Biden Expands Oil Exploration in Bid to Slow Climate Change

Jerri-Lynn here.  The Biden policy offshore oil exploration discussed in the post below  in this post reminds me of the Vietnam War, when we had to kill those villages in order to save them.

To be sure, the Supreme Court has dealt the administration a major blow to any attempt it might make to address climate change in its West Virginia v. EPA decision. But I agree with Neuburger, the Biden administration isn’t even trying to do anything. Except for flooding my in-box with pleas to send them money so that Democrats can ‘fight for’ something or other.

Contrast that to the Republican m.o. They tell us what they’re going to do – which is usually odious – and then they do it. One must respect their honesty, and their follow-through. I mean I loathe their agenda, and I especially loathe their results, but I acknowledge their competence.

Whereas Democrats are forever ‘fighting for’ something or other – and achieving nothing. Name for me please the last time Democrats managed to deliver on any element of their professed agenda. Doesn’t really matter whether they’re hapless or deeply corrupted, the result is the same.

Biden’s climate change agenda? As with all his other campaign promises, he’s achieved bupkis. Squat. Bugger all.

By Thomas Neuburger. Originally published at God’s Spies

Before we begin, take a minute to read the text in the tweet above. It doesn’t matter whether you start from the bottom, with the Washington Postheadline, and read up, or from the top, with the comment, and read down. The absurdity is almost too on-the-nose to have come from the real world.

The Post article says what you think it says: new drilling ahead. “The proposed program for offshore drilling between 2023 and 2028 would ban exploration off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. But by leaving the possibility for new drilling in parts of the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Alaska, the announcement falls short of Biden’s campaign promise to end federal fossil fuel leasing for good.” (emphasis added)

There are several things to note in this article.

First, John Podesta, head of the 2016 Clinton campaign, wants us to appreciate the powerlessness of the (Democratic) president:

“The Supreme Court just put a lead ball around his ankle with regard to his executive authority,” said John Podesta, a former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and a former senior adviser to President Barack Obama. “If you don’t get reconciliation, together with the constraints that the Supreme Court has put on, I think there’s no way you can get the [U.N.-pledged] 50 percent reduction by the end of the decade.”

You certainly don’t get a reduction in emissions if you don’t try. Biden is not trying, even though he still has choices.

Second, the Post writers, while acknowledging that the consequences of continued global warming are “enormous for humanity,” define those consequences this way: “If left unchecked, global warming may stall headway on combating hunger, poverty and disease worldwide.”

“Stall headway on combating hunger”? For starters, there is no headway. Global hunger is increasing, not decreasing:

The number of people affected by hunger globally rose to as many as 828 million in 2021, an increase of about 46 million since 2020 and 150 million since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic (1), according to a United Nations report that provides fresh evidence that the world is moving further away from its goal of ending hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition in all its forms by 2030. (emphasis added)

One can guess at the reason: The world’s super-wealthy are too busy adding to their own happiness to worry about the misery of others, or in many cases, worry about causing it:

“This report repeatedly highlights the intensification of these major drivers of food insecurity and malnutrition: conflict, climate extremes and economic shocks, combined with growing inequalities,” the heads of the five UN agencies (2) wrote in this year’s Foreword. (emphasis added)

But more importantly, the consequences of global warming are “enormous” because it will collapse humanity’s 5,000-year-old greatest accomplishment (or its original sin) civilization, stable cities supported by agriculture. Is the Post afraid to acknowledge this fact? Perhaps it is, considering that its owner is Jeff Bezos, America’s predator-in-chief.


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  1. Ignacio

    Mr. NWFCh is senile, ultraconservative, warmonger, makes of government just another business (pay per abortion rights, pay for whatever…). Makes Mr. Trump look sympathetic and that is an achievement. Now, the latest trick: offshore drilling against climate change! Problem is that next president will probably double down on the same line.

    It is nearly unbelievable to witness how politics are being degraded.

    1. The Historian

      Mr. NWFCh is all those things, but mostly he is just a puppet who ‘dances with those who brung him’. Replacing him with someone else isn’t going to change anything at all.

      Remember all those promises he made to the left when he was running? Yea, what happened to all that? And the progressives should have understood that because he was making those promises, that they actually had some power. But they didn’t, and they folded – mostly because getting elected was more important than taking risks to change things.

      And the Republicans understood something that the progressives can’t even fathom. If you want to get progressives off your backs, just throw them a social issue, like abortion. They will chase that bone and let you run away with the economy and do what you want.

      Doesn’t anyone understand why social issues made such gains in the 60’s and 70’s? It was because the economy was pretty good and people were willing to listen. They aren’t willing to listen when the economy is bad – and they aren’t willing to listen now. But progressives, instead of realizing that if they want social changes, they have to wrest hold of the economy from the 1%, would rather spend their energy fighting shadows they will never win right now.

      Meanwhile, inflation is getting worse, climate change is getting worse, we are on the verge of a serious war we can’t win, Covid is getting worse, etc., but the 1% is getting richer and richer.

      Am I depressed at how politics has become degraded? You bet! But I blame the progressives more than I blame Biden.

      1. Susan the other

        There is a certain method to Biden’s madness. The Caribbean contains the world’s biggest oil field. So it looks like it will be sacrificed – ecologically. It will be an all-out effort to drill every possibility because the chips are really down now. And we will need oil. The most important thing for the US to do is nationalize oil/gas. So that it can be controlled rather than controlling the economy.

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          If we nationalize oil/gas, we will get a PetroNomenklatura which will control the economy through “nationalized” oil and gas.

          The long term goal should be to exterminate the oil industry and wipe it off the face of the earth. “Nationalization” just gives it a whole new constituency of oppressive bureaucrats and operatives who will live to keep it going forever.

      2. bernie

        What progressives? Just dont’ think that any genuine progressives would have voted for Biden.

        He, and the democratic party, JMO, is as transparent as permaglass. Just flip side of the coin of the duopoly. Sorry, that is my feeling, though.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      I am clueless! Who is Mr. NWFCh? A quick search didn’t turn up any clues and I couldn’t spot any name in this post that might tie to the acronym you and Historian used in your comments.

      1. SB in StL

        “Nothing Will Fundamentally Change,” a promise Biden made to big-money donors that was recorded and leaked during the 2020 campaign.

  2. John R Moffett

    The Democrats exist to keep the left from ever accomplishing anything. The Dems love “bipartisanship” because it means they can cave to Republican demands, but always complain the the mean Republicans won’t reciprocate. Funny how that works. All politicians are given money from the same corporations and wealthy donor class, and therefore work for the same masters. Nothing will get better in this country until the left realizes they have been played as fools for decades. As noted by Jerri-Lynn, the Democrats have miraculously failed to implement a single good and meaningful piece of legislation in decades. It all started with Bill Clinton, and it has gotten much worse through Obama and now Biden. Because the wealthy donor class also controls the news outlets, there really isn’t any simple solution. I think it will take a major disaster, like Biden accidentally causing WWIII, for any meaningful change to occur. Of course at that point, change will be forced upon everyone, and it won’t be for the better.

    1. jackiebass63

      I don’t consider Clinton,Obama, or Biden being democrats. They are actually moderate republicans. Many so called democrats are democrats because the Republican Party purged them because they were considered too moderate.We now live with 2 versions of the Republican Party. Money controls both parties and the money comes from the same sources.

      1. John Moffett

        One quibble, they are not moderate Republicans, they are far right wing warmongering Republicans. The Overton window in the US now ranges from conservative to sheer insanity. Nixon’s policies (e.g., the Clean Water Act) were to the left of Biden. What I never have understood is why the left has not gotten the memo. Even Nixon didn’t risk nuclear war with Russia.

        1. Lex

          Playing the “even Nixon didn’t …” game is depressing. I’ve never seen a president to the left of Nixon, who was the president when I was born. There were those few years of my early childhood under Carter.

          1. britzklieg

            Carter was busting unions before Reagan and the “Carter Doctrine” (Zbigniew Brzezinsk) is fundamental to the Ukraine clusterschmuck. I admire his post POTUS profile but he was a horrible president. The first Democrat neo-liberal and it’s all been downhill since.

            And yes, he put solar panels on the WH…

            1. John Zelnicker

              britzklieg – Carter was singularly bad as a president. As you say, the first neoliberal one. IIRC, he’s the one who started the rush to deregulate everything, starting with the airlines, railroads, and possibly trucking.

              1. JGarbo

                No POTUS since JFK has “started” anything. They’ve all followed “advice”. The naivete of the US public is astounding: they believe one man controls a country of 330 million? The corporations run the show, while the POTUS reads their script. That’s why no POTUS can change anything. Do wake up.

                1. John Zelnicker

                  Excuse me, I am quite awake, thank you. Putting the blame (or credit) on the POTUS is a matter of convenience since the administration is his.

                  I have no illusions about who is actually running this country. And, it didn’t “start” after JFK either. In fact, I would suggest that all presidents have been manipulated by the wealthy and powerful. It’s what they do.

        2. Kurtismayfield

          Heck, the Right would crucify Reagan today if he was around. Remember he raised taxes, which is the greatest sin of all.

      2. drumlin woodchuckles

        Clinton, Obama, Biden were never purged out of the Republican Party. They were Democrats right from the start.

        And their kind is what purged the New Dealers and any Newer Dealers who might emerge from out of the Democratic Party.

        So yes . . . Clinton, Obama, Biden, Manchin . . . are Democrats. So are Clyburn and Pelosi and Hoyer. Their portraits should be posted all over with the caption. . . ” This is what a Democrat looks like”.

  3. PlutoniumKun

    I have no idea whether the people who came up with this deal are sincere or not (probably not), but if anything demonstrates that normal democratic politics is simply incapable of dealing with an existential crisis like climate change, doing a deal to allow more drilling in some vague hope that it will change the mind of one senator… well, this is it. Only wartime levels of mobilization can work and without anyone willing to declare that war… its simply not going to happen.

  4. Socal Rhino

    I just watched Ted Cruz on CNBC. It seems pretty clear to me that Biden and the Democrats are extremely vulnerable on energy policy, judging by the difficulty Sorkin, a center Democrat (I think) had countering Republican talking points. And he visibly struggled. Biden ran on reducing fossil fuel production, but just as campaign talk, and presents no plausible strategy for an energy transition. He can be attacked for the rhetoric and blamed for the current economic woes, with no ability to point to an improved future. Republicans have clarity: they will allow fracking in Yosemite if needed but they’ll increase production.

    1. griffen

      I caught most of that interview with Cruz as well, and had seen him on CNBC before. Sorkin is rarely at a loss for words.

      The most glaring statement from Cruz has been is to just watch what the Biden administration set out to accomplish from day one. Biden and his energy policy from the get go was determined to pull forward the expiry date on fossil fuels. This country can’t run very far on high input costs for the average USian (car, daily food and home) or the average long distance trucker / diesel fuel inputs. The green energy and cleaner energy infrastructure will take decades still, even if we were a serious country.

  5. Lex

    The post title is far too appropriate and interchangeable with other issues. “Biden sends weapons to Ukraine in a bid for peace.” “Biden sends military hardware to cops in a bid for police reform.” “Biden sends black men to jail in bid to strengthen the black community.” “Biden limits bankruptcy in a bid to help the working class.”

    Citizen votes for Democrat in a bid to help Republicans.

  6. Robert Hahl

    >As with all his other campaign promises, he’s achieved bupkis. Squat. Bugger all.<

    To that I would add: "Nothing will fundamentally change." I don't think his supporters expected WW3 to begin so soon.

  7. Oh

    Thanks for the post, J-L-S. The Democrats always make promises that they do not ever keep and they’re quick to blame the Republicans and/or people like Manchin as a reason that they cannot implement popular agenda. They know fully well that the voters are stuck between choosing between two zeros. When I see someone (in frustration) state that they’re going to vote for a Republican it works in favor of the two parties. Ever since the SC ruled that money is speech and corporations are people the politics in this country has gotten much worse. The two parties (one party) have pretty much made registration of a new political party well nigh impossible. States are even restricting people’s rights by limiting referendums.

    Whenever oil prices are high there is this “drill, baby drill” attitude – another giveaway to the petroleum lobby. More exploration does not decrease oil/gas prices. Biden has always been a politician who has been bought off by special interests. Pelosi and Schumer too. These people are out to wreck our planet and are making great progress thanks to the SC.(in)justices, Unfortunately, the public doesn’t get it.

  8. JAC

    “Biden is not trying, even though he still has choices.”

    Show me a person that can sacrifice and I will show you a person who understands spiritualism. You see, we keep electing these dead humans to be leaders, but yes, they are empty humans, puppets, void of any spirit.

    but can we keep an eye on our own spiritualism as well? Have we tested our own ability to sacrifice? To lay upon the cross as a christian? To leave our wife and kids for enlightenment as a Buddhist? To live in humility that we cannot make the world better as a Daoist?

    At this moment Capitalism is the reigning god, and it knows nothing of sacrifice. It is a false god, a dead spirituality that will lead humanity to hell.

    So how will we sacrifice, the ones who do not kneel on the capitalism alter? Rent or sell our home below market rate? Carpool to work? Not work? Live homeless?

  9. Grumpy Engineer

    Part of the problem here is that the Democrats are trying to do things backwards here. [And in fairness, they’re doing this in part because environmentalists demand such an approach.] Specifically, they try to limit fossil fuel supply before addressing demand. And then when a energy supply shortage hits and prices escalate to the point where citizens feel pain, the restrictions are promptly cancelled.

    Democrats and environmentalists love to fight against “Big Oil” and “Big Energy” by limiting leases, protesting against pipelines, etc., but people continue to buy equipment that will need fuel/energy for many years into the future. Has anybody seen protests or proposed legislation that would force GM, Ford, and Chrysler to quit manufacturing large SUVs? Or protests or proposed legislation that would force Trane, Carrier, etc. to quit manufacturing oil- and gas-fired furnaces? Or protests or proposed legislation that would limit new houses to 1400 square feet or less? Something to significantly reduce demand?

    Right now millions of people live in 3000+ sq-ft “McMansions” (often heated with gas-fired furnaces) and have two large SUVs parked in the garage. And hundreds of thousands of people buy more every year. Wittingly or not, they’ve effectively signed up for a high-fuel, high-energy lifestyle for another couple of decades, and they’ll expect that fuel and energy to be available and affordable. If Democrats and environmentalists continue to crack down on supply first, all they’ll do is lose elections.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      I agree with your analysis that Democrats and environmentalists continue to crack down on supply first. This usually accomplishes the same results as other strategies the Democrats employ to ever work toward failure to legislate ‘because they are blocked by Republicans’. Actually, controlling supply without measures to reduce demand seems remarkably similar to the standard means both parties use in their cooperation to engineer the ultimate failure of any proposal or action that might slow or stop the combustion of fossil fuels and the continued even accelerated emission of CO2 into the atmosphere. After watching “Planet of the Humans” several times I guess I am becoming paranoid about the putative leaders of the environmental movement. I smell either horrific ignorance of practical politics or the acrid stink of co-option.

      1. Grumpy Engineer

        Heh. The worldwide battery industry currently manufactures about 500 GWh of batteries per year, which is enough for 7 million electric vehicles per year (assuming that each EV has a 70 kWh battery). It’d take 140 years to manufacture a billion EVs.

        And this optimistically assumes that 100% of battery production goes to electric vehicles and none is deployed for energy storage to help support a renewables-based grid. More realistically? 250 years.

        1. Glen

          Yes, there is just no way EVs can come close to “replacing” ICE vehicles. Hopefully, we can pursue a mix of vehicles with ICE, EV, hydrogen ICE, and hydrogen fuel cell. Heck, I’m still holding out for a dumb cheap beefed up golf cart for just getting groceries, but still need a truck for dealing with firewood, bulk material, etc, all those small farm type duties.

          The problem is if one was serious about this, it should have started at least ten years ago, and needed some serious subsidizing/prodding by the government to support a transition.

          Now? Who knows? Gas could go through the roof which will certainly move people away from using it if possible. But it’s not possible for most Americans.

  10. Susan the other

    So ecologically speaking, if natural energy resources and commodities are used wisely to also provide mitigation for climate and pollution and are strictly controlled they can’t be free-market commodities anymore. Extraction will need reclamation everywhere. Clearly, if the free market is restricted it isn’t free. But now that’s the only way to establish a systematic and effective sustainability. So to think that along, we can’t continue to use exploitation as the engine of capitalism and profits. That engine needs to be replaced with a value system that is directly connected to good ecology. Fortunately for us it can be monitored. From satellites to field workers. Lotsa jobs for the future. Good science and boots on the ground should logically now become the main industry of the future. So direct value extraction can’t turn into an eternal bezel if sovereign credit is used – nationalization. And any industrial production can also be monitored by analyzing the commodities used, the energy consumed, the reclamation measures necessary – all the stuff that goes into manufacturing analysis to establish a price that maintains the industry but doesn’t exploit the environment. So that would serve to diminish all the churning to make profits to keep the current system going. Which is killing us. I don’t see this so much as “socialism” as I see it to be well managed sovereignty. If the Supreme Court can’t deign to dig in the weeds for this kind of enlightenment then their political racketeering (under the pretense of protecting the “constitution”) endangers us all. They need to broaden their scope to reflect the modern world. Really, sometimes protecting the constitution is the equivalent of protecting all the contradictions that prevent us from taking good action in a timely manner. This “justice” is certainly a cop-out if there ever was one because it just reinforces an ineffective and corrupt congress to do nothing as well.

    1. drumlin woodchuckles

      If the Supreme Court is giving us problems, kill the Supreme Court to stop it from giving us problems.
      No Court, no problem.

      The way to do that is for a President to run and get elected on packing the Court. And then pack it.

      Then the other Party can get a President to counter-pack it even more.

      Eventually its image-legimacy will be reduced to reflect its reality-legitimacy, which is zero. Then it can be allowed to die on the vine, be drowned in the bathtub, etc.

      And its empty space can be kept empty until “our side” can create a new Court reflecting “our” agenda against “our” enemies. ( Whomever Darwin finally permits ” our” side to be).

    2. Rolf

      So to think that along, we can’t continue to use exploitation as the engine of capitalism and profits. That engine needs to be replaced with a value system that is directly connected to good ecology.

      That’s a key point, and as a society, as a nation, we need to recognize this point, it is so, so overdue. We overproduce and oversize everything (vehicles, houses, commutes, food, agricultural production, waste, everything) because our entire system is driven by “cheap” energy, and the absurd, almost infantile “need” to have all of it, sooner, tomorrow, in fact, right now. But there is nothing cheap about any of this behavior — the real costs will kill us — all of us. (Sorry Jeff, Elon: that includes you too).

      It seems we have to crash and burn before we acknowledge this plain fact. As a species we are clever, but we can’t seem to recognize that the rate at which we’ve combusted GTs of organic carbon is many orders of magnitude faster than it was originally sequestered. And that mismatch has consequences.

      Please excuse the rant.

  11. Anthony G Stegman

    In my humble view the die is already cast. The “fight” against climate catastrophe has already been lost. The Fat Lady is singing, though some may not hear in their delusions that it is still not too late to reverse things. It is too late. The American way of life requires massive expenditures of energy, of which fossil fuel is and will remain for the foreseeable future, the major component. So CO2 levels will continue to rise. 350PPM will never be achieved short of near human extinction. On some gut level most people know this and so they see no point in dramatically changing their lifestyles. The party will end eventually, but may as well enjoy it for a while longer. I continue to see brand new giant SUVs and jumbo pickup trucks on the roads with solo drivers. I continue to see monster homes being constructed. I continue to see airports filled with travelers. For a politician like Biden it makes little sense for him to restrict the mining of fossil fuels if that will raise costs to the consumer. He will earn no brownie points for expensive gasoline and energy related inflation, regardless of climate benefits. Drill baby drill. Burn baby burn. Nothing will fundamentally change for the simple reason that it wouldn’t do any good anyway.

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