A search for “Obama reneges” yields 15,800 hits in Google.
And once again Barack Obama reneges, this time on offshore oil drilling and in so doing makes the United States even more dependent on foreign oil. This is the first step in Obama’s bypassing Congress to rule by Executive Order.
The Obama administration instituted what was supposed to be a six month moratorium on “deepwater”drilling following the Deep Horizon spill. A Federal judge struck it down, but Obama just instituted another one. On October12, the Obama administration announced that it would lift the deepwater drilling moratorium but has issued no new permits.
The issuance of new permits was promised to be a slow process
President Obama lifted his moratorium on deepwater oil drilling nearly a month ago, but the government still hasn’t issued any new permits in the Gulf of Mexico.
And most analysts say permits will be slow in coming through 2011.
Really, really slow, as it turns out.
On Wednesday, the Interior Department said it would not propose oil exploration off the Atlantic and Pacific coastlines or the eastern Gulf of Mexico for at least seven years.
As is Obama’s usual policy, he called for bipartisan support while acting in a strictly partisan manner.
But unlike the late March announcement when President Barack Obama took to the podium to embrace domestic energy production and call for bipartisan support in Congress, Wednesday’s declaration came with little fanfare — a press release and a phone call with reporters by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.
Democrats continued to make painfully clear how stupid they are:
March’s proposal brought instant opposition from two key Atlantic Coast Democratic senators — Robert Menendez of New Jersey and Bill Nelson of Florida — who were thrilled Wednesday with the administration’s reversal.
“I regret that it took the spill in the Gulf to have them come to that conclusion that there is no such thing as absolutely safe drilling,” Menendez told reporters.
I don’t know anyone who would ever assert that oil drilling is absolutely safe. Driving a car is not “absolutely safe.” Crossing the street is not “absolutely safe.” Menendez’s statement is “absolutely” idiotic.
Oil prices continue to rise as strong continued demand is forecast.
“The momentum in global economic growth remains strong,” it said. “Overall, the latest U.S. data remain consistent with our view of continued steady demand increases ahead.”
Gasoline prices where I live have risen 25 cents in the last three weeks.
The next domestic oil production confrontation is expected to take place over Alaska.
The next flash point will come in the Arctic, where Shell is trying to get Interior to approve its proposed drilling project in the Beaufort Sea. That operation is at most 200 feet deep, as opposed to the 5,000-foot Macondo well that ruptured and sparked the three-month oil spill that was plugged this summer.
In the Arctic, Salazar said Interior will “proceed with upmost caution,” leaving open the question of whether the agency will greenlight plans by Shell to drill in shallow waters off the coast of Alaska.
The prediction here is that no approvals will be granted. Instead, Obama will push the United States into continued and growing dependency on foreign oil and greater oil costs. It will then be asserted that increased energy costs affect the poor unfairly and look for a supplemental tax to “spread around” the greater energy cost burden.
Don’t bother looking to Congress for that, though. Look for the Executive Order via the EPA. Obama promised this would happen and the time is here.
It does make you wonder whose side Obama is on.