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And, yes, I DO take it personally: In a rather horrifying instance of deja vu, Obama is following in Dick Cheney's footsteps
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Thursday, June 21, 2012

In a rather horrifying instance of deja vu, Obama is following in Dick Cheney's footsteps

i keep getting 4-5 solicitations every day asking me to donate or otherwise support obama's re-election, but my enthusiasm is at a low ebb, to say the least, and reading things like this certainly doesn't help...

michael t. klare in tomdispatch...
Through his speeches, Congressional testimony, and actions in office, it is possible to reconstruct the geopolitical blueprint that Cheney followed in his career as a top White House strategist -- a blueprint that President Obama, eerily enough, now appears to be implementing, despite the many risks involved.
That blueprint consists of four key features:

1. Promote domestic oil and gas production at any cost to reduce America’s dependence on unfriendly foreign suppliers, thereby increasing Washington's freedom of action.

2. Keep control over the oil flow from the Persian Gulf (even if the U.S. gets an ever-diminishing share of its own oil supplies from the region) in order to retain an “economic stranglehold” over other major oil importers.

3. Dominate the sea lanes of Asia, so as to control the flow of oil and other raw materials to America’s potential economic rivals, China and Japan.

4. Promote energy “diversification” in Europe, especially through increased reliance on oil and natural gas supplies from the former Soviet republics of the Caspian Sea basin, in order to reduce Europe’s heavy dependence on Russian oil and gas, along with the political influence this brings Moscow.


This four-part geopolitical blueprint, relentlessly pursued by Cheney while vice president, is now being implemented in every respect by President Obama.

When it comes to the pursuit of enhanced energy independence, Obama has embraced the ultra-nationalistic orientation of the 2001 Cheney report, with its call for increased reliance on domestic and Western Hemisphere oil and natural gas -- no matter the dangers of drilling in environmentally fragile offshore areas or the use of hazardous techniques like hydro-fracking.  In recent speeches, he has boasted of his administration’s efforts to facilitate increased oil and gas drilling at home and promised to speed drilling in new locations, including offshore Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico.


In virtually every respect, then, when it comes to energy geopolitics the Obama administration continues to carry out the strategic blueprint pioneered by Dick Cheney during the two Bush administrations.  What explains this surprising behavior?  Assuming that it doesn’t represent a literal effort to replicate Cheney’s thinking -- and there’s no evidence of that -- it clearly represents the triumph of imperial geopolitics (and hidebound thinking) over ideology, principle, or even simple openness to new ideas.

When you get two figures as different as Obama and Cheney pursuing the same pathways in the world -- and the first time around was anything but a success -- it’s a sign of just how closed and airless the world of Washington really has become.

if the u.s. had taken the initiative to develop alternative and sustainable energy sources when jimmy carter first put them on the national agenda over 40 years ago, the world of energy would look nothing like it does now... instead, we have a perpetuation of greedy oilmen, exploitative oil companies, and a world full of gadgets and machines that either suck up oil products or are made from them... we tend to think only in terms of oil as fuel... but look around you... virtually everything you see that's made from plastic or uses synthetic materials is an oil-based product... we have steadily built our dependence on oil to unimaginable levels, so much so that, if oil suddenly went away, the world would grind immediately to a stop...

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