a global phenomenon, yet he encourages oil production from other countries, such as Brazil.

Obama push for blue-collar jobs ends with Keystone.  President Obama, who extolled the value of middle-class construction jobs during nearly five years of recession and recovery, has changed his tune to borderline contempt for the blue-collar jobs needed to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline.  In a speech in Chattanooga, Tenn., on Tuesday, Mr. Obama chuckled derisively when he mentioned that Republican lawmakers are promoting the pipeline project for the thousands of jobs it would create over two years.

Barack Obama expresses reservations about Keystone XL pipeline project.  Barack Obama has given the strongest indication to date that he holds reservations about the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, saying the project would not create many jobs and could raise gasoline prices.  In an interview with the New York Times, the president disputed a main justification for the pipeline — its economic benefits — and reaffirmed he would reject the project if it expanded carbon pollution.

Want infrastructure improvement and middle class jobs, Mr. Obama? Approve the Keystone XL pipeline.  One has to be forever bemused by our President of Perpetual Irony.  Recently, in his big economic speech, he stood at the port in Jacksonville, Florida to emphasize infrastructure's role in creating jobs.  He then proceeded to call out House Republicans as obstructionists.  Question 1:  What is a project which will immediately increase the capacity our energy infrastructure and create jobs at no cost to the government?  Question 2:  Who is the obstructionist not allowing that to happen?

Think of the Keystone XL pipeline as an IQ test for greens.
Can Environmentalists Think?  The reason oil is moved on trains from places like North Dakota and Alberta is because there aren't enough pipelines to carry it.  The provincial governments of Alberta and New Brunswick are talking about building a pipeline to cover the 3,000-odd mile distance.  But last month President Obama put the future of the Keystone XL pipeline again in doubt, [...]

Keystone safety.  The rail explosion over the weekend in Quebec piles tragedy upon tragedy. [...] It's a grim reminder that moving oil by rail through urban and suburban centers and rural areas is freighted with dangers, all of them serious. The trains pass through cities large and small with risks that wouldn't be there if the crude oil moved through a dedicated pipeline.  President Obama is stalling the safe alternative, refusing to approve construction of the pipeline that would relieve pressure on the American rail system.

Obama Donor Set To Profit From Keystone Demise.  Environmental activist Tom Steyer donated as much as he could to get Massachusetts Rep. Ed Markey elected to the Senate in the recent special election to fill the seat vacated by now-Secretary of State John Kerry.  He wanted another senator who's opposed to completing the Keystone XL pipeline that he says would be an environmental plague on the planet.  A few days before President Obama said that Keystone XL would be built only if it could be shown to have no net effect on greenhouse gas emissions, Steyer, a major contributor to Obama's campaigns, urged the president to kill the project.

Obama's Keystone Regrets.  If President Obama once thought it politically savvy to kick the Keystone XL pipeline decision down the road, he's surely ruing that strategy today.  The delay has allowed the environmental community to elevate the project into a litmus test of his environmental fealty — so much so that some of Mr. Obama's biggest supporters are now vowing to turn his base against him if he moves ahead with a win-win project that will boost the economy.

Obama administration cuts back oil shale development.  Controversy is heating up over an administration plan to drastically reduce the amount of federal lands available for oil shale development in the American West.  The Bush administration had set aside 1.3 million acres for oil shale and tar sands development in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.  The new Bureau of Land Management plan cuts that amount by two-thirds, down to 700,000 acres, a decision that has prompted industry outrage.

Green groups to Obama: Designate lands to stop drilling.  Environmental lobbyists are pressing President Obama to turn more western lands into national monuments to prevent oil-and-gas companies from drilling there.  The Sierra Club is leading the charge and is sweetening its message with political sugar, saying Obama could thereby help Democrats win House and Senate seats in midterm elections year.

Democrat Congressman: The Keystone Pipeline is Bad Because...  Democrat Raul Grijalva of Arizona thinks you'll be persuaded to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline because rocks [...] sink in water.  That's the sum and total of his argument. [...] We all fret around here about the low-information voter.  How about the low-information politician?

Misguided Energy Policy: Alone, Enough to Cause American Failure.  Nowhere is the threat to America's future more clear, and more easily avoided, than in the energy sector.  Therein, fairytale fears about climate change have grown to the point that the U.S. is now on the verge of committing suicide by turning off many of its most important energy sources to appease loud, misinformed climate activists.

Obama administration threatens Keystone veto.  The White House on Tuesday threatened to veto a House bill designed to approve building the Keystone pipeline, saying President Obama should have final say over the controversial project to bring oil from Canada to the U.S.  "Because [the bill] seeks to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether cross-border pipelines are in the national interest by removing the presidential permitting requirement for the Keystone XL pipeline project, if presented to the president, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto this bill," the White House budget office said in a statement of policy.

Obama donors compare Keystone decision to Lincoln's outlawing of slavery.  A group of 150 major Democratic donors and clean energy investors have sent President Obama a letter urging him to deny a presidential permit to the Keystone XL pipeline, comparing the decision's significance to Abraham Lincoln's push to end slavery through a constitutional amendment.

'No such thing as ethical oil,' Al Gore tells Toronto audience.  [Scroll down]  In a public interview with The Globe and Mail's editor-in-chief, John Stackhouse, Mr. Gore also spoke of his wish that U.S. president Barack Obama would cancel the Keystone XL pipeline intended to transport heavy crude from the Alberta oil sands to U.S. refineries.

Gore: 'There's no such thing as ethical oil'.  Former Vice President Gore on Tuesday [5/7/2013] said "there's no such thing as ethical oil," slamming the notion that importing oil from U.S. ally Canada was better than doing so from unfriendly nations.  "There's no such thing as ethical oil.  There's only dirty oil and dirtier oil," Gore told Canada's The Globe and Mail during a Tuesday event in Toronto.

Keystone XL Opponents Hypocritically Talk Property Rights.  Opponents of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline are increasingly trumpeting private property rights as a reason people should oppose the pipeline.  Drawing upon small-government conservatives' wariness of the federal government abusing its eminent domain power, environmental activist groups are suddenly presenting themselves as champions of limited government and private property.

Why shipping oil by rail may not be a substitute for Keystone.  An assumption that oil would move by rail without Keystone was a key part of a U.S. State Department report in March that found development of Canada's oil sands region will proceed at roughly the same rate, with or without the pipeline.

President Obama steals credit for energy success he opposed.  President Obama may be the first chief executive to take credit for the results of things he has opposed throughout his time in the Oval Office.  The latest example came last week, when the Department of the Interior announced it had approved 21 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico for energy resource exploration and development.

Canadian Minister: Put Up Or Shut Up On Keystone XL.  As the EPA snipes at the State Department's approval, Canada's natural resource minister says failure to approve the pipeline would seriously jeopardize our energy relationship and do nothing to save the earth.

Activists threaten massive protests over Keystone XL.  Environmentalists opposed to the Keystone XL pipeline are pledging to turn up the heat on President Barack Obama by risking arrest through acts of civil disobedience at fundraisers, political meetings and federal agency offices.  The planned protests are designed to build political pressure as Obama nears a final decision on the project.  They illustrate the political challenge facing Obama, who risks alienating at least one key Democratic base — environmentalists or labor unions — no matter what he decides.

The President's self created trap on Keystone XL.  This is truly a case of trying to eat your cake and have it to [sic].  Having turned this into a huge political wedge tool in his early days, Barack Obama is now looking for an escape hatch where he can sluff off the blame — no matter which way it goes — on somebody else.

NASA Global Warming Extremist Hansen Leaves To Fight Canadian Pipeline.  The man who once compared coal trains to Nazi boxcars headed to crematoria leaves government service to fight what he calls the "pipeline to disaster" and promote his brand of climate quackery.

The 1% Keystone Confusion.  President Obama hit California for some fundraising this week, including stops with various billionaires who fervently oppose the Keystone XL pipeline.  The visit had the virtue of showing how Mr. Obama is cross-pressured between his superrich green friends who don't need to worry about a job and the blue-collar types who wouldn't mind laying oil pipe for $25 an hour.

A useful pipeline spill in Arkansas.  The environmentalists who were waging a losing war against the proposed Keystone pipeline woke up to the news of a small pipeline leak in Arkansas and thought it was Christmas morning.  If environmentalists were the praying kind, they would say the Arkansas leak was an answer to their prayers.  They think it ends the debate over the Keystone pipeline.

The Editor says...
Sometimes pipes leak, but railroad cars leak more often.  The ocean floor leaks oil continuously.

Anti-Keystone billionaire rattles Democrats.  San Francisco billionaire Tom Steyer is giving Democrats a taste of the divisive, big-spending primary battles that have caused Republicans so much heartburn over the past four years.  And he says it's for their own good.  The former hedge fund trader-turned-philanthropist is bankrolling a far-flung political operation pushing environmental causes and candidates, including his pricey effort to torpedo the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

Obama's One-Man March Against Keystone.  If Obama wants to be grand marshal of a one-man parade against the Keystone XL pipeline, he's doing a heckuva job.  Top Democrats along the proposed pipeline route favor Keystone.  These include U.S. senators Jon Tester of Montana and freshman Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota.  Texas representatives Henry Cuellar, Charles A. Gonzalez, Al Green, Gene Green, Ruben Hinojosa, and Sheila Jackson Lee all have pleaded with Obama to give Keystone the green light.

The Keystone Pipeline: Delay is the Name of the Game.  The four-year saga of the Keystone XL pipeline is a textbook case of the game Washington politicians play.  To avoid making decisions that might anger one constituency or another, they appoint a committee or commission a study and then sit back, hoping the report never comes in.  If they don't like the results, they commission another study.

The Keystone Converts.  An evolving political consensus persuaded President Obama to come out for same-sex marriage last year.  Here's hoping the shifting political tides will also inspire a personal evolution on the Keystone XL pipeline.  Last week 17 Senate Democrats voted with all 45 Republicans for a budget amendment supporting the TransCanada pipeline, which would transport crude from the Alberta oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries (oil from North Dakota's Bakken Shale would hop along for a ride).  A similar measure last year garnered support from 11 Democrats but fell short of the 60 votes to overcome a filibuster.

Production Obstruction.  Delays in federal permitting for oil and gas exploration on public land is likely reducing national energy production and depriving the federal government of revenue, according to a federal report released Friday [3/22/2013].  The report is the latest addition to a mounting body of evidence undercutting the administration's claims that it has fostered increased oil and gas production, critics say.  Production on lands the federal government controls has plummeted during Barack Obama's presidency.

Why Is White House Stalling Energy Measures?  It occurred to me recently that President Obama and House Democrats managed to force ObamaCare onto the American people in just over 400 days.  Yet, it's been over 1,600 days since the application for the Keystone XL Pipeline from Canada was submitted to the State Department — and the administration continues to stall on approving or disapproving the project.

Senate endorses Keystone XL in budget amendment vote.  The Senate on Friday [3/22/2013] voted 62-37 to approve the proposed Keystone XL oil sands pipeline in an amendment to Senate budget.  Sen. John Hoeven's (R-N.D.) amendment was largely symbolic, but served as a clear statement that the Senate backs the pipeline.

One Year Ago Today, Obama Promised to Expedite Keystone XL.  A day before the one-year anniversary of President Obama promising to expedite the Keystone XL pipeline in Cushing, Okla., his campaign arm Organizing for Action accused Senate Republicans of launching a "backhanded environmental attack."  But proponents of the pipeline charge the administration is attacking the project through endless delays and unfulfilled promises.

Why Environmentalists Are Wrong on Keystone XL.  It may seem arbitrary, given the large number of oil and gas pipelines that already criss-cross the US, that this particular one has generated such a high profile debate around energy security and the environment.  But this debate isn't really about a pipeline.  This pipeline isn't going to make or break the development of Canada's oil sands, nor — as I will show here — is it going to make a measurable difference with respect to climate change.  The truth is that the Keystone XL pipeline is symbolic.

Environmentalists 'outraged' by federal Keystone XL report.  Environmentalists are angry that the Obama administration's report on the Keystone XL pipeline did not find significant negative effects on the environment. [...] The State Department's draft assessment of the pipeline found that the pipeline won't have a huge impact on climate change, because it won't substantially impact the development of tar sands oil or the amount of oil refined in the Gulf Coast region.

Obama's War On Drilling: Oil Surplus, Not Scarcity, Is The New Regulatory Excuse.  Regardless of abundance and necessity, the Obama administration continues to justify new regulations that restrict access to America's oil and gas reserves.

Keystone XL Benefits Too Great To Allow More Delays.  Keystone XL could play a role in moderating high gas prices by increasing the supply of crude oil.  Millions of hardworking Americans are feeling pain at the pump and we should do everything we can to expand access to stable and affordable energy supplies.

'Leading by Example' and the Keystone Pipeline.  While many have long seen America as the global bad boy, everybody likes Canada. [...] Canada is a global citizen, a good neighbor, a northern Puerto Rico with an EU sensibility that earns its gold stars from the United Nations every day.

Keystone XL: Parallels to the Alaska Pipeline.  An 800-mile engineering marvel, the Alaska Pipeline was completed in two years and two months — but only after Congress acted to end interminable delays forced on the builders long after they completed the required environmental impact statements. Contrary to the dire predictions from many opponents, the Alaska Pipeline has had an excellent environmental record and has delivered 16 billion barrels of petroleum along with royalty revenue and thousands of jobs.

A futile and stupid plan to "save the planet".  The Obama administration continues to drag its feet on approving the Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport crude oil from Canada through the American Great Plains to refineries on the Gulf of Mexico.  Environmentalists oppose the pipeline because they hate oil, which they claim causes "climate change."

State: No Environmental Reason To Delay Keystone XL.  In yet another clean bill of health, the State Department's draft review says the pipeline from Canada will not affect global warming or harm aquifers it crosses.  But it will create jobs and economic growth.

Waxman on Keystone: 'We Don't Need this Dirty Oil'.  Representative Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) — the top Democrat on the House Energy and Commerce Committee — said that America does not need the "dirty oil" that would be imported through the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, which received long-awaited favorable environmental review from the U.S. government.  "We don't need this dirty oil.  To stop climate change and the destructive storms, droughts, floods, and wildfires that we are already experiencing, we should be investing in clean energy, not building a pipeline that will speed the exploitation of Canada's highly polluting tar sands," Waxman said in a statement on Friday responding to the government's analysis.

State Department: Keystone pipeline won't hurt the environment.  TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline will not harm the environment, the State Department — in a blow to environmentalists who want to block the project — wrote in a newly-drafted report on the latest proposed route.  "[T]he draft Supplemental EIS concludes that approval or denial of the proposed Project is unlikely to have a substantial impact on the rate of development in the oil sands, or on the amount of heavy crude oil refined in the Gulf Coast area," the State Department draft report says, as Think Progress noted.

Obama Possibly Trading Keystone for More Taxes?  Pretty much everyone, including all of the major labor unions, is geeked about the Keystone Pipeline, which would create jobs and improve the United State's energy independence.  But a bunch of hippies hate it, and the hippies vote, probably illegally in seven states, so Barack Obama is totally against it for right now, you guys.  The Earth, it matters so much more than rebuilding the American economy by providing needed jobs to skilled and unskilled laborers in states across middle America, and ending the vice grip that backwards Middle Eastern nations have on our energy consumption.

Domestic Oil Production At Record Level Despite Obama.  Earlier this month oil output hit its highest level in the U.S. since the summer of 1992.  That's good, but it could be better.  The Obama administration won't get out of the way.

Keystone XL pipeline would have little impact on climate change, State Department analysis says.  The State Department released a draft environmental impact assessment of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline Friday [3/1/2013], suggesting that the project would have little impact on climate change.  Canada's oil sands will be developed even if President Obama denies a permit to the pipeline connecting the region to Gulf Coast refineries, the analysis said.  Such a move also would not alter U.S. oil consumption, the report added.

China Deal Benefits Obama Donors.  The government watchdog group Judicial Watch is suing the Treasury Department for records pertaining to the department's decision to grant a Chinese government-backed company access to oil deposits in the Gulf of Mexico, a move that will benefit Obama donors.  The Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) reached a "definitive agreement" with Nexen, Inc., a Canadian energy company, announced on July 23, 2012, to buy all of the company's outstanding public shares.

Obama trading Keystone XL for a carbon tax?  There are apparently some bad ideas which never die, no matter how many stakes you drive through them.  One of these is the carbon tax, not so subtly invoked during the State of the Union address, and now making a comeback with some of the usual list of suspects in Congress.  But this time it may be coming with a twist.

Environmentalism and Human Sacrifice.  Take the Keystone XL pipeline, the pipeline the Canadian government wants built in the US in order to send Canadian crude to American refineries.  It would be a 1,179-mile, 36-inch-diameter crude oil pipeline, beginning in Alberta, and ending in Nebraska.  The pipeline will be able to transport about 830,000 barrels of oil per day to Gulf Coast and Midwest refineries, reducing American dependence on oil from Venezuela — Iran's base in the Western Hemisphere — and the Middle East by up to 40 percent.  It will also provide Americans with many thousands of well-paying jobs.  Approving this pipeline is a moral and economic necessity. [...] But the Obama administration may (again) veto the Keystone XL pipeline — for one reason:  environmentalist fanaticism.

US clears big Chinese oil deal.  United States officials have signed off on Chinese oil giant CNOOC's $15.1 billion purchase of the Canadian oil company Nexen, a deal that triggered U.S. review because Nexen has oil-and-gas assets in the Gulf of Mexico.  Nexen announced Tuesday [2/12/2013] that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) has approved the transaction, and that the deal "now has all of the requisite approvals to proceed to close."  CFIUS is a Treasury Department-led interagency panel that reviews foreign purchases of U.S. assets if the transactions could affect national security.

Will Obama Trade A Carbon Tax For Keystone XL?  Having failed to lower the sea levels in his first term, President Obama, in the first SOTU of his second term, highlighted the need for fighting climate change and proposed an Energy Security Trust Fund to siphon off money from those who actually produce abundant and useable energy to fund alternative energy sources which constitute a rounding error in the percent of energy produced by various sources.

Greens bank on Kerry to quash Keystone pipeline.  John F. Kerry long has been a vocal crusader against climate change in the Senate, and in the process the Massachusetts Democrat became a hero to the environmental movement.  Now as the incoming secretary of state, Mr. Kerry is in a position to deliver one of the movement's biggest victories in decades:  drive a stake through the heart of the massive Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL pipeline project.

Would the Obama administration really reject the Keystone XL pipeline?  This entire time, I thought that there was hardly a real chance that the Obama administration would ultimately reject the Keystone XL pipeline when it really came down to it.  Sure, they've been stalling [a lot] — presumably hoping the PR furor over the proposal would die down a bit, and/or to think up some other tantalizing climate-focused projects with which to quell the green lobby's inevitable anger — but there is too much bipartisan, international, high-profile and widespread support for the project as both a job creator and energy-security enhancer for the president to really shut it down in the end.

Keystone pipeline delayed another few months.  Faced with the warring factions of vociferous environmentalists versus the pipeline's various wealth-and-jobs-favoring proponents pulling them in both directions, the Obama administration just can't seem to make the tough decision (which, by the way, will only decide whether the oil sands in question are purchased by us or China, not whether they will be used at all).

Obama's path toward energy poverty.  [I]nstead of promoting the most reliable and least expensive energy technologies, such as coal-fired electricity generation, Mr. Obama encourages the least reliable and most expensive sources.  It was certainly an understatement to say, as he did in the address, "The path toward sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult."  He should have added, "and virtually useless," because the sustainable energy sources he has most in mind are wind and solar power.  The president presents the transition to these technologies as an economic benefit.  He asserted, "We cannot cede to other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries — we must claim its promise.  That is how we will maintain our economic vitality."  No, that is how you ruin a country's economy.

Crunch time for the Keystone Kops.  Radical activists have launched more attacks on oil sands to try to derail the Keystone XL pipeline that would bring desperately needed jobs and tax revenues.

The Keystone to Bringing Jobs.  Six GOP lawmakers on Tuesday introduced a proposal to make Pennsylvania, the "Keystone State," the nation's 25th right-to-work state.  The legislation, which would end the longstanding practice of forcing employees to join unions as a condition of work, has stalled several times over the past decade.  The bill's sponsors say new laws in Michigan and Indiana forced the state's hand.

Bipartisan senators to Obama: Come on with the Keystone pipeline already.  Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman signed off on TransCanada's revised route through his state earlier this week, effectively clearing what the Obama administration has cited as a major hurdle to green-lighting the entire Keystone XL pipeline.  Having already been through years of multiple State Department reviews, and with the southern portion of the project already under construction, it appears that bipartisan members Congress in fact can agree on at least one thing:  The administration's level of well-orchestrated stalling on this thing is starting to get downright ridiculous.

Nebraska governor approves revised Keystone pipeline route.  Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman notified the Obama administration Tuesday [1/22/2013] that he has approved the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline to traverse his state, marking a significant step toward reviving the project after President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sidelined it.  The Republican governor approved a revised route for the Canada-to-Texas pipeline which his office said would avoid environmentally sensitive areas.

Nebraska OKs re-routed Keystone XL pipeline, now it's Obama's problem.  The 1,700-mile long pipeline is designed to carry 700,000 barrels a day of Canadian heavy crude oil from Alberta tar sands excavations to Gulf Coast refineries.  The project would create thousands of construction jobs and reduce U.S. dependence on unreliable foreign oil sources, often cited by both American political parties as a good thing.

Obama faces new pressure on Keystone pipeline.  President Obama's Inauguration Day vow to fight climate change is facing an unexpectedly early test as a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline now rests solely with his administration.  Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman on Tuesday [1/22/2013] removed the only other remaining hurdle by formally approving the pipeline's modified 194-mile route through his state, skirting sensitive ecological areas and clearing up the last major question mark on the course of the proposed $7 billion Canada-to-Texas project.

State Department delays Keystone pipeline decision.  The Obama administration has delayed a decision on TransCanada Corp's rerouted Keystone XL oil pipeline until after March, even though Nebraska's governor on Tuesday approved a plan for part of the line running through his state.

Nebraska OKs Pipeline; Now It's Climate Myth Vs. Jobs.  With a clean bill of health from the Cornhusker State's governor, only the president's green base and the State Department's shared belief in nonexistent climate change stands in the way of jobs and growth.

Energy cash influx leads to a state surplus in Texas.  An inbound crush of revenue, private sector productivity, job creation, economic growth — this is everything we are giving up while the Obama administration has tried to forcefully mold the energy economy of their greenest political fancies by delaying on drilling leases for federal lands and waters, flexing their regulatory muscles and waging a war on coal, "investing" our money in their pet projects, and bandying around with potential new regulations to crack down further on hydraulic fracturing.

Robber Barony: Obama Energy Policy By Another Name.  It is time for more Americans to learn about the real energy boom that the Obama Administration is trying to keep under wraps in major and countless minor ways.

The North American Gusher.  Since becoming president, Mr. Obama has treated hydrocarbon production like an infectious disease to be eradicated.  His administration had to commission a study to learn, as announced last week, that allowing American companies to export liquefied natural gas would be beneficial to the U.S. economy.  Still, the Department of Energy says it can't make "final determinations" on export applications until it hears from those who object.

Harsher energy regulations seen in Obama's second term.  Energy producers braced for tighter regulation in President Barack Obama's second term, with coal companies expecting more emissions restrictions and drillers anticipating less access to federal land even as his platform promotes energy independence.

Environmentalists Petition Susan Rice to Divest 'Every Dollar of Stock' in Oil Pipeline Co..  Environmentalists are furious that potential Secretary of State nominee and U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice owns stock in TransCanada Corp, the pipeline firm that would benefit from the Keystone XL pipeline, which the State Department would have to approve.  In an online petition, they have urged Rice to divest "every dollar of stock" in TransCanada Corp.

Rice Has Up to $600K Stake in Keystone Company.  Potential secretary of state candidate Susan Rice owns up to $600,000 of stock in the Canadian company pushing to build the Keystone XL Pipeline, according to her financial disclosure reports.  OnEarth reports that Rice, Obama's preferred candidate to succeed Hillary Clinton, owns millions of dollars of stock in oil companies, including TransCanada, the company behind the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline.

U.S. To 'Become Largest Global Oil Producer' By 2020, 'Net Oil Exporter' By 2030 — If We Let It.  In a striking blow for the environmental left, the International Energy Agency has released a report detailing how the United States is on track to outpace Saudi Arabia in oil production.  This surely puts the Obama administration in a bind concerning its green energy monomania that has dominated their energy policy for the past four years.  This finding shows that the United States can be energy independent, and we have the resources to do so.  However, the boot of government is trying to centralize and control those resources to expand their dependency agenda.

Senators Ask Obama For Post-Election Keystone OK.  Now that the election is over, nine Republican and nine Democrats have asked the president to stop making excuses and build a job-creating pipeline that will close the revenue gap through economic growth.

Our Incoherent Energy Policies.  The price of gasoline hit $4.80/gallon in California just a few weeks ago.  And yet near four years into this Administration, we are still without a coherent policy to access our vast reservoirs of oil and gas offshore, on federal lands and Alaska.

Moody's predicts Obama will approve Keystone XL pipeline.  President Obama will give the proposed Keystone XL oil sands pipeline a green light, Moody's predicts in a new report.  The fate of TransCanada Corp.'s proposed Alberta-to-Texas pipeline is shaping up as a major post-election battle.

With Election Over, the News Flows Freely.  We heard throughout the campaign of President Obama's "all of the above" energy policy.  That was then.  This is now.  About 48 hours after he was assured of reelection, the president's Interior Department issued a plan to close to oil shale development 1.6 million acres of federal land in the West to oil.  These acres were targeted for oil shale exploration and development by the prior administration.  Instead, only some 677,000 acres would be open for oil shale exploration, and an additional 130,000 for tar sands production.  The reason for excluding so much acreage from development includes a desire to protect sage grouse habitats and land with "wilderness characteristics."

The Editor says...
Personally, I couldn't care less about the sage grouse, and something tells me that when gasoline is $5.00 a gallon and constantly climbing, nobody else will care, either.

Democrats Better Start Soul Searching.  We can't know quite what a second Obama term will bring, but if his first term is an indication, there's little reason to expect his party will be crowing. [...] On Friday [11/9/2012], citing ecological concerns, the administration closed off 1.6 million acres of federal land in western states from planned oil shale extraction.  An American energy boom lies in wait underground and Obama is determined to keep it there.

The U.S. will be the world's leading energy producer, if we allow it.  As readers of these pages know, the key to this U.S. energy boom has been technological innovation and risk-taking funded by private capital.  Specifically, the private oil and gas industry pioneered the use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) to tap unconventional deposits such as shale that once were technologically out of reach.  It also wouldn't have happened if the industry wasn't able to drill on private land, free from federal regulation.  This is a real energy revolution, even if it's far from the renewable energy dreamland of so many government subsidies and mandates.

Barack H. Obama is doing everything he can to prevent this:
U.S. Oil Output to Overtake Saudi Arabia's by 2020.  U.S. oil output is poised to surpass Saudi Arabia's in the next decade, making the world's biggest fuel consumer almost self-reliant and putting it on track to become a net exporter, the International Energy Agency said.  Growing supplies of crude extracted through new technology including hydraulic fracturing of underground rock formations will transform the U.S. into the largest producer for about five years starting about 2020, the Paris-based adviser to 28 nations said today [11/12/2012] in its annual World Energy Outlook.

Obama Shuts Down 1.6M Acres to Oil Shale Development.  Just two days after President Obama's re-election, the Obama Interior Department announced a plan to shut down 1.6 million acres of federal land to oil shale development.  The land had originally been slated for drilling under President George W. Bush.

The Editor says...
This puts us one step closer to $5.00 gasoline.  Thanks a lot, Obama voters!

Interior proposal would limit commercial oil shale development on federal lands in West.  The Interior Department on Friday [11/9/2012] issued a final plan to close 1.6 million acres of federal land in the West originally slated for oil shale development.  The proposed plan would fence off a majority of the initial blueprint laid out in the final days of the George W. Bush administration.

Keystone pipeline pushed to forefront.  With a second term now in hand, President Obama no longer can delay a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline and must either side with environmentalists within his party or greenlight a major step toward North American energy independence.

Obama Is Right.  Every other month, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar withdraws more land from potential energy development.  Most recently, he put nearly half of the 23-million-acre National Petroleum Reserve on Alaska's North Slope off-limits, restricting development to 12 million acres with potentially 549 million barrels of oil.  In 2002, the Reserve, designated almost a century ago by Congress for energy development, was thought to hold 9 billion barrels of oil.  Mysteriously, in 2010, this estimate was reduced to 900 million barrels.  People notice when you pull billions of barrels of oil from potential production.  Change the story by redefining the estimate, and the news item goes from page 1 to page 19 when the administration puts America's resources off-limits.

Gas Prices Doubled, Obama Locks Up National Reserve.  As the administration fast-tracks solar projects on public lands, it has locked up more than half of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, preferring to continue outsourcing energy jobs and dollars.

Obama's Alaska Oil Debacle Is a 'None of the Above' Energy Policy.  The Obama administration's decision to block oil drilling in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska (NPR-A) is the latest symbol of an energy policy that could be described as "none of the above."  It is an even worse decision when you consider the recent history of the Reserve, which was partially opened to oil and gas drilling and exploration by the Clinton administration in the late 1990s.

DOE delays decision on natural-gas export license.  The Obama administration punted a decision on whether to prevent a liquefied natural gas (LNG) export license, saying it needs more time to review a complaint that an environmental assessment for the plan did not go far enough.  The Department of Energy (DOE) said it needs to review a complaint regarding a conditional permit granted to Cheniere Energy.  That permit would let the firm export LNG to countries without free-trade agreements from its Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana.

The Editor says...
What does the Department of Energy do to facilitate the production of energy?  The DOE doesn't produce energy — it reluctantly issues permits to energy producing companies.  In other words, the United State would have far more energy available if the DOE were abolished.

Obama's slippery foreign oil promise.  It was one of President Barack Obama's boldest 2008 campaign promises:  Getting the United States off oil from anti-U.S. hot spots within a decade.  That didn't happen.  Persian Gulf oil imports are down only 5 percent, while the U.S. remains Venezuela's biggest oil-trading partner since Obama said changing that relationship was crucial "for the sake of our economy, our security and the future of our planet."

Obama's Great Alaska Shutout.  President Obama is campaigning as a champion of the oil and gas boom he's had nothing to do with, and even as his regulators try to stifle it.  The latest example is the Interior Department's little-noticed August decision to close off from drilling nearly half of the 23.5 million acre National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska.  The area is called the National Petroleum Reserve because in 1976 Congress designated it as a strategic oil and natural gas stockpile to meet the "energy needs of the nation."  Alaska favors exploration in nearly the entire reserve.

U.S. donors pump hundreds of millions into Canadian groups opposed to the Keystone XL pipeline.  Pipeline opponents include environmental pressure groups who oppose oil sands because they see its extraction and processing as especially destructive to the environment, and because they oppose carbon-based fuels in general. [...] Unfortunately, U.S. donors' funding of anti-oil sands groups displays a troubling lack of transparency.  Approximately $83.7 million — 42 percent — of that funding has been funneled in such a way that the link between foundation grants and the Canadian recipients are unknown to the public.

Obama Proclaims October 'Energy Action Month' Despite Rejecting Pipeline, Threats To Natural Gas And Coal Industries.  "I call upon the citizens of the United States to recognize this month by working together to achieve greater energy security, a more robust economy, and a healthier environment for our children," Obama declared.  Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, took exception to Pres. Obama's proclamation of National Energy Action Month, saying "Every month should be national energy month."

Where's Our Energy?  When President Barack Obama took office, the average price for a gallon of regular gas was $1.84.  That means gas prices have more than doubled on Obama's watch.  But why?  The primary reason is that the system is rigged. [...] Another reason Americans are getting hosed at the pump is that President Obama loathes the fossil fuel industry and does everything he can to inhibit production.

Are Democrats More Likely to Release Strategic Oil Reserves?  In contrast to last year's release, the International Energy Agency disagreed with the need this time, stating "There is no reason for a release" and "The market is sufficiently supplied."  I think the Obama Administration is signaling that they may release some oil for two reasons.  One is to spook the markets and cause a sell-off of oil, with the hope of lowering gasoline prices.  The other is to test the reaction from the American public and from U.S. allies so they can better judge the political risks of such a blatant attempt to manipulate prices heading into the election.

The president decides to stick with climatism.  The president did not mention the Keystone Pipeline in his speech [to the Democratic National Convention].  In January 2012, he halted the $7 billion Keystone project on recommendation by the State Department in order to assess potential environmental harm.  During the last months of 2011, thousands of protesters gathered in front of the White House to protest the Keystone project.  They claimed that the oil the pipeline would transport from Canadian tar sands would cause irreversible global warming.

Trashing the Constitution.  Constitution Day is Monday, Sept. 17, so I compiled a non-exhaustive list of the ways Barack Obama has violated the Constitution. [...] [For example,] Using the EPA to attack America's energy industry.  In 2010, the Senate refused to pass the "cap-and-trade" bill that would have created a carbon-tax system, vastly increasing federal power over energy.  The Environmental Protection Agency declared carbon dioxide a pollutant anyway and began exerting raw bureaucratic power.  Mr. Obama's green zealots nixed the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada and virtually shut down new oil exploration and drilling.

Obama's New America.  Mr. Obama made much of the truth that the USA is producing a lot more energy from oil and gas domestically now compared with some years ago.  But he gives no credit at all to the oil companies and the gas companies that made that possible.

Manufacturer: EPA against all fossil fuels, not just coal.  "I firmly believe that this administration, including the EPA, has a very, very robust, anti-fossil fuels agenda," [Charlie] Drevna said in a telephone interview.  "You guys in West Virginia should know this as well as anybody else.  What is this administration trying to do with coal?  Well, they're trying to do the same with oil and other fossil fuels.  It's just an anti-fossil fuels agenda.  One can argue whether it's noble or not.  I don't think it is.  Is it detrimental to the consumers?  Is it detrimental to the economy and national security?  Absolutely."  Consumers stand to lose dramatically, whether they are driving a pickup truck or a passenger car, mowing the lawn or steering a motorboat, he said.

Romney Plan Would Make America An Energy Superpower.  Mitt Romney has unveiled a market-based plan to achieve U.S. energy independence by 2020 and make America an energy superpower.  It calls to mind just how stagnant our energy policy has been up until now.

Romney energy plan would put states in control of drilling.  An energy plan Mitt Romney unveiled Thursday [8/23/2012] adopts familiar GOP ideas for weaning the United States off foreign oil by boosting offshore drilling and relaxing environmental regulations.  Although both President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger view energy development as a way to rev up the economy and create jobs, Romney focuses on the oil and gas sector.

Eating America's Seed Corn.  As gas prices climb back toward $4 a gallon, the Obama administration — facing a tough reelection campaign and rising Middle East tensions — is once again considering tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.  For years, administrations have bought and stored oil for emergencies, in fear of a cutoff of imported oil, as happened during the Arab embargo of 1973-74.  But since 2009, the U.S. government has declared most federal lands off-limits to new oil and gas exploration — despite vast recent finds of energy and radically new means to tap it.

Once again, the  strategic  political oil reserves come into play.
Report: Obama may release oil reserves.  President Obama will consider releasing oil from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve if increased sanctions on Iran cause costs to rise, according to a report on Friday [8/17/2012].  Officials have a plan ready if gasoline prices do not fall after Sept. 3, according to Reuters.  Historically, gas prices drop after the Labor Day holiday.

Offshore Drilling: Increase Access, Reduce the Risk, and Stop Hurting American Companies.  The Obama Administration remains committed to strangling America's economic revival by doing everything in its power to prevent companies that obtain offshore leases from actually drilling and producing oil — a fact evidenced by a new lawsuit just filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims by an independent U.S. oil and gas company.

7 Things to Expect If Obama Is Elected to a Second Term.  [#3]  Gas and energy prices will be dramatically higher:  Obama once said, "Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket."  His Energy Secretary Steven Chu added, "Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe."  Is it any wonder that Obama won't drill ANWR, has blocked the Keystone Pipeline, and has slow-walked offshore drilling?

Sayonara, Sierra.  A federal judge denied the Sierra Club's request for a temporary injunction to halt construction of the lower half of the Keystone XL Pipeline Sunday [8/5/2012].  The environmental advocacy group recently filed a lawsuit to halt construction of the lower leg of the TransCanada corporation's contested Keystone XL oil pipeline, the whole of which would run from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, traversing eight states along the way.

AFL-CIO's Trumka: Keystone XL pipeline possible in a second Obama term.  AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said this morning that should President Obama win a second term it was possible the White House would approve the Keystone XL pipeline project.  Trumka cautioned that environmental concerns regarding the pipeline would have to be addressed but said that could be done without undermining the project.

The Editor says...
Nonsense.  The Keystone XL pipeline will not be built as long as President Obama is in office.  If Mr. Obama and the left-wing Democrats weren't opposed to this pipeline project, it would already be halfway finished.

After Blocking Oil Drilling, Obama Now Posing in Front of Oil Wells.  I guess posing in front of a shuttered Solyndra factory isn't part of his campaign.  Seriously, can it get any more pathetic than this?

Agency's decision on beetle could affect Keystone XL pipeline.  A federal agency's recent decision involving the endangered American burying beetle could cause up to a year's delay in construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, if the project wins federal approval, an environmental group said Tuesday.  But a spokesman for pipeline developer TransCanada Inc., said that assessment was premature and that the company would be able to work around new rules concerning the beetle.

The Editor says...
The construction of this badly-needed pipeline would probably result in the deaths of several bugs.  But I find it hard to imagine that the pipeline crew would locate and destroy all of the remaining specimens of the burrowing beetle.  That could only happen if all of the beetles live in a straight line, right under the path of the pipeline.  Even if all the burrowing beetles are sure to be wiped out — and that won't happen — the pipeline should be built, because gasoline is more important to our economy and our lives than beetles.

The Mother of All Hoaxes.  The U.S. is floating on an ocean of oil, but for now it can only be extracted from lands owned privately because the Obama administration has done everything in its power to restrict access to it on federally owned lands and, of course, the billions of barrels locked up off-shore.  In exactly the same way that the Obama administration has presided over the loss of billions in subsidies and loan guarantees for the solar panel companies or the ridiculous costs of wind power industry compared to a single coal-burning plant, at the heart of it all has been the claim the global warming is caused by "greenhouse gas" emissions, carbon dioxide, that imperil the Earth.

Do We Want To Buy Canadian Oil From the Chinese?  'Do we really want to be buying our oil or Canadian oil back from the Chinese?" asked Sen. John Hoeven on Thursday [7/26/2012] as he reacted to news that China's state-owned oil company, CNOOC Ltd., had launched a $15.1 billion takeover bid for Canada's Nexen Inc., a company with operations in the Gulf of Mexico.  Our answer would be no.  But it may happen, thanks to the Obama administration's indifference to developing energy resources anywhere on the North American continent or building the Keystone XL pipeline linking Alberta's oil-rich sands to refineries on the Gulf Coast.

Democrats Backpedal as China Readies $15.1 Billion Canadian Oil Deal.  When President Barack Obama blocked the Keystone Pipeline, Republicans said the move would encourage Canada to pursue oil deals with China instead of the United States and cede a massive chunk of North American oil assets to the communist nation.  Now, with China's state-run oil company CNOOC poised to cut a $15.1 billion deal — the largest ever foreign acquisition for a Chinese company — with Canadian oil company Nexen, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) are in full backpedal mode.

Interior Department opening up more federal land... for solar panels.  Forget about the leasing for oil, gas, and mineral drilling that would allow the energy market to produce the jobs and economic growth it is absolutely chomping at the bit to create — let's prioritize our administrative resources and land use for an industry that has demonstrated itself barely capable of competing on the global market despite heavy assistance from taxpayers.  Yeah, that's a great plan.

Caught in a green crossfire.  President Obama has waged war on fossil fuels for three and a half years — and American consumers and families are caught in the green energy crossfire.  They are getting hit with higher energy prices, dismal employment prospects and a floundering economy, as billions go to unfriendly overseas countries for oil we could produce in the USA, and billions of tax dollars are wasted on subsidy schemes designed to make "green" energy more competitive — by raising the cost of electricity and fossil fuels that really power our economy.  Even worse, his policies are actively killing jobs and preventing job creation:  in the oil patch, coal country, and hundreds of industries whose survival depends on reliable, affordable energy.

How Fossil-Fuel Democrats Became An Endangered Species.  President Obama's heavy-handed regulation of the booming old-energy economy — the moratorium on offshore drilling following the BP spoil, the decision to block the Keystone XL Pipeline, and the prospect of a fracking ban — and his embrace of green-energy policies has played well in the solidly-Democratic post-industrial coastal economies that he also depends on for fund-raising.  But it's left him with few friends in the energy belt that spans the Great Plains, the Gulf Coast, Appalachia and now some parts of the old rustbelt, despite his election-year claims of an "all-of-the-above" energy policy.

Utah Officials Decry Obama Administration's Oil Production Restrictions.  State government officials in Utah are calling on the Obama administration to reverse its policy of curtailing oil and natural gas production on federal lands in western states.  Utah officials say Obama's policies are killing jobs and stifling the state's economy.

EPA Proposes Stricter New Standards for Soot Pollution.  Adding to the Obama administration's mounting heap of regulations, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed Friday [6/15/2012] new air quality standards to curb the purportedly fatal repercussions of soot emissions.  In reducing the emission of such particles, which environmentalists say are one of the most hazardous air pollutants, oil refiners and large manufacturers will be forced to invest in costly pollution-reduction upgrades.

Obama's war on guns and oil.  The Obama administration is using more than just the Environmental Protection Agency to "crucify" businesses it doesn't like.  Congress won't enact any gun-control measures, and the American people aren't interested in paying more at the pump.  So President Obama has to get a lot more creative in pushing his anti-gun, anti-affordable-energy agenda.  His latest technique is dispatching the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to wage small-scale battles against guns and oil. [...] It's obvious what the White House is up to, and the American people shouldn't stand for it.

Keystone Fallout: As Promised, Canada Building Pipelines to Sell Oil to China.  In April, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper revealed disheartening consequences for America's energy policy at a think-tank event in Washington.  Asked about President Obama's decision to put off a decision on the construction of the cross-border Keystone XL pipeline, Harper explained that it would permanently alter Canadian energy policy.

AFL-CIO: Build the Keystone Pipeline.  This is somewhat noteworthy, as prior to this the AFL-CIO had no official position on the pipeline, as they needed to delicately balance their loyalty to President Obama and the desires of specific union groups which would have benefited most from the construction of the pipeline.

Big Enviro Push Coming to End All Coal, Oil, Gas Subsidies.  Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) will announce legislation today to end every last subsidy for oil, coal and natural gas production.  "The measure would do away with tax breaks, financial assistance, royalty relief, direct federal research and development and many loopholes that benefit the fossil fuel industry," Sanders' office said.

Real Hope for Ending Federal Debt.  [Scroll down]  Of course, tapping the United States' natural resources is the opposite of what Obama is doing.  Oil and gas production on federal lands has dropped by 40% under the dreary marriage of environmentalism, puerile elitism, and Marxism which is Obamanomics.  What is true of oil is also true of coal.

Obama Stalls U.S. Energy Independence, Enemies Smile.  Do America's enemies wish us well?  It's an important question because they've made a big push to halt U.S. energy production.  So why does the Obama administration's policies support their aims?

Obama's Delays Of Keystone Pipeline Have Cost North Dakotans $573 Million Since January.  Rep. Duane DeKrey requested that Lynn Helms, director of the North Dakota Industrial Commission's Division of Mineral Resources[,] calculate the fiscal impact to North Dakotans of President Obama's decision to sandbag the building of the Keystone XL pipeline.

North Dakota Oil Boom Should Inspire Federal Energy Policy.  North Dakota's per-capita income jumped 78% in the past 12 years, largely due to its fossil fuel boom.  Imagine the impact at the national level if Washington stopped blocking energy development.

Obama Wants Power, Not Jobs.  Natural gas is a feedstock for the production of fertilizer, plastics, and many chemical products.  Fortunately, America possesses vast reserves of recoverable natural gas.  The low price of this gas is one factor spurring companies like Dow Chemical to expand production in the United States rather than send jobs overseas. [...] It all sounds like an economic miracle, and it is.  So why is Obama trying to kill it?

Russia Hires Exxon Mobil to Get Oil Obama Doesn't Want.  Alaska contains a wealth of oil both on land, in ANWR, and off shore in its outer continental shelf.  But President Obama and the Democrat party are staunchly opposed to allowing us to avail ourselves of it.  And via the Keystone Pipeline, Canada could supply nearly 1,000,000 barrels of oil a day that we're not getting from Alaska, but Obama and the Democrats have stopped that too.

Obama Administration's Energy Policy A Boon To Petrotyrants.  Wittingly or not, President Obama has contributed to high oil prices by stymieing U.S. production.  But if that's the idea, it makes sense to secure energy abroad.  He hasn't.  In fact, Obama's stated policy, in his March 30, 2011, energy speech has been a crude central planner's diktat of reducing oil imports by a third over the next 10 years and replacing them with increased production of biofuels and other unproven "green" energies yet to be developed.

Obama faces defeat on pipeline as Dems defect.  The president has put his feet in cement in opposition to the Keystone oil pipeline.  But on Capitol Hill, more and more Democrats are joining Republicans to force approval of the pipeline, whether Obama wants it or not.  The latest action happened Wednesday, when the House passed a measure to move the pipeline forward. Before the vote, Obama issued a veto threat.  The House approved the pipeline anyway — by a veto-proof majority, 293 to 127.  Sixty-nine Democrats abandoned the president to vote with Republicans.  That's a lot of defections.

Keystone pipeline controversy returns to dog Obama.  President Obama is back at the center of the controversy surrounding the Keystone XL oil pipeline with labor leaders pushing a new route for the pipeline, which environmental activists adamantly oppose.  Obama rejected the proposed northern half of the pipeline in January, citing environmental concerns it would contaminate a drinking water source in Nebraska.

The Editor asks...
Are there no pipes in the ground in Nebraska?  Do they not have sewers in Nebraska?  Have any of those pipes contaminated the water supply?

Your Energy Vote — Scarcity or Abundance.  With our Presidential candidates clear, there's no better issue to contrast our choice than energy policy. [...] Natural gas in America has decreased in cost because of the dramatic expansion in supply.  The same could be done with oil.

Obama's Crackdown On Speculators Won't Cut Prices.  President Obama's promised "crackdown" on speculators is another example of his using government to strangle markets and increase control over the private economy.  Worse, it won't cut gas prices one bit.

Our president goes on a wild goose chase against "speculators."
Obama's Snipe Hunt.  Watching President Obama stumble through his energy crisis, it seems only a question of whether he will end up channeling Jimmy Carter or President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of Argentina.  The latter, in case you missed it, just announced that her government will be seizing a 51 percent interest in YPF, the Argentine subsidiary of Repsol, the Spanish conglomerate that is the 15th largest refiner in the world.  In most places, that would be called theft, but in the banana republic of Argentina it's just business as usual.

Five Ways that Barack Obama has Decimated the American Economy.  Our economy runs on coal, natural gas, nuclear power and most importantly, oil.  By refusing to drill ANWR, blocking the Keystone Pipeline, fighting offshore drilling, slow walking drilling on federal land, trashing fracking, and attacking oil companies on a regular basis, the Obama Administration has driven up the cost of oil.  Not only does this take money out of the pocket of consumers, it increases the cost of just about everything in the economy via higher shipping costs.

Democrats' dumbest new energy idea.  For scurrilous attacks on the oil and gas industry, few liberals in Congress can hold a candle to Rep. Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts.  Several weeks ago, Mr. Markey, who is the ranking Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee, filed a bill that would require bidders for oil and gas leases on federal lands to certify that all production from such leases would be offered for sale only in the United States. [...] The congressman obviously doesn't understand how energy markets work.

The case of President Obama's missing oil tax.  Candidate Barack Obama pushed it hard in 2008:  a tax on Big Oil company profits that would flow back to families in $1,000 rebate checks.  President Barack Obama acts as if the idea never existed.

Canadian company to reapply for pipeline permit.  The Canadian company seeking to build a Canada-to-Texas pipeline says it will reapply for a permit after President Barack Obama announced he had rejected the current proposal.

Obama's bogus Keystone talking points.  The Keystone project has already been studied for three full years at a cost to TransCanada of $1.9 billion.  The State Department has already completed one entire Environmental Impact Statement.  Another Environmental Impact Statement will provide zero additional environmental protection to anyone.  But it will delay the project even further.  Another EIS would push construction back somewhere between one and six years at a cost of up to $2 million.

BrightSource and the Fracking Task Force.  Bad stuff always happens on Friday the 13th.  So it was on Friday [4/13/2012] that BrightSource Energy, the large solar energy company that has already received $868 million of a $1.6-billion loan guarantee, canceled its IPO application.  And that same day, President Obama appointed Heather Zichal to head a new high-level task force to coordinate regulation of hydraulic fracking.  The two events, both highly inauspicious, were not unrelated.  The connection is simple and obvious:  in order to prop up failing solar companies, Obama needs to force natural gas prices higher.

Obama's Keystone Pipeline Lies:  In his weasel-worded decision to block a perfectly harmless pipeline that would have provided America with jobs, energy and hope, President Barack Obama betrayed his country, lied and even welshed on a deal with Congress.  I am sorry to say so, but it's true.

What Happened To Our Cheap Oil?  It didn't disappear.  It's still here. [...] There hasn't been an oil refinery built in the U.S. since 1976, ironically the same year that Jimmy Carter was elected.  He was responsible for the creation of the Department of Energy and the enabling legislation was passed and signed into law on August 4, 1977.  Hundreds of billion dollars later with a budget of $24.2 billion a year, 16,000 federal employees and approximately 10,000 contract employees, we are no closer to being independent of foreign oil.

Obama's energy lies.  Canadian tar sands, it turns out, hold 100 billion barrels of obtainable oil, which is to say, we have Saudi Arabia II sitting right next door.  Stretching a pipeline from Canada to Texas refineries is no big deal in a country with 2 million miles of pipeline already.  What's more, there is good besides oil that would flow from it.  It would create thousands of jobs and experts note that a pipeline is far cheaper and safer than other modes of transportation, especially shipping it across the ocean.

Canada unfriends Obama.  As a presidential candidate, Barack Obama promised to "restore" America's place in the world.  Promised kept.  Welcome to 1812, when we were at war with Canada and the rest of the British Empire.  President Obama's decision to block the Keystone XL pipeline helps enrich his major donor, Warren Buffett, whose railroad will continue to have a near monopoly on transporting oil from the Bakken fields in North Dakota.

Sticker shock at the pump.  The president wants to raise taxes on oil companies by about $40 billion over 10 years.  Senate Democrats were more modest, limiting the tax hike to just the biggest companies for about $26 billion over 10 years.  Even if Democrats were interested in using the new revenue to reduce the deficit, this tax would barely cover five hours of government spending a year.  Instead, their bill used the majority of the money to increase the subsidies to their political allies in the intermittent energy business, making this a mere redistribution of corporate wealth.

Obama: End Tax Breaks For Oil In Order To "Double Down" On Wind And Solar.  [Quoting President Obama in the Rose Garden on Thursday 3/29/2012:]  "Instead of taxpayer giveaways to an industry that's never been more profitable, we should be using that money to double down on investments in clean energy technologies that have never been more promising."

Obama's Real Oil Agenda.  During a speech in Miami, President Obama planted himself firmly in the use less oil camp.  Amidst laughter, he said efficiency was one of the "easiest ways to reduce our dependence on oil."  Missing from the phrase was the word "foreign."  Was it simply just a slip of the tongue, or something more revealing?  Well, just a month earlier when President Obama rejected the Keystone XL Pipeline, he claimed the rejection was part of his commitment to policies that reduce our "dependence on oil."  President Obama does not just want to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, as he frequently states, but all oil.

Lying About Green Jobs Now.  The majority of Americans, even Democrats, think the [Keystone] pipeline should be built.  Of those that are really engaged with the issue, the number leaps to 78%.  Nonetheless, the faulty reports and rhetoric never stop coming. It would be easy to give in and just accept at face value their facts.  It would be easy and, in fact, has become easy for so many people to just accept what they hear.

Minnesota Non-Profits Receive $440,000 to Oppose Keystone Pipeline.  Three Minnesota environmental non-profit advocacy groups have received nearly half a million dollars in out-of-state foundation funding to oppose the Keystone oil pipeline project, according to a Freedom Foundation of Minnesota analysis.  The California funding to state groups comes as a surprise, since Keystone's proposed route does not include Minnesota.

Critics hit Obama's energy move.  Over the weekend during a brief refueling stop in Alaska on the way to the nuclear summit in Seoul, Mr. Obama issued a release inviting industry input on an oil and gas lease sale in Alaska's Cook Inlet. ... But the Cook Inlet, off the coast of South-Central Alaska is the oldest oil field in the state, dating back to the early 1960s, and industry organizations are ridiculing the move as an attempt to try to dress up an old leasing area the industry has had little to no interest in drilling in for years.

Drillers, environmentalists not buying Obama's energy pitch.  Touting an "all-of-the-above" energy policy, President Barack Obama traveled to this oil town on Thursday [3/22/2012] to show his support for the southern leg of the controversial Keystone oil pipeline proposed from Canada to refineries along the Gulf Coast.

The Old Democrat Party: FDR Expanded US Domestic Oil Production.  In spite of the Obama Administration, a rag tag assortment of small "wildcat" oil and gas entrepreneurs have proven that America has over 100 years' supply of natural gas and over 50 years' supply of oil.  With Obama's green initiatives in tatters, his new strategy seems to be taking credit for drill, baby, drill achievements, but remains fearful of the political consequences to build the pipelines to pump, baby, pump all that oil and gas to markets.

Faith-Based Energy Policy.  Americans remember that [President Obama's] team boasted about wanting higher energy costs in 2008, when Obama was still basking in hope-and-change adulation.  Energy Secretary-designate Steven Chu, who doesn't own a car, pontificated about wanting higher American gasoline prices, hoping they would somehow reach European levels.  Candidate Obama breezily warned of skyrocketing energy prices — the necessary cost of his planned cap-and-trade, anti-global-warming legislation.  Senator Ken Salazar of Colorado, who was soon to become interior secretary, bragged that even if gas reached $10 a gallon, he would not vote to open up new federal offshore oil leases.

Was Keystone Blocked to Benefit Buffet?  While our anti-petroleum president is visiting oil and pipeline country in a Potemkin photo op attempt to imply that he is what he clearly is not, here's something to ponder.  Are you one of those who've wondered why billionaire, Warren Buffet, is so cozy with the Obama Administration?  In an article published a couple of weeks ago by Bloomberg News, which gained little traction, author, Natalie Doss, noted that Buffet had made another one of his "pretty good bets" back in 2009 when Berkshire-Hathaway bought the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railroad.

Pipeline ruling filled with politics.  From all appearances, the Keystone XL pipeline was on track after the State Department's approval.  But the project hit a major snag in July 2010, when the Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its authority and claimed the State Department's analysis was faulty because it didn't consider oil-spill response plans, safety issues and greenhouse gas emissions.

Flashback to 2009: Administration Policies Sought to Discourage 'Overproduction' of Oil.  In May 2009, four months into the Obama presidency, retail gasoline prices averaged $2.32 per gallon.  Rep. Charles Boustany (R-LA) wrote Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner to express concern about the impact that the Administration's budgeted changes in tax policy would have on the oil and gas industry. ... In just three years' time, retail gasoline prices are up 68%.  $4.00+ gasoline prices loom as a key reelection vulnerability for the President; in response, the Administration's rhetoric has shifted to "energy friendly", but its original energy-hostile policies have not changed a whit.

Obama's Upcoming Visit To Keystone Pipeline Site: 'So Hypocritical And So Ironic'.  On Thursday [3/22/2012], as part of a roadshow for his "all of the above" energy strategy, President Obama is scheduled to visit Cushing, Okla., home to the world's biggest oil storage complex.  There he will tour a yard where TransCanada is storing pipes to be used in building the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline.  The line will stretch from Cushing down to refineries on the Texas gulf coast.  It will be a strange and remarkable visit considering that Obama in January denied a permit for the northern section of the pipeline that would have crossed the Canadian border.

Republicans go on offensive over rumors about tapping oil reserves.  Republicans launched a preemptive strike last week against rumored plans by the White House to tap the country's emergency oil reserves.  Releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, a 696-million-barrel stockpile stored on the Gulf Coast, is a ploy to score political points amid gas prices that are nearing a national average of $4 per gallon, Republicans argued.

Tapping Petroleum Reserve has gotten trickier.  Moving to tap the four giant Gulf Coast salt caverns that hold 700 million barrels of government-owned crude would still almost certainly knock global oil futures lower, delivering some relief at the pump for motorists and helping Obama in the November election if he can prevent gasoline from rising above $4 a gallon nationwide.  On Thursday [3/15/2012], prices fell by as much as $3 a barrel after Reuters reported that Britain was set to agree to release stockpiles together with the United States later this year.

Trains roll from Canada to Gulf to fill void left by failed Keystone Pipeline.  A Canadian railroad carrying millions of barrels of oil to Gulf refineries is hurtling full steam ahead through the Obama administration's block of the Keystone Pipeline.  The amount of oil Canadian Pacific Railways carries down through the heartland has surged 2,500 percent since 2009, to 8.5 million barrels per year from just 325,000.  The company expects to move 45 million barrels per year within the decade.

Obama's Oil Speculation Task Force Should Look Into Obama.  Pres. Obama says he wants Attorney General Eric Holder to "pay attention to potential speculation in the oil markets," so he's calling the DOJ's speculation task force to action. ... But, Obama's stubborn refusal to approve the Keystone oil pipeline project or oil drilling permits is one of the things they're speculating about when they drive up the cost of oil.

Senate rejects drilling for oil in Arctic refuge.  The U.S. Senate on Tuesday [3/13/2012] resoundingly rejected a sweeping measure to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other protected areas to drilling as well as approve construction of the Keystone pipeline project.  The vote was the first time in four years the Senate has voted on a measure including ANWR drilling, and it failed miserably.

Obama's Energy Lies.  President Obama is spewing lies and distortions on America's energy capabilities, and attempting to paint political opponents as medieval.  The president's agenda is anti-American and anti-progress.  It's driven by a statist ideology.  Frankly, the country's not likely to expand domestic supply and reduce foreign dependence while the Democrats are in power.

Fossil Fuel Production on Federal Lands at a Nine-Year Low.  What can the president do about gas prices?  Stop shutting down energy production on federal land.

Top 10 Obama energy blunders.  Canadian energy producers want to sell the United States an abundance of oil, if only President Obama gives the go-ahead to build the Keystone Pipeline XL.  However, the President has chosen his deep-pocketed environmental backers over U.S. energy needs (and thousands of jobs for American workers).

How Obama Is Choking Off U.S. Oil Production.  The news wires are reporting that President Obama actively lobbied Senate Democrats to defeat the Keystone pipeline yesterday.  The effect of blocking the Keystone XL Pipeline is to defer 700,000 barrels of oil per day.  And as I reported at The Weekly Standard recently, the president's policy of choking off oil production under federal leases will prevent another 1 million barrels of oil per day this year, and even more next year.  Obama will soon be personally responsible for preventing some 2 million barrels per day of possible North American crude oil production from reaching the American economy.

Oil and Gasoline Prices.  Actual oil prices are unknown to most Americans. ... A few of us know that the price of U.S. crude oil is always cheaper than the price of foreign OPEC crude oil.  Some of us know that because we have followed "World Crude Oil Prices" on the website of the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the U.S. Department of Energy for years.  On November 11, 2011, the EIA shut down the World Crude Oil Prices website.  EIA did not even leave up the valuable historic data on the website.  The Obama administration has hidden actual oil prices from the public.  That should be a scandal.

White House Defends Opposition to Keystone XL Pipeline Bill.  The White House confirmed Thursday [3/8/2012] that President Barack Obama personally lobbied Democratic members of Congress to get them to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline, a project that is projected to have created about 20,000 direct jobs in the United States, and more jobs indirectly.  The president's action drew rebuke from Republicans on Capitol Hill.

Presidential Pork Kills Keystone.  56 Senators voted in favor of a plan yesterday [3/8/2012] that would allow the Keystone pipeline to go forward by cancelling the bureaucratic roadblocks put up by the Obama administration/world-wide bus tour. ... Yet, despite the majority vote, Senate rules apparently require a 60-vote supermajority to create jobs in this country.

The best way for government to reduce oil dependence? Do nothing.  [Scroll down]  After the oil shocks of the 1970s, the United States succeeded in reducing its use of oil.  As late as 1995, the United States was using no more oil than it had used in 1978.  Not its use per person, or use per vehicle, but its use, period.  This progress was not accomplished by reinventing the internal combustion engine.  It was accomplished by (1) shifting homes from oil to gas heat; (2) ending the burning of heavy oil by electrical utilities; and (3) shifting freight traffic from trucks to trains.  No government official planned these changes.  They just happened, in response to market forces.  Result:  Even as Americans put more cars on the road — and drove further in them — they successfully decreased their oil reliance.
[Emphasis added.]

Sen. Reid raises possible FTC probe of gasoline.  Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid on Tuesday [2/28/2012] said he hoped the Federal Trade Commission would look into rising domestic gasoline prices, noting "rampant speculation" in oil markets.

The Editor says...
The market exists to allow investors to speculate.  The Senator might as well launch an investigation into rampant shopping at the supermarket.

Tell America the whole truth about gas prices, Mr. President.  [Scroll down]  The president is just flat wrong about those silver bullets.  His predecessor pulled the trigger on one on July 15, 2008, by lifting an executive branch moratorium on oil and gas exploration and development in the Outer Continental Shelf regions off America's coasts.  Literally within minutes, the price-per-barrel of oil on the world market plunged from just below its historic high of $149 to $136, a 6.3 percent decrease.  Bush also challenged the then-Democratic Congress to lift a parallel legislative moratorium on the same areas.

Saving this for an "October surprise"?
Obama administration coy on possibility of tapping oil reserve as gas prices rise.  The Obama administration is staying mum about the possibility of opening up the Strategic Petroleum Reserve as a way to curb the rise in gas prices — declining to rule it in or out while insisting all along that officials are not interested in "short-term fixes."  Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner stirred speculation on Friday [2/24/2012] when, in an interview on CNBC, he said "there's a case for the use of the reserve in some circumstances."

Obama's sour spot on energy.  The Obama administration has been slow-walking oil drilling permits in the Gulf of Mexico, has continued the long-standing opposition of most Democrats and some Republicans to the common sense policy of oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska and has blocked the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, apparently at the behest of wealthy campaign contributors — and seems to realize the political idiocy of this policy, as witness the totally-without-credibility denial by Press Secretary Jay Carney that the president did what he did.

Americans support Keystone XL pipeline, poll says.  Americans who have heard about the Keystone XL pipeline overwhelmingly support the proposal to carry Canadian oil across the United States to Gulf Coast refineries, according to a Pew Research poll released Thursday [2/23/2012].  Among those who knew about the pipeline, 66 percent said the federal government should approve the project.  The poll found only 23 percent opposed it.

Gassy Rhetoric: DNC chair blamed Republicans for high gas prices in 2005.  Obama told students in Miami on Thursday that there is "no silver bullet" when it comes to lowering gas prices.  The White House press secretary told reporters this week there are no "magic solutions."  But Democrats haven't always been so consistent in their message.  In fact, one prominent Democrat argued in 2005 that President Bush and Republicans were directly to blame for high gas prices.

Jay Carney reveals Republicans are to blame for Obama killing Keystone XL Pipeline.  It was the initial accidental admission by an administration spokesman that there was something other than credit to be assessed for Obama's torpedoing the job-creating pipeline from Alberta, Canada to Texas to carry 700,000 barrels of reliable crude oil per day to American refineries from the United States' largest, most reliable and friendliest trading partner, enhancing energy security and keeping billions of dollars a year from flowing to unfriendly regimes in sandy, hot places across the dangerous, environmentally-sensitive seas.  Unless reversed soon by, say, a presidential administration of a different political flavor, Canada will begin building a shorter pipeline to its Pacific coast to sell the oil to Asia, namely China.

'Stupid' and Oil Prices.  'The American people aren't stupid," thundered President Obama yesterday in Miami, ridiculing Republicans who are blaming him for rising gasoline prices.  Let's hope he's right, because not even Forrest Gump could believe the logic of what Mr. Obama is trying to sell.  To wit, that a) gasoline prices are beyond his control, but b) to the extent oil and gas production is rising in America, his energy policies deserve all the credit, and c) higher prices are one more reason to raise taxes on oil and gas drillers while handing even more subsidies to his friends in green energy.

API accuses Obama of lying about energy.  The White House is lying to the American public when it says its policies are responsible for increased oil production, the American Petroleum Institute said.

Oil Execs Say Obama Led Us To 'Energy Abyss'.  Energy executives and other industry players gathered for the North American Prospect Expo (NAPE) in Houston shredded administration assertions that it is opening up areas for oil and gas exploration and that its policies are responsible for increased oil and gas production on President Obama's watch.  "These have been the most difficult three years from a policy standpoint that I've ever seen in my career," Bruce Vincent, president of Houston oil and natural gas producer Swift Energy, told the Houston Chronicle.

Top 10 reasons to elect anybody but Obama.  [#4]  With his Keystone Pipeline XL ruling, Obama showed his true colors, choosing to placate the environmental lobby over jobs for American worker.  His deep-water oil-drilling moratorium in the Gulf sent jobs to Brazil.  Vast areas in Alaska and off the U.S. coasts remain off-limits for development.

Obama's pipeline decision is just insane.  It isn't often that a president makes a decision that has no redeeming virtues and — beyond the symbolism — won't even advance the goals of the groups that demanded it.  All it tells us is that Obama is so obsessed with his re-election that, through some sort of political calculus, he believes that placating his environmental supporters will improve his chances.

House votes to kick-start Keystone XL and open ANWR for drilling.  The House Thursday [2/16/2012] passed an energy measure to fund highway and transportation projects that also included contentious language to kick-start the Keystone pipeline and open the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to drilling.  The bill seeks to expand offshore drilling for oil and gas and create a shale oil leasing program, and passed mostly along party lines 237-187.

The Obama Fable about Energy.  As I always say it is better to read Obama's speeches then to just listen.  Obama never talked about the high price of gasoline at the pump in his last SOTU.  It is way too high, and it is causing folks to have to sacrifice.  But, after all, Obama said we would need to sacrifice for hope and change.  The big question should have been answered by the community organizer as to why the price of oil is getting out of sight again?

China will get the oil from Canada that could have come to the U.S.
Texans Are Baffled by the Keystone Decision.  It seems unimaginable, yet President Obama refused Trans-Canada's request to run its pipeline across the border from Canada to the Texas Gulf Coast.  This extensive pipeline holds the potential of moving up to 830,000 barrels of crude oil per day — including oil produced in North Dakota and Montana — to refineries here in Texas.  Translated into job numbers, that's up to 20,000 direct jobs and estimates of up to hundreds of thousands of indirect jobs created by this $7 billion project.

Canada's Harper talks oil with China as U.S. faces $4 gas.  Just as he promised he would do if the United States rejected the Keystone XL pipeline, Prime Minister Stephen Harper headed to Beijing earlier this week on a four-day trade mission in which he is expected to seek a deal to sell millions of barrels of Canadian oil to China.  Since China is aggressively pursuing energy deals around the world to support its economic expansion, expect Harper to come home with an official signature on the dotted line.

Enough Oil?  A report for November 2011 indicated that, for the first time in forty years, the U.S. was a net exporter of petroleum products.  Liberals seized on this report as evidence that the U.S. needs no acceleration in drilling, no XL pipeline — indeed, no new exploration or production of any kind. ... In reality, the U.S. still imports 51% of its oil despite the existence of vast undeveloped reserves to be found offshore and onshore.  The fact that America imports 51% of its oil, at huge cost and from unfriendly regimes including Venezuela, is hardly an argument to halt drilling.

The Great Keystone XL Pipeline Massacre.  What the Great Keystone XL Pipeline Presidential Massacre of 2012 affirms is the president's out-of-touch energy policy:  Oil is bad.  The sun and wind are good.  This policy, of course, is dumb and dumber.  After whacking the pipeline, Mr. Obama would have us believe that more time and more environmental studies need to be conducted.  What a convenient political move, what a convenient lie.

Obama's "green energy" policies won't work.  Two powerful forces are pushing crude oil prices up.  First, the Obama Administration is restricting American production of oil through its "no drill America" energy policy, in which it obstructs efforts to increase domestic oil and gas production.  This is bad for consumers not only because it restricts total world supply, but especially because it restricts supply from sources unaffected by foreign political instability.  Secondly, oil from the Middle East remains vulnerable as illustrated by Iran's continuing threat to mine the Straits of Hormuz and so block 35 percent of all world oil carried by ship.

Narrow Interest Blocks Big Pipeline.  The Obama Administration, encouraged by environmental groups, has blocked yet another affordable energy project — the Keystone XL Pipeline.  Add this to the unconscionable slowdown of leasing and production in the Gulf of Mexico, foot-dragging on production in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, blocks on offshore production in the Atlantic and Pacific, and continued prohibitions and impediments to production in non-park, non-wilderness areas of the Western U.S. and ANWR.  For each one, the claim is that the production wouldn't make much difference.

ANWR — Is President Obama Serious About Domestic Oil Production?  President Obama admitted in the State of the Union that energy production creates jobs, so why isn't he opening up new areas like the North Slope of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) for oil and gas production?  As we have noted numerous times, the federal government leases a mere 3 percent of federal lands for energy production.  The United States is already the world's third largest oil producer, but we could produce a lot more oil if the federal government would let the American people explore for oil on more federal lands.
[Italics in original.]

Obama on Energy: An Exercise in Nuance.  Obama's "Green Energy" policies are based on the global warming hoax.  His decision to cancel the Keystone XL Pipeline project pleased environmentalists, but at the cost of 20,000 jobs.  And "global warming" is Obama's scare tactic.  During his State of the Union (SOTU) address on January 24, 2012, Obama applauded his administration for increases in oil and natural gas production in the U.S.  He also claimed that the federal government, under his watch, invented hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling.

Senate GOP floats bill to bypass Obama and approve Keystone.  Senate GOP leaders are flexing their constitutional muscles with a new push for approval of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline.  Citing Congress's powers under the Commerce Clause, Senate Republicans floated legislation Monday [1/30/2012] that would bypass the Obama administration and approve TransCanada Corp.'s pipeline to carry oil sands crude from Alberta to Gulf Coast refineries.

Moving Oil on Buffett's Railroad.  It's already been widely reported that Warren Buffett, a major shareholder in Obama, Inc. will be one of the primary beneficiaries of the decision from the White House to kill the Keystone pipeline and the jobs it would create.  The administration now makes no attempt at all to disguise the fact that most decisions he makes are made in the best interest of Obama, Inc. shareholders.

Rejection of Keystone XL a Hammer Blow to Economy.  Obama has blocked a project that would have given the United States a secure and safe pipeline that would have fed our economy with 700,000 barrels of oil every day — and created hundreds of thousands of jobs.  And this from our most trusted and closest trading partner, Canada.  That's nearly half of what the United States receives from the Persian Gulf, through the Strait of Hormuz, which is shaping up to be the next global flashpoint for military conflict.  If that does happen, Obama will learn just how it feels to be "rushed" into a decision about energy policy.

Obama claims credit for cheap natural gas.  President Barack Obama has been taking the credit for the worldwide boon of cheap natural-gas, and declining to give credit to the entrepreneurial energy industry.

Dem lawmaker says 20,000 Keystone XL jobs 'not that many'.  Chicago Democratic Rep. Jan Schakowsky (Ill.) drew fire from Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) on Wednesday [1/25/2012] when she dismissed the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, suggesting the 20,000 jobs it could create were relatively insignificant in the scheme of the greater economy.

Drawing a pipeline in the sand.  On Wednesday, Rep. Fred Upton's House Energy and Commerce Committee is expected to question Kerri-Ann Jones, assistant secretary of state for oceans and international environment and scientific affairs, about the administration's choice.  "We want to know why this project was derailed at the 11th hour after an extensive review process and with time to spare before the president's deadline," the Michigan Republican said in a statement Thursday [1/19/2012].  The House had given Mr. Obama until Feb. 21 to act on the project.

Destroying America by Denying Access to Energy.  It is the crime of the century that America, home to some of the world's greatest reserves of coal, natural gas and oil, is being deliberately destroyed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior as they do everything in their power to restrict access and drive energy producers out of business.  It is common sense that a nation that cannot produce sufficient electricity to turn on its lights and power its manufacturing sector will be destroyed if current Obama administration regulations and actions continue.

Obama loves oil! Not!  Without his nose growing visibly, the President claimed the government was behind the technological advances that led to the current shale gas boom, and even suggested that he might take credit for the rise in domestic oil production.  In fact, Mr. Obama's administration has hampered and castigated oil companies at every turn.  In the light of the hysterical grandstanding over the BP Gulf spill (whose impact proved to be greatly exaggerated), it was ironic indeed to hear the President now declare a great opening up of offshore exploration.

What can the President do to make America Prosper?  The President's policies are raising energy prices, which makes consumers poorer and destroys jobs in energy-intensive industries.  If President Obama is sincere when he says that 'we can't wait' to create jobs and economic growth, then he should reverse his anti-energy policies and tell the EPA to stop its regulatory onslaught against coal-fired electricity.  He could start tonight by taking back his decision to block the Keystone pipeline.

Keystone Kops energy policy.  In his State of the Union speech, President Obama had barely cleared his throat when he outlined his vision for an American "future where we're in control of our own energy, and our security and prosperity aren't so tied to unstable parts of the world."  Just days before, he had delivered a crippling blow to his own plan.

15 Questions The Mainstream Media Would Ask Barack Obama If He Were A Republican:  [#5]  When you took office, gas was $1.79 per gallon.  Since then, you've demonized the oil industry, dramatically slowed offshore drilling, blocked ANWR, and killed the Keystone Pipeline.  Now, gas is $3.34 per gallon.  How much higher do you anticipate driving gas prices?

Let's restore sanity to environmental reviews.  "The score is Job-Killers, two; American workers, zero.  We are completely and totally disappointed.  This is politics at its worst," Laborers International Union of North America President Terry O'Sullivan said last week following President Obama's decision to require more environmental study of the Keystone XL pipeline.  Unions weren't the only ones roundly criticizing Obama's transparent cave-in to environmental activists.  The Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the Houston Chronicle and USA Today all condemned the decision too.

President Obama's job-killing environmental extremism.  The Keystone XL pipeline would have been a 1,700-mile pipeline transporting Canadian tar sands oil to Texas refineries for domestic use and export.  Tens of thousands of jobs for Americans in six U.S. states were expected to be created as part of this project.  The pipeline would have aided in reducing dependence on Middle Eastern oil, provided more oil for U.S. refineries and accelerated free trade with Canada.  But President Obama seems to be too busy pandering for green voters to worry about reducing unemployment.

Buffett's Burlington Northern Among Winners From Keystone Denial.  Warren Buffett's Burlington Northern Santa Fe LLC is among U.S. and Canadian railroads that stand to benefit from the Obama administration's decision to reject TransCanada Corp.'s Keystone XL oil pipeline permit.  With modest expansion, railroads can handle all new oil produced in western Canada through 2030, according to an analysis of the Keystone proposal by the U.S. State Department.

The Editor has two questions:
Do railroads present less danger to the environment than pipes?  And why is the State Department involved in this anyway?

Obama's energy policies have us over a barrel.  On the same day Obama kills the Keystone pipeline, the Saudis announce plans to boost price of oil.

Congress has legal clout on Keystone pipeline: study.  The Congress has the constitutional right to legislate permits for cross-border oil pipelines like TransCanada's Keystone XL, according to a new legal analysis released late on Friday [1/20/2012].  The study by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service could give a boost to Republicans drafting legislation to overturn a decision this week by President Barack Obama to put the $7 billion Alberta-to-Texas project on ice.

Environmentalism and the Leisure Class:  This week President Obama handed down what may prove to be one of the most fateful decisions of his entire administration when he rejected the plan to build the Keystone XL Pipeline carrying oil from the tar sands of Canada to the refineries of Houston. ... In turning down Keystone, however, the President has uncovered an ugly little secret that has always lurked beneath the surface of environmentalism.  Its basic appeal is to the affluent.  Despite all the professions of being "liberal" and "against big business," environmentalism's main appeal is that it promises to slow the progress of industrial progress.

Rejecting the Keystone pipeline is an act of insanity.  President Obama's rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico is an act of national insanity.  It isn't often that a president makes a decision that has no redeeming virtues and — beyond the symbolism — won't even advance the goals of the groups that demanded it.  All it tells us is that Obama is so obsessed with his reelection that, through some sort of political calculus, he believes that placating his environmental supporters will improve his chances.

Obama's Keystone Blunder.  Using the fig leaf of a State Department review of the environmental impact on Nebraska of a possible pipeline rupture, Barack Obama has killed the Keystone XL pipeline project, and with it tens of thousands of good paying jobs.  Aside from the oddity of the State Department acting as the protector of the environment of a landlocked state (isn't that the job of the EPA, and hasn't the pipeline already passed EPA review?), it is hard to see how the decision will benefit Obama poltically.

Obama the Job-Killer.  Republicans shouldn't let a single day go by without reminding voters of the Keystone pipeline, the most visible symbol of the Obama administration's hostility to economic growth and job creation.

A Lose, Lose, Lose, Lose, Lose Proposition.  If the Keystone project raises environmental issues, then every other comparable one would too.  It is not as if the route bisects Yosemite on its way to Big Sur.  How strange — we assume that the Saudis or the Turks can build pipelines across their own lands without environmental problems, but that we, the apparently less technologically advanced, cannot.  We hear that oil is "fungible"; if so, each barrel that we pass on, someone else less green won't.

Republicans fume as Obama rejects Keystone pipeline.  In an election-year decision that pits the Democrats' twin pillars of big labor and environmentalists against each other, the Obama administration Wednesday rejected the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, which would have provided tens of thousands of jobs from the Canadian border to Texas.

Obama rejects the Keystone XL pipeline and blames Congress.
The Anti-Jobs President.  The central conflict of the Obama Presidency has been between the jobs and growth crisis he inherited and the President's [eager] pursuit of his larger social-policy ambitions.  The tragedy is that the economic recovery has been so lackluster because the second impulse keeps winning.  Yesterday came proof positive with the White House's repudiation of the Keystone XL pipeline, TransCanada's $7 billion shovel-ready project that would support tens of thousands of jobs if only it could get the requisite U.S. permits.  Those jobs, apparently, can wait.

The Passive-Aggressive Presidency.  The Obama administration today [1/18/2012] denied a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring crude from Canada's tar sands to Texas' refineries.  But as National Journal reports, that doesn't mean the pipeline will never get built.

Obama administration rejects Keystone XL pipeline.  The State Department will shoot down the Keystone XL pipeline, closing off a valuable source of oil and discarding thousands of American jobs. ... Supposedly the State Department might still be willing to entertain an alternative route for the pipeline... but of course they'd dither forever, the President would repair to the golf course, and the "alternative route" will end up leading to Beijing.

Only Obama and Big Green oppose Keystone pipeline.  All that stands between the start of work and the creation of thousands of good-paying jobs in America is a green light from President Obama.  But Obama fears angering thousands of campaign contributors and workers associated with the Big Green environmental movement, which rabidly opposes Keystone.  So he's waffled and delayed a decision until after the November 2012 election.

Interior Department energy propaganda misleading, disingenuous.  The interior department announced Tuesday [1/10/2012] that oil and gas lease sales on public lands increased 20 percent in 2011, generating more than $250 million in profits for taxpayers.  The fact, however, is that oil production on federal lands, lease sales, and revenue have drastically declined during the Obama administration.  "The American people need only to check their electric bills or the price they are paying at the pump to see just how well the Obama administration's energy policies are working. ... The president promised to make energy prices 'skyrocket,' and so he has." ... said IER Senior Vice President Dan Kish.

Keystone XL pipeline: Oil chief issues threat to Obama over decision.  The head of the US's biggest oil and gas lobbying group said on Wednesday [1/4/2012] that the Obama administration will face serious political consequences if it rejects a Canada-to-Texas oil sands pipeline that has been opposed by environmental groups.

Oil industry: 'Huge political consequences' if pipeline rejected.  A top oil industry official delivered a clear warning to President Obama Wednesday [1/4/2012]:  approve the Keystone XL pipeline or face "huge political consequences."  American Petroleum Institute President Jack Gerard urged Obama to quickly approve the pipeline, which would carry oil sands crude from Alberta, Canada, to refineries along the Gulf Coast.

Obama's War on U.S. Energy.  The Obama administration delayed the proposed Canadian Keystone XL pipeline that would provide more oil for America's needs.  It imposed an illegal moratorium on oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.  While China drills for oil off the coast of Cuba, access to offshore oil is restricted on both the East and West coasts of America and, of course, in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  According to the Department of Interior's 1987 resource evaluation of ANWR's Coastal Plain, there is a 95% chance that a 'super field' with 500 million barrels would be discovered.

Obama's Delay On Keystone Carries A Large Cost.  In November, the White House announced it would delay deciding on the project until after next year's election.  Administration officials claim they need more time to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of the $7 billion, 2,100-mile project to transport crude oil from Alberta, Canada, to major American refineries in the Gulf Coast.

Create wealth, not jobs.  "There's no reason for Republicans in Congress to stand in the way of more construction projects," President Obama told an Ohio crowd in September.  "There's no reason to stand in the way of more jobs."  However, the president now wants to block a massive private-sector construction project that would create the thousands of jobs he demands — the Keystone XL pipeline.

The Keystone Ultimatum.  One provision would force a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline within 60 days.  This is the most shovel-ready project in America, as the TransCanada company has already made plans to buy the steel pipe to carry crude oil from Canada and the Upper Great Plains to the Gulf of Mexico.  The pipeline would create thousands of new jobs, both immediately and downstream, which is why the Teamsters and other unions support it.  But Mr. Obama's green financiers see the pipeline as a conveyer of evil carbon, and so the President recently postponed any decision past the election into 2013.

Union Leaders Blast Obama For Keystone XL Pipeline Delay.  Obama's other two job-creating ideas are extended unemployment benefits and infrastructure spending.  "Infrastructure" is an ancient Greek word meaning "huge construction project."  Trans-continental pipelines, for example.  The President's ideologically and politically motivated indecision could do a lot more than simply "delay" the pipeline, which Canada could route in other directions, if America doesn't want it.  [Brent] Booker correctly fears such an outcome.

Obama's Keystone cop-out.  President Obama has done everything in his power to keep oil from flowing through the Keystone XL pipeline.  TransCanada says this $13 billion project would put 20,000 to work immediately, but the Obama administration wants none of it.

Obama Blocks The Biggest Shovel-Ready Project Ever.  The president says that extending unemployment benefits and the payroll tax cut will create more jobs than an oil pipeline from Canada.  There are at least 20,000 members of the 99% who would disagree.

Obama Insists He's 'All In' for Domestic Energy Production.  President Barack Obama, who punted a decision on the Keystone XL oil pipeline until after the presidential election, nevertheless insists that his administration has gone "all in" when it comes to domestic energy production.  He also flatly refused any give-and-take with Republicans to speed up the pipeline project.

Top 10 Most Needed Government Reforms.  [#6]  Energy production:  It is far past the time for the federal government to get out of the way and let America's vast energy resources be developed.  With large coastal oil reserves and shale oil potential in the heartland, it is a crime that America can be held hostage for its energy needs by Middle Eastern madmen.

White House denies pipeline delay was political decision.  The White House is pushing back against fresh GOP claims that the administration had politics in mind when it delayed a decision on whether to approve the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline until after the 2012 elections.  Senate GOP leaders revived the allegation Wednesday when rolling out new legislation that would force a decision about permitting the proposed Alberta-to-Texas pipeline within 60 days.

Will The EPA Choke Oil Shale Production?  The latest salvo in the administration's war on energy may be new rules and permits to regulate a process to get oil and gas from porous rock, sacrificing jobs and economic growth while under review.

Energy in America: No Bridge to Oil.  North of the Arctic Circle, the tiny village of Nuiqsut, Alaska, has become the latest flash point in the struggle between oil drilling and environmentalism.  The town, with a population of 400, nearly all Eskimos, sits on the edge of the Colville River and the National Petroleum Reserve, or NPR.  How isolated is it?  It takes four flights and eight hours to get there from Seattle.  Conoco Phillips wants to build a road bridge and pipeline over the river to connect to the nearby Alpine development, which sits just outside the NPR.  But the Army Corps of Engineers rejected the plan telling, the oil company it had to go under the river.

Obama's Disastrous Energy Record:  The energy policies of the Obama administration have made America less safe and have significantly contributed to our nation's high unemployment rate and lackluster economic growth.  At the same time, President Obama's failure to expand our oil resources has led to higher prices at the gas pump for all Americans.  In short, the Obama administration has been an utter failure in managing the energy sources of the United States.

Hey Obama: Gas Up and Go.  [This is] the most anti-oil, anti-energy administration this country has seen since the failed presidency of Jimmy Carter. ... But that's what happens when your president goes on a jihad against American energy.  Obama has opposed coal, he wants to be punitive against the oil industry, won't allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and, in a politically cowardly move, stalled plans for the Keystone XL pipeline.  The only energy Obama seems to support is the mass anger of Occupy Wall Street.

'Lazy' Isn't America's problem.  President Obama was wrong to say at the Asia-Pacific economic summit that America has gotten "lazy" in the last few decades at attracting foreign investment.  What he should have said, in light of his administration's handling of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, is that America has become quite adept at blocking it.

Powering Down: Federal regulation is killing energy development.  American energy policy is increasingly defined in terms of what is prohibited, not what is promoted.  Coal, nuclear, and natural "shale" gas all have been hampered by the current administration.

China wants our crude, Canada says.  Canada expects strong interest in its heavy crude oil reserves from China after the U.S. government balked on a major oil pipeline project, the government said.

Sticking Our Head In Tar Sands.  The administration plans to study rerouting the Keystone XL pipeline until after next year's election, delaying needed jobs and energy.  By that time, Canada's oil will be on its way to China.

Canada Looks to Asia after Oil Pipeline Delay.  Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is disappointed with the Obama administration's decision to delay construction of TransCanada Corp.'s $7 billion Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico.  The delay is designed not to ruffle environmentalists feathers before next year's election.  Harper says Canada won't wait and will start selling more of its energy products to Asia.

Obama to Be Involved in Keystone XL Pipeline Decision.  President Obama says he will be closely involved in the decision on whether to approve the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline that has pitted two of his key constituencies, labor unions and environmental groups, against each other.

Obama, Liberals, And Destructive Energy "Policies".  President Barack Obama seems to have determined that our problem isn't so much "foreign oil," but oil itself.  His Administration has sought to force the nation away from consuming all types of oil — both foreign and domestic — and to move us in the direction of his environmentally preferred "green" energy sources.  Unfortunately, the President has approached energy policy just as he approaches most everything else — with the naïve assumption that as long as lots of government programs and mandates are established, the agenda will be accomplished and all will go well.

Obama's Regulatory Excess and Abuse.  Shortly after Obama took office, his Interior Secretary Ken Salazar "canceled land leases for energy development on 77 parcels of land in Utah.  Then he canceled a pending oil-shale lease sale based on his expert judgment that it 'didn't meet the smell test.'"  Kerpen adds, "Overall there has been a steep drop-off in leasing on federal lands....  2010 saw a 79 percent drop in leasing in Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming from 2005.  Total onshore royalties dropped 33 percent in just two years."  Even more virulent is the Obama Administration's attack on coal, which the President seems to have targeted for quick phaseout, even though we have the world's most expansive coal reserves, offering 200 years of inexpensive energy.

We must remove energy production obstacles to create jobs.  Two of the biggest challenges facing the United States are getting people back to work and becoming less dependent on foreign oil from hostile countries.  Unfortunately, the President's rigid belief that stimulus spending could create private-sector jobs has failed and left us with higher unemployment and skyrocketing debt.  His energy policies undermine America's security by making it more difficult for entrepreneurs and private employers to produce domestic energy resources.

A Disastrous Presidency.  The gulf lost 40,000 jobs when the president decided it was best to shut down all oil production after the BP oil spill.  The approval for Keystone XL Pipeline sits on his desk, awaiting his signature.  It would connect Canadian oil from the tar sands of Alberta with refineries in Cushing, Oklahoma and Nederland, Texas, while providing 20,000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs.  With recent discoveries and improvements in drilling techniques, some have called America the Saudi Arabia of natural gas.  America also has the largest oil reserves in the world; the Bakken Formation alone is said to contain more than 11 billion barrels.

Sen. Inhofe: Obama's EPA Waging War on Fossil Fuels.  "The President of the United States wants to destroy American energy," said Oklahoma GOP Sen. James Inhofe, the ranking member of the Senate Energy and Public Works Committee.  "His intention is to kill fossil fuels, which we rely on for 99% of the energy in America.  "All of this killing of our energy supply is not by accident.  It's on purpose."

Texas EPA Czar Pushes 'Urgency' Drilling Regulations.  Fearing President Barack Obama might not get re-elected to the White House in 2012, Texas EPA Czar, Al Armendariz, a professor at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, called for greater "urgency" in getting oil and gas fields in the Lone Star to be declared as "health hazards."

Greens want terror oil in your gas tank.  Canada, not the Middle East, is the No. 1 supplier of oil to the United States, a symbiotic relationship that has existed for decades.  What's more, the Canadian province of Alberta is home to the world's third-largest petroleum reserves.  Viewing America as the most logical market for its expanding production, the government of Alberta and the TransCanada Corp. are proposing a pipeline called Keystone XL to bring crude oil from Alberta to refineries along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast.

End Mindless Energy Policy.  Of all the absolutely mindless things coming out of Washington these days, it's hard for me to imagine anything more mindless than the Obama administration's thinking on energy policy.  His energy secretary has said he thinks we'd all be better off if gas cost $7 per gallon.  They've used the BP oil spill, whose lasting environmental impact seems to be minimal, as an excuse to end all deepwater drilling and virtually all other drilling.  This has crippled the economies of oil-dependent states, particularly those along the Gulf Coast.

Oil industry study: Wider drilling would add 1 million jobs.  A study commissioned by a major oil-industry lobbying group found that federal policies to expand oil-and-gas development could add 1.1 million U.S. jobs over the next decade and bring in $36 billion in federal revenues by 2015.  "We can be a major driver in the economic recovery and we stand ready to do so," said American Petroleum Institute (API) President Jack Gerard in an interview about the study, unveiled Wednesday [9/7/2011].

The Obama energy crisis as you've never before seen it.  It's been eclipsed somewhat in recent months by the continued stagnation of the economy and the increasingly loud Republican presidential nomination battle, but the energy crisis caused by President Obama's Permatorium on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico is just as serious as it ever was.  And it's going to get worse if something isn't done soon to lift the bureaucratic strangulation being applied to the oil and natural gas industries by Obama's Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar.

Congressman warns Alaska pipeline could be dismantled within 10 years.  The Obama administration is setting the stage for the dismantling of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and poses the greatest threat to its existence today, according to House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings.  The 800-mile pipeline cost $8 billion to construct in the 1970s, and has moved more than 18 billion barrels of crude oil.  Three oil companies constructed it, in the face of significant opposition from environmentalists, in response to the 1973 Arab oil embargo.

Ruby Red Tape.  The abstraction known as "regulation" is often invoked as a reason businesses aren't growing or hiring fast enough, and with good reason.  Anyone wondering what that means in practice should consult the epic saga of the Ruby pipeline.

Solving Our Debt Crisis Through Energy Freedom.  Things would not look so bleak if the federal government allowed more freedom in the development of American energy resources.  Energy freedom would boost economic growth and lower oil prices.  The fiscal crisis would be eased as more revenues flowed into the Treasury, and fewer people [would need] unemployment benefits and food stamps.

The Tea Party, Right About Everything.  [Scroll down]  According to a new study by IHS Global Insight, merely picking up the pace in granting oil drilling permits would go a long way in producing jobs throughout the US, adding to GDP and reducing dependency on foreign oil sources.  In 2012 alone it could mean 230,000 new jobs, $44B more in GDP, 150 million more barrels of oil, and $15B less in imported oil.

Oiling The Economy.  With the job market in the dumps, and the president moving that to the top of his priority list, wouldn't getting out of the way of 740,000 jobs that could be created in the oil industry be a no-brainer?  Well, no.

Petroleum leader decries 'extreme' regulations.  Despite President Obama's pledge to cut red tape for job-creating industries, regulations and other delays are holding up billions of dollars in investments and thousands of jobs for oil and gas producers, the head of the American Petroleum Institute tells The Washington Times.

Obama's assault on the rule of law.  [Scroll down]  In 2008, the Senate voted against the "cap-and-trade" bill that would have created a carbon-tax system and vast federal power to interfere in the energy market.  So the Environmental Protection Agency declared carbon dioxide a pollutant and has embarked on a massive scheme to impose cap-and-trade through bureaucratic power.  Meanwhile, Mr. Obama's green fascists have virtually shut down new oil exploration and drilling.

Obama continues his war on cheap American energy.  Barack Obama's EPA has been on a crusade to kill off efforts to boost America's domestic energy supplies.  We are now among the least attractive nations for energy companies seeking to explore and develop energy supplies.  The American people are waking up to the man-made disaster that Barack Obama has created.  Three quarters of Americans now think our oil and gas resources are under-exploited.  Yet, Barack Obama and his Democratic allies are doing all they can do kill carbon and jam down our throats ruinously expensive and uneconomic green schemes that benefit their donors.

This is an original compilation, Copyright © 2013 by Andrew K. Dart




The use of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for political gain:

Obama's Oily Desperation.  The excuse being used by the Obama Administration and the International Energy Agency for the oil release is that reduced oil exports from Libya are raising energy prices and thus hurting world economies.  However, the Saudis have already said they would increase production to offset losses from Libya — and they have done so. ... The idea that the federal government needed to knock oil prices down further or faster for economic purposes while oil was already in what would be considered a dramatic sell-off is simply not credible.

Too Little, Way Too Late.  The Democrats have been blocking oil companies from developing America's fossil fuel resources — the largest in the world — for decades.  Whenever their anti-drilling policies are challenged, they assure us that increasing domestic production would do little or nothing to bring down the cost of energy.  Yet, whenever the price of gasoline becomes politically embarrassing, what do they do?  They take "emergency" action to increase the supply of petroleum by opening up the Strategic Petroleum Reserve — some 700 million barrels of oil that are stored along the Gulf coast.

The Strategic Petroleum Reserve Is an Obama '12 Reelection Asset.  The American economy, the one that even Democrats admit Obama now owns, is hurtling towards a near depression so fast that the administration will exploit any asset, and embrace any ploy, however desperate, in the hopes the economy will resurrect itself and reflate Obama's plummeting poll numbers at the same time.

Cash for Pumpers.  On Thursday [6/23/2011] the President announced that he would release 30 million barrels of oil from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve.  The immediate effect on world markets was to knock the oil price down by over $4 a barrel.  But many experts question the wisdom — and the timing — of the move.  Clearly, the timing of the withdrawal was politically motivated.

Is Obama's Oil Dump A Political Ploy?  The White House announced Thursday that for only the third time in history, the U.S. would release 30 million barrels of oil from the national stockpile. ... The spigots have been opened just twice — in 2005 by President Bush, who released 11 million barrels after disruptions from Hurricane Katrina, and in 1992 by President Bush Sr., who tapped 20 million barrels in the wake of the Gulf War.  President Obama's release — which is far bigger than either of those two emergencies — is supposedly in response to disruptions from Libya, which isn't even a U.S. supplier.  It isn't our crisis.

Obama's Oily Desperation.  In a move that has everyone from oil analysts to traders to petroleum producers scratching their heads, the Obama Administration announced on Thursday morning that the U.S. along with over two dozen other nations will release 60 million barrels of oil from emergency oil stock piles.  Half of the total release, or 30 million barrels, will come from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

The Strategic Petroleum Reserve Isn't a Political ATM.  The Obama administration announced Thursday the answer to a question it hass been mulling for months:  It will tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to release 30 million barrels of oil over the next 30 days.  The administration is hoping the move will lower the price of oil.  While the move led to immediate declines in the short term, this move will do little to impact prices and energy security over the long term and only proves that the administration's energy policy is a disaster.

Business group slams Obama over oil release.  Washington's most powerful business lobby panned the Obama administration's decision to tap the nation's strategic oil reserve Thursday, calling the move "ill-advised."

New Low.  Less than a year ago, the Obama Administration was insisting that its moratorium on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico would do no harm to our nation's economy because we could just buy more oil from OPEC.  Now, instead of allowing more production in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore Alaska, the President is tapping our strategic reserve in the salt domes of Texas and Louisiana, which will only have to be refilled later at potentially higher prices.  Tapping the SPR will do nothing to bring down oil prices in the long term, but rather distort markets even further without bringing any significant new energy supplies to market.  If allowed to drill in Alaska, we could produce an extra one million barrels a day for decades, rather than one month, as the president's plan calls for.

Obama wrong to curry political favor by tapping oil reserve.  Tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to curry political favor shows how out of touch President Barack Obama and his administration are to reality.

Our Hokey President.  [Obama's] release of oil from the strategic reserve is a classic:  the Democrats tell us that increasing our domestic production won't affect gas prices, until they face a political crisis.  Then the clouds part, momentarily, and they remember Economics 1:  increasing supply will lower prices.

Tap the nation's true oil reserve in the Gulf of Mexico.  The Obama administration has come under criticism for its decision to drain 30 million barrels from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve, purportedly in an effort to address Libya's unrest and ease prices at the pump.  The critics are right.  This move was not necessary.  Gas prices are trending downward already, and our nation doesn't face an emergency that warrants tapping into the strategic reserve.

Update:
Release of oil from reserves seems to have had no effect.  The move was widely ridiculed as a blatantly political effort to get past the Fourth of July holiday weekend; some liberals, however, hailed it as a success.  The verdict is now in, as the effect of the release has run its course.  This morning, an expert in the field emailed:
  * The SPR's release of 30 million barrels of oil was sold to oil refiners and traders at more than $10/bbl BELOW market.  Can the US taxpayer afford the $300mm subsidy?
  * Does the public know that prices are the same now, less than two weeks since the SPR announcement?  Was this money well spent?

Obama's gas stunt comes up empty.  The results are in from President Obama's controversial decision last month to tap into the nation's oil reserves to drive down gas prices:  none.  Like his futile efforts to revive the moribund U.S. economy by spending $1 trillion in borrowed money, the president's release of 30 million barrels from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve produced nothing more than a brief pause in the steady rise in prices at the pump.

Whether he needs to or not...
Obama may tap Strategic Petroleum Reserve.  [Scroll down]  The whole situation if rife with political implications, especially for President Obama, who faces reelection in November.  Obama can't appear to be seen as weak on Iran.  That would open him up to charges that he's soft on national defense.  But crimping Iran's oil output too much could raise gas prices, angering voters just before they head to the ballot box.




Gangster government attack on oil companies.  The main feature of the Democrats' bill, which was defeated in the Senate but which we probably have not heard the last of, was to deny five major oil companies the domestic production tax credit that is available to all manufacturers and mining companies, including oil companies.  The justification?  Well, big oil companies get lousy ratings in polls.  So stick 'em with a higher tax bill.  Sounds a lot like gangster government to me.

Administration blocks restart of massive oil pipeline, citing leaks.  The Obama administration said Friday [6/3/2011] that a massive pipeline carrying oil across much of the United States must remain shut down until federal regulators are satisfied that it can operate without future leaks.  TransCanada's Keystone pipeline leaked twice last month, fueling opposition to a pending expansion of the project, which is undergoing a wide-ranging federal review.

U.S. Energy Crisis a Liberal Power Grab.  It is no coincidence that U.S. oil production peaked in 1970, the year after President Richard Nixon signed the National Environmental Policy Act and the Environmental Protection Agency was established, just the beginning of a decade of laws that have made the United States the hardest place in the world to produce energy.  When the federal government started taking over roles traditionally held by the states and expanding its reach into every corner of every economic activity in the country, those who love more government had the perfect proxy for justifying more power over the economy and over the way Americans live their lives.

Obama's schizo energy policy.  Rising energy costs already have changed many families' summer vacation plans, threatened to short-circuit the weak recovery from the Great Recession and, combined with recent increases in food prices, contributed to incipient inflationary pressures that foreshadow a lower standard of living and a return to the stagflation of Jimmy Carter's presidency.

New Issa report goes after Obama administration's energy agenda.  Rep. Darrell Issa of California, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, has found another target in the Obama administration's policy agenda:  energy.  Late Monday [5/23/2011], Issa released a scathing report accusing the White House of being complicit in driving up oil prices to push a move to alternative energy sources.

Rising Energy Costs: An Intentional Result Of Government Action.  President Obama, Energy Secretary Chu and others have stated that American consumers should pay more for energy, including electricity and gasoline.  From a political perspective, increasing the price of energy (by whatever means) helps them make the case for "green" energy.  Even beyond the effort to raise energy prices through "cap and trade" legislation that Congress rejected, a pattern of increased enforcement, regulatory delay and new hurdles can be seen across numerous agencies and approval processes.  The result of this government action is less production, higher costs for producers, and more expensive energy.

Natural gas pains.  America's energy woes show what's wrong when politicians intervene in the market. ... As gasoline prices skyrocket, natural-gas backers sense an opportunity to grab a larger share of the fuel market and want lawmakers to climb aboard the "green" fuel express.

Drill, Maybe, Drill.  When President Obama said during his Saturday [5/14/2011] radio address that "we should increase safe and responsible oil production here at home," the operative words were "safe and responsible."  We will drill if it's safe for polar bears, caribou and West Texas lizards, and if it doesn't contribute to the "climate change" myth.  Similar words were used to justify the seven-year moratorium on offshore drilling off both coasts, in the eastern Gulf of Mexico and in the seas off Alaska following last year's Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf, even though no other wells were found to be unsafe.

Obama's latest fake plan for more drilling.  First he promised to open up the Atlantic to exploration.  Then he reneged.  Then he said he'd lift his oil moratorium in the Gulf.  Production has only decreased since.  Yesterday [5/14/2011] Obama again played Lucy to the American energy consumer's Charlie Brown.  This time he is promising to direct "the Department of Interior to conduct annual lease sales in Alaska's National Petroleum Reserve, while respecting sensitive areas, and to speed up the evaluation of oil and gas resources in the mid and south Atlantic."

Cole: "The president doesn't know squat about energy production".  Oklahoma is one of the nation's top energy states, so it's no surprise that its senators and representatives are opposed to President Obama's energy and environmental policies.  What is surprising, however, is the intensity of their reactions to Obama's proposal to do away with $4 billion worth of energy industry tax breaks.

Washington vs. Energy Security.  Americans keep hearing only short-term solutions and narrowly focused rules and regulations.  The U.S. still imports more than half its oil, gasoline prices are at historic highs, and consumers are paying the price.  One bipartisan policy tradition is to deny Americans the use of our own resources.

Shrinking Oil Supplies Put Alaskan Pipeline at Risk.  When the famed Trans Alaska Pipeline carried two million barrels of oil a day, the naturally warm crude surged 800 miles to the Port of Valdez in three days and arrived at a temperature of about 100 degrees.  Now, dwindling oil production along Alaska's northern edge means the pipeline carries less than one-third the volume it once did — and the crude takes five times as long to get to its destination.

Obama war on oil production threatens Alaska pipeline.  The House is voting on the Reversing President Obama's Offshore Moratorium Act today which, among other things, would require the administration to allow drilling in at least 50 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf, including the Arctic.  Also today, The Wall Street Journal's Russell Gold has a great article on how President Obama's efforts to stop new oil fields in Alaska is threatening to shut down the entire Alaska pipeline.

Public Misplaces Blame for High Oil Prices.  [Scroll down]  Obama and other Democrats have pooh-poohed the idea of more drilling.  First, new leases would take years to result in new oil, they say.  Second, they argue that oil companies are sitting on existing leases, with some hinting that companies are deliberately sitting on proven reserves.  Oil companies point out that it takes a long time to get to the point of drilling.  They have to find the oil — if it exists — and then figure out if it's economical to pull it out of the ground.

Phony 'Safety' Fears Cripple U.S. Oil.  The Energy Department wants to find ways to make hydraulic fracturing, a fast-growing method of extracting natural gas, safer and cleaner.  Say, isn't that how the administration justified its offshore drilling ban?

Get a Clue About Drilling And $4 Gas.  With last month marking the one year anniversary of the Gulf spill, the public should take a moment to review America's energy landscape.  They won't like what they see.  The White House has declared open season on our domestic oil firms.

More oil would mean smaller deficit.  With the price of oil at more than $100 per barrel, higher gasoline prices are eating into Americans' budgets.  Consumers, however, are not the only ones losing out.  The various taxes, lease revenues and royalty payments to federal, state and local governments for oil and gas production on public lands is a significant source of revenue — among the largest sources outside of the personal income tax.  Yet, the Obama administration stubbornly clings to a "no new production in our backyard policy" — while blaming oil companies for high prices.

2008: Pelosi blames high gas prices on "oil men in the White House".  Back in 2008 Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said, "The price of oil is at the doorstep.  Four dollars plus per gallon for oil is attributed to two oil men in the White House."  Oddly enough, Pelosi is now conspicuously silent about gas prices.  No public comments.  No press conferences.  No interviews.

Are Sky-High Gas Prices Good?  Examine a few revealing past remarks from President Obama and the Cabinet officials who are now in charge of the nation's energy use and oil leases on federal lands.  Then decide whether the current soaring gas prices are supposed to be good or bad.  In 2008, then-Colorado Sen. Ken Salazar — now the secretary of the Department of the Interior in charge of the leasing of federal oil lands — refused to vote for any new offshore drilling.  In a Senate exchange with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Salazar objected to allowing any drilling on America's outer continental shelf — even if gas prices reached $10 a gallon.

Oil and Obama don't mix.  Americans are paying more than $4 a gallon for gas, ExxonMobil announced a 69 percent boost in earnings, and President Barack Obama is struggling with the fact that he can't do much about any of it.

'Change' via executive power grab.  The Environmental Protection Agency has ruled that Shell Oil Co. may not drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Circle off Alaska, where an estimated 27 billion barrels of domestic oil are waiting to be extracted.  Never mind that Shell's already spent nearly $4 billion on the project, including $2.2 billion to Uncle Sam for the leases.  No, the EPA's appeals board said the oil giant had failed to include possible greenhouse-gas emissions from an icebreaking vessel in its calculations and that the project might somehow threaten the health of the 245 people in an Eskimo village 70 miles away.

Listing of lizard may shut down Texas oil.  You can't make this up.  First, a Spotted Owl destroyed the timber industry of the Pacific Northwest, then a minnow turned the most productive agricultural land in the world into a dustbowl, and now, as energy prices spike and the economy sputters, they're going after Texas with a scurrilous reptile.  Specifically, the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard.

Will A Lizard Stop West Texas Oil?  After the harm done by the spotted owl and delta smelt, the listing of a tiny reptile as endangered may be the latest salvo in the war on domestic energy.

Despite $4 gas, Obama boots Shell from Arctic drill site.
EPA Rules Force Shell to Abandon Oil Drilling Plans.  Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska.  The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA's Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. ... The closest village to where Shell proposed to drill is Kaktovik, Alaska.  It is one of the most remote places in the United States.  According to the latest census, the population is 245 and nearly all of the residents are Alaska natives.  The village, which is one square mile, sits right along the shores of the Beaufort Sea, 70 miles away from the proposed off-shore drill site.

Pence rebukes Obama over committing to support Brazilian oil.  Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) is criticizing President Obama for expressing support for Brazilian oil production while limiting American energy output.  "Under his administration, there is a de facto moratorium on oil exploration in the Gulf of Mexico," Pence wrote in an op-ed Monday [4/25/2011] in The Journal Gazette in Fort Wayne, Ind.  "The United States has a drilling ban off both coasts, on Alaska's continental shelf and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge."

Obama blames everyone but himself for high gas prices.  The president's energy non-policy of funding solar, wind, and god-knows-what-other kind of power while doing everything to prevent opening new oil fields to exploration and development is not to blame for high gas prices, says the president.

Obama's Fake Energy Policy.  In 1999, Americans paid $90 billion for all their oil, less than 5 percent of what they paid in federal taxes.  At current prices of $108 per barrel, Americans this year will pay over $800 billion for oil, an amount equal to 33 percent of all federal tax revenues, with two thirds of the take going to fill the coffers of foreign regimes.  If current trends continue, there is every prospect that oil prices will more than triple by Obama's 2025 target date, leaving us paying more for oil than we pay to the federal government.

U.S. Gov't Agency Plans $2.84 Billion Loan for Oil Refinery — In Colombia.  The U.S. Export-Import Bank, an independent agency of the federal government, is now planning a $2.84 billion loan for a massive project to expand and upgrade an oil refinery — in Cartagena, Colombia.  The money would go to Reficar, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ecopetrol, the Colombian national oil company.

How we will end up paying $6 a gallon for gas:  Someday, you will be pumping gas, staring at the digital numbers racing by, and you'll wonder:  "How could I possibly be paying $6 a gallon for gasoline?"  You also will be wondering why so many of your friends and relatives are still looking for work.  Or why America is more dependent on foreign oil than ever before.  If you look back to today, you'll remember why:  President Obama's de facto moratorium on deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

Desperation Breeds Familiar Energy Gimmicks.  When lawmakers were home for spring recess this month, they faced an earful of outrage as gas prices near $4 per gallon, well ahead of summer driving season.  Some members of Congress told their constituents that they are pounding on the administration to jumpstart offshore drilling in order to relieve the pressure at the pump. ... Opponents of American energy development on Capitol Hill are becoming increasingly desperate to deflect criticism against anti-drilling policies which the majority of Americans realize have contributed to this price surge.

Obama promised higher energy costs. He wasn't kidding.  President Obama held a town hall meeting Wednesday at a wind turbine manufacturing plant in Fairless Hills, Pa., to promote his Big Green energy agenda.  Not everyone in the audience was receptive to his message. ... "There is no magic formula to driving gas prices down," the president also said Wednesday.  Maybe so, but Obama has figured out a pretty good formula for driving gas prices up.

Obama's energy hoax:  The emphasis was on a vast expansion of "clean energy."  The familiar pipe dreams were unfurled again:  Biofuels.  Further increases in fuel economy requirements.  Electric cars.  Flexible-fuel vehicles.  High-speed rail.  Public transit.  Sure all nifty ideas, their regulatory quirks notwithstanding.  And all are costly, many to the point of wiping out any possible benefits.  If the president sought increased oil production to hold down prices, he'd do a lot more good.

The President's New Energy Plan:  If you want to lower the price of something, the best solution is to produce more of it.  This is basic Econ 101 stuff.  But nowhere in the administration's new energy proposals, presented by the president this Wedesday in a speech at Georgetown University, is the idea of pumping more oil in the United States addressed, except to say it is impossible.

Obama's overseas oil:  It's no surprise that gas prices are on the rise as President Obama returns from his truncated excursion to Rio.  The commander in chief has shown more interest in helping Brazilians develop their energy resources than he has in helping ease the pain of Americans stung by spiraling prices at the pump.  Three months into the new administration, Brazil's state-owned oil company, Petrobras, received approval for at least $2 billion in U.S. government-backed loans.

Soros Wins Under Obama's Energy Policies.  Abby Wisse Schacter, in the New York Post, notes that the Obama administration is clamping down on oil and gas development in America (both onshore and offshore) but is hell-bent on helping other nation's tap their resources and points out that such help is being showered specifically in New Guinea, of all places.

Obama administration's energy stagnation.  It is starting to look obvious that the administration doesn't want oil exploration and extraction at home while it is promoting the same exploration and extraction elsewhere — specifically Brazil and New Guinea. ... [But] this isn't about a single piece of equipement, [sic] it is about wanting to retard offshore drilling in America, period.

George Soros: Demagoat.  Another interesting note:  Soros has a lot invested in Brazilian oil production.  His puppet, Obama announced that the U.S. would be investing and trading in Brazil's oil development.  Of course, Obama doesn't want to drill here in the U.S.  The connection is very clear.  Since Soros is out to destroy the USA like he has other countries, all of the organizations he funds are nothing but puppets for him, just like Obama.  Obama went to Brazil to protect the Soros investment there in Petrobras.

Wrecking a Nation.  In 1985, the U.S. imported 25 percent of its oil usage.  Today, it's 61 percent.  And still we are placing restrictions on increases in domestic production, both for oil and other sources of energy.  A few days back, President Obama, rather than sticking around a couple hours to explain to the American people or to the U.S. Congress why we were going to war in Libya, flew off to Brazil to hand out a permit to allow deep sea oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico to Brazil's state-run oil company, Petrobras.  Capitalist companies in America need not apply.

A Man-Made Energy Crisis.  Gas is well over $4 a gallon in most places in California — and soaring elsewhere as well.  But are such high energy prices good or bad?  That should be a stupid question.  Yet it is not, when the Obama administration has stopped new domestic offshore oil exploration in many American waters, curbed oil leases in the West, and keeps oil-rich areas of Alaska exempt from drilling.

Obama Needs to go Back to Energy School.  The Administration's "logic" regarding oil leases is liable to drive one insane.  The claim is that oil companies pay billions of dollars to the federal government to obtain the right to drill, and then purposely don't drill in order to drive up the price of oil.  But wouldn't it be cheaper to not bid on the lands in the first place?  And why is the oil industry in favor of expanded access to drill offshore and in ANWR, if their nefarious plot is to keep oil off the market and push up prices?  Obviously the whole thing makes no sense.  The reason the oil industry doesn't extract oil from certain leased land is that oil isn't distributed evenly across the globe.

Stall, Baby, Stall.  Many Americans fear that President Obama's new energy proposal is once again "all talk and no real action," this time in an effort to shore up fading support for the Democrats' job-killing cap-and-trade (a.k.a. cap-and-tax) proposals.  Behind the rhetoric lie new drilling bans and leasing delays; soon to follow are burdensome new environmental regulations.

Full-Throttle Drill, Drill, Drill.  In the fact sheet that accompanied the speech, there's a lot of talk about "responsible development" for natural gas fracking chemicals, state regulators, tapping experts, the environmental community, and protecting public health and the environment.  In other words, the standards for new drilling could be so high that there won't be that much new drilling.  The president doesn't discuss the role of the EPA, which is going after coal, natural gas, and oil.  And while he says he'll speed up new leases and permits, he then blames oil companies for not using their old leases.  That's an old saw of an argument that neglects to mention dry holes.

Barack Obama's Oil Lease LIES!  How do you know which parts of Obama's energy speech were either lies or misrepresentations?  The parts where his mouth was moving.  This morning President Obama outline his energy policy which is comprised of trying to pull the energy policy wool over America's eyes.

Lawmakers, Executives Slam Obama for Boosting Brazil's Offshore Drilling.  Republican lawmakers and oil industry executives are slamming President Obama for offering to help Brazil expand offshore drilling while U.S. production struggles to get back on its feet in the wake of the BP spill.  The president, on the first leg of his trip to Latin America, said in Brazil over the weekend that his administration wants to assist the Brazilian government "with technology and support" in developing its oil reserves — a black gold mine he said could hold twice as much oil as U.S. deposits.

President Obama's Crony Capitalism.  The president's announcement that his administration would lend billions of dollars to develop Brazil's offshore oil reserves left many Americans flabbergasted.  After all, he had issued two drilling moratoriums in U.S. waters and then was declared in contempt of court for defying a federal judge who ordered the moratoriums reversed.  Some wondered if the president wasn't intentionally acting against U.S. interests.  Others wanted to know if pleasing political campaign contributors was the idea.

Obama Boldly Continues his Energy Deception.  President Obama finally held a press conference on the subject of rising gas prices last week that required anyone who has been watching his administration's war on domestic energy to suspend disbelief.  Instead of announcing a reversal of his anti-domestic energy policies, he explained that on his watch, oil production is actually up and imports are down.  What the President failed to explain was that his energy policies have nothing to do with this, and that the U.S. would actually be producing more oil today if his administration had not been doing everything in its power to stop domestic energy production since they walked into office in January of 2009 when gasoline was $1.80 a gallon.

Solving US Energy Problems:  The big problem is the Democratic agenda to destroy US oil.  Currently, this agenda is well illustrated in the Gulf of Mexico.  BP's Macondo Prospect well, which blew out in the Gulf of Mexico last year, was reported by the federal government to be producing 62,000 barrels of oil per day.  At the present oil price, that is $2.2 Billion a year.  This well may have been the largest oil well in the history of the world.  Yet, it was plugged and abandoned, and the federal government would not allow the development of the large oil reservoir it was in, which may have created thousands of new jobs.  No other nation on earth would do that to an oil well which may have been the largest oil well in world history.

Exploiting the Japanese.  [Scroll down]  Then the President proceeded to take credit for record levels of domestic oil and gas production in 2009, the year in which he was inaugurated.  The last I heard, oil and gas drilling has a lead time of at least five years, with exploration, leasing, licensing, and actual production taking as long as twenty years.  Yet Obama suggests he had something to do with 2009 production levels?  What he has done, with his Gulf drilling ban and restrictions on East Coast and Alaska drilling, is to set future U.S. oil and gas production back by years.

Drilling Unlikely to Lower Oil Prices, Energy Information Chief Says.  Richard Newell, administrator of the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), said that while oil prices are likely to stay above average for the remainder of 2011, it is unlikely that an increase in domestic oil production would dramatically affect oil prices in either the short-term or the long-term.  Newell, a political appointee, was tapped to head the EIA by President Barack Obama in mid-2009.

The Editor says...
This man clearly does not understand supply and demand, and obviously knows nothing about the oil industry.

An Energy Policy Designed to Fail.  Gasoline prices are on the rise again, mostly due to a combination of turmoil in the Middle East and increased worldwide demand that has driven crude prices up over $100 per barrel.  When refiners switch to EPA-required summer blends starting on May 1, gasoline prices will increase even more.  The left understands that the harder consumers are hit at the pump, the more sympathetic they are to calls for more domestic oil exploration.  In an attempt to head off the issue, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and other leftists have fallen back on a tired, discredited canard:  the "use it or lose it" approach.

Who benefits when Obama puts federal lands off-limits?  It sounds like a logical argument until it runs into the reality provided by the answer to two basic questions — How much federal land is actually off-limits and who benefits from those lands being kept off limits?  Based on government data, the answer to the first question is this:  Ninety four percent of federal onshore lands are off-limits to oil and gas exploration, while 97 percent of offshore federal lands are off-limits.  So virtually all of the public lands now owned by the American people but controlled by the federal government isn't even eligible to be placed on the auction block for bidding by U.S. companies for energy exploration rights leasing.

They're Not Serious.  No-drill Democrats are looking wan under the bright light of rising gasoline prices.  So what do they do?  They retreat to their worst ideas and claim they've brought a fresh set of solutions to the table.

Green Goons.  It's getting so people are afraid to drive more than 150 miles for fear that they won't be able to afford the gas to get home again.  Still, President Obama refuses to allow oil development either on government-owned land or just off our coasts.  We have enough petroleum in the ground right here in the United States to last us centuries but Obama, the Democrats and their green goons won't let us get at it for fear there might be a spill and a sea gull might get oil on its wings.  It's all right though to send $1,000,000,000 a day to Muslim countries who use much of it to finance jihad against us in their radical quest to destroy western civilization.  Our liberal Democrat rulers want fossil-fuel energy prices to go up in hopes that Americans will turn to solar panels, windmills and Chevy Volts.

Why We Need to Drill Here and Drill Now.  Upon taking office, President Obama's Department of Interior, led by Ken Salazar, began taking deliberate steps to reduce domestic drilling.  From canceling oil and gas leases throughout the American West to banning offshore production to refusing to issue deep water drilling permits, the Obama administration has imposed virtually the same regulatory agenda that Americas soundly rejected in 2008.  The result of these policies is also the same as last time.  Oil prices above $100 per barrel for the first time since 2008.

Our Man-Made Energy Crisis.  [Scroll down]  What's missing is a coherent U.S. energy policy.  At best, the Obama administration's approach to U.S. domestic oil and gas production can be characterized as a strategy of ambivalence, an uneasy equilibrium between desire to lessen the role of fossil fuels and the reality of their necessity in a functioning U.S. economy.  Last year's Deepwater Horizon tragedy in the Gulf tilted the current administration's policies to an even more punitive posture vis-a-vis domestic energy production. ... The time to rethink and redesign our entire energy strategy is now.

War On The Poor.  Those on the left who say they care most for the least fortunate see the soaring price of gasoline as positive — despite the fact that those with the lowest incomes are hurt the worst.  Since January 2009, when President Obama was sworn in, the average price of a gallon of regular-grade gas has rocketed from less than $2 to $3.53.  During this period, Obama's administration has placed an illegal ban on oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, refused to permit deeper exploration into our rich fossil fuel reserves and pushed $2.3 billion in a useless green energy initiative.

Murkowski calls for new energy policy, more domestic drilling.  Amid rising energy prices, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) is urging the formulation of a national energy policy that expands U.S. oil drilling and creates alternatives to reduce consumption, both of which would provide greater control over energy prices.  In the weekly Republican radio address, the ranking member on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee said her party is prepared to "end the de facto moratorium on new development in the Gulf of Mexico and parts of the Rocky Mountain West."

Murkowski uses rising gas prices to call for opening Alaska's oil fields.  Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), citing rising gas prices, called on the administration Thursday [3/10/2011] to open up Alaska's oil reserves for further exploration.  "We are the only country that has identified a huge resource base and then absolutely refused to use it," said Murkowski, referring to her state's massive oil reserves that remain untapped because of their designation as a wildlife refuge.  "We need to develop a coherent national energy policy."

Oil Hypocrisy.  As the White House goes to court to defend its self-imposed drilling moratorium, it floats the idea of tapping our strategic petroleum reserve to lower rising prices.  How about the oil offshore and in Alaska?

Feds: No new drilling permits, but we'll tap into Strategic Petroleum Reserve!  Oil prices have been on the rise recently, with supply worries from the unrest in the Middle East pushing prices past $106 a barrel this morning, the highest in two years.  Americans are feeling the sting of an average $3.50 a gallon price at the pump, with prices as high as $5 a gallon in some areas such as L.A.  The Obama administration has issued contradictory statements on the high oil prices.

As Gas Prices Rise, Is It Time to 'Drill, Baby, Drill'?.  With unrest and turmoil in oil-producing Middle East and North African countries upon which America heavily relies for our domestic oil consumption and with gas prices inching toward $4.00 a gallon, now is the time to drastically increase America's own oil production.  Even before the Middle East and North African government meltdowns, many experts were predicting $4 a gallon gas in 2011 and $5 a gallon gas in 2012.

The End of the Drilling Permitorium? Guess Again.  After 314 days of the United States government holding the nation's oil industry hostage in a fashion which hearkened back to the Carter administration, the first deep water drilling permit in the Gulf of Mexico has been issued.  Or has it?  As The Hayride points out, this wasn't actually a new permit.

Gas Price Increases Are Intentional.  Gas prices continue to go up.  When George W. Bush was President of the United States, Democrats constantly demanded he open the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to help lower prices.  Some even wanted a temporary suspension of the gas tax.  With Obama?  Crickets. ... The left could use gas prices as a political wedge issue against George W. Bush because they knew he did not actually want higher gas prices.  Barack Obama, on the other hand, wants higher gas prices.  His Energy Secretary, Steven Chu, wants the same.

Drilling Here, Drilling Now: It's Just Common Sense.  One of the problems we face right now is the uncertainty in Libya, an OPEC nation that has cut its normal daily output of 1.6 million barrels of oil per day (bpd) to just over 700,000, amid the political tensions surrounding Muammar Gaddafi.  What this means for humanity as a whole is that there is now less oil on the world's market to meet the demand around the globe.  What this means for you and I as Americans is that our refusal to "drill here, drill now" is catching up to us with a vengeance.

Obama Making Us More Dependent on Foreign Oil.  Expectations of political instability in the North Africa and the Middle East are factors which cause the price of crude oil to rise, but the reality is the Obama Administration is doing serious damage to our essential domestic oil industry.  The Administration is making our nation more and more dependent on imported foreign crude oil through increased regulations, taxes, and litigation.

Barack Obama repeating Jimmy Carter's mistakes.  You need to watch only a few minutes of cable news analysis to realize just how ludicrous our national energy policies have become.  As escalating tensions and chaos unfold in Egypt, Libya and other Middle Eastern nations, one energy analyst suggested that if Libyan oil supplies were to fail, the United States would rely on Saudi Arabia for its oil needs.  If that statement alone doesn't put U.S. leaders on red alert, the looming national energy crisis may soon become reality.

Obama: Lost in Translation.  On February 2, 2011, his administration was found to be in contempt of court, for knowingly and intentionally defying the court's injunction of its enforcement of a ban on oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.  And just weeks before the issuance of that contempt citation, a Federal court judge in Florida ruled ObamaCare is unconstitutional in its entirety.  In his order the judge held that his ruling was tantamount to an injunction, and he was proceeding on the well-established presumption that government officials will conform their conduct to rulings.  The President, whose oath of office requires him to "preserve, protect and defend" the Constitution, nevertheless appears to have accorded the Florida judge's ruling the same level of respect and compliance as he did the order enjoining his "moratorium" on oil and gas drilling in the Gulf.

Barbour says Obama cheers for higher gas prices.  Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a potential presidential contender, accused the Obama administration Wednesday [3/2/2011] of favoring a run-up in gas prices to prod consumers to buy more fuel-efficient cars.

Obama is AWOL in Oil Crisis.  We have a major oil crisis unfolding now and where's Obama? ... We now, this week, have oil prices busting through $100 a barrel.  This will create major havoc to our already anemic economy.  How did we get here?  Our president has a moratorium on nearly all domestic oil production:  we can't drill off our coasts, nor Alaska and certainly not the gulf.  We can't build nuclear power plants, dam rivers, explore for natural gas or mine coal.  We're stuck with windmills and failing solar power companies — companies that can't even stay in business after billions in taxpayer subsidies.  This is an energy policy written by hippies.

America's Enemies Don't Want U.S. Drilling.  With oil prices shooting through the roof, the nation's failure to ramp up domestic energy production is baffling.  But one thing we know for sure: America's enemies are actively agitating against drilling in the U.S.

The Editor says...
Apparently some of America's enemies work in the White House.

Obama administration 'hostile to oil states,' Alaska Gov. Parnell says.  In a speech at the National Press Club, the Republican governor called the federal government "openly hostile" to oil-producing states, particularly for the delays in allowing Shell to drill exploratory wells on leases off Alaska's northern coast that the company purchased in 2008.  "If it looks like a moratorium and walks like a moratorium ... maybe it is," said Parnell, who is in Washington this weekend for the National Governor's Association winter meeting.

Now Can We Drill In Alaska?  Alaska's governor attacks President Obama's hostility to oil states and warns that ever-higher oil prices will doom economic recovery.  The polar bears are doing fine.  The American economy is not.

The inflation disaster is near.  Five dollar a gallon gas will shatter the Federal Reserve's tightly constrained lid on inflation and accelerate the other half our long anticipated "double dip" recession. ... 91% of House Republicans have historically voted to increase the production of American-made oil and gas, while 86% of House Democrats have historically voted against increasing the production of American-made oil and gas.

After Obama, the Deluge.  Gas prices in many parts of the country are nearing $4 a gallon; it could get even worse as unrest spreads throughout the oil-exporting Middle East.  Yet the Obama administration once again seems to see no crisis.  It has curtailed new leases for offshore oil exploration for seven years and exempted thousands of acres in the West from new drilling.  It will not reconsider opening up small areas of Alaska with known large oil reserves.

The left's drive toward $8 gas.  A perfect storm of foreign and domestic policy choices by the Obama administration has paved the way for European-style energy prices to arrive on these shores.  Far from being alarmed, President Obama sees the prospect of $8 a gallon gas as an opportunity. ... Making energy more expensive is exactly what the administration's "cap and trade" scheme is meant to do.

Obama's Solar Nightmare:  The Obama administration has tried to kill off the oil industry. Offshore moratoriums have been unilaterally imposed by executive orders and justified using scientific panel studies that were misrepresented — if not distorted — by the administration.  The drilling permitting process has been afflicted with sclerosis.  Federal lands are becoming less and less available for development.  Obama does not like carbon; he boasted during the campaign that he would bankrupt coal power plants and that his policies would necessarily boost the price of power.  Those words were ignored by much of the media, in thrall to the man they so wanted to win.

A Shale Of A Difference.  The brightest hope for America's energy independence has been shut down by an Interior Department that says it wants to review the rules for leases.  It really wants to kill off oil altogether.

Increased Energy Development Will Lead to More Jobs, Faster Recovery.  Research and consulting firm Wood Mackenzie recently released a startling new report analyzing the devastating economic impact of the nearly $73 billion in proposed tax increases upon the nation's oil and gas industry.  In contrast, allowing access to energy resources currently off limits would provide massive boosts to production, employment levels, and government revenue.  Onerous federal regulation currently prevents access to oil and gas reserves in areas of Alaska, the Eastern Gulf of Mexico, and the Atlantic and Pacific Outer Continental Shelves.  The difference between allowing access to these vast reserves versus continued regulation and following through with the nearly $73 billion of proposed tax increases could not be more drastic.

Obama's Oil War:  Oil prices are surging to levels that will soon crimp economic growth.  And what's our government doing about it?  Just making it worse. ... It's becoming more and more obvious that Obama's energy policy is meant to raise prices by making fossil fuels harder to produce and use.  Indeed, the White House has followed a deliberate policy of attacking Americans' use of energy, turning it into something of a moral crusade.

Driving US Families Into Poverty.  The Obama Administration still hasn't gotten the message voters sent Washington on November 2.  The lame duck session and 111th Congress finally ended, without the White House getting key items on its wish list.  So now, the Environmental Protection Agency and Interior Department intend to impose costly, job-killing, economy-strangling new rules for power plants and refineries, and implement more land-grabs that will lock up additional millions of acres and more billions of dollars of American energy.  Their goal is to end the hydrocarbon and nuclear era in America — and force us to convert to "renewable" energy.

Auditing the President's Oil Spill Commission.  The National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill (the Oil Spill Commission OSC) just finished its last set of public meetings as it prepares to submit its report to the president, due January 12, 2011.  There is good news and bad news.  The good news is that its report will be released after the Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in January.  The bad news is that left to its own devices and predispositions, the administration will likely do to the offshore oil industry what the Carter administration did to the nuclear power industry in the wake of the Three-Mile Island accident:  effectively destroy a critical energy industry in which America is the world technology leader.

Oil Producers Bullied.  Department of Interior officials seem to take sadistic pleasure in badgering oil companies.  The latest example involves a new agency created to levy untold millions of dollars in fines if companies don't kowtow to the new bureaucracy.  The agency's head gave the tasteless warning:  "If they cut corners they could end up paying enough to quickly take care of the federal deficit."  The oil industry now pays $37 million a day in royalties.  That's over $13 billion a year for our near empty U.S. Treasury and other state and special accounts.  The comment about collecting royalties enough to pay off the federal deficit might have been said in jest.  But petroleum officials aren't laughing.

New Starve-The-Beast Plan:  Stop Fed Printing Press.  Capital Hill has been exploring the potential for a political backlash against renewed Federal Reserve quantitative easing with a focus on one particular set of risks:  a jump in oil prices even as the economy continues to sputter.  Oil prices have climbed back to $83 a barrel, fueled in part by a Fed-inspired weaker dollar, though demand growth in China and other emerging markets is the biggest reason.

China's Will To Drill.  The administration lifts the Gulf drilling moratorium in time for the election, but it's not as good as it sounds.  Meanwhile, China buys up Texas oil land to develop the energy reserves we won't.

The Very Dangerous Folly of Obamanomics.  [Scroll down]  From here, then-Senator Obama went on to introduce his new "energy" proposal.  As a remedy for rising gasoline prices, he wanted to raise taxes on oil companies, and use that "extra" tax revenue to give "working Americans" a thousand-dollar voucher that they could use to make gasoline purchases. ... Senator Obama simply portrayed the Exxon Mobil company as a "villain" for earning a "record profit," and he was going to be the "good guy" who would legislate money away from the oil company and give it to "us."

Barack Obama Secures His Grip on the Oil Industry.  [Scroll down]  So why, then, does this country, especially the Obama administration, continue to play ball with [Hugo] Chavez?  And, more interestingly, why was the Chavez rhetoric towards THIS White House so vanilla by comparison to the vile language hurled at Bush?  The obvious answer of Socialist brotherhood comes to mind; after all, the handshake viewed 'round the world is household news by now.  No, there's something deeper here; something much more complex — even sinister, perhaps.

Arctic Drilling Suspended.  The Obama Administration has done an about face on drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean.  Just days after its Justice Department defended Shell Oil's plan to drill five exploratory wells in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas off the coast of Alaska, the Interior Department suspended the operation.

Obama is Strangling Big Oil.  There was no "official" announcement.  Not in so many words.  Connect the dots of what has occurred in just the past two weeks to deep-water oil drilling, shallow-water drilling, and oil refining.  The effect is the same.  Barack Obama is shutting down Big Oil.

A Few Questions for President Obama.  [Scroll down]  America is not running out of oil.  It is running out of places the government allows us to drill. ... Companies have been drilling in deep waters, because most onshore and shallow water areas are off limits.

Empty rhetoric, empty gas tanks.  The Army Corps of Engineers recently denied ConocoPhillips' permit to construct a drill pad in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, threatening 400 construction and 100 operating jobs and new production that could extend the life of the trans-Alaska pipeline.  If this shameful abuse of regulatory power could be used to stop routine oil and gas development of leases already granted by the federal government — in an area already designated a National Petroleum Reserve — then how optimistic could anyone be about this administration's new energy policy?

Getting Gas Wrong:  In an economy full of problems there are still a few high points.  One of them, as you may have noticed if you pay attention to your utility bills, is that natural gas prices are relatively low. ... We shouldn't have to worry about this sector of the economy, but there is a dark cloud looming on the horizon in the form of yet another environmental initiative that the Obama administration is pushing forward, one that has the potential to cut domestic natural gas production, cost us jobs and revenue and force energy prices upward.

Drilling plan opens new areas but halts Alaska sales.  President Obama's new offshore drilling plan opens up some new areas for oil and gas exploration but also cancels some Alaska lease sales planned for the next two years, putting billions of barrels of oil out of reach for now.  The long-awaited plan, announced Wednesday, expands drilling opportunities off the coast of the southern Atlantic seaboard, in the Gulf of Mexico and some parts of Alaska, but halts other future sales in Alaska's Chukchi and Beaufort seas that drilling advocates say could account for far more oil than the new areas the president proposes to open up.

Obama's EPA stifles new energy gains.  [Scroll down]  Last week, it was Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announcing that no new permits will be issued for outer continental shelf development until 2014 at the earliest.  Salazar has also used bureaucratic obfuscation to delay new energy development on Western lands.  There are billions of recoverable barrels of oil and trillions of cubic feet of natural gas in those areas, enough to put the United States well on the way to complete energy independence.  Obama is instead spending billions of tax dollars on renewable energy resources that can't possibly supply even a fourth of this nation's critical energy needs for many decades to come.

The 'necessarily skyrocket' energy strategy comes to Hawaii.  Bright ideas from Hawaii's legislature:  House members introduced House Bill 2421, a "barrel tax" or "carbon tax bill", which will increase the tax on unrefined petroleum by $1 per barrel.  Their reasoning, they want to discourage Hawaii's "dependence" on fossil fuels through taxation and encourage renewable energy use and creation.

Obama's budget reveals true agenda on energy.  The budget shows that revenues collected from new offshore leasing will decline over the next five years — from $1.5 billion in 2009, to only $413 million in fiscal 2015.  If the president planned on expanding offshore drilling, revenues would be increasing, not decreasing.

Obama surrenders gulf oil to Moscow.  The Obama administration is poised to ban offshore oil drilling on the outer continental shelf until 2012 or beyond.  Meanwhile, Russia is making a bold strategic leap to begin drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico.  While the United States attempts to shift gears to alternative fuels to battle the purported evils of carbon emissions, Russia will erect oil derricks off the Cuban coast.

Obama's a pain at the pump.  Get ready to pay a lot more than $3 a gallon to fill up your car during peak driving periods this spring and summer.  More pain at the pump is the inevitable result of the Obama administration's carrot-and-stick approach to dealing with America's energy woes.  Interior Secretary Ken Salazar last week announced new leases for offshore oil and gas drilling, which will take effect in 2012.  While news reports characterized the decision as a bold response to the nation's energy needs, reality is quite to the contrary.

The Obama Moratorium:  No offshore drilling while he's in office.  The Obama administration's six-month delay in approving new offshore drilling leases in federal waters will become a new three-year ban, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar quietly told reporters last Friday [3/5/2010].  Which means that no new oil and gas leases will be approved during President Obama's term even though two-thirds of the American public supports such activity, according to a December 2009 Rasmussen poll.

Chortling At Chu.  Our secretary of energy pushes bio-refineries and windmills to oil executives at an energy conference as the administration announces a three-year offshore drilling ban.  This is a policy for economic suicide.

Report:  Oil-and-gas drilling bans will cut GDP by $2.36 trillion.  This should provide some ammo for industry groups pushing the White House to allow wider drilling:  A new report says U.S. oil-and-gas drilling bans will increase consumer energy costs and decrease cumulative U.S. GDP by $2.36 trillion over the next two decades.  That's an average annual GDP drop of roughly a half a percent.

Drilling Ban To Cost Trillions.  A new study shows that our reluctance to develop domestic energy will cost the beleaguered U.S. economy trillions in opportunity costs, reduce our gross domestic product and increase our trade deficit.

Our National No-Energy Policy:  Thomas Pyle, the president of the Institute for Energy Research, recently offered a chilling description of our national energy focus.  "When it comes to paving the way for the responsible development of homegrown, job-creating energy resources, no administration in history has done more to ensure producers do less."

How to spell Obama energy policy: 'D-e-l-a-y'.  The need to develop America's bountiful fossil fuel resources will only intensify as our economy grows and those of emerging world economic powers like China and India similarly expand.  But President Obama is moving national energy policy in exactly the opposite direction.  Instead of aiding exploration and development of available fossil fuel resources, the administration appears to be doing everything possible to slow or even stop it.

Follow the Money.  As we have noted many times, the United States is the only country in the world that deliberately fails to develop its own energy resources.  Other than instituting price controls, this is the single most destructive economic policy that a country can pursue, which is why no one does it except us.

The Obama Energy Fiasco.  If the president wishes to free America from dependence on foreign oil, he should be encouraging the production of reliable energy supplies in this country.  What has he done to encourage more production of coal, oil and gas, and nuclear energy?  The answer is that he has done nothing. ... Not only has the president done nothing to promote new supplies of energy, but he has also done much to impede them.

Alaskan Oil Abundance Versus Washington's Wasted Billions.  Analysts are already forecasting 100-dollar-a-barrel oil within a year.  Yet the Obama administration is still blocking offshore drilling in America — even though it was approved by Congress last year — and wants to raise taxes on oil companies.  Several years are needed to get major new production on line, even without anticipated environmental lawsuits designed to stymie or at least harass and delay any drilling of new wells off of America's east and west coasts.  In Alaska, we have a pipeline which could flow another 1.5 million barrels per day — worth nearly $50 billion per year — from vast oil resources waiting to be drilled.

No Substitute For Fossil Fuels.  Earlier this year, Congress approved a scheme to pour $80 billion — on top of the tens of billions already spent — into renewables.  A government report released last week indicates the money will be wasted.  Renewable energy is the shiny gem that everyone wants but no one can have.

Forget 'Peak Oil' — Drill, BP, Drill.  Ignoring peak-oil Cassandras, BP has made another giant oil find in the Gulf of Mexico.  We're not running out of oil.  Our government just doesn't want us to look for it.

Foolishly Choosing Bears Over Barrels.  [Al] Gore is just plain wrong.  Yet the myth he perpetuates has dealt a critical blow to our hopes for true energy independence.  Despite ever-increasing numbers and demonstrated adaptability, the famous Knut the polar bear and his kind are still said to be endangered.  That in turn has prompted the federal government to designate 200,541 square miles off the coast of Alaska as critical habitat for polar bears, effectively killing hopes to exploit the vast energy riches of the American Arctic.  The world polar bear population is at a modern high and growing.

A Crude Reality.  To get to the bottom of what's wrong with the 1,400-page energy bill passed by the House of Representatives, you have to dig deeper than Canada's tar sands. ... The greener we are, the less secure we're likely to be.  Meaning, we either can be green or we can be less dependent on oil from terrorist-sponsoring states.  But under the current energy bill, we can't be both.

Running on empty.  American energy policy is in limbo.  "Drill, baby, drill" still articulates a good policy direction, but the Obama administration is outsourcing that policy, and our tax dollars, to Brazil.  This is all while the White House is ignoring public opinion by blocking domestic energy production.  The mind boggles when trying to figure out why the energy issue is still at issue at all.

Seeing Chukchi.  Back in July [2008], ... it was thought that Chukchi's waters northwest of Alaska's landmass held 30 billion cubic feet of natural gas.  Today, Science magazine reports that the U.S. Geological Survey now finds it holds more than anyone thought — 1.6 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered gas, or 30% of the world's supply and 83 billion barrels of undiscovered oil, 4% of the global conventional resources.  That's enough U.S. energy to achieve self-sufficiency and never worry about it as a national security question again.  The only thing left to do is drill.

Judge blocks drilling on refuge.  A federal judge has indefinitely blocked gas and oil drilling on a wildlife refuge that sits next to the Great Sand Dunes National Park in south-central Colorado.  U.S. District Court Judge Walker Miller on Thursday [9/3/2009] granted a preliminary injunction, ruling environmental groups presented adequate evidence that drilling would cause irreparable injury to Colorado's Baca National Wildlife Refuge.

Lost In An Energy Wilderness.  Earlier this year, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar canceled 77 Utah oil and gas leases that had gone through seven years of studies, negotiations and land-use planning.  They were rejected because temporary drilling operations might be "visible" from several national parks more than a mile away.  We are not making this up.  Some of these parcels are in or near the Green River Formation, an oil-rich region in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming that's been called the "Persia of the West."

Cap and Trade spells disaster.  [Scroll down]  To see how extreme HR 2454 is, one need only go to page 106-107 of the bill.  "Congress finds that the status of oil as a strategic commodity which derives from its domination of the transportation sector presents a clear and present danger to the United States."  With this one statement, House Democrats have declared war on the oil industry.  Currently, oil is supplying the vast majority of this country's energy requirements.  While we need to continue to diversify our energy supplies, we cannot ignore reality.

Environmentalist Economic Strangulation.  The Green Left must be thrilled with the new Obama/Pelosi/Reid (OPR) troika in charge of the federal government.  Three times already, the troika has blocked the development of domestic oil resources.  During his first week in office, President Obama rescinded his predecessor's executive order permitting drilling on the continental shelf and in the Green River Formation.  Both areas contain abundant oil — especially Green River (under Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah), which has recoverable shale-oil reserves three times the oil reserves of Saudi Arabia.  Several weeks later, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar unilaterally canceled 77 oil and gas leases in Utah, on the grounds that (I kid you not) someone might catch a glimpse of temporary drilling equipment from the national park that sits more than a mile away.

Drill, Drill, Drill.  Onshore and offshore drilling restrictions for oil and natural gas have to be removed.  Deregulate the energy sector.  Open the door to nuclear power.  Drill the shale regions for natural gas.  Exploration has dried up in the new Obama environment, which is so very anti-fossil-fuel and anti-nuke.  If we are going to power our way to economic growth, fossil fuels and nuclear energy have to play key roles.  Alternative-fuel technologies may grow up, but that's gonna take several decades.  Right now they're about 2 percent of our power.  That's all.

CBS Slams Exxon for Not Drilling More.  After all the media hand-wringing the past few months over imploding financial institutions, they might praise ExxonMobil for taking care of it shareholders first and keeping ample reserve funds, rather than running on risky investments and toxic assets.  "Consumer advocate" Dan Weiss closed the story saying, "Big oil is swimming in profits with money drained from the pockets of American families."  CBS mentioned he was a senior fellow at the "Center For American Progress" yet neglected to mention that it is an avowedly liberal think tank.  The founder of CFAP is former Clinton Chief of Staff John Podesta.

Cognitive Ideological Dissonance on Capitol Hill.  Speaking of energy, we can't help but give more attention to a recent press release from some of the Senate's leading liberals.  Charles Schumer, Byron Dorgan, Bernie Sanders, Bob Casey and Mary Landrieu are demanding that President Bush tell OPEC nations to increase their oil supplies or risk losing arms deals with the United States.  The Senators say U.S. consumers need the price relief that only increased oil production can bring.  Yes, that Senator Schumer and that Senator Dorgan, both of whom voted against increasing U.S. oil production because they couldn't abide drilling across 1% of Alaska's wilderness.

1.5 TRILLION barrels, locked up
U.S. Geological Survey ups estimate of Piceance Basin oil shale by 53%.  The Piceance Basin of northwest Colorado probably holds about 53 percent more oil-shale resources than previously estimated, the U.S. Geological Survey said Thursday [4/2/2009].  It was the federal geology and mapping agency's first reassessment of in-place oil-shale resources in the basin in 20 years.  In 1989, USGS said the Piceance Basin held the equivalent of about 1 trillion barrels of oil in its oil-shale resources.  Now, it says the basin has an estimated 1.525 trillion barrels of in-place oil-shale resources.

Big Oil Bites Back.  Wednesday [5/27/2009], Chevron was descended upon by a zoo-full of San Francisco leftists pushing rain forest sentimentalism, Burma, and other pet causes dear to the no-soap crowd.  They journeyed all the way to San Ramon, Calif. to shout "Shame on you!" and "No blood for oil" and worse yet to make demands on the company. ... The real aim of all these attacks is to end these companies' world leadership in oil extraction.  The green groups want to put an end to what the oil companies do best, from finding oil in the world's most hostile climates like the Arctic Sea, to extracting oil from abandoned wells, to drilling oil 12 miles through salt walls under the sea.  The ultimate goal is less oil to power American industry and to maintain the quality of private life.

Obama budget rescinds oil, gas industry tax breaks.  The oil and gas industry is taking a hard hit in President Barack Obama's proposed budget.  According to details released Thursday about the 2010 budget, the plan would rescind tax breaks at a cost to the industry of $52.4 billion over the next 10 years.

Drill, Ivan, Drill.  Oil prices have risen to a six-month high on the prospect of economic recovery.  Russia plans floating reactors to power Arctic drilling.  We plan to do nothing to increase supply.

The Next Oil Shock:  The current recession has wiped out demand growth for the last four years.  Oil prices have tumbled $100 a barrel or more from their high point.  Spare production capacity is expected to be 6.5 million barrels per day through 2009.  Anticipating a robust future, other countries such as China and Brazil have continued to look for oil while we continue to research ... switch grass.

An End to Dependence on Middle East Oil.  Today, America imports two-thirds of its oil at a cost of $300 billion per year, much of it from politically unstable, Middle East countries which control 45% of the world's oil, overall.  This is occurring despite the existence of bountiful, untapped oil resources within the United States.  Developing these resources could free America from imports, create badly needed, oil-production jobs and meet U.S. energy demand for the next 200 years.  With nearly three-fourths of Americans favoring increased energy exploration, the only obstacle standing in the way of our energy independence is a lack of political vision and will.

Offshore Oil Drilling Ban Will Be Restored 'By Any Means Necessary,' Democratic Congressman Says.  "When we talk about drilling, the new thing we have to think about is the Arctic," said [Rep. Jay] Inslee.  "There is a dangerous irony occurring.  We are drilling, burning oil, sending CO2 up into the atmosphere, creating global warming — and it's melting the Arctic making it possible for people to drill."  "Now there is this gold rush to start punching oil wells in a place we just desecrated because of global warming," said Inslee.  "That's one place we have to get a new moratorium where there hasn't been one before, because there has always been ice there before."

Obama's anti-oil team.  The president-elect is poised to hand environmental policy to people who want to punish petroleum.

Drill, Baby, Drill? Forget It.  For all the political energy spent on offshore drilling —something that a vast majority of Americans support but liberals oppose —the courts have spoken and delayed drilling for years, perhaps decades.  Last Friday [4/17/2009], the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit overturned the 2007-2012 plan authored by the Interior Department because —as the lawyers say, inter alia —its "environmental sensitivity rankings are irrational."  So the matter gets dumped into the hands of the much more sensitive Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.

Boxer Unwilling to Compromise on ANWR Drilling.  Even if you offer Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., what she's been pushing for — taxpayer investments in "green" or renewable energy — she's not going to budge in her opposition to opening federal lands to oil and natural gas exploration.

Santa Barbara County reverses oil drilling stand.  Months after making national headlines for supporting offshore oil drilling, the county famous for spawning the modern environmental movement reversed course Tuesday [4/7/2009] and voted to oppose the drilling.  The Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors, citing a need to preserve its coastline, voted 3-2 for a resolution to oppose oil exploration and extraction in the county.

Appeals court cancels offshore drilling program.  A federal appeals court ruled Friday [4/17/2009] that the Bush administration did not properly study the environmental impact of expanding oil and gas drilling off the Alaska coast and canceled a program to find new reserves.  A three-judge panel in Washington found that the Bush-era Interior Department failed to consider the effect on the environment and marine life before it began the process in August 2005 to expand an oil and gas leasing program in the Beaufort, Bering, and Chukchi seas.

Obama Is Anti-Oil And Anti-American.  Oil producing nations such as Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, along with Venezuela, will grow rich while Americans will be faced with high costs for gasoline, heating oil, and everything else that depends on oil such as asphalt or even Vaseline.  Meanwhile, oil producers in America, large and small, will take a financial beating.  If you don't like living in a modern, advanced and industrialized society, you will favor this.  If you think Americans consume too much, drive too much, and deserve to be punished for it, you will favor this.

Obama Targets U.S. Oil.  While Mr. Obama's original plan was to impose windfall-profit taxes on oil firms, now that windfall profits are gone because energy prices have fallen, he is pitching in his fiscal 2010 budget proposals to raise at least US$31.5-billion more from the oil-and-gas sector over 10 years by raising royalties, imposing new taxes and eliminating loopholes. ... Too bad it won't work the way Mr. Obama envisions, as the Alberta experience with higher oil and gas royalties has shown, and that Mr. Obama's plan will more likely steer Americans further down a path of dependence on Middle East oil ... .

Green-Subsidy Strings.  President Obama has long promised $150 billion — $15 billion a year over 10 years — in industry subsidies to develop alternative fuels, including Detroit Three production of alternate-fuel vehicles to meet federal fuel mandates.  White House Deputy Budget Director Robert Nabors confirmed yesterday that that the subsidy is contingent on revenues from the president's cap and trade tax.  No cap and trade, no $150 billion.  The White House was not forthcoming with details, but the move points a gun at Detroit's head:  Support our cap and trade scheme or no green subsidIes for you.

Energy-state lawmakers vow to fight Obama oil tax hikes.  Energy-state lawmakers are vowing to do everything they can to block President Obama's proposed $31.5 billion tax increase on oil and gas producers.  Obama's $3.55 trillion budget blueprint released Thursday [2/26/2009] targeted U.S. energy producers by imposing new taxes and fees, abolishing existing tax breaks and changing accounting rules.  The White House proposals provoked a firestorm of opposition today from industry allies on Capitol Hill.

Court halts Utah oil and gas leases.  A judge late Saturday [1/17/2009] halted the Bush administration's efforts to open 110,000 acres of federal land in Utah to oil and gas exploration, ruling that the danger of damaging the pristine land required further study before leases were awarded.  The leases to the parcels had been auctioned off Dec. 19 in a move that environmental groups said was a last-minute gift to the energy industry before President Bush left office.

Bias alert!
A "gift to the energy industry" is a gift to the energy consumer.

Harry Reid's Land Grab:  The 1200-page, pork-laden, $10 billion proposal locks up millions of acres of energy-rich property by designating it as environmentalist-friendly "federal wilderness" area where not even as much as a bicycle would be permitted to travel across the land.  Many of these areas recently became available when the ban on domestic drilling in Western states expired last fall and the liberal left couldn't muster the courage to keep it in place due to rising energy prices.  Now Democratic leaders are using different legislative strategies to put a new kind of ban in place.

US govt cancels leases for Utah oil, gas drilling.  In a sharp reversal of Bush administration policy, the Interior Department canceled controversial energy leases on Wednesday [2/4/2009] that would have opened lands near national parks in Utah to oil and natural gas drilling.

Obama's 'Extreme Team' On Energy.  One of them wanted to see Americans paying $8 a gallon for gasoline.  Another tried to block access to domestic oil reserves that could one day exceed those in Saudi Arabia.  Another thinks global warming is a dire crisis justifying a massive crackdown on energy — decades after saying the same thing about global cooling.  Yet another had a position in the one of the world's top socialist organizations.  Meet the Obama administration's energy team.

War On Fossil Fuels.  The new administration has wasted no time in reversing a decision by the Bush White House that let gas and oil companies explore for new resources.  Keep this in mind the next time pump prices take off.

Boxer Unwilling to Compromise on ANWR Drilling.  Even if you offer Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., what she's been pushing for — taxpayer investments in "green" or renewable energy — she's not going to budge in her opposition to opening federal lands to oil and natural gas exploration.

Obama Interior Nominee to Consider New Ban on Oil Drilling in USA.  President-elect Barack Obama's secretary of the interior nominee, Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.), said he will consider restoring parts of an expired federal ban on offshore oil drilling, but told CNSNews.com that he has "no idea" how much of the drilling restrictions should be reimposed.

The POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy:  Tanks a Lot.  The POR economy kicked in during the latter part of June, when its architects — Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, and Harry Reid — decided that starving the economy of energy by refusing to allow more offshore drilling in the face of $4 gas prices was a winning political position.  Pelosi claimed that because we couldn't totally "drill our way out of this," we shouldn't increase drilling at all.  Reid put an exclamation point on Pelosi's stubbornness by insisting that fossil fuels are "making us sick."

In Alaska, The Drill Is Gone.  Remember those 68 million acres House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the oil companies had to use or lose?  According to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, they can't drill there either.

"Use It or Lose It" Is Not the Way Energy Markets Work.  While Republicans have argued for drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), Congressional Democrats responded with a counterclaim:  oil companies need to use what they already have.  To that end, House Democrats have proposed "use it or lose it" legislation that would apply to leases on federal land.

Speaker Pushing Stealth Renewal of Congressional Energy Embargo.  Having failed to pass the required measures to fund the government for the next fiscal year, Congress must now pass what is known as a Continuing Resolution (CR) in order to avoid a government shutdown.  A draft of the resolution contains a provision taken from the recently passed House bill, H.R. 6899, to continue the ban on energy exploration and production on nearly all of the taxpayer owned Outer Continental Shelf in the lower 48 states for another year.

Gasoline, Oil and the Economy:  Despite the current gas price relief, growing numbers of Americans remain wary of domestic gasoline supply, gas prices, and fear for their economic future.  They are wary of the OPEC nations, who can throttle supply on political whim; and, they fear that, should they lose their job, how will they be able to buy food, gas, and pay for their home.  Their worry is understandable.  Perhaps, it is also wise — if their worry serves as a catalyst for demanding specific action by elected officials.

Stop the War on Poor Families.  As Democratic Party delegates gather in Denver, America is repeatedly being told that we must transform our economy to "green" energy.  Our future is in wind and solar, liberal Democrats and environmental activists insist.  Oil, gas, coal and nuclear must go.  American citizens vigorously disagree.  They know fossil and nuclear fuels built this country and created health and living standards unprecedented in history.  Over two-thirds support increased drilling.

Why Americans Can't Get U.S. Oil:  At last report, Democrats decided to allow the quarter-century ban on drilling for oil off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to expire.  That's not the same as lifting the ban.  Moreover, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md) is on record saying that, if the Democrats retain control of Congress, restoring the ban "will be a top priority for discussion next year."  So much for so-called "energy independence."  When Democrats say that, they are talking about wind and solar power, and biofuels, not oil, natural gas, and coal.

The Congressional Oil Embargo.  Congress and America united when we suffered from an Arab Oil Embargo in 1973.  Now we're suffering from a Congressional Oil Embargo. … The Arab Oil Embargo only lasted six months.  The Congressional Oil Embargo has lasted for decades and endures to this day.

House Democrats to Let Ban on Drilling Expire.  Congressional Democrats bowed to political pressure yesterday [9/23/2008] and agreed to let the ban on offshore oil drilling expire, a decision that would allow exploration just three miles off the Atlantic and Pacific coastlines unless the next president reinstates an executive branch order that prohibits drilling.

Pedaling no-gas options.  Democratic leaders in the House of Representatives sent a message last week to hard-working commuters forced to pay historically high prices for gasoline:  Ride a bike.  The message was buried on page 255 of a 290-page bill the Democratic leadership introduced at 9:45 p.m. last Monday night, forced through the Rules Committee at 10:00 p.m., and put up for a "debate" and final vote — with no amendments allowed — on Tuesday evening [9/16/2008].

Congressional corruption:  The energy crisis comes to rest at the feet of the Democrats.  For more than 30 years, the Democrats have used whatever rules and procedures necessary to block or prevent the energy industry from keeping up with the growing demand.  Democrats have prevented the construction of a single nuclear plant, or a single oil refinery, and the development of our domestic energy resources.  It is the Democrats that are now preventing even a reasoned debate.

The drilling bill that bans drilling.  This bill permanently bans all drilling within 50 miles of the US coast, which just happens to be where most of the recoverable oil and gas reserves are.  It permits drilling between 50 and 100 miles out only if the adjoining states agree — which they won't, since the bill denies them any share in the royalties the oil companies would have to pay, thereby eliminating any financial incentive for a state to say yes.  Virtually all the oil off the California coast and beneath the Eastern Gulf of Mexico would be locked up for good.

Energy Policy End Game.  In 41 days, the long-imposed moratorium on offshore oil drilling and domestic oil shale production is set to expire — gone.  This happens automatically and can be stopped only if Congress votes to re-establish the ban.  Lifting the moratorium might free up as much as 100 years' worth of oil and gas for domestic consumption.  But keeping domestic energy supplies off limits is something Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid and their environmentalist allies desperately want to do.

A Country At Mercy Of Environmentalists.  For several decades, environmentalists have managed to get Congress to keep most of our oil resources off-limits to exploration and drilling.  They've managed to have the Congress enact onerous regulations that have made refinery construction impossible.  Similarly, they've used the courts and Congress to completely stymie the construction of nuclear power plants.  As a result, energy prices are at historical highs and threaten our economy and national security.

Where's the Energy?  Locked up, thanks to Speaker Pelosi.  With complete disregard to the rights of the minority party, the Democrat leadership in Congress will not allow a vote on drilling for America's vast domestic resources.  Producers have made great strides in minimizing ecological damage.  Over the past 25 years, 7 billion gallons of oil have been pumped to shore, without a single significant spill.  In fact, the last oil spill of any impact from a drilling rig off our shores occurred 37 years ago.  Yet, congressional Democrats refuse to acknowledge these facts, choosing instead to remain beholden to the fringe environmental extremists who oppose advancement.

No Excuses For Not Drilling.  About 700 billion U.S. dollars flow out of this country every year for foreign oil and gas.  Instead of this obscene transfer of our wealth and standard of living out of the United States, why don't you let the "Big Evil Oil Companies" invest their obscene, windfall profits right here in the United States and then the let the taxpayers' dollars for energy stay here too?  Here are the weak excuses I hear, mostly from Democrats….

Nelson endorses Jennings, vows to block offshore drilling.  Democratic congressional candidate Christine Jennings on Wednesday [8/20/2008] picked up the endorsement of Sen. Bill Nelson, a fellow Democrat who also vowed to prevent any expansion of oil drilling off Florida's Gulf Coast.

Pelosi's Energy Stonewall:  Democrats appear ready to sacrifice their whole agenda, even spending, rather than allow new domestic energy production.  Or even a mere debate about energy.  The Democratic leadership is stonewalling any measure that might possibly relax the Congressional ban on offshore drilling.  Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid know that they would lose if a vote ever came to the floor, and they're desperate to suppress an insurrection among those Democrats who are pragmatic about one of the top economic issues.

Pelosi won't limit vote to offshore drilling.  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday firmly rejected the idea of a House vote solely on the issue of offshore oil drilling, calling it "a hoax on the American people" backed by oil companies. ... "You want to drill?  We want the royalties for the American people, and we want that to pay for renewable energy resources," the San Francisco Democrat said in an interview for KQED television's weekly news show, "This Week in Northern California."  "We want to connect all that together."

The Editor interjects...
But Ms. Pelosi, those royalties are not yours to give away.

Let's See the Votes.  Here is information and a list of votes compiled by Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), ranging from 1995 to 2008, on off-shore drilling and drilling in ANWR.  Take a look and decide for yourself who is to blame for stopping drilling in the OCS and in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR).

No-Energy Nancy's Phony Energy Plan:  Our friends at the Institute for Energy Research (IER) posted a devastating exposé of the Pelosi plan.  As announced last week, the plan would:
 •  Permanently ban access to about 97 percent of the undersea oil lying within 50 miles of the California coast.
 •  Continue the ban on energy production in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico.
 •  Impose a brand-new ban on oil and gas leases in Alaska's coastal waters out to 50 miles.
 •  Not allow states that approve new leases beyond 50 miles to share royalties with the federal government, thus stripping any financial incentive for states to stand up to environmental pressure groups, who will continue to agitate against any new oil and gas operations offshore.

The Democrats' Sham Energy Bill:  Republicans recognize expanded drilling for oil is a powerful issue working for them in this election year.  Voters paying record high oil prices in a country where long drives to work are often mandatory favor expanded oil drilling.  Speaker Pelosi's ruse was endangering too many of her Democratic colleagues.  Thus she resorted to Plan B.

Pelosi's Drilling Ruse:  When Democrats opposed every measure to increase domestic oil production, they angered millions of Americans.  And when they finally tried to claim they were for new drilling by producing two bills that allowed new drilling only where there was little or no oil, Americans quickly picked up on the scam.  On all of the major issues of the past two years, the Democrats chose to play political gotcha instead of actually govern.

Democrats Still Aren't Serious About Drilling.  After a five-week paid vacation, Democrats are back in Washington and claiming that they want to do something about oil prices.  But the problem is that their plan, which passed the House yesterday [9/16/2008] and will likely come up for a vote in the Senate later this week, will not produce a single drop of oil.  Why?  Because it does nothing about environmental groups that are suing to stop drilling.

Dems like $10 per Gallon Gasoline.  You have to see this video to believe it.  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) was on the Senate floor earlier today, attempting to get offshore drilling authorized.  As you'll see on the YouTube shot, he tried to get Democrats to agree to a trigger for it, at ever-increasing levels of gas prices.  McConnell was asking for unanimous consent, so the bill could pass immediately.  Try as he might, Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Co) objected no matter how high McConnell raised the ante.  $4 a gallon?  Salazar objected.  $7.50 a gallon?  Again, Salazar objected.  Finally, McConnell offers a trigger for offshore drilling permission at $10 a gallon gasoline prices.  And guess what?  Salazar objected.

Bush Says Drill, Drill, Drill — and Oil Drops $9!  Democrats keep saying that it will take 10 years or longer to produce oil from the offshore areas.  And they say that oil prices won't decline for at least that long.  And they, along with Obama and McCain, bash so-called oil speculators.  And today we had a real-world example as to why they are wrong.

'Rig' The Election.  When President Bush lifted the executive order banning exploration and drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf, two things happened almost immediately:  The world price for oil started to drop and the Democrats panicked.  They could no longer hide under the umbrella the order provided.

Washington's Dry Well:  President Bush ratcheted up the pressure on Congress this week to open the Outer Continental Shelf to oil drilling by rescinding the executive order prohibiting such exploration.  There's just one catch:  For the president's action to take effect, Congress has to lift its own ban, which has been in place since 1983.  And that's not going to happen.

Boehner says majority of Congress wants to drill.  House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Congress is ready to lift the ban on offshore drilling but is being blocked by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).  "Nancy Pelosi and the liberals here in the Congress, they worship at the altar radical environmentalism.  The last thing that that group wants is more drilling," said Boehner in an interview with Bloomberg TV Saturday.

Pelosi stands firm against offshore drilling.  Her voice carries considerable weight since, as speaker, Pelosi is in a position to prevent a vote on expanded drilling from reaching the floor.  And she and Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, appear intent on holding the line against calls to approve drilling in areas now off limits.

Pelosi blocks vote on Bush request to lift ban on offshore oil drilling.  A plan to lift the ban on coastal drilling is stalled on Capitol Hill, for one simple reason:  A Californian who opposes President Bush's proposal is calling the shots in the House of Representatives.  Despite growing public support for ending the ban, even in California, Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco said she won't allow the immediate vote the president wants.

Blunt blasts Pelosi for not allowing drilling vote.  House Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) on Sunday [7/20/2008] strongly criticized Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for not allowing a vote on a measure that would allow offshore drilling.  While acknowledging that Pelosi can prevent such a vote, Blunt said the Democratic leader would have to live with that decision, which he argued "does not make sense to the American people."

America's Energy Held Hostage.  A recent CNN poll showed more than 73 percent of Americans in favor of offshore drilling.  But the House Speaker can keep the issue from even reaching a vote, and Pelosi seems bent on just that.  "(In California) We learned the hard way that oil and water do not mix on our coast," she said back in 1996.  Pelosi was referring, of course, to the famous Santa Barbara oil spill of 1969, an event that serves as the Alamo of the anti-drilling cause.

The Editor says...
Nancy Pelosi has gotten a lot of political mileage out of that one oil spill almost 40 years ago.  The Santa Barbara incident was a blowout.  Prior to the development of blow-out preventers, blowouts were common and were referred to as gushers.*  In other words, there's so much oil and gas out there, it can hardly wait to get out of the ground.

Democrats Against Drilling.  Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and other liberal leaders on Capitol Hill are gripped by cold-sweat terror.  If they permit a vote on offshore drilling, they know they will lose when Blue Dogs and oil-patch Democrats defect to the GOP position of increasing domestic energy production.  So the last failsafe is to shut down Congress.

Dems Over a Domestic Barrel.  On September 30 … the ban on fossil-fuel drilling off America's Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) and in the oil-shale fields of the West will expire.  Democrats, who control both houses of Congress, must pass an appropriations bill extending the bans.  The onus, in other words, is on them.

Democrats Should Let Us Drill.  Now that an executive branch ban on offshore oil exploration has been lifted, the time has come for Democrats in Washington to lift their own ban on increased domestic supply.  Americans are demanding that Congress do something about record-high gas prices.  They recognize that prices will not go down unless supplies go up.  And they also know that the only thing now standing in the way of more domestic supply is the Democratic refusal to allow it.

The Futile Crusades of Dem Quixote:  You name the issue, and the party led by Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi has diagnosed it incorrectly and applied the wrong remedy.  Let's consider just a few of today's ills:  oil prices, Iraq, and obesity.

Dems' Doublethink on Drilling:  High gasoline prices are good.  A high price, imposed through federal carbon taxes or carbon caps, is precisely the mechanism by which Democrats hope to curb carbon emissions. … [But] High gasoline prices are bad.  With constituents irate over gasoline prices that are pushing $5 a gallon, Democrats complain that high prices are a bad thing.

The Democrats' No-Drill Energy Plan.  When it comes to domestic oil production, the Democrats and their Green/Left supporters are all singing from the same deranged hymnal.  In May, one of the choir leaders, Democratic Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois declared, "We can't drill our way to lower prices."

The Democrats' Energy Charade:  Earlier this month the House of Representatives voted on an energy bill called the Drill Responsibly in Leased Lands (Drill) Act.  The good news, for those of us who actually want to do something to lower gas prices, is that it failed. … The problem here came in the fine print.  The bill would have mandated that leasing be done in an undefined, "environmentally responsible" way.  We know from experience that such ambiguous language leads to lawsuits and delays.

How Wrong are the Democrats on Drilling?  A common response of the Democrats when confronted with citizens advocating for increased offshore drilling is that the results are "years off into the future" and therefore any relief on gas prices would be unlikely — at least in any sort of time frame that matters to voters right now.  They are wrong on many measures — foremost among them is that the same obstruction deprived Americans all these years of domestic production which would have been in place but for Democratic opposition.  Also future prices would respond to the prospect of increased oil supplies and this would have a depressive effect on oil prices — NOW.

Drilling and Blissful Ignorance:  Consider:  25 years ago, nearly 60 percent of U.S. petroleum was produced domestically.  Today it's 25 percent.  From its peak in 1970, U.S. production has declined a staggering 47 percent.  The world consumes 86 million barrels a day; the United States, roughly 20 million.  We need the stuff to run our cars and planes and economy.  Where does it come from?

Shut Up and Produce Some Oil.  Liberals are flailing about looking for some political cover on energy and gas prices.  For decades now, they have supported the policies of extremists who have systematically sought to shut down every major energy source for our economy.  We can't drill for oil offshore, we can't drill in the frozen tundra of north Alaska, we can't even develop oil shale on the mainland.  Liberals are even opposing the development of new oil discoveries in the Plains states.

Let's Drill.  Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, the Mr. Magoo of American politics, stumbled onto the truth last week.  He discovered the law of supply and demand.  "We want to put [more oil] on the market to increase supply and lower prices," Reid said.  "With oil and gas prices continuing to break record highs every day, much more needs to be done."  Indeed it does.  But Reid won't allow it.

Loony Harry Reid.  This nation is in serious trouble because it has people in very powerful elected positions that say crazy things.  Take, for example, Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) who is the Senate Majority Leader:  "The one thing we fail to talk about is those costs that you don't see on the bottom line.  That is coal makes us sick.  Oil makes us sick; it's global warming.  It's ruining our country, it's ruining our world.  We've got to stop using fossil fuel."  [Italics in original]

Harry Reid's Position Paper on Drilling:  In a recent interview with Fox News Business Channel, Mr. Reid, who was evidently fed up with questions about drilling, suddenly exclaimed:  "Coal makes us sick, oil makes us sick; it's global warming.  It's ruining our country, it's ruining the world.  We've got to stop using fossil fuel."  Mr. Reid's rant quickly became the No. 1 video on the Internet, approaching a half-million views.

Dems oblivious on oil.  Maybe the quickest way to lower oil and gas prices would be this:  Immediately enroll every Democratic member of Congress in an entry-level economics class.  The lack of even a basic grasp of economic concepts has led Democrats to oppose sensible policies that would begin to lower oil and gas prices.  Instead, they push hair-brained ideas that make no sense.

We're Not Addicts!  It's a confused and confusing debate but it can be boiled down to this:  On one side are those who believe the answer is for us to slash our demand for energy.  On the other side are those who believe the answer is to greatly increase our supply.

What Do The Democrats Take Us For?  The public wants more oil, but Democrats keep offering the same solutions, not one of which includes drilling and all of which are asinine.  Do they think the American people are fools?

Dems Oppose GOP Call for Increased Domestic Drilling.  Democratic senators are skeptical about new efforts by Republicans and the Bush administration to increase offshore drilling, despite a government report by the Department of Interior's Bureau of Land Management showing that there are 139 billion barrels of oil in the United States (onshore and offshore combined).

Countering Democrats on Drilling:  The Democrats have a standardized talking point against any domestic drilling (in ANWR, the Midwest oil shales and off-shore), settling on the comeback:  "It won't help us today." … If the voters see environmentalists, tree-huggers, and their Democratic political minions as causing $4 or $5 a gallon gasoline, along with the rise in consumer prices across the board because of the increase of the cost of oil used as an ingredient in many products, they will blame the Democrats.  And frustration with environmentalism is starting to show up in the polls, which are indicating an increasing call for domestic drilling from the American public.

Domestic Drilling OK, Just 'Not in My State,' Senators Say.  "There may be places that make sense, I am not saying, 'Let's not drill anywhere,'" Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) said in response to the question.  "But do I want to drill off the California coast?  No.  Do I want to drill in the Arctic in endangered areas?  No."

The Editor asks...
Uh, Senator, I have a question:  What is an "endangered area?"  Is that a place that might disappear if we drill for oil there?

Fuelish Democrats:  [Democrats] promised in the 2006 campaign to offer a "common sense" plan to curb gas prices.  They have yet to produce one, and the price per gallon of gas has risen by more than $1.60 since Democrats took control of Congress in January 2007. … [But] John McCain is a problem.  He opposes drilling for oil in the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR), though he has come around on increased domestic production in other areas (except off the coast of Florida).

Obama Unlikely to Support New Oil Drilling in U.S..  A recent report by the Interior Department shows that there are about 139 billion barrels of undiscovered oil on U.S. territory, onshore and offshore combined, much of it restricted from extraction because of environmental regulations.  Further, indications are that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) does not support drilling for that oil and would not take steps to do so if elected president.

Senate votes to halt strategic oil stockpiling.  Jittery about a political backlash over gasoline costs as prices set yet another record Tuesday, Congress voted to halt deliveries to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in defiance of President Bush.  The action was expected to have a modest effect on pump prices, saving motorists from 2 to 5 cents a gallon, backers said.

Democrats and High Oil PricesInvestor's Business Daily has a continuing series on "Breaking the Back of High Oil", and today's edition has a fascinating breakdown of some of the actions that the Democrats have taken over the last three decades or so to ensure that our country has no defense against the effects of rising oil prices.  While doing so, they've made us all captives of OPEC and such tinpot dictatorships such as Venezuela.

Blame Congress for High Oil Prices.  If there is a villain in all of this, it is Congress itself.  That venerable body has made it impossible for U.S. producers of crude oil to tap significant domestic reserves of oil and gas, and it has foreclosed economically viable alternative sources of energy in favor of unfeasible alternatives such as wind and solar.  In addition, Congress has slapped substantial taxes on gasoline.

Clinton:  Drilling not the answer.  Exploring new sources of oil in the United States is not the solution to the nation's growing energy crunch, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Hillary Clinton said last week.  There are places where exploration and drilling can take place, such as the Gulf of Mexico, but it doesn't make sense to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska, Clinton said during an interview with the Argus Leader on Friday.

The Editor says...
In other words, Hillary Clinton wants to leave the oil in the ground and depend entirely on conservation to achieve "energy independence."  Anyone with an ounce of critical thinking will see immediately that her plans cannot succeed, and that she will blame someone else when the ideas flop.

Turning Voters Into Morons:  Consider the Democrats' cruel exploitation of their supporters' hopes and fears regarding rising gasoline prices.  Both Clinton and Obama have talked as though those prices can be lowered.  Clinton specifically talks of lowering federal gas taxes during the summer.  That will do it, but only for the summer.  The problem is that oil demand worldwide has exceeded supply. … Likewise the candidates are deceiving their supporters when they promise to make the country "independent of foreign oil."

Obamanomics:  [Scroll down]  It should be possible on the straight-talk express to devise some alternative to the patently cynical promise of "energy independence."  No such "independence" is within reach, as the successive failures of Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, and two Bushes to attain it should demonstrate.

Striking Out on Energy.  President George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain went to bat on energy policy this week.  And guess what?  They both struck out.  Mr. Bush went hat in hand to the Saudis to ask for more oil production in order to bring down world prices.  He whiffed.  They said no for the second time this year.  ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson said it's "astonishing" that Mr. Bush keeps asking Saudi Arabia to pump more oil, rather than working harder for increased oil production at home.

Bush gets oil but no credit for jawboning Saudis.  President George W. Bush walked away from a meeting with Saudi King Abdullah on Friday with a prize he has been seeking for months:  a commitment from the world's big oil exporter to boost output.  But the news — which came the same day that U.S. crude oil futures hit a new record of $127.82 a barrel — speaks less to Bush's success at "jawboning" the de facto OPEC leader on oil prices and more to the kingdom's worry that high oil prices will dent demand for their own supplies, analysts said.

Dems 'Oil' Wet About Gas Prices.  Have you noticed that ever since the Democrats took control of Congress, oil and gas prices have been going through the roof?  The Dems won control of the House and Senate last year in part on the notion that sinking billions of taxpayer dollars into corn-based ethanol would combat global warming; itself a dubious superstition that some scientists say is part of the Earth's natural environmental changes over many eons.

Democrats Fumble Ball On Energy.  The price of oil has risen sharply since the Democrats, with their government-heavy energy schemes, took control of the House.  Since January 2007, the first month for the Democrats in office, oil prices are up by more than 113%. … Congress, led by Democrats since January 2007, has steadfastly refused to do anything constructive to bring down the price of oil.  What truly is frightening is Pelosi shows no sign of running out of bad ideas to ruin our energy-dependent economy.

Feckless To Reckless, Pelosi Should Resign.  Any leader with an energy record as derelict as Speaker Pelosi's ought to step down.  Where she once was just incompetent and irresponsible, she has now — with her latest scheme to fix oil prices — become dangerous.  Despite polls showing Americans in favor of drilling more oil from America's huge untapped supplies, Pelosi won't allow it.  She just wants to empty our Strategic Petroleum Reserve for a short-term fix to get through Election Day.

Ann Coulter is a little sarcastic, but she has a point...
This is Not a Drill.  [Speaker of the House Nancy] Pelosi announced that the Democrats also plan to push for "an historic investment in biofuels, efficiency, conservation and the rest."  The "rest" is apparently what she called our "important and essential" investment in alternative energy.  That certainly would be historic:  We would make history by throwing our money away on unproven energy boondoggles that have eaten up untold billions since the 1960s without producing a single net kilowatt of power while we all starve to death.

Over to You, Speaker Pelosi.  Gas is still at $4 a gallon, but the good news is there's an emerging consensus on a measure that would help:  Drill for more oil here at home.  President Bush dropped the executive ban on offshore oil and natural gas exploration last week, and House GOP leader John Boehner plans to lead a congressional delegation to Colorado and Alaska to highlight America's abundant energy resources this week.  Polls show more than two-thirds of the public support increased domestic energy exploration and production.  Guess who stands in the way.

Power of one:  Pelosi vows to block offshore drilling vote.  A plan to lift the ban on coastal drilling is stalled on Capitol Hill, for one simple reason: A Californian who opposes President Bush's proposal is calling the shots in the House of Representatives.  Despite growing public support for ending the ban, even in California, Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she won't allow a vote.  "I have no plans to do so," Pelosi said Thursday [7/17/2008].

Pelosi:  'I'm trying to save the planet'.  After promising fairness and open debate, Pelosi has resorted to hard-nosed parliamentary devices that effectively bar any chance for Republicans to offer policy alternatives.  "I'm trying to save the planet; I'm trying to save the planet," she says impatiently when questioned.  "I will not have this debate trivialized by their excuse for their failed policy."

Drill Through The Floor.  Led by Reps. Mike Pence, R-Ind., Tom Price, R-Ga., and Lynn Westmoreland, R-Ga., and fully backed by House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, this GOP attack could smack unwary Democrats as hard as the blast of a Texas oil gusher, because what Republicans are demanding is nothing more than a simple up-or-down vote on drilling for domestic oil in a Democratic-controlled House of Representatives.

Five Myths About Going It Alone on Energy:  The idea that the United States, the world's single largest energy consumer, can be independent of the $5 trillion-per-year energy business — the world's single biggest industry — is ludicrous on its face.  The push for energy independence is based on a series of false premises.  Here are a few of the most pernicious ones.

An awful oil bill.  If you're wondering why the Democrat-controlled Congress has lower approval ratings than President Bush, then look at the bill that the House passed on mostly a party-line vote, 236-182.  It scraps the tax deductions given to the nation's oil companies, such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and ChevronTexaco.  In light of the record profits these firms have been racking up, not many folks will shed any tears for them.  But perhaps they should.

The U.S. needs a good oil plan.  Americans in both parties need to get on board.  That means opening up the coasts of Florida and California to new offshore drilling for the first time in a quarter-century.  That means tapping into the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.  That means easing regulations to allow the industry to build its first new refinery in three decades.  For too long, partisanship and environmental demagoguery have blocked progress toward easing the nation's ever-growing reliance on foreign oil.

The Oil Dependency Myth:  To say that the people of the United States are "dependent" upon foreign oil is also a misnomer.  Individuals choose to purchase oil from overseas producers because such an action is preferable to other alternatives.  I am "dependent" upon overseas oil in the same way that I am "dependent" upon Proctor & Gamble for my laundry detergent or the local butcher for my meat.  (This is not to absolve the U.S. government for engaging in bad foreign policy in the hopes of convincing overseas producers to sell oil to Americans at cheap prices.  My purpose is simply to point out the absurdity of saying that voluntary economic exchanges are acts of "dependence.")

A Cartel Worse Than OPEC:  This year a very large reserve was located in the Gulf of Mexico, some distance from the shore line of Texas.  There is no shortage of oil or gas around the coast of the United States.  Some 20 years ago, Phillips Petroleum sought permission to drill wells in the Bridger-Teton National Forest (gasp!) in Wyoming.  The wells were to be capped and used only in case of a national emergency.  Wyoming is one of America's richest states in energy resources.  The request was denied.

Mind their own business.  Global energy giant BP has been a leader of the so-called "corporate social responsibility" movement. … Two weeks ago, the campaign broke down.  BP shut down its Prudhoe Bay oil field in Alaska's North Slope after discovering what a company press release called "unexpectedly severe corrosion" in the pipeline.  The company says it will replace 73 percent of the Prudhoe Bay pipelines.  The shutdown will cost the nation 8 percent of its output — 400,000 barrels of oil a day — at a time when consumer gas prices are hitting record highs and world oil prices are soaring.

Addicted to what?  The first part of last Tuesday's State of the Union — on national security — was tough, clear, principled, well reasoned.  The second part was a laundry list, reminiscent of the worst of Bill Clinton.  I was nodding off when I heard the President Bush say, "America is addicted to oil."  Addicted to oil!  That woke me up.  America is no more addicted to oil than it is addicted to bread, to milk, to paper, to water, to computers….

America's Oil Weapon:  President Bush has bemoaned what he calls the United States' addiction to oil.  He has demonized America's oil use in speeches, and talked about the need to move beyond the petroleum-based economy.  The president is certainly correct to point out harmful side effects to our use of oil and the need for us to address them.  But in using the expressly negative language of addiction, the President not only cast a dark cloud over the fuel that presently underpins a huge portion of our economy, he badly confused a set of issues that demand clear thinking and fair analysis.

 Editor's Note:   That America is "addicted to oil" is something you would expect Al Gore to say, not George W. Bush.

Addicted to Regulation.  In his State of the Union Address, President Bush said that "America is addicted to oil."  But it would be more accurate to say that America is addicted to opportunity, and oil and its products help us seize it. … Some 40% of our oil consumption is for cars and light trucks; 32% for buses, railroads, ships, trucks and agricultural machinery; and another 17% goes into petrochemicals to produce products from plastic to paint.  These uses represent opportunities, not addictions.

Oil Addiction Fiction:  Bush's "Addiction" May Be Rational Choice.  In spite of President Bush's dire warning in his State of the Union address that America is becoming "addicted to oil" — followed by "rehab" policies to include renewables, hybrids and now CAFE standards — most Americans do not wish to break the habit.  Far from it:  Americans want their government to find new sources of oil to increase domestic supplies.

Nelson:  Oil rigs would interfere with military training in Gulf.  U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson says the Bush administration is "hell-bent" on offshore oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, with some gas rigs as close as 25 miles from Florida's shoreline.  But he says the military may prevent it.  Nelson told reporters in Tallahassee that the Pentagon needs restricted air space south of Eglin and Tyndall Air Force Bases, to test new types of jets and even secret weapons.  He said the Navy also does some weapons testing in the area, and can't have oil rigs in the way.

Note:  There's more about Environmentalists vs. Military Preparedness on another page.

Energy insecurity — unreliable supply at an unreasonable cost — took years to create.  Solutions will take years as well.  In the meantime, working with the international community, Washington must develop better knowledge, more tools and greater will to effectively address international petroleum supply issues in foreign and economic policy.  Focused activities, skillfully executed, in producing countries could bring millions of barrels more to world markets.  We would then have less to fear from Iran or other threats.

The 21st century Boston Tea Party.  On Aug. 1, Speaker Nancy Pelosi — without addressing gas prices that continue to hover near $4 per gallon — adjourned Congress for five weeks, dimmed the lights, turned off the microphones and C-SPAN cameras and attempted to remove the press and visitors from the House chamber.  Republicans refuse to leave the chamber because the issue is about much more than gas prices.  It is about much more than energy.  It is about the U.S. economy, jobs and national security.  It is about who we are as a people.




How to lower gas prices:  Produce more oil!

A Declaration of Energy Independence.  How can we achieve the energy independence which every President since Nixon has said is a matter of national security?  Stop wringing our hands and moaning about our situation, stand up like our ancestors have and boldly declare our Energy Independence!  In practical terms we should:  take the shackles off our domestic oil industry, build new refineries, develop better distribution of natural gas, expand the use of nuclear, wind, solar and every conceivable form of energy, and drill baby drill!

Drill.  Given that we're spending billions of stimulus dollars to rebuild our highways, it makes sense to think about what we'll be driving on them.  For years to come, most of what we drive will be powered, at least in part, by diesel fuel or gasoline.  To fuel that driving, we need access to oil.  The less use we make of our own reserves, the more we will have to import, which leads to a number of harmful consequences.  That means we need to drill here and drill now.

Let's Drill Our Way To Lower Taxes.  Opening our vast domestic resources, both on- and off-shore, to responsible oil and gas development would produce an influx of tax revenue from additional lease sales and royalties, as well as from income and excise taxes.  These additional collections could be used, for example, to offset the alternative minimum tax (AMT).  The Congressional Research Service recently estimated the potential federal revenue from Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) oil development at $191 billion over 30 years — roughly $18.36 per barrel, based on projections of recoverable reserves.

All Falling Down...  [Scroll down]  While Obama was right to stiffen efficiency standards and promote alternate energies, he is neglecting the only mechanisms that can tide us over for the next 20 years — more natural gas, domestic oil, shale, tar sands, clean coal, and nuclear energy.  We should be on a dash to build nuclear plants for the coming demand from plug in hybrids and spikes in electricity usage.  We should be leasing as much natural gas lands as possible, to gain the supplies to run energy plants and to power vehicles.  There is plenty of oil in the Dakotas, California, Texas and in the Gulf and we should be drilling there like mad.  Sorry, even Santa Barbara should either ban SUVs or have oil derricks on the horizon.

Drill and Save, Now.  The nation, it seems, now favors developing new sources over "saving the planet" by a hefty 3-2 margin.  And get this:  The biggest shift came among — yep! — liberals.  Seems sanctimonious tree-huggers and caribou-coddlers have their price:  $4 gas.

What Part of 'Drill Now' do they Not Understand?  Out here in West Texas we love our guns, we support our troops, and we treasure our freedom. … We also walk around on top of oil:  yes it's far beneath us, but it's there.  And all these aspects of West Texas come together to our astonishment and anger over the fact that our independence is limited by an intrusive federal government that tells us what oil we can and can't access through drilling, and ultimately makes us dependent upon other nations for our own fuel supplies.

Most Americans support more U.S. oil drilling.  A push by U.S. President George W. Bush and Republican presidential candidate Senator John McCain to lift a ban on U.S. offshore oil drilling could find plenty of support from Americans weary of rising energy costs, according to a Reuters/Zogby poll.  Some 59.6 percent of Americans surveyed in the poll released on Wednesday [6/18/2008] said they would favour government efforts to boost domestic drilling and refinery construction to cool record prices.

It's Time for Rage.  We have a right to be angry, but anger is no longer enough.  It's time for rage — good, old American rage aimed at those elitist Democrats who prefer to see the folks beggared by soaring fuel prices rather than take the action this very real economic crisis demands.  Drill.

Drill, Already.  High gas prices are finally curbing America's demand for the open road. Transportation Department statistics for March indicate that the country just experienced its first year-over-year decline in miles driven since 1979.  A decrease in demand is one natural market response to rising gas prices.  The other natural response — an increase in supply — has not been as forthcoming, and the price of oil continues to rise even though Americans are driving less.

Drill! Drill! Drill!  At this point in time, is there another country on the face of the earth that would possess the oil and gas reserves held by the United States and refuse to exploit them?  Only technical incompetence, as in Mexico, would hold anyone back.  But not us.  We won't drill.  California won't drill for the estimated 1.3 billion barrels of recoverable oil off its coast because of bad memories of the Santa Barbara oil spill — in 1969.  We won't drill for the estimated 5.6 billion to 16 billion barrels of oil in the moonscape known as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) because of — the caribou.

A Time to Drill.  In a remarkably short time, the public has changed from supporters of environmentalism to advocates of drilling for oil and natural gas in the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and/or in the ocean.  For the first time since the 1970s, liberals in both parties have found themselves responding to significant demands for drilling.  Their responses are meant to confuse the electorate in order to turn public opinion back to their position on the environment.

Energy Myths:  Many in Congress seem either disconnected from reality or intentionally disingenuous about our energy crunch.  They have well-honed negative responses to common-sense ideas about solving our energy crisis, particularly drilling for more oil.  These responses are based on a number of widely held myths.  Sadly, they've become the backbone of the Democrats' energy policy.  They include:  "We can't drill our way out of our energy crisis."  Actually, we can.

Who wants to help me start drilling for oil?  I'm tired of this nonsense.  I am not addicted to oil.  I'm not psychologically or compulsively compelled to pump gasoline.  If my truck ran on maple syrup I'd use that instead.  But it doesn't.  It is not my fault that the automobile runs on gasoline.  I didn't invent it.  I only bought one because I need it for work like most of you do.  I tolerated paying $2 per gallon, and I could handle $3.  But word came down on Wednesday that $4-a-gallon gas will be the norm through 2009.

'Just Drill, Baby' — Governor Palin.  Yes, my friends on the left, there are responsible ways to drill for oil that will help us with our energy needs and not disturb your precious caribou.  It's time we started to look to solutions like this rather than Obama's wind farms….

Oil Crisis is Solvable.  There is only one way to drive down the rising cost of gasoline for the long term:  significantly increase the domestic supply of oil.  We are the only nation in the world with access to known oil deposits on our own land or off our shores that essentially refuses to tap those resources.  The main stumbling block is a lack of political consensus, which is in especially short supply in an election year.  Instead of coming up with real solutions to our growing energy crisis, the Democrats in Congress would rather rail against the oil companies.

Just Drill, Baby.  Washington politicians will tell you this is an "energy crisis," but America's energy challenges are far more political than substantive.  First, we are not running out of oil.  In 1920 it was estimated that the world supply of oil was 60 billion barrels.  By 1950 it was up to 600 billion, and by 1990 to two trillion.  In 2000 the world supply of oil was estimated to be three trillion barrels.  The U.S. has substantial supplies of oil and gas that could be accessed if lawmakers would allow it, but they frequently don't.

The drill-nothing Congress goes home.  Democrats' insistence on blocking a vote on drilling has more to do with protecting environmental special interests than really protecting the environment or solving the energy crunch.  And for that, they should pay a political price.




Everything but oil is subsidized.

Fossil Fuel Subsidies.  Whenever anyone questions whether wind power and other renewables, such as solar, should get subsidies, the proponents of wind and solar respond by saying fossil fuels get larger subsidies than renewables.  Let's sort out the facts as best we can.

Wind ($23.37) v. Gas (25 Cents).  [Scroll down]  An even better way to tell the story is by how much taxpayer money is dispensed per unit of energy, so the costs are standardized.  For electricity generation, the EIA concludes that solar energy is subsidized to the tune of $24.34 per megawatt hour, wind $23.37 and "clean coal" $29.81.  By contrast, normal coal receives 44 cents, natural gas a mere quarter, hydroelectric about 67 cents and nuclear power $1.59.

D1 Oils says US subsidies have forced it to shut UK refineries.  The enormous damage being done by "splash-and-dash" imports of American biodiesel was highlighted yesterday when one of the UK's leading operators, D1 Oils, said it was closing down all its refining operations in Britain after running up a £46m annual loss.




Big Oil:  Hero or Villain?

'Fractivists' caught in flood of Colorado lies.  Massive storms dumped "biblical rainfall amounts" across nearly 2,000 square miles of Colorado last month, according to the National Weather Service.  The raging floods that followed killed at least eight people, damaged or destroyed nearly 2,000 homes, and wrecked more than 200 miles of state highways and 50 state bridges.  The Denver Post ran a front page aerial photo headlined, "Front Range Flooding: Oil spilling into mix," showing a trashed stream bed with brown stains near a "damaged tank" that "leaks crude."  Opportunistic flocks of Big Green eco-vultures already embroiled in five local anti-fracking ballot measures pounced on the tragedy as a propaganda vehicle.  Their basic strategy was to pose as "mom-and-pop victims with no money to stop this spilling, but Big Bad Oil is putting zillions into the campaign."

Chevron Vindicated As Evidence Points To 'Green Fraud' By Environmentalists.  So what happened to the $19 billion judgment against Chevron over rainforest pollution in Ecuador?  Seems the leftist lawyer behind it all now finds himself in the dock on a RICO rap for a massive fraud.

Chevron takes shakedown lawyers to court in RICO trial.  [Scroll down]  While such tactics have traditionally been successful against big corporations with deep pockets, choosing to simply pay off the pests rather than spending the time and money to fight them, not so with Chevron.  The plaintiffs, led in large part by Manhattan lawyer Steven Donziger, tried to dig too deep, racking up a $19 B[illion] judgement in an Ecuador court based on what turned out to be a staggering series of apparently fraudulent ploys.  Chevron fought back and refused to cough up a dime.

Demoralize the anti-oil fringe.  It has become a familiar scene at major oil company annual meetings.  Protestors, some of whom have purchased token amounts of stock to appear, confound the proceedings by asking oil companies to exit their business in the name of the environment.  According to this fringe, oil companies have a responsibility to protect the planet from the scourge of fossil fuels.  Oil companies are portrayed as pushing their product while the planet overheats.  This black-and-white view of energy policy puts the global warming issue into a moral context.  It assumes everyone who believes in catastrophic climate-change theory is good, and those who don't are bad.  It also asserts that replacing fossil fuels will make the world better and "sustainable."

Obama budget would end oil industry tax breaks, hike royalites.  While the tax plans are dead on arrival on Capitol Hill — where lawmakers have rejected similar proposals many times before — they drew outrage from oil and gas industry leaders who said Obama was seeking to use the sector as a piggy bank.  The fiscal 2014 budget proposal aims to raise $2.5 billion over the next decade by raising the royalty rates for oil and gas produced on federal lands and waters, with the revenue steered toward a new Energy Security Trust for research in alternative fuels and vehicles.

Shocker: Oil companies pay the most in income taxes.  President Obama and the Democrats' calls for more revenue are almost never complete without some kind of shoutout to how we need to end loopholes for those treacherous, evil oil companies, but just a friendly reminder:  Oil companies provide for some of the most handsome portions of federal revenue already.

Big, Evil Oil Companies Pay Most in Taxes.  It's no surprise liberals love taxes.  The new Democratic Senate budget calls for $1 trillion in tax increases in order to offset $1 trillion in new spending.  But liberals who constantly demonize big oil are biting the hand that feeds and fulfills their big govenrment spending dreams.  It turns out, big oil companies like Exxon Mobile and Chevron pay [more] in taxes [than] any other company.

Who really owns Big Oil companies?  Research shows that the bulk of economic rewards reaped by the oil and gas sector are actually flowing back to everyday Americans.  Their success is boosting the financial futures of millions of working families all across the country.  Oil and gas companies have broad-based public ownership.

Israel Silent on Dems' Chevron Cash.  After Chevron contributed $2.5 million to a Republican Super PAC, Rep. Steve Israel (D., N.Y.), chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, accused the oil company of looking for political payoffs. [...] Israel failed to mention that Chevron has contributed more than $84,000 to Obama.  Chevron has donated at least $16,000 to Senate Democrats and more than $38,000 to Israel's fellow House Democrats.

Obama Will Say and Do Anything.  "Big Oil" has become a favorite Obama target.  On March 29, 2012, Obama said, "Congress up until this point has thought it was a good idea to send billions more of your tax dollars to the oil industry."  Obama appealed to Congress to "stand with the American people" and vote to end subsidies to the oil and gas industry.  But there is one problem:  "Big Oil" receives tax incentives.  In no sense can what "Big Oil" receives be called a subsidy — the sending of "billions more of your tax dollars to the oil industry."  Further, the incentives (sometimes referred to as tax breaks) are available to any US company.

Progressives Now Blame "Big Oil" for... Everything.  In typical Center for American Progress (CAP) partisan fashion, Daniel Weiss manages to blame oil companies for the price of gasoline, America's overspending problem, the inefficiency of biofuels, and for not drilling on land the federal government refuses to lease.  But don't let 'em off so easy, Mr. Weiss, oil and natural gas producers are also responsible for the Iraq war, world hunger, and that time I wrecked my ATV and broke my arm (it was powered by gasoline!).

Dems propose 'Reasonable Profits Board' to regulate oil company profits.  Six House Democrats, led by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), want to set up a "Reasonable Profits Board" to control gas profits.  The Democrats, worried about higher gas prices, want to set up a board that would apply a "windfall profit tax" as high as 100 percent on the sale of oil and gas, according to their legislation.  The bill provides no specific guidance for how the board would determine what constitutes a reasonable profit.

Debunking the big-oil subsidy myth.  The late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan used to warn against "semantic infiltration" — employing less-than-accurate words in an effort to shape the debate.  Moynihan's caution is often ignored, but it's still worth calling out the offenders.  Among them is a favorite think tank of the Obama administration, the Center for American Progress (CAP), which regularly insists that taxpayers are "subsidizing big oil companies."  That's simply not true.

Gasoline and Onions.  Oil companies today are no more greedy or clever than they have been all along.  We have to look for a better explanation — and it isn't hard to find.  Demand for oil rises with the growth of China, India and other developing countries.  When poor people get a little richer, they buy cars, computers and refrigerators.  They burn more fuel to make them and to run them.  Rising demand, other things being equal, increases prices.  And other things have not been equal.

The Administration's Big Oil Lie.  The hearing was called ostensibly to support the Democrats' Close Big Oil Tax Loopholes Act, a bill with no chance of passage.  Its purpose was to once again deflect blame for rising gas prices caused in large part by the Obama administration's ban on increasing domestic supply of fossil fuels.  Shell Oil President Marvin Odum laid the blame for high gas prices at the administration's feet, where it belongs.

Krauthammer rips oil company congressional 'show trials': 'A disgrace'.  Beating up on oil companies has always been low-hanging fruit for politicians when gasoline prices are high.  And as the country is headed into the summer driving season, gas prices are certain to go higher, giving Democrats the opportunity to play that card.  But such politicking isn't going unnoticed or without criticism.

Myths About Oil and Gas:  Instead of facing the reality of his owned failed policies, President Obama is calling for an end to the "tax giveaways" he claims amount to $4 billion in "subsidies" to the energy industry.  This tactic isn't surprising given the effect that rising gas prices have on the President's approval ratings and his obsession with re-election.  But, less than truthful innuendos and political spin hardly helps American working families that are getting hammered at the pump.

About Those Oil Subsidies:  Everyone wants to end subsidies to oil companies, from President Obama to John Boehner and Paul Ryan.  My question was "What subsidies?"  Remarkably enough, CNN Money provided the answer.  It turns out that they are all tax "breaks."  I even hesitate to call them "breaks" because some of them amount to little more than Congress defining accounting terms such as "capital equipment."  And the total amount of earnings not collected in taxes (which liberals define as a "subsidy") is about $4 billion per year.

Oil industry profits:  [Scroll down to page 7]  While large in absolute dollar amounts, oil industry profits are modest when measured as net income on each dollar of revenue.  Over the past five years, the industry's net income was only 5.7 cents per dollar of revenue, hardly different than the 5.5 cents average for all industries.  Oil industry profits are also highly cyclical.  The oil industry goes through repeated boom and bust cycles as prices vary but high levels of investment in capital and exploration must be maintained.  Today's high profits pay for investments made in the past that did not generate returns for investors because of low gasoline prices.  Finally, the oil industry pays high taxes already.  ExxonMobil reported net after-tax earnings of $40.6 billion in 2007, paid $30 billion in corporate taxes that year, and had an effective tax rate of about 40 percent, much higher than other industries.  Other oil companies reported similarly high tax rates.

Facts versus Myths about the US Energy Industry.  Most people seem to have a misunderstanding as to the nature of the oil and gas industry, their impression being formed only by the large multi-national integrated oil companies who make "billions of dollars of profit".  In actuality, the industry consists of thousands of companies ranging from one-person independents to the large multi-national integrated oil companies.  Another long standing misunderstanding is that the 5 super-large companies work together to control the price of oil.  If that were true, then the companies would not have allowed the low prices of 1996 to 2000, nor would they allow the current unstable oil prices.

Big Oil Democrats:  Here is how you know Republicans are on the winning side of the oil drilling issue.  It's not that two-thirds of the American people support offshore drilling.  It's that the Democratic response has been to simply point at Republicans and shout, "Big Oil!"

Extorting Big Oil.  On the surface, it has all the makings of a classic David vs. Goliath tale — an ostensibly exploitative multinational oil company plundering the pristine rain forests of impoverished, indigenous inhabitants. ... In short, this lawsuit is nothing more than a politicized attempt by the Ecuadoran government to extort money from a deep-pocket, American oil company.

The Onion Ringer.  Congress is back in session and oil prices are still through the roof, so pointless or destructive energy legislation is all but guaranteed.  Most likely is stiffer regulation of the futures market, since Democrats and even many Republicans have so much invested in blaming "speculators" for $4 gas.  Congress always needs a political villain, but few are more undeserving.

An Energy Sarbox.  While some kind of crackdown on the U.S. oil futures market is inevitable after so much political agitation, Congress has begun to believe its own demagoguery.  The Senate may vote on a bill this week that will drive commodities trading overseas and decrease oversight and market transparency.  Call it a Sarbanes-Oxley for energy.

Oil Rally Topped Dot-Com Craze in Speculators' Mania.  Crude rose 697 percent since trading at $17.45 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange in November 2001, and reached 28 record highs this year.  The last time a similar pattern was seen in equities was eight years ago, when Internet-related stocks sent the Nasdaq Composite Index up 640 percent to its highest level ever, according to data compiled by Bloomberg and Bespoke Investment Group LLC.

In Defense of Oil and Gas Speculators:  Despite Congress' periodic hauling of weak-kneed oil executives before their committees to charge them with collusion and price-gouging, subsequent federal investigations turn up no evidence to support the charges.  Right now oil company executives are getting a bit of a respite as Congress has turned its attention to crude oil speculators, blaming them for high oil prices and calling for tighter control over commodity futures trading.

Dems willing to criticize oil despite holding stock.  More than a dozen Democratic members of Congress critical of oil companies have investments in the industry, according to a review of lawmakers' financial assets.  At least 14 Democratic members of the House and one senator have holdings ranging from several thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars in companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. or partnerships such as Schlumberger and Hornbeck Offshore Services.

Why Big Oil is not to blame for fuel prices:  Anyone with an understanding of basic supply and demand economics knows well enough that Big Oil is not the big player in the energy market.  More often than not the oil majors are just as helpless in the face of global market forces as any other consumer.  Why are energy prices sky-high?  In a word:  geopolitics.  The rapidly expanding economies of China and India, with a joint population of over 2 billion, have become increasingly voracious consumers of energy.  China's economic growth alone is running at nine percent and, over coming years, will only accelerate.

Unleash America's Energy Potential.  As any driver can tell you, the pain at the pump is pretty acute right now.  It's a simple matter of supply and demand.  Demand is up (thanks, in part, to an increasing appetite for fuel in China and India), and supply is low.  And if there's one thing that makes the pain worse, it's knowing that supply doesn't have to be this low.  Are the ridiculously high prices we're paying the fault of the big, bad oil companies?  No, the lion's share of the blame goes to politicians, who have locked away vast amounts of American energy — both oil and natural gas.

The 'Idle' Oil Field Fallacy.  Anyone with even the most basic understanding of how oil and natural gas are produced — and this should include many members of Congress — knows that claims of "idle" leases are a diversionary feint.  A company bids for and buys a lease because it believes there is a possibility that it may yield enough oil or natural gas to make the cost of the lease, and the costs of exploration and production, commercially viable.  The U.S. government received $3.7 billion from company bids in a single lease sale in March 2008.  However, until the actual exploration is complete, a company does not know whether the lease will be productive.

Idle Leases — Or Addled Minds?  Sen. Jeff Bingaman, Rep. Nick Rahall, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress who oppose producing more American oil are in a bind.  They know voters are hurting from high gas prices and overwhelmingly want the government to allow more American oil production.  But they can't side with the American people and risk upsetting their left-wing base.  So they needed a way to make us think they support more drilling — while effectively preventing us from ever drilling a single new well.

Obama's Dry Hole:  "I want you to think about this," Barack Obama said in Las Vegas last week.  "The oil companies have already been given 68 million acres of federal land, both onshore and offshore, to drill.  They're allowed to drill it, and yet they haven't touched it — 68 million acres that have the potential to nearly double America's total oil production."  Wow, how come the oil companies didn't think of that?  Perhaps because the notion is obviously false….

The Editor says...
The oil companies haven't been "given" anything.  Oil companies have spent billions of dollars for those leases.*

Oil Leases on '68 Million Acres' No Guarantee of Oil, Experts Say.  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says a Republican plan to expand domestic oil drilling — instead of forcing oil companies to drill on the 68 million acres they've already leased — is a "hoax" and "unworthy of serious debate."  But the nation's oil producers say Pelosi is being disingenuous, because federal regulations restrict their exploration on the leased land, while much of the 68 million acres is already "tapped out" of oil.

Who's Hoarding America's Oil?  The truth is, over 96% of the lands that belong to the taxpayer haven't even been leased by the government so that energy exploration might occur.  Consumers are paying for this failure at the pump and in utility bills.  Some are even paying for it with their jobs.  But instead of opening new areas to energy exploration and production, some in Congress have taken to diversionary tactics.  Take, for example, the mysterious "68 million acres" myth.

Congress returns to gridlock over oil drilling.  Mrs. Pelosi last month said she will introduce energy legislation in the coming weeks that might include opening portions of the outer continental shelf for drilling — a provision Democratic leaders previously had opposed.  The measure also would include a "use it or lose it" provision that would force oil companies to surrender oil and gas leases on federal land they're not drilling on, and prohibit these companies from acquiring new leases.

The Editor says...
In other words, "Find oil on the land you have leased, or you won't be permitted to look elsewhere."  The logic escapes me.

Facts beat talking points.  The problem with the energy debate is that most of the "facts" we hear on the radio and cable news are really just talking points from folks who mostly don't know what they are talking about.  The Democrats — as if they all received the same e-mail Wednesday — are arguing that the oil companies have plenty of places to drill, and isn't it very curious that they aren't?

Some wonder if speculators are fueling oil run-up.  With American motorists struggling to pay record-high gasoline prices, a debate rages in the halls of Congress and across the Oil Patch over the role speculators may be playing in driving up oil prices.  Crude prices have rocketed nearly $70 a barrel in the past year.  Some energy experts suggest speculation could account for $20 to $30 of that run-up.

Should the Oil Company Executives Go on Trial?  Obama science guru John Holdren isn't sure.  Michael Egnor, writing for the Science & Public Policy Initiative, reports on a television show last year when Holdren was asked about trying company executive for "crimes against humanity" for doubting global warming...

Oil firms' profits keep dropping as recession shrinks demand for energy.  The world's biggest oil companies are reporting sharp declines in quarterly profit as the recession continues to weigh on consumer demand, driving down energy prices.  Exxon Mobil, the world's largest oil company by market value, said Thursday [10/29/2009] that its third-quarter profit slumped 68 percent, to $4.73 billion (98 cents per share).




"Windfall profit" taxes

Only the stockholders of an oil company are entitled to share its profits.

What Is a 'Windfall' Profit?  To pay for "stimulus" checks of $1,000 for families and $500 for individuals, the Senator says government would take "a reasonable share" of oil company profits.  Mr. Obama didn't bother to define "reasonable," and neither did Dick Durbin, the second-ranking Senate Democrat, when he recently declared that "The oil companies need to know that there is a limit on how much profit they can take in this economy."  Really?  This extraordinary redefinition of free-market success could use some parsing.

Please define what a "windfall profits" tax is.  Liberals like to bleat about the oil companies making "windfall profits" as if there is some point when making a profit is bad.  So the Wall Street Journal asks what the definition is of a "windfall profit."  This is important to know because Senator Obama has proposed giving each American family a stimulus check of $1000 paid for by a windfall profits tax on the oil companies.

More Taxes Will Mean Less Oil.  Democrats say there should be a limit to the profits oil companies can make.  Should there also be a limit on the taxes government can take?  Just who's the profiteer here?

Windfall taxing big oil:  how to make the gas crisis worse.  Yes, it's true that Exxon's recent quarterly profits were, at near $12 billion, big.  It's also worth noting that turnover was $138 billion, giving them a margin on sales of 9 percent:  which isn't really, anything much to write home about. … The reason the profits number is a huge one is because the business itself is a huge one.

In Defense of 'Big Oil':  Senate Democrats last week sought to ingratiate themselves with voters, while doing nothing to produce more energy, with a familiar attack on "big oil."  They want to repeal $17 billion in tax breaks for the oil companies over 10 years and on top of that impose a windfall profit tax on companies that don't invest in new energy sources.  This is political expediency at its worst.

Energy charade:  There's no way to put this politely.  Raising taxes on U.S. oil companies and calling it an energy plan is just about the dumbest idea the Democrats have come up with yet.  Democrats call it "a windfall profits" tax, and it is at the heart of their plan to deal with punishing oil prices nearing $140 a barrel and skyrocketing gas prices that have crossed the $4-a-gallon threshold at the pump.  Their proposed tax increase will not produce a drop more oil.  In fact, it will reduce supplies.  And it will not lower oil prices, either.  It will make oil more expensive, because oil company costs would rise as a result of higher taxes.

Things I Don't Believe:  Didn't we try this with the Carter administration at the tag end of the 1970s? … The windfall profits tax of the Carter years was, however, a dandy way to cap every small well in the country.  And reduce production in general.  (Why produce more in order to have the profits taxed away?)  A tax is a great way to cut down on supply and therefore increase demand and, with it, prices.

The "Big Oil" Witch Hunt:  [Members of Congress] — themselves guilty of thwarting American energy independence — are poisoning the minds of gullible Americans against the very oil companies that reliably supply us with essential fuels, and would be producing even more (resulting in lower prices) if Congress weren't blocking them from doing so.  When it comes to energy, Congress is the problem and Big Oil is part of the solution.  The longer it takes Americans to perceive this, the longer our energy woes will continue.

Dumb or Ill-Informed?  What assumptions do congressmen make about the American people?  Do they assume that we're dumb or ill-informed about the energy problems we are experiencing?  Every time there has been a huge spike in gasoline prices, Congress hauls oil company executives before their committees to accuse them of greed, obscene profits and price-fixing.  One federal investigation after another of supposed oil company misconduct turns up nothing to substantiate congressional allegations.

Out of Energy.  Colorado's $23 billion-a-year oil and gas industry is keeping the state's economy afloat, but Governor Bill Ritter and his fellow Democrats are promoting new rules and tax hikes that would drive business elsewhere. … Ritter and his allies in the environmental movement are also seeking to raise taxes on energy producers.  In many mineral-rich states, energy producers have to pay what is called a severance tax on any oil or gas they take out of the ground.

Phony 'Emergency'.  [Scroll down]  Sen. Obama seems to be trying to take advantage of reports that Exxon Mobil reported record second-quarter income — indeed, the highest quarterly profit for any corporation ever. But the reality is that as Obama and his equally unknowing friends push windfall taxes, Exxon Mobil has already given the U.S. a massive windfall. As economist Mark Perry has noted, Exxon Mobil will pay more taxes this year to the U.S. Treasury than the bottom 50% of all taxpayers — combined.

Obama and McCain Spout Economic Nonsense.  Why should we stop with oil companies?  They make about 8.3 cents in gross profit per dollar of sales.  Why doesn't Mr. Obama slap a windfall profits tax on sectors of the economy that have fatter margins?  Electronics make 14.5 cents per dollar and computer equipment makers take in 13.7 cents per dollar, according to the Census Bureau.  Microsoft's margin is 27.5 cents per dollar of sales.

The Wrong Way to Kick An Oil Habit.  High oil prices, like a walk under the summer moon, can drive normally rational people to do foolish things they later regret.  For Barack Obama, it is a fling with a windfall profits tax on American oil companies — one of the most thoroughly discredited economic policies of the past few decades.  A 2006 Congressional Research Service report found that Jimmy Carter's version of the tax generated less than one-fourth of expected government revenue while depressing domestic oil output between 1.2 percent and 8 percent and increasing dependence on imported oil between 3 percent and 13 percent.

Putting Up The 'For Shale' Sign.  Democrats will say Exxon and its unindicted co-conspirators still make obscene profits.  The fact is that American oil companies in 2007 had an 8.3% profit margin, compared with 8.9% for all U.S. manufacturing.  The cigarette and beverage companies' profit margin was 19.1%.  Drug companies made 18.4%.

Thank you, Big Oil.  Before you get all excited about tearing down the energy industry, stop and think for a moment about what makes your comfortable life possible.  Your heat and most of your electricity are provided through the burning of oil and natural gas.  The thousands of plastic items in your home, car and office are all made from crude oil.  Much of your clothing is woven of fibers made from petroleum.  Without the hard work and ingenuity of the men and women who work for the energy companies, we would be living in the 17th century….

Windfall-Profit Nonsense:  Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama want to raise the price of oil, as well as most everything else, and lower the value of the pension and mutual funds that union members and retirees depend on.  Of course, they don't describe their plan that way.  Instead, they call for a windfall-profits tax on the oil companies.  But it's the same thing.  Taxing a "windfall" sounds appealing, but stock prices are based on expected profits.

GOP nixes Democrat-backed tax on oil companies.  Senate Republicans today successfully blocked a vote on a Democratic- written energy package intended to slap the major oil companies with a new windfall profits tax and roll back other tax breaks the industry now enjoys.

$4 Gasbags:  Anyone wondering why U.S. energy policy is so dysfunctional need only review Congress's recent antics.  Members have debated ideas ranging from suing OPEC to the Senate's carbon tax-and-regulation monstrosity, to a windfall profits tax on oil companies, to new punishments for "price gouging" — everything except expanding domestic energy supplies.  Amid $135 oil, it ought to be an easy, bipartisan victory to lift the political restrictions on energy exploration and production.

Stop Whining And Blaming Oil Companies.  First, the bad news:  Nothing — and I mean nothing — the U.S. government does can stop the rise in the price of oil in the short run.  Stopping buys for the emergency stockpile will have no effect at all.  These purchases are less than one-tenth of one percent of daily worldwide demand.  Cancelling the purchases is precisely the same as not paying life insurance premiums when you're worried about money.  It is nonsense.

The "Problem" Of Human Freedom:  Could it be that a foolish and abusive use of governmental power is a causal factor with our energy woes?  Could it be, as [Bill] O'Reilly suggested, that our government's (and Mrs. Clinton's) prohibition of domestic energy development is part of the reason we are now held hostage to the "monopoly" of OPEC?  Not so, for Hillary.  In her leftist world, the problem is that American citizens are enjoying too much freedom.  "Consumers" and "drivers" behave badly, they drive too much, and they drive the "wrong" vehicles; and American oil corporations (just as President Carter told us in the 1970's) are once again raking in "windfall profits."

Oil companies spend more on taxes than on oil supply development.  Over the last several the major oil companies have been driven away from investing money in future exploration and production.  The so-called Supermajors, Exxon, BP, Shell, Chevron. Conoco, and Total have paid more in taxes than they have invested in the oil business.  For the three year period, 2005 to 2007 these companies have paid $292 billion in taxes and invested $265 billion in capital projects.

No such thing as obscene profits.  Profit isn't a shameful accident for corporations — it's their very reason for being.  Big profits help them do more of what they did to make the profit in the first place.  In the case of oil companies, that means more exploration, development, drilling, pumping, refining, transporting and marketing of the oil that fuels every aspect of our economy. … Of course, at the moment it's frustrating to pay more at the pump, but oil profits aren't the culprit, nor would punishment of the energy companies help to bring down the cost of fuel.

Strangling Oil:  As any economist will tell you, "price-gouging" per se doesn't exist.  There is only supply and demand. … To add more dependable sources, the U.S. should be developing oil in the Alaskan National Wilderness Reserve (sic) and on the continental shelf, where literally billions of barrels of oil await.  But we aren't.  That's the supply side.

The Editor says...
Good article, but ANWR is the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Is Oil the Root of All Evil?  Lives per Gallon gratuitously excoriates the oil companies and places blame for every conceivable ill facing the world — from air pollution to thievery — on their product.  Replete with homilies to past civilizations, such as the Rapa Nui, and fearsome examples of devastated ecosystems like Pacific Ocean kelp beds, Tamminen assaults not only petroleum, but modern technological-based life.

Oily politicians.  If there is anything worse than partisan demagoguery, it is bipartisan demagoguery.  Republican leaders have now joined the Democrats in blaming the oil companies for the fact that prices rise when demand expands more than supply.  Prices have been rising under these conditions for thousands of years, long before there were any oil companies.  This has happened with everything from food to furs and it has happened among people in every part of the world.

Oily politicians:  Part II.  World demand for oil has risen out of all proportion to the amount of oil supplied.  That is the problem and prices are a symptom of that problem.

Oil Is Well.  I see that the media and the left-wing foundations are in a state of hysteria over oil company profits.  Exxon Mobil reported profits of about $10 billion for the last quarter of 2005, and this has driven certain people who don't really know a lot about the oil business … insane.

Governmental Viscosity Breakdown:  Members of Congress, such as Pennsylvania's Arlen Specter, who … manages to exude split-atom energy when it comes to cheerleading for bad ideas, are calling for a windfall profits tax on the oil companies.  Of course, the tax would be passed on to consumers, but Congress will deal with that later — it'll be good fodder for calling for the federalization of the oil industry.  In a Beltway culture that confuses motion with action, windfall profits taxes are but flailing victims in the quicksand of lunacy.

Clinton Seeks 'Energy Revolution' Fueled by Tax on Oil Profits.  Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) Tuesday [5/23/2006] called for an "energy revolution" based on greater fuel efficiency and a $50 billion research fund financed largely through higher taxes on oil company profits.  A GOP spokesman responded that the plan is just "partisanship, political pandering and yesterday's mistakes."

Control Freak:  Hillary Clinton says our trade deficit and reliance on foreign investors are big problems, and wants to fix them.  But her cure would be far worse than the disease, and should be rejected out of hand.

We are all Marxists now.  National Public Radio's Juan Williams, appearing on Fox News Sunday, insisted repeatedly that "supply is at an eight year high" as proof that the oil companies are cheating us.  He kept repeating the phrase, as if that would make it a more sensible statement.  It didn't. … Frustrated by his inability to convince others of his nonsense, Williams then insisted that there is no connection between supply and demand.

Big awl and gasbags.  Though some of the stated bases for the alarmism of the Sixties and Seventies may have changed (example:  from global cooling to global warming), their bogeymen/targets remain the same.  No matter what environmental scare they have sported from time to time, the culprits are always the same.  The foremost villain, of course, is America, home of the rich, greedy, and voracious consumers of the earth's resources.  Next, are big corporations, whose favorite sadistic pastime is to pollute.

You Can't Always Get What You Want.  Calling for a probe of oil companies for possible manipulation of gas prices is Bush's latest nonconservative position. … He could have said, no, the free market is working properly.  That, while basically true, would no doubt have further injured his political standing.  Instead, he moved to take control of the issue and protect himself politically.  Two days later, the president conceded he had "no evidence that there's any ripoff taking place."  Of course he hadn't.  That wasn't the point of his intervention.

Punishing big oil:  Intended to punish the oil industry for making so much money, the provision actually would increase American dependency on foreign oil producers.

Senate Approves $5 Billion in New Oil Company Taxes.  The U.S. Senate on November 17, 2005 voted to impose nearly $5 billion in taxes on oil companies in response to record oil company profits.  The Senate rejected three amendments that would explicitly assess "windfall profits" taxes on the oil industry, but nevertheless changed longstanding accounting rules in ways that are expected to add $5 billion to the oil companies' tax burdens over the next two years.

Oil Industry Posts Record Profits in 2005.  "You need to make money to spend money," said oil industry analyst John Parry, senior vice president of John S. Herold, Inc. of Norwalk, Connecticut.  "If we go back to the 1990s, the oil companies were making less than 5 percent on their capital.  If you were to average profits over about a 10-year period, which is the cycle of investment, they have not earned excessive amounts.  This is a cyclical industry.  You may have seven or eight down years and two or three good years.

MoveOn Targets McCain on Offshore Drilling and 'Obscene' Oil Profits.  MoveOn.org, the liberal grassroots group, has unveiled a television ad campaign on energy that is an attack on presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain and his support for offshore drilling.  But free-market critics say the ad reflects more about MoveOn's ignorance of economics than it does politics.




Refineries

Hess to close last refinery in New Jersey.  This story went mostly under the radar, but it will have some implications for many people on the east coast and for the industry in general further down the line.  Without much fanfare, Hess recently announced that they were selling off their last commercial refinery, located in New Jersey.  Their stated reasons are clear enough, but there's a bit more to the story.

Republican Bill Would Encourage New Refinery Building.  House Republicans [are trying to] drum up support for a bill that would "expedite" the construction of new oil refineries in the United States. … But environmental groups and others oppose the bill….

Graphic 'borrowed' from ibdeditorials dot com


Our Thorny Oil Patch.  When America's biggest oil refiner contemplates putting almost a third of its refineries on the market, Congress should sit up and take notice.  The business climate it has created is hurting our economy.

Number of operating refineries 1982-2007.  Shows a steady decline from 254 in 1982 to 145 in 2007.  (Not including operable but "idle" refineries.)

Kuwait May Build Oil Refinery in Louisiana, Boost U.S. Capacity.  Kuwait, the Middle East's fourth-largest oil producer, is seeking a "mid-sized" U.S. partner like Marathon Oil Corp. to build a refinery in the U.S. with as much as 400,000 barrels a day of output….

Blended fuels may spike the price at the pump.  Record crude oil costs are largely responsible for today's $4 gas prices, but regulators continue to study another factor blamed for regional price spikes in the past — the high number of unique fuel blends used to fight air pollution.  These so-called "boutique" fuels arose from various federal and state laws enacted since the early 1990s.  The blends — more than a dozen nationwide — are designed to help curb emissions in some of the largest U.S. cities, including Houston.

Why I'm Voting for John McCain:  Democrats insist that we shouldn't drill off the Pacific coast or in Alaska or in the Dakotas because they claim we wouldn't get a drop of oil for at least 10 years.  And that's true, but only if the same left-wing idiots who are more concerned with moose than with people won't allow the oil companies to build new refineries.  Also, even if it were true that we wouldn't be any better off for an entire decade, what do you suppose they'll be saying in 2018, when gas is going for 25 bucks a gallon?



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Updated April 16, 2014.

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