America Getting Lost In The Smoke

It’s been quite a week for President Trump. Just when you thought that he couldn’t sink any lower, he drains a little more from the pool.

First, he lost the Presidential election by millions of votes. Then he lost his mind–what was left. That was just the beginning of the end.

Last weekend, he called the Georgia Secretary Of State and pressured him into finding 11,780 votes.

Trump clearly wanted this elected official to break the law for his benefit. Trump lost. He also committed a crime.

Then he threatened his most loyal follower, Vice President Pence, and asked him to overturn the election by rejecting the Electoral College votes. Trump lost.

Then, he called on his right-wing mob to ascend on the U.S. Capitol to help him carry out a coup. Trump lost. In the wake of the madness, lives were lost. America lost.

The next day, America lost more than 4,000 citizens to the COVID pandemic–an all-time high.

Trump walked away from the coronavirus battle months ago. America has lost almost 400,000 citizens to Trump’s negligence and his warped war against science.

On Tuesday, Trump suffered another defeat. After breaking the law to rush the sale of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), the oil industry shrugged it off as a non-event. Only two tiny oil companies attended the party. The oil industry is reeling from the pandemic that Trump is perpetuating through negligence and incompetence. So much for favoritism.

In November, the Trump administration fast-tracked plans to sell drilling rights in ANWR to oil companies. Yesterday’s sale was supposed to end a battle that has raged for more than 40 years—a battle over drilling, pumping and transporting crude oil in the delicate coastal plain that supports migrating caribou, polar bears and other wildlife. The coastal plain covers about 1.6-million acres, which represents about eight percent of the massive refuge.

Many major banks say they won’t fund oil projects in the Arctic. Opponents have also filed multiple lawsuits seeking to block drilling. They’ve raised concerns about its impacts on Indigenous people, the global climate and wildlife.

But amid a global recession, low oil prices and an aggressive pressure campaign against leasing by drilling opponents, oil analysts predicted low interest in the sale. They were right. Opponents took the sale as evidence that drilling in the refuge is no longer treasured by oil companies. The ANWR oil lease attracted just three bidders — one of which was the state of Alaska.

“They held the lease in ANWR, which will be recorded in the history books,” said Larry Persily, an Alaska resident. “But no one showed up. It was a dry hole. They had the lease sale, but no one’s going to see any oil coming out of ANWR.”

Even Kara Moriarty, head of the Alaska Oil and Gas Association, acknowledged that the sale results weren’t as strong as expected. But she said the industry still supports future access to the coastal plain.

“Today’s sale reflects the brutal economic realities the oil and gas industry faces after the unprecedented events of 2020, coupled with ongoing regulatory uncertainty,” she said.

With less than two months left before the presidential transition, the Trump administration attempted to move quickly through a process that would normally take longer. After finishing its environmental review in August, the Trump administration launched a call for nominations on November 17. That’s a 30-day window for oil companies to tell the government which pieces of land they want included in the lease sale. But the Bureau of Land Management did not wait 30 days before going ahead and scheduling the sale date.

“I laughed out loud. It was a joke. A joke to the American people,” said Desirée Sorenson-Groves, director of the Arctic Refuge Defense Campaign. “Those companies that bid today will never drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. We will stop them.”

Read The Full Story About Trump’s Attack On Democracy, The People and The Planet.

Of course, now Trump can add a second impeachment to the list. Sad.

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