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View Diary: NYT's Tesla Smear Artist Pushes For Keystone XL Pipeline Approval (77 comments)

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  •  oh, I think it's pretty clear why it isn't winning (2+ / 0-)
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    Argyrios, ericlewis0

    it's the same reason we don't have stronger environmental regulation and have giant runaway banks:  Americans by and large don't care, and will gladly throw the planet under the bus if there's money to be had.  As has been noted, the science isn't really in dispute on this issue, and the facts on Keystone XL are pretty damn clear.  Notice that we have the rough lines of a bunch of scientists and analysts on one side of this and a bunch of business people on the other.  That speaks volumes I think

    Touch all that arises with a spirit of compassion

    by Mindful Nature on Thu May 09, 2013 at 08:06:21 AM PDT

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    •  I respect your viewpoint (0+ / 0-)

      ...but I think everyone should acknowledge that there are equities on the other side. For one, this is massive infrastructure spending, in a weak economy, that is privately financed and requires no congressional approval or government spending. For another, the people are firmly in favor of approval and denial will have political and opportunity costs. You're free to believe that the environmental considerations on the other side outweigh these considerations. But that is a judgment call, not a matter of "science."

      •  as I said (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Argyrios

        the reason it is winning is that the meager economic benefit (a handful of jobs, but increase gasoline costs in the midwest) gets higher value than the massive environmental impacts.  As I said, the issue is that many American people would basically sell their own grandmothers (and would DEFINITELY sell someone else's) for the kidneys if they got a buck out of it.  That is the issue.

        Touch all that arises with a spirit of compassion

        by Mindful Nature on Thu May 09, 2013 at 10:20:33 AM PDT

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        •  The environmental impact analysis (0+ / 0-)

          should specify against what baseline you are comparing. Does denial of the permit permanently cause the tar sands to sit in the ground forever, or not? I know there are data points that could permit one to believe that is the case, but it strikes me as more wishful thinking than anything else.

          In addition, you say a handful of jobs, but are selectively citing the number of permanent jobs. I was talking about short-term stimulus in a weak economy, which will be more significant. You'll have a hard time convincing me that hundreds of miles of pipeline is not significant infrastructure development.

          Most commentators on this website particularly, myself included, have no idea what the correct analysis is. I just think it's better to admit that than to claim expertise based on the talking points of impassioned activists who are making an argument.

          •  There are several key points here (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Argyrios

            The question of whether the denial of the permits will itself result in permanent killing off of the tar sands mining is exactly the wrong one.  While it is a necessary condition to achieving that result, it is not a sufficient condition.  Obviously, completely keeping the tar sands carbon in the ground will involve winning several other battles as well.  More to the point though is that building the pipeline will virtually guarantee ALL the carbon is released into the atmosphere.  Thus, the issue is preserving the possibility of a good outcome.

            Second, if we are looking for short term stimulus, there are vastly better ways to do it than to have this project go forward.  Frankly, most infrastructure projects do NOT carry the very heavy costs imposed by this project.  Trading the future viability of the planet for a few short term jobs to help during a current downturn is a major example of short term thinking that will carry negative consequences going forward.

            Having studied the issue, I have as reasonable sense of the correct analysis as most.  I'm afraid that throwing up hands and ignoring that analysis as has been done is not a useful response.  No one has a perfect crystal ball, as as they say prediction is notoriously difficult, particularly about the future.  However, knowing that there is substantial evidence of major risks, it would be foolish to blithely ignore those.

            Touch all that arises with a spirit of compassion

            by Mindful Nature on Thu May 09, 2013 at 02:35:05 PM PDT

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