The New York Times Keystone XL Illogic

Aug 22, 2011

Keystone XL pipeline

I'm trying to decide how seriously I should take the New York Times editorial page. I'm mean, they pay a guy who thinks it would be good economic policy to fake an alien invasion.

Today, the editorial board comes out against the Keystone XL pipeline that would bring Canadian oil into the United States.

However, the editorial fails to note this fact: The development of Canadian oil sands won't stop if the State Department doesn't issue a permit. A pipeline from Alberta could just as easily go west instead of south. Canada will have no problem selling oil to China instead of to the U.S. The editorial acknowledges this:

Canada’s government is committed to the tar sands business. (Alberta’s energy minister, Ronald Liepert, has declared, “I’m not interested in Kyoto-style policies.”) The United States can’t do much about that, but it can stop the Keystone XL pipeline.

Yet they oppose the pipeline, which makes me scratch my head.

What would stopping the Keystone XL pipeline accomplish? Do they not want the ten of thousands of jobs directly and indirectly created from the pipeline? Would they rather have the U.S. be less energy secure? Do they want to be on the side of anti-growth, anti-energy protesters?

It sure looks that way to me.

Contrast the Times with the Wall Street Journal editorial page, which last month urged the State Department to approve the pipeline.

Maybe the Times thinks little green men can use their alien technology to solve our energy needs. But until we make contact, we need the Keystone XL pipeline.

[Photo via Steve Meirowsky]

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