So my last post was about the small likelihood of Obama vetoing the creation of the Keystone XL Pipeline. At the time, I thought he may refuse to do so because he’s focused on being re-elected. He wants to appeal to independent voters and he’s “all ears” when it comes to the loud — though small — voices of the Tea Party. But do middle-aged, white males really support a president who caves-in and gives the opposition his queen before the chess match even starts? My guess is that the independent voters want someone with a little more muscle.
Today, Obama pressured the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which was created by then Republican President Richard Nixon, to back off pollution regulation on the US’s top corporations. They already implemented regulations on nuclear and coal power plants earlier this year. The rules were aimed at limiting carbon emissions which some believe is a contributor to climate change. Opponents to EPA’s regulations say that this move would cost businesses about $90 billion a year. But what is America’s health worth? Isn’t anything worth having, worth fighting for. In this case, isn’t a more efficient, clean and profitable industry worth fighting for? It’s tough to push for new ideas though — especially when Americans constantly look for instant gratification.
EPA opponent Fred Upton (R-MI) says that the EPA’s carbon rules are an “unconstitutional power grab.” This is just the latest in the Republican assault against the “unconstitutional” acts of the EPA. The Chamber of Commerce (CoC) is the biggest lobbyist behind efforts to disable the EPA effectiveness. They support congressional Republicans so the connection is blatantly obvious.
The CoC is a group of businesses from around the country. Supposedly, the CoC represents the interests of all businesses (small and large), but it’s hard to believe that the main concern of small businesses is to “debunk” climate change (everyone is familiar with the Apple beef, where Apple left the group because of differing views when it came to climate change). I think small businesses are more concerned with not losing their lease.
The CoC — like any large group of corporations with massive lobbying power — has a main priority to increase profits. The EPA is just a roadblock in their way to make profit. They’ll get around it somehow and their best bet is to deny that climate change is real (I wonder if the drought-ridden state of Texas, the victims of Katrina, Irene, and Joplin and the Sudanese are wondering if climate change is real or not). However, the power still remains in the hands of the Democratic majority of the Senate. Really, we can analyze what will or will not happen all we want, but it will not matter until the Senate gets involved. So I follow the flow of cash…
To get back to the original point, Obama does not seem to be serious when it comes pushing for progressive ideas. He may talk like a progressive, but I pay attention to what politicians do. Obama is the best thing that happened to the Republican Party. The business community is experiencing record profits (pre-depression numbers), but the “business environment” seems to never be “certain” enough for these guys. The Dodd-Frank Bill was basically a bill saying that Wall Street should be following the rules that were implemented years ago — they should be doing now what they were supposed to do. It has no new regulations or rules. It’s basically a bill where Obama points his finger at Wall Street like a mother does her 6-year-old daughter and says, “No, no Susy! You get a timeout!” Without strict and concrete regulation like the Glass-Steagle Act, Wall Street ain’t changing a damn thing!
All this brings me to one point. Obama will cave when it comes to building the Keystone XL Pipeline. No matter what side he takes, he’s going to take a beating. If he wants to, Obama can make a case against old forms of energy, but he won’t. He could always frame the push for relaxed regulations on polluters as another tax cut for the insanely rich. The conservative media machine called regulations anti-business, anti-job and an increase in taxes. So why then can’t relaxed regulations be seen as tax cuts? These are further tax cuts for the extremely wealthy. When it comes to Obama, only one question should enter your mind: Who is he more willing to take a beating from? I don’t think he fears the progressives, I mean they don’t even carry weapons to their “non-violent” protests…