We have lulled ourselves into a false sense of dependency.
We are a nation so dependent upon a life with fossil fuels that we've been unwilling to accept that we're running out of them. Technology has buttressed our fantasy that things could keep on just as they have. But the real world costs of deep water drilling, fracking, mountain top removal, tar sands mining, combustion pollution, and global warming has left us far worse off than if we had simply dealt with the issue.
It is time to deal with the issue.
Most of you have probably already figured out why finagling a Bill that forces President Obama to decide on the Keystone XL pipeline before the election puts Obama on the hot seat... If President Obama were to cancel the pipeline deal, the oil companies would spend whatever it takes to get an oil sell-out elected in 2012. For the big money oil oligarchs, this only makes “fiscal” sense. The potential tar sands oil profits will more than make up for the campaign contribution expenses. The oil oligarchs are willing to spend millions – to make billions.
This isn't about what is right. This isn't about what is best for Americans – or even for America. This is about maximizing profits – at whatever the cost (to the rest of us).
President Obama has already been publicly threatened. Does “huge political consequences” sound like a threat to you... especially when it comes from the oil industry's top lobbyist? “Huge political consequences” sounds a lot to me like; “Don't mess with us billionaires. We can take you out.” (Of course, you're entitled to your own interpretation. I'm open to other ideas. Maybe some of you think this oil man could be talking about an “intervention.”)
Most of you probably already know that the Keystone XL pipeline is an investment in an environmental disaster on a scale we have never seen before. But did you know this pipeline will be a broken down hunk of junk right from the start? A former Bechtel pipe inspector, now whistle-blower, has come forth to warn us that the previous pipeline project Bechtel worked on was built with “shoddy materials and poor craftsmanship.” That's right, on top of it all; they're going to cut every corner in the construction of this pipeline too. It may as well be guaranteed to leak – and spill.
Here we go again; maximize the profits – socialize the costs. Privatize our government – socialize its losses... Or as the band Rage Against the Machine put it; “bury the past, rob us blind, and leave nothing behind.”
However, the fossil fuel industry does plan on leaving something behind; the biggest environmental, political, and economic mess in human history. They've already corrupted our government. They can't wait for when the supplies of fossil fuels drop, so they can price gouge us into a permanent depression. And hey, if they poison us all in the process of getting filthy rich; oh well...
The fossil fuel industry has a well documented history of leaving a poisonous mess where ever they go. And their inexcusable record extends to consistently fighting cleanup expenses or conducting much of any mitigation efforts. For example; Chevron is still fighting an $18 billion settlement in Ecuador. I wouldn't be surprised if Chevron/Texaco has spent more on advertising to con us into believing that they're the good guys than they ever will helping Ecuador.
It is blatantly obvious that the Canadian tar sands pipeline companies won't pay squat to help the people they harm from the pipeline's consequences – if they can get away with it. Hey, the industry is already trashing Canada.
And then, of course; there's global warming. The extreme climate change brought on by global warming is already being felt world wide. Australia is in serious trouble – serious trouble! And here? Our snow capped peaks aren't. And there's no significant snow in the 10-day forecast. That would put us into mid-January without any snowpack at all! As far as I know; nobody has ever seen this before. This could be a very dry year. And last year was an unusually wet year. Which means we could see a lot of big wildfires this summer. We might even suffer a mega-fire in Nevada (like in Texas last year and California a couple of years ago).
Of course, the (paid off) fossil fuel industry sympathizers will probably claim that this climate change is all just natural fluctuations, sun spots, or anything other than millions of tons of carbon dioxide being extracted from the ground every year. Can they be trusted? No. No way. For a part of billions of dollars, would you lie? Somebody would. Even a hand full of scientists would lie for the right price.
Usually I say follow the money. But this time I have a much more gruesome trail for you to follow. Follow the dead bodies. Not just the animals and plants. Not just the scores of cancer victims and victims of other pollution related diseases. Follow the murder victims...
In case you hadn't noticed; there's nobody getting murdered on the other side. And ironically, it's the environmentalists that get accused of being terrorists by Homeland “Security.” Face it; our police state security system is in place to protect the very people causing the most damage – and we, the taxpayers, got stuck paying for our own oppression.
In the real world, the biggest security risk we face is the loss of our home – a healthy Earth. But apparently, we haven't wanted to pay the price to keep from losing our home – and our situation continues to worsen.
Now we, all of us, must pay the price for the fossil fuel industry not wanting to give up their outrageous profits.
And if President Obama doesn't stand up to these greedy fools, the price the whole planet will have to pay will be that much worse.
And if President Obama can't get elected after doing the right thing, then I guess we deserve what we get.
Consequences. That's the price we'll pay for not being willing to pay the price of doing what is best for us in the long run. And the consequences are horrifying.