Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Our Job Denier In Chief (Repost from August 18, 2013)

To mark the occasion of Barack Obama's veto of the Keystone Pipeline bill we republish....

Energy is the elixir of a strong and growing economy, a key driver of employment growth, a generator and multiplier of good jobs and economic security. It is to the economy as a whole, what water is to the American West.

Meanwhile, reflecting ignorance and perverse priorities, Barack Obama has mocked, laughed and snidely dismissed claims that the Keystone XL would be a significant job creator. 

Obama recently told the New York Times,

Well, first of all, Michael, Republicans have said that this would be a big jobs generator. There is no evidence that that’s true. And my hope would be that any reporter who is looking at the facts would take the time to confirm that the most realistic estimates are this might create maybe 2,000 jobs during the construction of the pipeline -- which might take a year or two -- and then after that we’re talking about somewhere between 50 and 100 [chuckles] jobs in a economy of 150 million working people.
So I see, Republicans said it. Funny, very funny. Ha, Ha! This guy is a real clown, maybe when his gig runs out in 2017 he can start a new career appearing in rodeos since he is so good with the bull. But look at what his own experts and allies say, even with their inherent biases.
The State Department reported that the pipeline would directly create 3,900 jobs per year, and 42,100 jobs if indirect jobs are included. Even the Sierra Club, one of the leading groups campaigning against the pipeline cites the 3,900 jobs figure — higher than the president’s unsupported numbers.
Consider neighboring reality instead of Obama's political straw man. Sections of the country near the proposed route of the XL Pipeline are about the only parts of the country beyond the inside the Washington Beltway government debt and spending bomb, where anyone can get a job, a decent full time job at a decent salary, due to natural gas and oil development and transport.     

Take Williston, North Dakota for example. Even at the bottom of the economic ladder, the local Walmart has advertised starting pay of $17.00 per hour.  At times, a local McDonald's has restricted business to its drive up window because it can't keep its operation well enough staffed to serve the dine in crowd, despite paying well above minimum wage. Unskilled workers can earn $50K or more working in oil and gas, while skilled workers command from $70K or $100K or more. I have neighbors here in Bozeman who work the North Dakota oil patch, two weeks on, then two weeks off, earning big and salting it away. It's an economic boom -- something that Barack Obama has no understanding or comprehension of. 

Obama's low-balled job estimates are a joke. He is outlandish.  He is an extremist.  He is a denier.  

In the same interview, Obama highlighted his views about the role of the Fed in the economy.

And when unemployment is still too high, and long-term unemployment is still too high, and there’s still weak demand in a lot of industries, I want a Fed chairman that can step back and look at that objectively and say, let’s make sure that we’re growing the economy, but let’s also keep an eye on inflation, and if it starts heating up, if the markets start frothing up, let’s make sure that we’re not creating new bubbles.
So real economic activity doesn't count for anything. But yes, Barack Obama thinks the road to high employment is paved by the Fed's printing presses -- unfrigging believable.

We've blogged previously about the strong employment and high pay in the pipeline industry. We reported on the extraction and refining opportunities that would be opened by building the XL, big job and high pay generators as well. We blogged on the burgeoning oil reserves in North Dakota that have to get somewhere, somehow, and that the Keystone XL has an on ramp for that oil. It all fits together, but the addle minded ideologue you elected to the White House is lost in a fog of ignorance.

To get to a ground up example, yesterday, it came to my attention that I have a relation who is employed directly and substantially in the pipeline industry. The job is Pipeline Controller. Think of it something like being an Air Traffic Controller but for transport on the ground, someone who is constantly monitoring capacity, movements and flows, ready to intervene, redirect or initiate emergency action on a moment's notice.  

Pipeline controller in Williston, North Dakota
near the proposed route of the Keystone XL Pipeline
Just to mention a few, Chevron employs them, Shell has controllers on staff as does Praxair Inc.. Enterprise Products and Sunoco Logistics are in the pipeline controller space as are Williams Energy and Epic Energy Holdings, as is Phillips 66.  The much hated ExxonMobil and Koch Industries are dutiful employers as well. Then there are employers such as Enbridge, Conoco Phillips and Kinder Morgan -- you get the idea. 

Not surprisingly, if unlike the President you understand how business and industry work, you might also realize there are people who train Pipeline Controllers. Pipeline personnel training and development is big business. 

Then there are the software packages and systems that controllers use, the engineers, technicians and laborers on call to address problems as they arise, security staff and the folks who are involved in upgrading, improving and otherwise securing pipeline safety and performance. Preventive maintenance is a must. It is a pyramid of jobs, not the isolated employee or two that Obama in his world of distortion and denial would have you believe.  Don't believe a word that comes out of that man's mouth -- nothing at all.

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