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View Diary: When political punditry and math collide (53 comments)

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  •  Ah, Yes, KXL - (0+ / 0-)

    All the lovelies willing to fall on their swords over KXL.
    Never has there been a more quixotic adventure.
    Polls have consistently shown 2-to-1 to 3-to-1 support.
    Major Democratic unions have indicated support.
    And energy state Dem senators up for reelection support it.

    Not to mention that in terms of total carbon it is insignificant.
    And that alternative transport - albeit more expensive - is available.

    Do you honestly think that Grimes can say,
    "Coal-free by '23" and get elected in Kentucky???

    Please, please enjoy your moral correctness.
    And also enjoy a GOP Senate.

    PS - I am reminded of the Lamont supporters here back in 2006 who delighted in such terms as "LIE-berman" and Lamont's campaign director who compared Lieberman supporters to slime and evil. Of course, Lamont was going to need a hefty chunk of Lieberman supporters in the general to win - and he didn't get them. Duhhhhh.

    •  So, (0+ / 0-)

      are you saying that we SHOULDN'T try to thwart a very risky project with little to no long-term benefit to the American people because it might not be politically expedient (in the short term) to do so? I disagree.

      That pipeline is a massive ecological disaster waiting to happen, not to mention how it will greatly enrich people who will only use that money to harm the American working class in other ways.  It's a lose/lose proposition for everyone except the .1%.

      •  Massive Ecological Disaster? (0+ / 0-)

        No - shipping it by rail and by barge is far more dangerous.

        If you can show me how bitumen production might be stopped in Alberta - despite its huge Conservative legislative majority and an opposition party even more conservative; if you can show me how distribution of bitumen oil can be halted when it is a legal product both to produce and distribute and where there is considerable worldwide demand; then I might entertain your points.

        I don't buy the Koch brothers' propaganda, but unemployment is the lowest in the nation in North Dakota and has been for the past 5 years - plus, working-class wages are some of the highest. The oil & gas industry has many problems associated with it - I am a historian of boom communities - but it produces wealth not only for the corporations, but also for state coffers, and for individuals.

        •  A barge or a rail car (0+ / 0-)

          contains a fixed amount of oil. A pipeline could turn into an above-ground BP Horizon disaster that goes on for weeks, right above a giant aquifer.

          I don't like shipping this oil through America by ANY method, but I'll take the most compartmentalized and least cost-efficient method if I am forced to choose.

          I'm not concerned with the politics of Canada. I have no doubt that they will take their product to market even if KXL is stopped. But we do have a say in whether it comes through America, and I see absolutely zero benefit that justifies the insane level of risk involved.

           I'm glad for the workers of North Dakota, but I'm not going to fool myself into believing that their boom could be replicated on a larger scale, or that it is worthy to attempt to do this. I don't want our economic recovery plan to be built around hoping for local oil industry booms.

          •  Fantasy - (0+ / 0-)

            Pipeline shipment has an extremely low incident rate.
            Pipelines can also be shut down quickly.
            It seems you know little about pipeline technology.

            KXL is far LESS environmentally threatening than a host of other things - such as the amount of chemicals and herbicides spread on the soils of Nebraska farms - which are not hypothetical but take place every year.

            It's sad that so-called progressives are ready to toss out a Democratic majority in the Senate - ineffective as the Dems may be - over an issue that is largely meaningless.

            PS - All forms of transportation, whether freight or passenger, carry some risk. That risk can be roughly estimated then a decision made as to the level of risk which is acceptable. "No risk" does not exist.

            •  Deja vu (0+ / 0-)

              "Pipeline shipment has an extremely low incident rate.
              Pipelines can also be shut down quickly.
              It seems you know little about pipeline technology."

              This exact statement could have been somewhat credibly made regarding oil drilling rigs the day before the BP Horizon disaster.

              The larger problem is that our government is too compromised by oil industry money to be able to sufficiently regulate this industry. I am sure that there is a way to build a very safe pipeline, but nobody within our government can be trusted to ensure this.

              The pesticide argument makes no sense; we actually benefit from the crops grown. We get something in return. This pipeline won't make gasoline cheaper. It won't provide any significant number of real jobs once it's finished. All it will do is trade serious risk for the enrichment of a few already-wealthy malefactors.

              And I'm not even blaming red-state Dem candidates for supporting it, although I  think they are being very dishonest by claiming that this is about creating jobs or reducing dependence on foreign oil; that's just plain old lying.

               It's about getting "campaign contributions" and NOT angering very powerful people. Besides, KXL will not be the reason that we keep or lose the Senate majority.

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