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Former Obama national security adviser urges Keystone pipeline approval

  • Gen. James Jones, Pres. Obama's former national security adviser, tells the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that approving the Keystone XL pipeline (TRP) would send a message to Russian Pres. Putin and other "international bullies" that they cannot use energy security as a weapon, and rejection of the pipeline would "make Mr. Putin's day and strengthen his hand."
  • The Senate panel is holding its first hearing on the pipeline five years after it was proposed, as Democrats wrestle with its impact on the 2014 election.
  • Meanwhile, results from Canadian polling firm Nanos Research indicate U.S. support for Keystone XL at 62%, down from 74% in a survey it conducted nearly a year ago - still strong support but moving in the wrong direction, which the pollster says should concern the pipeline's proponents.
Comments (26)
  • dunnhaupt
    , contributor
    Comments (387) | Send Message
     
    Like all Presidents, Obama is constantly faced with issues where he will be damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. So it ultimately does not matter what he decides because he will be blamed anyway by one side or the other.
    13 Mar, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • movies555
    , contributor
    Comments (588) | Send Message
     
    I'm not sure if the lower support is entirely due to new negative news as much as it is people simply tired of how ridiculously dragged out this situation has been. It's absolutely the height of absurdity. It's a binary decision - yes, no. Energy has to be transported somehow - would you (and Buffett) prefer rail? Or pipelines? Neither are perfect, although rails somehow have gotten this perception that they are safer.

     

    I do think you have a situation with the Canadian rails - see the other day where the Canadian government forced the Canadian rails to carry x amount of grain - feel like they're at capacity, which may increase the push for Keystone to take on energy load.

     

    Tiny company Ceres Global Agriculture (CERGF.pk) is also building a commodity (oil, ag) logistics hub on the US/Canadian border that they have already gotten permission to link to Buffett's BNSF railway. Ceres trades at about 0.75x book value.
    13 Mar, 06:08 PM Reply Like
  • fossilfree
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    What this "pipeline PR" piece fails to mention is the fact that Retired Gen. James Jones is in deep with the oil industry and has been for many years and he has made substantial amounts of money doing so.

     

    Jones currently serves as a consultant for the American Petroleum Institute (API), which has spent over $22 million lobbying on behalf of Keystone XL since 2008.

     

    He heads Jones Group International, a consulting group described as offering "high level advisory and consulting services in the areas of international energy policy."

     

    He has worked as a CEO for the US Chamber's Institute for 21st Century Energy as well as their Energy Works for US. He has also served on Chevron's Board of Directors.

     

    This man is up to his neck in big oil, making millions from doing so and it stands to reason he'll make a lot more if the Keystone XL is approved.

     

    He also fails to mention any of this to the US Senate Foreign Relations committee... which sure makes for a nice PR piece for the (climate-poisoning) Keystone pipeline. More on this at: http://bit.ly/O8yzSZ
    13 Mar, 06:09 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    fossilfree,

     

    Your argument is meaningless, as the oil will be harvested either way. Obama nor the enviro extremists can stop it.

     

    If the US declines control of the distribution of it, China will be more than happy to step in.

     

    His position is that of National/Geo-political security, not environmental.

     

    (AKA foreign Wars)

     

    BTW; Making money is good.

     

    Ironically blocking the pipeline just insures less eco-friendly and dangerous means of distribution & transport

     

    They are delusional if they think blocking Keystone will prevent the resource from being developed & exported out of Canada.
    13 Mar, 06:22 PM Reply Like
  • movies555
    , contributor
    Comments (588) | Send Message
     
    Nothing against environmentalists (and I don't even like that term, how about those who are "environmentally friendly") - I completely agree with protecting the environment. However, the reality is that we need oil. The world can't be powered by solar or lithium-ion batteries yet and the reality is that alternatives will not replace oil for many years to come. So, oil will be transported somehow and we live in a global economy. If we do not want it, I completely agree with 1980XLS that there are other customers - Asia and elsewhere. If anything, if I were Canada I would have just forgotten Keystone by this point and instead just developed greater infrastructure to deliver energy out to the coasts instead.
    13 Mar, 07:27 PM Reply Like
  • fossilfree
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    1980xls,

     

    "the oil will be harvested anyway"

     

    If that were true, why has TransCanada spent over $5 billion trying to force this pipeline on us? You might want to read the following Bloomberg article.

     

    http://bloom.bg/1iGLd9z

     

    And it is no longer just a bunch of "enviro extremists" that are working to stop it. There are many in the financial world that are starting to warn about the carbon bubble. And if you think all those farmers and ranchers in the midwest are a bunch "enviro extremists" you might want to rethink that.

     

    "His position is that of National/Geo-political security, not environmental"

     

    Climate change threatens the global and our national security, political and otherwise. (If you have doubts goggle military brass on climate change and national security.) Oil sands increases CO2 emissions more than any ff except coal, so expanding oil sands mining ops hastens adding more CO2 to the atmosphere.

     

    "US declines control of the distribution of it" - The US has nothing to do about the control of where the finished petro product would go. That has already been determined by the oil producers who have already contracted the vast majority of it to go overseas, mostly to China.

     

    "Ironically blocking the pipeline just insures less eco-friendly and dangerous means of distribution & transport"

     

    There is nothing eco-friendly about pipelines or anything that has to do with the oil sands or any other extreme-fossil fuels for that matter.

     

    "They are delusional if they think blocking Keystone will prevent the resource from being developed & exported out of Canada."

     

    It that was truly the case, why aren't they doing it already?

     

    What is really delusional are the industries and politicians that support them, thinking they can just keep knowingly and willingly keep polluting and destroying our planet in their lust for more riches. Investors should be careful of not helping them out with all of that.

     

    Making money is good but at what to what lengths are you willing to go to make it? Destroying the climate? Poisoning and polluting our waters, our air and our lands? No one has the right to do that.

     

    There are many opportunities to make money available - a lot of it if your paying attention- without causing negative impacts on our environment or other people.
    13 Mar, 07:23 PM Reply Like
  • Retired and loving it
    , contributor
    Comments (215) | Send Message
     
    The oil I going to be produced. Much of the heavy oil is produced by U.S. owned companies so this not about Canada bashing. The choice is rail or pipeline. Pipelines are far safer. But if Congress wants rail then rail it will be but the oil is coming one way or another. Those opposed to the pipeline are seeking a pyrrhic victory.
    13 Mar, 07:44 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    Fossilfree,

     

    Given your screen name it's obvious where you stand on the matter.

     

    I am not making a case for it environmentally one way or the other.

     

    But,

     

    A small group of tree huggers living on the east & west coast of the USA will do zero to stop Canada from developing and selling the resource.

     

    Being that it's going to happen anyway, logic says it might has well be done in the safest and most responsible way

     

    I'm sure the residents of Lac Megantic would agree with me.
    13 Mar, 08:22 PM Reply Like
  • The Rebel
    , contributor
    Comments (424) | Send Message
     
    fossilfree- nice talking points. "Climate change threatens the global and our national security, political and otherwise...Oil sands increases CO2 emissions more than any ff except coal, so expanding oil sands mining ops hastens adding more CO2 to the atmosphere."

     

    The climate is changing every day in every possible way from all sources, mostly natural sources. The air we expel from our lungs probably affects the climate more than any pipeline could. Maybe the EPA could issue new regulations demanding that we all exercise some sort of breath control to help save the planet. The deadly eruption of Mount Sinabung Volcano in Indonesia recently put more ash and dust into the atmosphere, and that natural disaster will do more to change the climate than any pipeline will.
    13 Mar, 10:06 PM Reply Like
  • fossilfree
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    1980XLS,

     

    You can say that your not "making a case for it environmentally one way or the other" but I will contest that statement. If you are invested in oil sands mining or its transportation or refining, your investment is clearly taking sides against the environment.

     

    There is no denying the damage to the environment that the oil sands are doing. Even if your not admitting to the extent of the additional CO2 released into the atmosphere, no one can be so blind or naive to not see the damage to the water, land and air quality. This damage has had very serious consequences for tens of thousands of people who live near and/or downstream of the oil sands mining operations. Likewise for the leaks that are occurring with increasing frequency both in the US and Canada.

     

    You might want think your not making a case against the environment, but in reality, your investment in (or future investments if that is the case) speak otherwise.

     

    Moving on, here is a link you might want to check out: (http://boldnebraska.org). As the name implies, it is a coalition in Nebraska. A coalition of farmers, ranchers, landowners and concerned citizens. I doubt few if any of them consider themselves as "tree huggers" or "enviro extremists". Three members of this coalition who are farmers and ranchers, have successfully challenged in court, Transcanada's illegal and unethical usage of eminent domain to confiscate their lands.

     

    I myself come from the midwest and I was born and raised on a farm. Most of my family is still there and to the best of my knowledge, not a one of them think this foreign-owned pipeline that would carry this extremely toxic dilbit to TX to be refined and then shipped to foreign lands is a good idea. A number of them, including two young children, live within miles of where the original Keystone pipeline is laid. If there were to a serious leak in their areas, they could be directly affected.

     

    You can count on this… there are far more than a few tree huggers on the coasts who oppose this pipeline and the further expansion of the oil sands mines.

     

    Regarding the Lac Megantic exploding train-bombs: it sounds like you are not aware that the train that derailed in Lac-Megantic was transporting crude from a large shale deposit in North Dakota known as the Bakken field and not the heavy crude known as oil sands. Since the Alberta oil sands were not involved and the KXL would only carry oil sands dilbit, your argument for the KXL in this case is irrelevant.

     

    Yet, since you have held this up for an example of oil on trains, I will say this about the Lac Megantic disaster. While the explosion and fire were a direct result of the highly flammable Bakken crude (more flammable than gasoline), the wreck occurred as a result of human error and recklessness coupled with the incompetence and neglect that comes from an industry and political system that are more motivated by greed and personal gain than there are for the value placed on human life.
    14 Mar, 01:16 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    My argument is not weather or not it should be extracted, only that that decision has already been made.

     

    You lost, and nothing Americans nor Obama, can do about it.

     

    Horses have already left the barn.
    14 Mar, 01:29 PM Reply Like
  • fossilfree
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    wow... that's all you got.

     

    Time will tell who loses what.
    14 Mar, 01:48 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    The headline for the article is not as to weather the resource should be developed. That decision has already been made (it was not up to Obama or Americans)

     

    It was about weather Keystone is in the National security interests of the US.

     

    Since you claim to have such hatred for profits, and such regard for human lives, perhaps you could go sacrifice yourself in the next foreign war, so we would have one less of our sons having to do so.
    14 Mar, 02:04 PM Reply Like
  • fossilfree
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    While it is true that the oil sands are already being developed, the KXL is key to further expansion and in the bigger picture, an indicator if the oil sands will be profitable enough to continue.

     

    I have never said anything that could even remotely be considered a "hatred for profits." Could it be that since your lacking facts to back your argument in support of investing in KXL, your trying to make some up?

     

    Obviously I invest to make profits. I have just made the choice to do so with a "fossilfree" portfolio. Hence the handle. I will add that even with the current downturn of the markets, my fossil free portfolio is still up about 28%.

     

    BTW - "weather" is a state of atmospheric conditions, like clear, rainy, snow, etc. whether you choose to use the word correctly or not.
    15 Mar, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • Hendershott
    , contributor
    Comments (1497) | Send Message
     
    The XL would be a strategic positive for the US.
    13 Mar, 08:19 PM Reply Like
  • bobby44
    , contributor
    Comments (181) | Send Message
     
    Hendershott 100% correct. Said it before. 1-Take the oil. 2-Refine it. 3-Distribute it. Use the resource to help friends and NOT enemies.

     

    Europe knows Putin has a valve to the single biggest source of their energy, that is why they are almost silent as a neighbor is robbed.

     

    Take a lesson Mr. President and all - less you too get 'Putin' ed.

     

    This is serious!
    14 Mar, 12:13 AM Reply Like
  • marpy
    , contributor
    Comments (681) | Send Message
     
    With respect to "Canadian support for Keystone XL at 62%, down from 74%", one should not make the mistake of assuming that this means Canadian's are not in favor of pipelines and oil sands development. More than likely, they are fed up with the process that has become more of a joke than anything else and are instead favoring the proposed lines east and west to be run within Canada. And those smiling the most are China and Russia.
    13 Mar, 08:55 PM Reply Like
  • bobby44
    , contributor
    Comments (181) | Send Message
     
    I believe your assessment is correct. but also I fear there is a sentiment in much of Canada saying "enough BS about the USA telling us what we can or can not develop. Screw you. Let's make certain the energy does not go south".

     

    Does anyone think this is a better feeling than the "please take our oil" that was the previous strong sentiment?
    16 Mar, 01:47 PM Reply Like
  • joe kelly
    , contributor
    Comments (1725) | Send Message
     
    How do all these "experts" know what will make Putin's day"? Claiming anything emboldens our enemies or makes them giddy is a new form of Godwin's law. But God bless the general and I thank him for his service.
    13 Mar, 09:09 PM Reply Like
  • monmon
    , contributor
    Comments (13) | Send Message
     
    it doesn't matter if USA doesn't buy the oil, somebody will!!!!!!
    13 Mar, 09:33 PM Reply Like
  • jwill53
    , contributor
    Comments (226) | Send Message
     
    Watch Buffett as the next presidential election nears and a new administration takes over - that will most likely be the telltale for approval - Buffett reducing/moving out of his rail position(s) and into TRP (or other pipelines).
    14 Mar, 09:15 AM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    Obama's job approval still behind Keystone support numbers by a very wide margin.
    14 Mar, 10:26 AM Reply Like
  • marpy
    , contributor
    Comments (681) | Send Message
     
    Canadian production reaches record of almost 5 million barrels a day with a lot more to come.

     

    http://bit.ly/1qD9nmq
    14 Mar, 12:42 PM Reply Like
  • tomdgascop
    , contributor
    Comments (42) | Send Message
     
    Hey fossilfree You said your family are farmers are they getting any government
    help”a farm subsidy” and don’t the use fuel to operate their tractors and farm equipment Just wondering .
    14 Mar, 03:07 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3314) | Send Message
     
    tomdgascap,

     

    You forgot to mention for fertilizer too.
    14 Mar, 05:40 PM Reply Like
  • tomdgascop
    , contributor
    Comments (42) | Send Message
     
    1980xls,

     

    Thanks you are so correct thanks for the add-on. Just one correction it’s “tomdgascop”
    15 Mar, 10:30 AM Reply Like
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