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    Will The President Accept Science This Time?
    By Hank Campbell | February 6th 2014 12:32 PM | 4 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
    About Hank

    I'm the founder of Science 2.0® and co-author of "Science Left Behind".

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    Yet another government science report has found that the Keystone XL pipeline is not going to be risky to the environment. 

    This isn't the first time the Obama administration's own scientists reached this conclusion, but when activists balked last time (1), the president insisted it needed to be studied further. Then he said he was going to "fast track" an extension to it, even though he wasn't going to approve the extension to the extension. Yes, he agreed to build a Pipeline From Nowhere - through Indian burial grounds.  

    When it comes to science issues, the administration's message can be a little muddy(2), especially for a guy who convinced us all he was going to restore science to its rightful place. A Federal court had to berate him for illegally blocking nuclear science, he has stonewalled biology for no reason, and that's aside from surrounding himself with UFO believers and a Doomsday prophet.



    When it comes to climate change and biology, the current president is just as anti-science as the previous one, he is just appealing to the anti-science beliefs of a different political party. If activists protest about 400 miles of pipeline, in addition to the 24,000 already present, and ignore the fact that America builds the safest pipelines in the world and that our regulations (the Keystone plan has almost 60 new ones and a whole bunch of new spill mitigation strategies) and standards are a lot better for the planet than if more oil comes from the Mid-East, well, he plays along. And what scientists actually say is ignored.(3)


    What just the Ogallala aquifer pipeline map already looks like. Protesting about 400 miles of modern safe pipeline, when it is already covered in pipeline without issues, makes no sense. PennWell MAPSearch 

    President Clinton and Senator John Kerry killed nuclear science in this country, over the objections of scientists, which caused our CO2 emissions to soar. Activists against Keystone XL are engaged in the same sort of short-term thinking that directly led to a surge in global warming. They don't see the repercussions of their actions, they just insist on bans and rationing and insuring that poor people have miserable lives while the rich just pay more for energy.

    The president has been dodging this bullet for years. His last request for 'more study' was designed to get him through the last election without telling unions that he doesn't care about their jobs. Now this will go to "review" to see if it's in our national interest. Who will make that decision? Secretary of State John Kerry, the same man who gloated when he drove nuclear power out of our energy mix in the 1990s but whose State Department scientists just said it was okay. What John Kerry will do is truly a coin flip, historically he has hated science more than he has loved America.

    What if it's not approved?  Without a pipeline, Canadians are going to move their oil anyway. But by rail or tanker, which the president cannot veto. Moving it using those methods is actually far worse for the environment.  

    Activists and the administration would know that, if they actually read the science reports they insist is on their side when they are engaged in the scientization of politics.

    NOTES:

    (1) And did again. The progressive site Think Progress immediately declared that the Obama administration and John Kerry's State Department had intentionally left out facts that would have condemned the project. Like most political sites, Think Progress only accepts the science that matches their political beliefs.

    (2) Not as muddy as Congressman Raul Grijalva, (D-Arizona), who insisted that if a rock sinks in water, then government scientists are wrong about Keystone XL. He even borrowed a lab coat so he could show how super-smart he is about science:



    (3) Not every Democrat is playing along. As Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer phrased it years ago when it was being stonewalled despite the science, “Ninety per cent of these jackasses that are complaining about the Keystone pipeline in Washington, D.C., one year ago wouldn't have even known where the Keystone was." Plenty pf other Democrats in Congress broke ranks with the president as well. It has to be frustrating to have a self-proclaimed Scientist-In-Chief ignore evidence.

    Comments

    Some of the delays have had nothing to do with the president accepting science or not. Some of it has had to do with the lack of a complete plan from presumed proponents of the pipeline. Its a political football on both sides of the isle.

    http://www.politico.com/politico44/2012/01/propipeline-schweitzer-defend...

    I have heard Gov Schweitzer speak. He is no tool of just any dirty energy project. He sent coal lobbyists packing when they lied at him about photovoltaic and wind projects.

    The stone age did not end because they ran out of stones.

    http://www.science20.com/news/new_biofuel_cell_produces_electricity_from...

    Hank
    Well, the science has been settled for years, that is all I care about. It only became a political football when the president ignored the science report to match his personal beliefs and he got called out. Ignoring science is the same thing we all criticized George Bush for doing so if Pres Obama does not get the same criticism, and he has done this kind of thing on far more issues, it means science media should just go ahead and register as a Democratic PAC and be done with pretending to be trusted guides for the public on science issues.
    Uh dude, your are not throwing science, you are throwing the moral equivalent of flying flying monkey shit.
    I'm not saying I'm against the pipeline. I'm saying its not significant. As to politics I excerpt Wikipedia just cause its easy and footnoted.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keystone_Pipeline

    Keystone Pipeline (opposition to the overall project predates President Obama)

    TransCanada Corporation proposed the project on February 9, 2005.[14] In October 2007, the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada asked the Canadian federal government to block regulatory approvals for the pipeline, with union president Dave Coles stating "the Keystone pipeline will exclusively serve US markets, create permanent employment for very few Canadians, reduce our energy security, and hinder investment and job creation in the Canadian energy sector."[15]

    Hank
    President Obama is not the president of Canada, nor is the pipeline extension "controversy" about a Canadian aquifer.

    Clearly you might want to rethink the Wikipedia strategy. And don't call people "dude", you start off with an attitude both being dismissive and stupid, and that is never going to convince anyone of anything.