Putin’s Most Potent Weapon? – Joe Biden
Putin’s ‘Achilles Heel’ lies in his pressing need to export oil and natural gas. A huge proportion of the Russian economy is its oil and natural gas industry. Over 40% of the Russian government’s budget is derived from oil and natural gas revenues.
Without that money, Putin does not have an army. Putin does not invade anything. Russia is lucky if it can put gas in its tanks.
A rational American President – who actually wanted to deter Russian aggression and enhance American national security – would exploit this weakness to the fullest. He would do everything possible to ramp up American fossil fuel production, make Western Europe independent of Russian energy exports and leave Putin greatly diminished and powerless in the middle of Eurasia.
That’s what a President who was working on our behalf would do. Joe Biden is not that guy.
Biden had hardly sat down in the Oval Office before he had canceled the Keystone XL pipeline and greenlighted one of Putin’s prize projects, the Nord Stream 2 pipeline designed to bring Russian energy to Western Europe while cutting Ukraine out of the loop. American energy was targeted. Russian energy was boosted.
That move is completely consistent with what we have seen throughout Biden’s disastrous tenure in the White House. Late last year an American delegation participated in a United Nations meeting in Glasgow, Scotland which crafted a plan to restrict investment in companies that produce fossil fuels. Biden then declared 1.7 million acres in Utah a “national monument” as a means of putting it off-limits for oil and gas exploration. That followed an earlier such action in regard to federal lands in Alaska.
There continues to be speculation about Biden’s plans for the Enbridge 5 pipeline as well. That pipeline moves a half-million barrels of oil per day through Canada and Michigan. It has been in operation for decades but is now apparently considered some sort of environmental hazard. The government of Alberta, Canada from which that oil comes has appealed to Biden to keep the pipeline in operation, but no such commitment has been made.
Biden’s first nominee to be the next comptroller of the currency, Saule Omarova, is on record as stating, “[W]e want [America’s small oil and gas companies] to go bankrupt.” Her nomination has fortunately been withdrawn but her attitude and the fact that she was selected by Biden for the post at all says volumes about Joe’s intent.
Explaining increased gas costs…
Meanwhile, Biden’s Environmental Protection Agency has written new rules that will raise costs for fossil-fuel-based power plants. One estimate suggests that the cost of complying with the new rules on methane emissions may be $1 billion a year.
And, now with Russian troops knocking on the door of Kyiv and gas prices in this country already skyrocketing, Biden is doubling down on his grotesque, failed policies. Only days ago, Biden intensified his efforts to cripple American fossil fuel production, pausing new leases and permits for oil and gas drilling on federal land.
At the same time, Biden has explicitly refused to sanction Russian energy exports. While Joe is fine with killing jobs here at home and driving up our energy prices, he seems fixated on guaranteeing that Vlad can continue to bring home the cash he needs to bombard Kyiv, kill civilians and push his agenda of reconstituting the old Soviet Union.
Oil prices worldwide are going through the roof after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The price per barrel has already hit $100 in London. The average price of a gallon of gas in the U.S. is close to $4 a gallon. It will soon hit $5 in many places.
One industry expert at least thinks all this may get much, much worse. “My guess is that you are going to see $5 a gallon at any triple-digit [oil prices] … as soon as you get to $100,” said Dan Dicker founder of Energy Word talking to Yahoo News. “And you might get to $6.50 or $7,” if oil prices were to eclipse $150 a barrel.”
Oil has never reached $150 a barrel before. It may be there in the very near future. There is no guarantee that is a ceiling of any kind. We are in uncharted waters.
American consumers are feeling acute pain. Families struggling with a difficult economy crippled by COVID restrictions are now faced with the daunting task of filling the gas tank in the car and continuing to heat the home. Biden shows no sign of changing course.
In Ukraine, the Russians are employing all sorts of weapons from tanks to rockets to fighter jets. Putin’s most powerful weapon is none of those. It is the man in the White House who is working overtime to crush the American oil and gas industry and enrich the Russian war machine.