There are two things that irk native Alaskans; the summer mosquito, and pesky environmental cartels who tout centralized management, aka Washington DC, and constrained vision in determining how best to suck the life blood out of our state’s solvency.
While the preceding entities are hard to tell apart, there is only one Arctic National Wildlife Refuge; over 30,000 square miles of primordial majesty, but in whose crude oil substratum lies Alaska’s commercial and industrial subsistence.
It’s been twelve-thousand years since the use of flint rather than metal for energy generation, but Barack Obama’s plodding Interior Department recently mandated ANWR remain undeveloped to petroleum exploration and recovery. A modern-day decree from an administration who previously knew ANWR to be the first name of the former Egyptian leader. Different spelling, same lack of vision.
With a Democrat majority gone, and knowing there was no stopping Keystone XL’s passage in the Senate, Defenders of Wildlife and The Sierra Club clawed and mauled their way for a donor dollar return on Obama campaign contributions. Their frenetic lobbying in turn offset billions of future barrels of ANWR oil from the reach of energy companies.
As skilled as this administration is at percolating America rife with discord, Alaskans are mindfully aware that issuing further restrictions on the state’s oil and gas industry, including the coastal plain in the state’s northeast corner, which taps into 90% of the states revenue, is one big bad idea. One that Senator Lisa Murkowski, Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair labeled “a one, two, three, kick to the gut of Alaska’s economy.”
Obama slightly backtracked after the ANWR decision, infuriating ivory dome environmentalists by announcing a pervasive five-year project of oil and gas drilling off a southeast stretch of the Atlantic seaboard extending along the Gulf of Mexico. Apples-to-orange logistics though, are no comfort in nullifying Alaska’s petroleum exploration, where sundry employment prospects are not readily found as those in the Eastern United States.
With zero chance of Congress approving closing off ANWR, Republican Senator and former Alaskan State Department of Natural Resources commissioner, Dan Sullivan fears the worst, labeling it “a classic Obama tactic,” in the same vein as unconstitutional illegal amnesty. Sullivan, only a month on the job in DC said, Obama uses “executive action to do what no Congress would do.”
Which make Sullivan’s words so resounding, for it isn’t solely an Alaskan issue, but a national one. Few outside the state will ever know or appreciate the solitude of a place like ANWR, but everyone benefits from Alaskan crude oil production. Royalties and taxes from that industry fund the state’s public health care system, while also providing Alaskans jobs as ship captains, oil field and fishery workers. Those monies have translated into a vital education tool in academic curriculums, where information gathering field trips provide a broader understanding and observation of the landscape.
Inuit residents, who for generations have inhabited regions bordering the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, thriving on local fish, wildlife, cultivating the native flora and fauna, have seen their communities prosper with the discovery of oil and the inflow of oil-related money. As profits from Prudhoe Bay production wane and TAPS operating at less than 25% of rated capacity, the benefits accrued them—as well as all Alaskan citizens through the royalty and taxes placed in Alaska’s Permanent Fund, are receding. Oil production is in fact why Alaska is the only state without a personal income or sales tax.
As America sees a significant drop in gas prices and domestic oil production, it shouldn’t be seen as an omen for the future. Obama’s move was merely short-sided incrementalism and pandering to the panic-button left, who gloss over the benefits of smaller sized footprints left by directional drilling. But perhaps more damning than their placards and protestations, is the left’s willful blindness to the strict regulations, care for the land, native subsistence and protections already in place in the state for all 45 species of animals inhabiting ANWR. Not to mention the painstaking care to ensure birthing and calving junctures, as well as monitoring that whale migration seasons remain uninterrupted.
As Murkowski said, the administration “has taken a look at Alaska and decided it’s a nice little snow globe up there, and we’re going to keep it that way.”
I have to wonder if Obama knows the earth isn’t flat. Or, the Viennese snow globe presented his daughter Malia from the original Perzy manufacturers of Austria, was made from liquid petroleum gas.
Early into his presidency, the Beltway buzzword describing Barack Obama’s protocol of protracted reaction was dithering. Dick Cheney went one better, terming it waffling as Obama’s dawdling response to the role of American troops in Afghanistan facing an emboldened enemy.
In Obama’s Keystone XL Dithering, US News and World Report columnist Mort Zuckerman wrote of the economic cost of non-implementing a transformative link to American energy independence.
Obama’s most damaging, if not intentional delay came during the two-years Democrats controlled both Houses. With the economy in free-fall, Obama and the more hell-bent Nancy Pelosi, ramrodded, without one Republican vote, his paradigmatically-flawed signature healthcare program into law.
Obama and the State Department’s inaction and cover-up at the onset of the senseless slaughter of US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others, are as British investigative writer James Boys points out in Two Weeks to a Presidency, [Obama’s] “dithering over the Benghazi tragedy has done little to inspire confidence. His inability to present a comprehensive strategy for the next four years, in over four hours of debates, is equally troubling.”
Dithering has been more aptly replaced by a more conventional description of how Obama thinks, acts, or chooses not to act; leading from behind. In Richard Miniter’s book of the same name, a young, feral, impressionistic Obama is described as adopting the reactionary ascriptions of his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham. As president, Obama’s indecision and moodiness rely on the success or failures of female supporting players Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, and Valerie Jarrett.
While targeted phraseology promulgate the man and his failings, a second Obama term will further embolden a more disturbing, self-opportunistic pattern this president has already acted on; habitually skirting Congress to implement changes where he believes cooperation is lacking.
In bypassing formal legislation, Obama’s liberal agenda is predominant, witnessed in his executive fiat on welfare-to-work requirements; landmark legislation for its bipartisan efforts in 1996 under Bill Clinton.
The problem a Romney administration faces in rejuvenating the workforce stem from the hangers-on to Obama’s predilection that entitlement exists in being laconic, resentful and rooted in indignation; that welfare no longer represents failure, but failure to go out looking for or preparing for work is rewarded as a condition to receive aid.
Unable to bridge the separation of powers or reach across the aisle, Obama used authoritative action to personally overhaul the Dream Act. As Republicans consolidate their power in Congress after November 6th, an Obama replay would be more of the same, doing whatever it takes to get his way.
Resolute action is not in Obama’s repertoire. Little his defenders say about the number of times he was swift to act are pretentious. His self-proclaimed achievement of hanging Osama bin Laden’s head above his mantle was over 12 months in the making, and impossible without interrogatory information he chastised his predecessor’s tactics to attain.
One possible way for Obama to win reelection is for great numbers of voters to remain ignorant of the true natures of both party candidates on Election Day.
If enough of the nation’s electorate grasp a moderateunderstanding of the differences between these men, Americans will choose someone who acts fast and purposeful on his directives. It will usher in a new era of economic prosperity and resolve, because Mitt Romney is a man who will not dither. There’s simply no time.