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From a Bully Pulpit to the World's Biggest Bully

Just a Big Pussycat?... or really a Big Bully.
Is the World's Only Superpower becoming the World's Biggest Bully?

By Scott Rohter, February 2014 - Updated December 2014

After more than forty years of importing foreign oil to fuel our cars and trucks and drive our modern day industrial economy, and after decades of being held hostage to the rising prices of O.P.E.C., the United States now finds itself in the enviable position of having more domestic oil and gas reserves than we actually need. So you might be inclined to think that this would lead to the price of gasoline and fuel oil coming down in America... but that hasn't happened so far. (Editors Note: Please keep in mind that this article was originally written in February of 2014).

As of February 2014 the price of gasoline is still at record high levels. You might believe that our surplus domestic energy supplies would release America form the grip of those who would manipulate our fuel oil prices so as to inflict real financial pain upon our society... but if you thought that for a minute you would be wrong. As of right now the price of oil still remains at over ninety dollars a barrel and the price of gas at almost four dollars a gallon, and those who control our energy prices in the United States have no intention whatsoever of letting domestic energy prices come down. Of course this was before ISIS captured the oil fields in northern Iraq and began selling their newly acquired black gold on the Black Market substantially lower than the price for crude oil set by OPEC.

American oil companies don’t think any better of American consumers than the hostile foreign interests that control the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. We are “just another udder on the cow of crony capitalism to be milked for all we are worth,” and it looks like the milking will continue much to the delight of the multinational oil companies. They keep raising the price of energy with a wink and a nod from the Obama Administration… But everything changed the day that ISIS militants took over the oil fields near Mosul, Iraq. Now the Saudis are dropping the price of crude oil not to do us any favors in the West, but because they want to remain in power. They want to prevent ISIS militants from selling Iraqi oil on the Black Market. If they can dry up the source or revenue for ISIS and prevent ISIS militants from succeeding in the Middle East they can literally save their own necks. Otherwise they might lose their heads the same way anyone else does who opposes ISIS. Everyone who drives a car is benefitting now from the low fuel prices because the Saudi Royal Family is literally fighting for their own lives.

Instead of using our domestic oil and gas reserves right here at home where they belong and letting our abundant new supplies of energy help to lower the cost of gasoline, propane, and heating oil in America, our U.S. corporations are building huge liquefied natural gas export terminals along our coastline and they are planning on shipping much of our newfound treasure overseas to Europe and Asia for a pretty penny.

These export terminals were originally intended to be used as import terminals just a few years ago when America was still experiencing energy shortages, but since the discovery of shale oil in the Dakotas and Texas they have been modified into export terminals. On the West Coast some companies are in the process of building natural gas export terminals to ship our precious petroleum reserves from Montana and Wyoming to China and Japan. These export terminals will satisfy an ever increasing international demand for American natural gas and they will also create the market conditions here at home which will allow the cost of domestic energy to remain at record high levels for well into the foreseeable future.

America's domestic energy supplies should not be sent abroad to Europe and Asia. They should be used right here at home. America is not a colony and we shouldn't allow ourselves to be used as a source of raw materials by other nations. Our domestic energy should be used at home to support our own industrial economy. I have nothing against drilling for oil in America, but I believe that our domestic energy supplies should be used at home to help lower the cost of energy in America. Our energy reserves should not be exported overseas in order to drive prices higher here at home .

There is an unfortunate international consequence of our fracking frenzy in America. It is the political unrest going on in the former Soviet Republic of Ukraine ever since unruly street mobs overthrew the government of President Viktor Yanukovich and replaced it with a government that was more to the liking of the European Union and the United States. If Crimeans and ethnic Russians living in eastern Ukraine are upset by all of the lawlessness of the American backed government in Kiev they have a right to be. We are meddling in Ukraine over oil and oil markets. It is petro-politics at its worst. We are trying to replace the Russians as the primary supplier of natural gas to Europe while at the same time providing an overseas market for our surplus natural gas in order to maintain high energy prices at home.

Our State Department supported the coup that drove Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovich out of power and out of the country because he wouldn't acquiesce to E.U. demands. The reason we are now imposing tough sanctions on Russia for its support of Russian speaking Ukrainians has nothing at all to do with democracy. If we were actually trying to encourage democracy in Ukraine then we would have supported the referendum that took place in Crimea which favored re-unification with Russia. We would have supported it no matter what the results were.

The reason we are still meddling around in Ukraine has everything to do with our domestic fracking revolution in America. That is why the Obama Administration and Secretary of State John Kerry are supporting an illegitimate government in Kiev after mobs of U.S. State Department backed street demonstrators overthrew their legally elected government. That is why the Obama Administration and European nations keep imposing tougher and tougher sanctions against Russia and why they are relentlessly trying to dictate to them what their foreign policy should be in Ukraine. Frankly its none of our business. Russia isn’t the biggest bully in the world... We are !

What I would like to know is this... Has America volunteered to be the world’s biggest bully or has our government somehow been manipulated into acting like a big bully by a consortium of European and American business interests just so we can sell our surplus natural gas to Europe. Currently Europe buys most of its natural gas from the Russian gas monopoly Gazprom, but that won't be the situation for much longer if American oil companies get their way... And it looks to me like the Obama Administration is just going to let them have it. We are obviously sticking our big fat noses into a distinctly Russian matter along its border with one of its neighboring countries where we have no legitimate geopolitical reason to interfere.

Our confrontation with Russia over Ukraine is totally unnecessary and it is entirely precipitated by the European Union and by multinational oil companies. Did you know that Ukraine currently owes Russia over 2 billion dollars for oil and gas which they have received and already used, and that Russia has been continuing to ship supplies to them on credit? That is just how bad these pesky Russians are. This was the situation for quite some time until very recently when as a result of all of the political turmoil and international intrigue going on in Ukraine, the Russians finally decided to stop supplying them with any more gas on credit. The Russians actually have the nerve to expect to be paid for their oil and gas just like we do. So who in the heck do these Rusians really think they are? Did you know that we can't even get to our own International Space Station without Russian assistance?... And Barack Obama wants to impose even tougher sanctions against them? Why is he antagonizing Russia this way?

In my opinion we should mind our own darn business or we should expect to find the Ruskies coming over here and meddling around in our hemisphere and in our own backyard and interfering in important relationships that we have with our neighbors. Life is a two way street and things go both ways. American natural gas should not be used as a provocation to overthrow the President of another country. American domestic energy should be used here at home to fuel our own economy instead of being exported overseas to hurt the Russian economy or to maintain high prices here at home.

And for all you Republican chicken hawks who support the Obama Administration's policy of deliberately antagonizing Russia, I would remind you that Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachov buried the hatchet a long time ago and agreed that our two countries would never threaten each other again. The Russians view our interference in Ukraine and the fact that NATO weapons are being positioned all along their western border in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, and now in Ukraine in much the same way that we viewed Soviet missiles being placed in Cuba in 1963. Is that really so hard to understand? If America is just a big pussycat then we sure are one mixed up cat that is acting more like a Saber tooth Tiger half of the time. Why are we deliberately threatening Russia this way? Do we need to find another boogie man now that Saddam Hussein is gone and Muammar Gaddafy is gone and Al Qaeda is really not a threat to us anymore... Is that what we are doing with Vladimir Putin?... Are we turning him into another boogie man to line the pockets of our military industrial complex?

President Dwight Eisenhower's farewell address is ringing in my ear. He said, "Beware of the military industrial complex". Why are we squandering all of the good will that was built up with the Russians in the years since Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachov extended the olive branch? Is peace not nearly as lucrative as the threat of war? Why are so many Republicans in Congress okay with this policy of deliberately provoking Russia this way and squandering detante? America is not a British colony anymore. If the Brits want to take on the Russians let them do it by themselves. We are not a colony of any European power and our leaders should stop acting like we are. We have no beef with the Russians. Our government should also stop acting like it is the handmaiden of Big Business. The Europeans can take care of themselves without our help and so can the multinational oil companies. So let them both start doing it instead of trying to provoke World War III.

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"The truth, the political truth, and nothing but the political truth.
A journalist has no better friend than the truth."
- Scott Rohter

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Selected Reading
Don't Crimea River Over Ukraine - A Referendum in the Former Soviet Republic Strongly Favors
Re-unification with Russia

Beating a Dead Crimean Horse into a Ukrainian Trojan Horse just Meant for the Kremlin.
The Amazing Hypocrisy of the Democratic Party
Podcast interview on Ukraine with Mark Goodwin at
The World's Biggest Bullies are Vying for Influence in Ukraine over Access to European Energy Market