American Elephants

Canada Just Gave Up on Obama Actually Making a Decision. by The Elephant's Child


Like so many other governments, our friends to the north have given up on the Obama administration. Canada is tired of waiting on the Obama administration to make a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline. Ottawa has approved a pipeline to Canada’s west coast.

Six months ago, Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said his government needed an answer on the pipeline from President Obama”even if it’s not the right one,” as he told a U.S. Chamber of Commerce audience. Canada could not “continue in this state of limbo.”

The State Department has given it a green light, said it is not an environmental menace, and approved the Keystone. Rejecting the pipeline is a major mistake. The Keystone XL would carry crude oil from Alberta’s oil fields to the U.S. Gulf Coast for refining and distribution. It would be a major boost to the American economy and our dismal job situation. If Canada goes ahead with the construction of the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline they just approved, that business is lost. The oil will be shipped to Asia from a supertanker port on the West coast.

A completed Keystone could cut by 40% our reliance on Venezuela or the Middle East. It offered 20,000 new jobs, 13,000 in construction and another 7,000 in manufacturing parts. All told, according to our State Department, the project would create 42,000 new U.S. jobs, half from construction and the remainder from the economic stimulus created by the project.

But there’s another side to the story. Even the New York Times writes of hundreds more deaths and thousands more injuries over the course of a decade. Without the pipeline, companies will continue to move the oil by rail. Ironically, the radical environmentalists who have been actively protesting the Keystone XL, are now panicky about oil trains. There was the 2013 oil train derailment and explosion in Lac-Mégatic, Quebec, that killed 47 people, and in April, a train carrying oil derailed in Lynchburg, Va., caught fire and spilled 30,000 gallons into the James River, forcing the evacuation of 350 people.

Radical environmentalists from the National Wildlife Federation, the Sierra Club, and others tried to link findings to the issue of whether Canadian oil sands should be developed at all. They continue to assume that solar and wind can replace the nation’s energy supply, but they’re getting a little nervous about bird kill in the wind turbines and burning up in the solar arrays.

For President Obama, politics trumps all other concerns. Billionaire Tom Steyer has promised $50 million of his own money and another $50 million raised from his buddies if the Democrats support the war on climate change throughout the coming election. Tom Steyer is opposed to the Keystone XL pipeline. $100 million for Democrat coffers trumps a mere 42,000 jobs.

And further, the head of a leading environmental group calls job losses from the Obama’s administration’s new anti-carbon regulations from the EPA as “collateral damage.” A study by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce finds that the new EPA regulations will destroy approximately 200,000 mostly blue-collar energy jobs, reduce the  U.S. GDP by about $50 billion a year, and cost families  thousands of dollars over the next decade in higher energy costs.

William Becker of the Climate Action Project has praised the new EPA regulations (which will do nothing whatsoever to prevent climate change) to stop climate change, and wrote that “there is nothing explicit in the [administration] plan to mitigate or adapt to the economic disruption the clean energy transition will cause for coal and oil-country families.” These families thrown out of work, he wrote, are “an evolutionary step in technology and the economy” and a move toward “economic progress.” He offers the potential of yet another governmental job training program as a sop for the families of workers whose lives are turned upside down by the fantasy of “renewable energy” and green jobs.

Well, oil for the lamps of China, 200,000 more lost jobs, and the president uses executive action to allow the spouses of all H-1B visa holders to work if they so desire. And if you have lost a job, or have given up looking — you’re just collateral damage in the search for a brave new ‘renewable’ future for the radical greens, and collateral damage in the need for that $100 million Tom Steyer has promised.

Politics is everything. The chaos in the Middle East has to wait till Obama has a few more fundraisers. A golf game on a splendid private course trumps making boring decisions anyway. There is an election coming up and although Obama’s poll numbers are in the tank, he still believes he is doing a splendid job. New press secretary Josh Earnest just dismissed the entire IRS scandal as “a Republican  conspiracy theory.”

Pipelines, by the way, are way safer than oil trains. The picture above is of a November, 2013 derailment of crude oil tank cars in Aliceville, Alabama. The fire was still burning 18 hours later. The oil spill was partially contained by a beaver dam in the marsh. No report on the beavers.

The Predictable Result of the President’s Sustained Effort to Dismantle Immigration Enforcement by The Elephant's Child


At the end of May, the Border Patrol estimate that in 2014 they well catch more than 90,000 unaccompanied minors crossing the border (up from the previous estimate of 74,000).  DHS projects that next year this surge will increase still further in 2015, up to 142,000. This is a direct result, completely predictable, of the president’s sustained and deliberate effort to dismantle immigration enforcement.

The world has heard his message, and it has resulted in a completely preventable humanitarian crisis. There are always, of course, unintended consequences. We are getting teen-aged gang members, and ISIS members will not be far behind.

The administration has discussed the surge almost entirely in terms of children traveling alone, but there are reports that in fact only about a third of the flow are unaccompanied minors, and in spite of press reports of Border Patrol officers having to cope with diapers. most of the ‘children’ are teen-aged boys, many gang members. These are largely OTM (other than Mexican) from Central America—Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

The DACA order (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) 0f June 15, 2012, was Obama’s executive action response to Congress’ refusal to pass the Dream Act. Undocumented young people who were brought to the U.S. as children, have graduated from high school, or are currently in school, and have no criminal record can apply for deferred action (two years) about deportation. As of June 2013, there had been 550,000 applications and 72% had been approved. You can also fairly assume that it was Obama’s ham-handed attempt to pander to Hispanics just before an election. Never forget that the overweening goal is always winning elections.

Word gets around. In Central America the word is that  there is amnesty for  unaccompanied children or mothers with small children who can get into the United States, and will not be deported. The media there has reported on that regularly. A mother and child told Channel 5 News that the message in their country is “go to America with your child, you won’t be turned away.”Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson emphasized that the United States will continue exempting foreign youth from America’s immigration laws.

[A]lmost all of us agree that a child who crossed our border illegally with a parent, or in search of a parent or a better life, was not making an adult choice to break our laws and should be treated differently than adult law-breakers.

Why? Is there any other country in the world that does this? Eric Holder has described amnesty as a “civil right.” Cecilia Muñoz who runs immigration policy for the White House — and who is a former executive for La Raza, an open borders group, also claims amnesty as a civil right.

For those who wonder where this surge came from, in January Homeland Security was advertising for “Escort Services for Unaccompanied Alien Children” for ICE.

Obama is responding to a grim job situation by bringing in more workers. He will allow the spouses of H-1B visa holder to work.  Yet 83 percent of graduating college seniors do not yet have jobs. In technology fields, where corporate America claims a critical worker shortage, 82% of graduates don’t have jobs.

The White House may have realized that this all has gotten out of hand. The president sent Joe Biden to Guatemala City to talk with Central American leaders about the crisis of unaccompanied children flooding across the border. Instead of pledging support for reining in the exodus of children—Biden got a lecture about “migrant rights” and schemes to keep the illegals from returning to their home countries.

The problem is not “poverty and violence” in Central America, the illegals have been told what to say to get amnesty. The administration has encouraged this invasion by hinting that children would be allowed to stay if they came. The likelihood of the president accepting responsibility? Not any time soon.

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