George W. Bush on Keystone XL: Just “build the damn thing” already

posted at 7:21 pm on November 19, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

At the last update, I think we were somewhere in “earlyish 2014″ territory (who can even keep up?) for the time frame in which the northern extension of the Keystone pipeline will be either approved or denied by President Obama, but by determinedly delaying on what should have/could have been a simple and bygone decision of his first term, the issue is now a ticking time bomb of highly publicized, faux-environmentalist outrageous outrage. I suppose that the dollars the president has been fundraising from well-monied, self-fancied “green” Democratic donors may have made the delay, delay, delay tactic worth it in the run-up to his reelection, but the inevitable blowup (no matter which way he chooses) is going to be all the huger because of it.

G.W. hasn’t weighed in on too many hot political topics post-presidency, but the right decision in regard to the pipeline proposal is almost too painfully obvious to even be able to avoid it:

Former President George W. Bush said the construction of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline should be a “no-brainer” given its boost to the American economy and job growth.

Speaking at the DUG East Conference with top executives from oil and gas companies, the 43rd president said that the pipeline’s construction from Canada to Texas would help put the focus back on the country’s private-sector of the economy, reports Desmogblog.com.

“I do think we’re underperforming economically, and I think the reason why is there’s not enough focus on private sector growth, said Bush. “I think the goal of the country ought to be: ‘How do we grow the private sector?’ That ought to be the laser-focus of any administration. And therefore, once that’s the goal, an issue like Keystone pipeline becomes a no-brainer.”

“If private sector growth is the goal and Keystone pipeline creates 20,000 new private sector jobs, build the damn thing,” he said to applause.

The eco-lobby will dispute that jobs number ’til the cows come home, but the bigger point here, as ever, is that the United States is going to need to start laying a lot more pipeline in the very near future in order to properly accommodate our burgeoning oil-and-gas boom — which absolutely does create jobs and economic growth. The Keystone pipeline’s proposed extension will transport Canadian products as well as those from North Dakota, and while the environmentalist crowd will also deride the pipeline as an enabler of those much-loathed Canadian oil sands in terms of their effect on climate change, they never seem to address the fact that those oil sands are coming out of the ground with or without the Keystone XL pipeline — but the pipeline is the most cost-effective, efficient, safe, and environmentally friendly method of transporting them. Counterproductive, anyone?

As it happens, TransCanada is working on another possible pipeline project at the moment, and the Alaskans are pretty darn pumped about it:

An Alaska official said Monday the state is looking at taking a multibillion-dollar equity stake in a major natural gas pipeline project as a way to protect its interests and help make the long-hoped-for project a reality. …

The North Slope’s three major players — Exxon Mobil Corp., BP and ConocoPhillips — are working with TransCanada Corp. to advance a liquefied natural gas project that would be capable of overseas exports.

The proposed line would run 800 miles from the slope to south-central Alaska and could cost from $45 billion to more than $65 billion, according to company estimates. The companies haven’t committed to building it and have repeatedly said they needed competitive, predictable and durable terms on oil and gas taxes and royalties.

Alaskans have long dreamed of a gas line as a way to create jobs, provide energy for residents and shore up revenues as oil production declines. While there have been fits and starts over the years, state officials believe the current project has momentum, and Balash said it’s reaching the point where the state needs to start making decisions about its terms.


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Thank you GWB…

OmahaConservative on November 19, 2013 at 7:27 PM

I didn’t always agree with your policies, but you were a great leader and a great man.
God bless you George.

RovesChins on November 19, 2013 at 7:29 PM

Amen, Dubya.

Stoic Patriot on November 19, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Lightyears better than our present jackwad in chief.

Is there a living former President that hasn’t seen fit to dump on Barkys head?

Ecen clintoon, and peanut man have.

wolly4321 on November 19, 2013 at 7:37 PM

I miss ya, Dubya.

GOPRanknFile on November 19, 2013 at 7:37 PM

I like how he threw the term “laser-focus” in there. Just a little twisting of the knife. Love it!!!

Bitter Clinger on November 19, 2013 at 7:45 PM

Thanks, Mr. President, for finally speaking out and the classy way you did it. Keep it coming, please, I beg you.

TXUS on November 19, 2013 at 7:45 PM

Democratic donors may have made the delay, delay, delay tactic worth it in the run-up to his reelection,

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Warren Buffet and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, which doesn’t want to be replaced by your stinkin’ pipeline. The word for today, children, is: “Crony“. Can you say that? “Crony”. I knew that you could.

trubble on November 19, 2013 at 7:48 PM

I miss when honorable men and women occupied the Oval Office!

nicefly on November 19, 2013 at 7:50 PM

It’s a good idea, so Duh Won will never do it, not even to lift his sinking poll numbers.

Philly on November 19, 2013 at 7:52 PM

We have a chunk of the Alaskan pipeline, cut in the shape of Alaska with a plasma torch, by my uncle. He was a welder and made bucku bucks building it. Lives in Fairbanks today. Opened up a bed & Breakfast. I got to see a lot of the pipeline on a drive to Prudhoe Bay.

Pretty cool. Caribou everywhere.

wolly4321 on November 19, 2013 at 7:52 PM

MEGA Dittos GWB.

Keep them coming .

Texyank on November 19, 2013 at 7:54 PM

“I do think we’re underperforming economically, and I think the reason why is there’s not enough focus on private sector growth, said Bush.

People pay good money to hear this drivel. Hey, Bush, so we’re underperforming economically? You and your party wouldn’t have something to do with that, would you?

rickv404 on November 19, 2013 at 7:56 PM

That estimate of 20,000 new jobs is based on the pipeline alone. Bring 700,000 barrels a day of new Canadian crude into the States, it will need to be refined into gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, etc. The required refinery expansions would probably create double or triple that number of jobs.

When George W. Bush left office, gasoline was $1.80 per gallon. If we built the Keystone pipeline and developed all our resoures, we could probably get close to $2.00 a gallon within a year.

With all due respect, President Bush maybe should have stayed silent. Everybody knows that what ever GWB says, Obama will do the exact opposite.

Steve Z on November 19, 2013 at 7:57 PM

The proposed line would run 800 miles from the slope to south-central Alaska and could cost from $45 billion to more than $65 billion, according to company estimates.

Or as I like to say, roughly 1/10th the cost of a non-working obamacare website.

WitchDoctor on November 19, 2013 at 7:58 PM

Speaking of Dubya, for anyone that’s interested, Bush will be on the “Tonight Show” tonight.

GOPRanknFile on November 19, 2013 at 7:59 PM

Leaders make decisions.

NickelAndDime on November 19, 2013 at 8:00 PM

…get a little more vocal George!
…BJ is boring me!

KOOLAID2 on November 19, 2013 at 8:01 PM

The last decent democrat president.

Murphy9 on November 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM

The Democrats War on Prosperity. Virtually everything that has made human existence more comfortable the left is fighting. Find a way to kill mosquitoes and fight Malaria in the 3rd world. DDT gets banned millions die. Find a way to grow better crops then the left is against it. NO to fertilizer, No to Genetic modification, No to corporate farming which brings economy of scale to farming. When we finally get a small surplus and hunger is retreating then we must burn food in your car. They have now even come out against fire claiming burning stuff causes the world to end.

Grunt on November 19, 2013 at 8:30 PM

Well it’s about time.

Cleombrotus on November 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Should have said, it’s about DAMN time.

Glad he added that in there. Just the right touch.

Cleombrotus on November 19, 2013 at 8:41 PM

Build the dang fence.

stenwin77 on November 19, 2013 at 9:01 PM

People pay good money to hear this drivel. Hey, Bush, so we’re underperforming economically? You and your party wouldn’t have something to do with that, would you?

rickv404 on November 19, 2013 at 7:56 PM

GWB hasn’t been the president in quite a while.

Today’s economic underperformance is all on your preezy of the united steezy. (He be so kewl!)

And, what do you think of people putting out $38,400.00 to here him stutter his drivel?

Solaratov on November 19, 2013 at 9:43 PM

It’s long past time to stop listening to those know-nothings who demand that we listen to them simply because they claim to be “environmentalists.”

True credentials involve hard work, actual experience in the field, and PROOF that one knows what he is doing. The vast majority of “environmentalists” flunk this simple test, and instead try to claim that they are pure in heart precisely because they know nothing and have no knowledge or experience.

landlines on November 19, 2013 at 9:48 PM

The problem for Obama is the fracking boom is just about the only good economic news he’s had since oil prices rebounded in 2010, but for the Bush Derangement Syndrome Crowd — including those in the White House – its always 2000-2008 when they hear his name or see his face. Bush telling Obama to “Build the damn thing” will make those on the left even more determined not to build it, and to punish Obama if he does, at a time when the die-hard left is just about all Obama has left in terms of popularity.

jon1979 on November 19, 2013 at 10:17 PM

Miss ya W……you spent way too much but I never felt safer and I never once worried about my son and family having a Commander in Chief like you.

crosshugger on November 19, 2013 at 11:03 PM

King Barack is not interested in economic growth.

GarandFan on November 19, 2013 at 11:53 PM

Amen, Dubya.

Stoic Patriot on November 19, 2013 at 7:35 PM

..nice to see, stoic. We were at each other’s throats during the 2012 campaign (for reasons I certainly understand and now respect) but it’s good to see this absence of enmity to some degree.

The War Planner on November 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM

“Build the (condemn) thing” is beneath you, W.

It doesn’t even make sense, as is true with most mature immature language.

itsnotaboutme on November 20, 2013 at 1:15 AM

“Hey, Bush, so we’re underperforming economically? You and your party wouldn’t have something to do with that, would you?”

Oh, lil’ Ricky. Such a sad and disillusioned lad you must be…

five years on, and the (anti)stimulus/union payoff scam, cash for clunkers, the billions flushed away on “green” companies that produced roughly zero jobs, the prosperity gutting oblammocare, the energy sector crippling epa edicts based on the fable of global warming, the value sink of all the moronic “quantitative easings”- and none of it’s working. None of it.

Your stuttering braindead jugeared imbecile hero has ruined the economy, period. Unemployment, inflation, the value of the dollar- are all horrible, period.

But yeah, it’s the guy that hasn’t been in power since 2008- he done it. Jeez, you’re as dumb as the crooked moron in the White House.

GrassMudHorsey on November 20, 2013 at 8:03 AM

That alternate pipeline is for shipping product to China and Russia. If we won’t buy their oil and gas, Canada will fins someone who will. And the EPA won’t be able to stop a pipeline in Alaska.

oldroy on November 20, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Hey, Bush, so we’re underperforming economically? You and your party wouldn’t have something to do with that, would you?

rickv404 on November 19, 2013 at 7:56 PM

No more or less than anyone else.

What does that have to do with whether or not the pipeline should be built? Are you saying, if W contributed more to the situation, then the pipeline should go away?

The Schaef on November 20, 2013 at 10:10 AM