Obama Denies Keystone Pipeline Permit — Abandoning U.S. Recovery for Reelection

By: Jeffrey Klein, Political Buzz Examiner

At this moment, it appears as though the Obama Administration is going to accept the State Department’s recommendation that a permit for building the Keystone XL Pipeline [extension] should be rejected.

This is in accordance with the language Republicans had inserted in the Democrat “two-month” payroll tax holiday, which passed in a Senate [do nothing] “pro forma session,” just before the end of the year, which mandated that President Obama himself–not the State Department–make the final decision, on or before February 21st, according to a developing FOXNews article today.

[Oil] Industry sources say that the State Department will contend that 60 days is not adequate time to perform the environmental impact assessment of the pipeline route.

This excuse is a total farce of galactic proportions.

First, the State Departments, and seven other Secretary-level departments that would have even a possible jurisdiction in this matter, each received the original “Presidential Permit Application” (fact and detail links here) from pipeline owner, TransCanada Corporation, one of the largest oil and pipeline companies in North America, including the initial environmental impact study on the entire route, exactly 3 years and 4 months ago today–September 18, 2008.

For a clear, equally scaled contextual understanding, the State Department has had approximately 1,215 days, not just 60 days, to process this application–about the same amount of time that it took to develop the NASA Space Shuttle design (began in 1969, with final design approved by President Richard Nixon in 1972).

Second, the original environmental impact document was supplemented, which in general are produced to address and clear comments and questions, in July 2009, with the final 72 page document submitted [to all] in October 2010.

Third, these voluminous and expensive submissions, embodied the results of hundreds of charrettes the oil company held with government officials and citizens in the towns along the pipeline route, which no doubt began at least a year before the original submission. Initial route planning, engineering and internal feasibility studies most likely took a year or more prior to that to complete.

Fourth, the same oil company already has a precedent setting [smaller diameter] “Keystone” pipeline in operation, running through all of these same states, including a section that runs across the very same Nebraska aquifer in question. The “XL Extension” refers to running a straight line of larger diameter pipe that will bypass severe angles of the existing pipeline, in order to deliver a greater volume of crude product, more quickly, to the pre-existing refineries in Texas.

Finally, the so-called “environmentalist groups” who “complained” about possible oil spill accidents, and any other perceived negative aspects to building the pipeline, have not, to my knowledge, delivered any equivalent independent study–paid for by them–that contradicts the above described extensive and expensive environmental impact study provided by TransCanada.

But yet, it was enough for Barack Obama, who no doubt feared losing their campaign volunteers–and campaign contributions, to stop the project from going ahead.

The environmentalists’ true motives and objectives were clarified today, by the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group, whose prime argument was that the pipeline doesn’t make the U.S. anymore energy secure–just because it would get oil from a close neighbor and friend…


Here it comes…

Instead of carrying common crude oil, the Keystone XL pipeline would carry thick, toxic bitumen for refining in the Gulf States, effectively transporting pollution from Canada to the United States,” reads the NRDC report.

“It is not in the national interest to lock the United States into supporting an expensive and dirty form of oil for many years to come. Also, additional capacity for tar sands oil perpetuates America’s addiction to oil, and undermines the clean energy alternatives that would bring genuine energy security,” the NRDC report continues.

We have now learned that TransCanada Corporation has received formal notice from the Obama State Department that their Presidential Permit Application for the Keystone XL Pipeline has been denied.

Russ Girling, President and CEO of TransCanada Corporation released these statements on their corporate website (“formal notice” link above):

“This outcome is one of the scenarios we anticipated. While we are disappointed, TransCanada remains fully committed to the construction of Keystone XL. Plans are already underway on a number of fronts to largely maintain the construction schedule of the project,”

“We will re-apply for a Presidential Permit and expect a new application would be processed in an expedited manner to allow for an in-service date of late 2014.”

[TransCanada expects that consideration of a renewed application will make use of the exhaustive record compiled over the past three plus years.]

“Until this pipeline is constructed, the U.S. will continue to import millions of barrels of conflict oil from the Middle East and Venezuela and other foreign countries who do not share democratic values Canadians and Americans are privileged to have.”

“Thousands of jobs continue to hang in the balance if this project does not go forward. This project is too important to the U.S. economy, the Canadian economy and the national interest of the United States for it not to proceed.”

TransCanada will continue to work collaboratively with Nebraska’s Department of Environmental Quality on determining the safest route for Keystone XL that avoids the Sandhills. This process is expected to be complete in September or October of this year.

Jack Gerard, president and CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, had this to say to Fox News Radio … “Unfortunately, Prime Minister Harper of Canada, just this week said, because of the volatile indecisiveness on the part of this president, that they feel they are being held hostage and they will take their energy elsewhere specifically to Asia and China.”

Obviously, Mr. Gerard’s comments, and those of Canadian Prime Minister Harper, were made prior to Mr. Girling, TransCanada’s Chief Executive, who obviously does not want to “write-off” the tens of millions of dollars, or more, and the time and effort in pursuing this pipeline through the heart of America.

This obvious political, reelection-year tactic by President Obama and all Democrats is setting the stage for what is clearly going to be the most important and hard-fought political campaign, since Lincoln was elected in 1860–as pointed out last night by Bill O’Reilly.

In light of President Barack Obama’s comments regarding America becoming soft, and his regularly pointing to the amazing growth of the Chinese economy, he has now made it eminently clear that he has chosen the narrow ‘campaign trail’ over the broad ‘American Recovery trail.’

Copyright (c) 2012 by Jeffrey Klein


Times Takes Heat for Pro-Terrorist Article

By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media

Ilena Silverman, one of the story editors at The New York Times Magazine, is defending publication of a story urging New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to release Weather Underground terrorist Judith Clark from state prison. The article portrayed Clark, who was involved in the murders of three law enforcement officers, as a remorseful mother anxious to spend time with her daughter. She is serving 75 years in prison for her crimes and is likely to spend the rest of her life in prison unless political authorities intervene to release her.

Silverman calls the piece by Tom Robbins “a terrific story,” adding, “Over many visits and phone conversations, Robbins explored Clark’s life behind bars and her slow transformation from unrepentant young radical to a reflective, deeply regretful model inmate.”

Clark was a member of the Weather Underground and its spin-off, the May 19th Communist Organization, and worked with members of the cop-killing Black Liberation Army.

There is no evidence in the article or anywhere else that Clark, now advertised as a writer and a poet and educated behind bars at taxpayer expense, rejects communism. Critics say her alleged rehabilitation behind bars is a scam and that, if she is released by Cuomo, it is certain that she will become a cause célèbre for the international anti-American left.

Joseph F. Connor, the son of a victim of left-wing terrorism of the kind practiced by Clark, provided us a copy of the letter that he sent to Silverman:

Dear Ms. Silverman:

Looks like The New York Times is at it again, advocating release of an unrepentant terrorist onto society.

Just a year ago, Emma Fitzsimmons wrote a similar fluff piece about unrepentant, communist, Puerto Rican terrorist group FALN (Armed Forces for National Liberation) leader Oscar Lopez in advocating his parole. Like Judith Clark and her Weathermen, Black Panther and May 19th Communist Organization Comrades, Lopez and the FALN were part of a 1960s and 70s communist-fueled amalgam that violently sought the overthrow of the United States.

My 33-year-old father, Frank Connor, was murdered by these terrorists as he peacefully ate lunch with clients at Fraunces Tavern in 1975. Like Clark and the Weathermen, Lopez and the FALN represented themselves at trial, hurled insults at the judge, and refused to recognize the US courts to try them.

The FALN spewed the same brand of vile revolutionary rhetoric as their Weathermen brethren. In their January 24, 1975 communiqué found immediately after the Fraunces bombing, they wrote, “We, FALN, the Armed Forces of the Puerto Rican Nation take full responsibility for the especially detornated (sic) bomb that exploded today at Fraunces Tavern with reactionary corporate executives inside…You have unleashed a storm from which you comfortable Yankis cannot escape…”

A small group of those wounded by the FALN, law enforcement and family members of those murdered struck back last January by trekking to Terre Haute, Indiana, federal prison, where we confronted the unrepentant Lopez face-to-face at his parole hearing and ensured the denial of his parole.

Now the paper of record is at it again.

Judith Clark did abandon her child but that was her own diabolical choice.

Her revolutionary comrades of the FALN acted as judge, jury and executioner, in forcing my father’s abandonment of his mother, wife and two sons—my brother (11) and me (9)—when they murdered him.

Like Lopez, Clark sheds no tears for the families she left abandoned and we shed no tears for her.

Let her finish her term. She got off easy compared to Bill Moroney, Ed O’Grady, Chipper Jones, Peter Paige, Frank Connor, Alex Berger, Mike Schlaacter and their families.

Look inward New York Times and ask yourselves why you advocate for terrorists while you dismiss their victims and families.

When you figure it out, please publish the story.

Now that’s a story we’d all like to read.

Joseph F. Connor

In a follow-up series of questions and answers about his piece, former Village Voice writer and now professor of “investigative journalism” at the City University of New York, Tom Robbins, is asked about other terrorists involved in the 1981 Brinks robbery with Clark that killed the three law enforcement officers. He says that Marilyn Buck “won parole in 2010 after serving 26 years of a 50-year sentence for the Brinks robbery and related crimes. She died of cancer shortly after her release.” He makes it seem as if Buck was given an early release and that it is therefore unfair for Clark to spend the rest of her life in prison.

In fact, Buck’s release was another scam, carried out by officials of the Obama/Holder Justice Department who falsely claimed that she had repented for her terrorist ways. Robbins seems to be unfamiliar with the basic facts of the case, as detailed in documents released to this columnist under the Freedom of Information Act.

Writing about that case, former Justice Department official and whistleblower J. Christian Adams noted that the letters which persuaded the Justice Department to release Buck “were stuffed with crackpot arguments” and were featured “on the letterheads of government and private institutions, institutions most Americans incorrectly think are worthy of respect.”

For example, attorney Jill Soffiyah Elijah wrote on behalf of Buck’s release that “a warm nurturing living arrangement is available to Ms. Buck in my home located in Brooklyn. . . . I and my family look forward to her joining our home.” Elijah’s letterhead was Harvard Law School, where Elijah runs the Criminal Justice Institute.

“Also on the letterhead in the Elijah letter to the Justice Department is Charles Ogletree, President Obama’s dear friend and mentor,” notes Adams. “Having Ogletree’s name associated with such a request was like mailing Buck the keys to her jail cell. Ogletree’s daughter Rashida was recently hired into Holder’s Justice Department as a lawyer.” Indeed, Rashida Ogletree is today a trial attorney in the “special litigation section” of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.

Elijah, whose official title is Deputy Director of the Criminal Justice Institute at Harvard Law School, “has represented numerous political prisoners and social activists over the past 18 years,” her bio says. “And, her travels to Cuba over the past 13 years have enabled her to conduct extensive research on the country’s legal system, with a focus on its approach to criminal justice issues.”

Elijah represented Marilyn Buck as well as Joanne Chesimard, another cop-killer who escaped from prison and fled to Cuba with the help of Judith Clark and other members of the Weather Underground.

After her release from prison, followed shortly by her death from cancer, Buck was eulogized at a New York City memorial service by former members of the Weather Underground and the FALN as a great freedom fighter.

Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected].


While You Were Fleeing…

By: T F Stern
T F Stern’s Rantings

Sandra Bullock played a woman in love with a stranger who happened to fall into the path of an oncoming train in the movie, While You Were Sleeping. Things got out of hand when she told the nurse at the hospital she was his fiancé and the story took off from there. Eventually she had to fess up for her actions; but it all worked out and she lived happily ever after.

Closer to home, a young man was arrested here in Houston and charged with Felony Murder, a peculiar offense which covers unintentional deaths which are the result of entering into criminal behavior. The young man “allegedly was involved in the felony of burglary” and had admitted to having been caught red handed prior to his fleeing the scene and leaving his fellow burglary suspect behind. His partner in crime was shot by a police officer while wrestling for the officer’s gun according to the official report.

“Ed Chernoff, Smading’s attorney, called the charge unfair.

“A cop, rather than chase after some kids, decided to start shooting,” Chernoff said. “There was no need to start shooting.”

Legal scholars said felony murder is unusual and can be invoked in a number of situations.

“You see them in textbooks and occasionally in news stories, but they’re rare by comparison to your average homicide, obviously,” said University of Houston law professor Adam Gersho­witz. “Felony murder is controversial anyway, and this is holding someone criminally liable for an unintentional murder of their friend, while they’re away from the scene.”

If you follow that line of thought then criminals aren’t responsible for bad things that happen when their plans go sour. The lazy cop just started blasting away, too lazy to chase some kid on foot; it’s all the cops fault. The burglary suspects only wanted to break in, steal some stuff and leave. They never intended for anyone to see them, scream out for help, call the cops and they certainly didn’t plan on getting shot.

You read about things like this all the time; a robber goes into the liquor store to grab some quick money and “accidentally” shoots the owner of the store. “It wasn’t my fault, he grabbed for my gun and it just went off.” An auto thief grabs an SUV and takes off, unaware there’s a baby in the back seat, leaves the child abandoned in the cold night air and wonders why he’s being arrested for kidnapping. This happens all the time.

Geoffery Corn, a professor of law at South Texas College of Law summed it up best:

“A reasonable person would foresee that the conduct you engaged in could lead to the death of someone – a cop, a home-owner or maybe even your co-felon,” Corn said. “Felony plus death equals murder.”

In spite of what you may have been led to believe, we are responsible for our actions. I was about to say “even if you’re fleeing the scene of a crime.” However, a better choice of words would be, “especially while you’re fleeing the scene of a crime.” When you start a ball in motion, whatever it runs over or into belongs to you.

This article has been cross-posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government & The American Constitution.”


Watcher’s Council Nominations – Float Like A Butterfly, Sting Like A Bee Edition

The Watcher’s Council

Seventy years young yesterday… rumble young man, rumble!

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday.

Council News:

This week, The Independent Sentinel, Crazy Bald Guy and Capitalist Preservation took advantage of my generous offer of link whorage and earned honorable mention status.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

Simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category and return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week.

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!