Why the Trump administration will have a lot of energy to it

If you have been wondering how, from a practical standpoint, Donald Trump plans to fulfill his pledge to “make America great again,” his cabinet selections couldn’t convey it any more clearly. It’s energy, energy, energy.

Secretary of state? The CEO of Exxon Mobil.

Secretary of energy? The ex-governor of the nation’s leading energy-producing state (Texas).

Secretary of commerce? A longtime investor in steel and coal companies (among other industries).

Head of the EPA? The attorney general of another energy-rich state (Oklahoma).

Trump South Carolina

The U.S. has the world’s largest oil reserves. But that statistic is only meaningful if techniques such as fracking can be used to reach them; otherwise, we fall a few spots — and many billions of barrels — down the list. Democratic opinion has been split on the issue but trending away from support for fracking. Republicans have had no such reservations, and now Trump seems poised to supercharge the energy boom that was responsible for a disproportionate share of job growth in the first years of the recovery.

There are already signs that left-wing activists want to turn the Trump cabinet confirmation hearings into a debate about climate change, starting with State nominee Rex Tillerson. If Democrats’ goal is to sink an actual nominee or two, rather than simply placating some of their political allies, they couldn’t be more wrong about how to do it — or why it’s Trump, rather than Hillary Clinton, who’s forming a cabinet in the first place.

I recommend this piece from last week by National Journal’s Josh Kraushaar on why environmental issues may have helped undermine Clinton’s candidacy. The gist is here:

“(T)he most glar­ing prob­lem for the Demo­crat­ic Party is an un­will­ing­ness to even en­ter­tain the pos­sib­il­ity that its policy agenda had any­thing to do with its stun­ning de­feat. Even Re­pub­lic­ans, thanks to their na­tion­al com­mit­tee’s ‘autopsy re­port’ in the af­ter­math of Mitt Rom­ney’s loss, con­cluded that the party had to take a more mod­er­ate stance on im­mig­ra­tion to win fu­ture elec­tions. Demo­crats have done no sim­il­ar soul-search­ing.

“Let me of­fer a piece of un­so­li­cited ad­vice, one that Demo­crat­ic strategists have dis­cussed privately but are reti­cent to pro­mote pub­licly for fear of ali­en­at­ing green act­iv­ists. Tak­ing a more mod­er­ate stand on en­ergy policy — wheth­er it’s sup­port­ing the Key­stone XL pipeline, cham­pi­on­ing the frack­ing boom that’s trans­form­ing re­gion­al eco­nom­ies, or simply sound­ing a more skep­tic­al note on the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s lit­any of en­vir­on­ment­al reg­u­la­tions — would do won­ders for the Demo­crat­ic Party’s abil­ity to com­pete for the work­ing-class voters who have drif­ted away from the party.

“If the GOP gains in the Mid­w­est were an an­om­aly, per­haps Demo­crats could af­ford to cater to their en­vir­on­ment­al base. But this wasn’t the first time that Demo­crats lost sig­ni­fic­ant ground in the re­gion. In 2010, they lost a whop­ping 63 seats in the House in part be­cause of failed cap-and-trade le­gis­la­tion; over one-third of the seats they lost were in the Mid­w­est. Re­pub­lic­ans am­ped up their at­tacks on Obama’s en­vir­on­ment­al policies dur­ing the 2014 midterms — air­ing more than 26,000 spots cit­ing the En­vir­on­ment­al Pro­tec­tion Agency — and swept nearly every com­pet­it­ive Sen­ate race on their way to the ma­jor­ity.

“Take the Key­stone XL pipeline as a stand-in for voter sen­ti­ment on the bal­ance between pro­tect­ing the en­vir­on­ment and pro­du­cing jobs. A March 2014 Pew Re­search Cen­ter poll, con­duc­ted dur­ing the Key­stone de­bate, found that a 49 per­cent plur­al­ity of Demo­crats sup­por­ted build­ing the pipeline — even though the pres­id­ent and top party lead­ers op­posed it. Among work­ing-class Demo­crats (those who made less than $50,000 a year), sup­port for the Key­stone pro­ject out­dis­tanced op­pos­i­tion by a whop­ping 22 points (54 to 32). When your party’s own voters are at odds with its elite, it’s a re­cipe for dis­aster. Don­ald Trump’s Mid­west­ern sweep was the cul­min­a­tion of these long-stand­ing trends.”

This is easier said than done. Who was the No. 1 donor in the 2016 cycle? Environmental activist Tom Steyer, whose $67.5 million was more than 17 times the amount given by the oh-so-nefarious Charles Koch (whose brother, David, didn’t crack the top 100 list). What are the chances Democrats walk away from his money and influence? Not great. There is very likely to be a tea party-esque schism among Democrats very soon now that they will be totally without power come January, just as the GOP was in 2009. Environmental issues could be the fault line along which the party fractures.

In the meantime, Trump and his cabinet will be making it easier for oil and gas firms to tap into those reserves, creating a lot of jobs in the process. As the stats listed by Kraushaar indicate, those moves will be popular beyond the GOP base. They could also have the knock-on effects of 1) making energy cheaper so that U.S. manufacturing becomes more competitive without renegotiating a single trade deal, and 2) fueling higher tax revenues to pay for the infrastructure spending Trump has repeatedly touted.

Combine the latter with corporate tax reform that includes a special rate on repatriated funds — something I expect Trump to try in his first few months, since it’s his best bet for an early, bipartisan policy win — and we could be looking at tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars in fresh revenues. Plopping them all into an infrastructure bonanza wouldn’t be the most economically efficient or useful act, as President Obama learned the hard way (just Google “stimulus shovel ready projects”). But a smart deployment of new revenues to projects with strict, measurable criteria could make sense and put more blue-collar Americans to work. Not to mention the private-sector boom that would come from simply bringing $1 trillion or more off the sidelines and injecting it into the economy.

This isn’t your father’s Republican policy agenda (for that, look to what Congress produces on taxes, entitlements and health care) but it is the kind of program that could give a temporary jolt to the U.S. economy while wrong-footing Democrats. It’s very likely the method behind what liberals will try to brand as madness.

Reader Comments 0

98 comments
Eye wonder
Eye wonder

Kyle - Any chance you could erase IReportYouWhine / Andy from the discussion? Or do you work for him?

NativeAtlantan57
NativeAtlantan57

Perhaps the most famous Atlantan, Martin Luther King Jr., once stated that we should judge a person not based on the color of their skin but on the content of their character.

That is a wise sentiment that would truly make the world a better place.

I can overlook Donnie Boy Trump's frighteningly bizarre orange complexion. No problem. 

But character? That's a totally different story. This man has proven over a lifetime that he is mostly a hollow and soul-less sociopath. That was very easy to judge for the majority of us.

(This is not a message from the NAACP but from a white male in his 50s.) 

Astropig
Astropig

@NativeAtlantan57


Fair enough,BUT...


We didn't exactly have a choice between Trump and some other reasonable alternative.Trump beat my guy in the primaries fair and square and the choice that I was left in the general election with was Bad and Worse.Just about everybody else had to wrestle with the same dilemma.A few more chose Bad in states where it mattered.


I voted for the guy but am reserving judgement on him until I see his body of work.He could be pretty good or he could be a dud.Who knows?


I will say this-We all owe him a great debt of gratitude for toppling two smug political dynasties and finally making the insiders in the capitol feel some real fear of losing their jobs for non-performance.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Ex-Brit-ish ambas-sador who is now a Wiki-Leaks ope-rative claims Rus-sia did NOT provide Clinton emails - they were handed over to him at a D.C. park by an int-ermediary for 'disg-usted' Demo-cratic whistle-blowers. The lea-kers' mot-ivation was 'disg-ust at the corru-ption of the Clinton Foundation and the 'tilting of the pri-mary election playing field against Bernie Sanders'



Seems a lot more plausible to me

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

If only leftists could power their automobiles with their post-election tears...

But no, they're still filling up with dirty oil or hooking them up to coal and natural gas-fired generating plants.

Despite being the party of science, most of them don't even know the devices they write their silly blog posts on required lots of oil to manufacture.

Hypocrites.

breckenridge
breckenridge

Dec 14 - Two senior officials with direct access to the information say new intelligence shows that Putin personally directed how hacked material from Democrats was leaked and otherwise used. The intelligence came from diplomatic sources and spies working for U.S. allies, the officials said.

Putin’s objectives were multifaceted, a high-level intelligence source told NBC News. What began as a “vendetta” against Hillary Clinton morphed into an effort to show corruption in American politics and to “split off key American allies by creating the image that [other countries] couldn’t depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore,” the official said.

Of course that won't stop Trump from licking Putin's boots.

Lil_Barry_Bailout
Lil_Barry_Bailout

Democrats will be slightly less interested in Russian fake news and Podesta's emails being leaked after Tuesday.

Caius
Caius

Word from the industry is that Sec of State nominee Tillerson considers Russia the USA's number enemy on the planet.  Yet Trump nominated him.  Curious. What are Trump's true feelings on Russia?


Dimick
Dimick

@Caius No sane American thinks of Russian as our friend. However the press and probably most in Congress are not focused on China, although they have hacked the US every bit as much as Russia. China even has the top secret details on the F-35 and the personal data of millions of Americans.    

Trump made a wise move in answering the phone call from Taiwan, to brush China back.  


Trump knows Russia is no friend to the US and he knows how to deal with bullies like Vladimir Putin. Trump will draw no lines red lines in sand

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

The nation's new führer believes 🇷🇺 is our friend. Therefore, the nation's new führer is not a sane 🇺🇸. But then we already knew that.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

So the CIA turned down the "invitation" from the House Permanent Committee on Intelligence, their bosses, to disclose their sources for the Russian hack and influence of the election?


Oh, my.


What a tangled web they have woven.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Best line of the night-


Dennis Miller on the O'Reilly Factor; If Trump can turn Ray Lewis, Jim Brown and Kanye West it's nuclear winter for the democrats.


I thought I was gonna start crying.

Dimick
Dimick

@AndyManUSA#45  Look at what the Democrats lost to date:


The White House 

The Senate 

The House 


The governorships in 33 states to the 18 retained by the party out of power.


Any wonder why the left is unhinged?

Not IMHO


Last but not least one seat on the supreme court and likely they will lose two more seats over the course of the Trump Presidency, for a total pick up of three seat for the right. 


Ray Lewis, Jim Brown and Kanye West had no where else to turn than Trump for relief. Their communities are collapsing around them with the murder rate in Obama's Chicago and other inner-cities as bad as the ISIS killings in Syria.

Blacks where likely the most forgotten part of all America: dirty water in Flint, lack of jobs and opportunity in Detroit, no escape from failing schools in Georgia, to the unmentioned neighborhoods across our land rife with drugs and crime etc.        

The Democrats are political dustbin material.  


AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

 This brings us to another problem with shrieking, “Hillary won the popular vote!” Look around the country. Just how popular are Democrats these days? Not very. Thirty-three states now have Republican governors. Republicans have control of the Senate. A third of the Democratic congressional delegation comes from just three states—California, Massachussetts, and New York. Here’s what the House of Representatives map looks like, and does this look like a national party to you?

View image on Twitter
 FollowDavid Freddoso @freddos

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Kyle - Any chance you could erase breckinridge from the discussion? Or do you work for him?

breckenridge
breckenridge

@AndyManUSA#45 

You're problem is you lack the intelligence to make a cogent argument. You're nothing but stale and empty talking points.


Unfortunately for you, this forum is not a Fox News echo chamber.

Dimick
Dimick

I'm very glad that Mr. Trump is standing firm against the PC liberal Christophobia in America, we can say God Bless and Merry Christmas with no reprisal from the courts. 

Boycott as best we can any retailer stores that scorns the greeting of Merry Christmas  and any of their employees for saying to you as you leave have a blessed day. 

It is a crying shame in a nation where the majority of the people identify with Christianity face the bigots of our faith while they hypocritically protect Radicalized Islam.

Thank You Mr. Trump  

breckenridge
breckenridge

@Dimick 

Just 68% of Americans are Christians, compared with 78% 10 years ago.  The 1% annual decline is expected to continue for the foreseeable future.

It's primarily the millennial generation that has turned away from Christianity and all other religions.  Ironically, many of them grew up confusing social conservatism (the scum filth religious right) with actual Christianity, ergo their distaste for Christianity.


But by all means go around shooting your mouth off if gives you a woody.

stogiefogey
stogiefogey

One of the bigger challenges the Dems face is the effect the passage of time - the next four to eight years - will have on their core constituencies.

As millennials move out of mom 'n dad's basement and mature into responsible, tax paying citizens and as more immigrants assimilate into American society they'll migrate away from the left's screwball ideologies.

Dimick
Dimick

@stogiefogey Lets see, the Dems have lost the White House, the Senate the House and the lion's share of the Governorships in this country with a 31 to 18  advantage. It appears the shift has already happened,


The Democrats as a Party is well on their way to the dust bin of the body politic. 


Easy to understand why the Dems are completely freaking out they are in  the death throes of desperation.

breckenridge
breckenridge

It sure is a sad day when these pathetic punk apologists ("Russia isn't really that bad!") start putting politics above the welfare of the country. If you encounter one of them on the street, the best thing to do is spit on the curb derisively near their feet.

Dimick
Dimick

@breckenridge Punk apologist is what Obama is. I love the the fact President elect Trump is not going around the world kissing every tyrant buttock he can trashing America to the Puntins' of the world while they are laughing at him in scorn for the weak man he is and as they think we can play this idiot for the fool he is and is making of America and the American people.

I'm with Trump with his intent to follow the Reagan doctrine;

Peace through Strength, Trust but Verify and his standing up to China's aggression in Asian.  

MarkVV
MarkVV

Kyle is right – Democrats would do better in elections if they changed policies. As the recent elections have shown, opportunism and demagoguery beats principles and truth,

The American voters have elected - in the undemocratic process of the electoral college - a candidate who (in Kyle’s words) “lies because the truth is not just inconvenient to him, but meaningless and even irrelevant.” Many of those voting for him overlooked his lies and immorality, because he told them what they wanted to hear, such as blaming the immigrants and Muslims, or promising them to bring back the job they have lost, switching to new trade policies, even though, (again in Kyle’s words),”the evidence shows U.S. manufacturing jobs have mostly declined because of technology and automation, not trade or off-shoring.”

For those voters, it is even far less important whether climate change will endanger the existence of future generations – just drill, baby, drill, mine coal, frack, build pipelines – it will provide some jobs that need less skill than a technologically more advanced utilization of renewable resources – and huge profits for the fossil fuels industry. Trump’s cabinets will be ideal for that purpose.

Yes, the Democrats are naïve if they believe that they can win elections by sticking to what is right rather than expedient.

Dimick
Dimick

@MarkVV 

America is not a darn Democracy and Republics such  as this one does not elect our President by a popular vote, make your peace with that or move to socialist Denmark to have your SOCIALIST Democracy.  . 

Dimick
Dimick

@MarkVV  What have you got to replace America's dependence on our carbon based economy RIGHT NOW not fifty years down the road? 

Nothing is all you have and the rest of the world as well has. China , India and Russia are not going to change just by signing a scrape of paper  that says they will do a certain thing the global science community wants and they damn sure won't pay any  caps and trade taxes or play the carbon swaps game to pacify Al Gore. 

Rant on Mark Van Jones.

MarkVV
MarkVV

@Dimick @MarkVV Look, dummy, I have every right as American citizen to express my opinion about our electoral system. Stupid, ignorant people like you throw the label “socialism” without even understanding what it means. We are democracy as well as a Republic. There are many other Republics in the world, none of them with the undemocratic, discriminatory system of electing the President like our Electoral college.

MarkVV
MarkVV

@Dimick @MarkVV I have not suggested that we should replace carbon based economy RIGHT NOW, can't you read?

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

The best way to secure prosperity for the country is to start, as Trump has, forcing honest dialog on policy issues. 


MSM/Democrat labels like "Environmental issues/policy" almost always misrepresent the underlying political and economic objectives of the policy drivers. I do not believe, based on empirical evidence, Al Gore gives one whit about "Climate Change". Relative to Al Gore I am in reality a "climate change" all-star and I don't even believe his line of garbage. "Climate change" policy, to Al and the Democrats, is a Government-driven grant, contract, underwritten investment, back-scratching and skimming scheme, masked in a false narrative wrapper.


The Democrats cannot escape from the coalition of their fringe special interests. Their real core base is government and institutional workers, "idealistic" young people not fully integrated into the private sector, and groups seeking a tap into their redistribution programs.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Let's as-sume that the democrats have an honest autopsy of why they lost in 2016, instead of issuing a report tailored to what the chamber of commerce wanted to hear, like the Republicans did. Their first hurdle will be to un-loon themselves. The 2nd step would be to admit that they are completely out of touch with the heartland of America and have become the party of some seriously overpopulated coastal enclaves, with a few other societal hell holes scattered in between. That's where this exercise stops, getting them, as a party, to face reality. Ain't gonna happen.


Even if it did, who believes they would act on it?

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

@McGarnagle @AndyManUSA#45 With you until the very last sentence. Remains to be seen if the Republicans once again self-destruct somewhere down the road. If they don't I would expect the Dems will struggle.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@McGarnagle @AndyManUSA#45


Political parties will not change.


Are you kidding me? The Republican party is an entirely different ball game. They were never the party of the Heartland either. They were simply interested in keeping a fair share of the corruption in Washington DC, split evenly with the democrats.


Those days are ovah with.

Dimick
Dimick

@AndyManUSA#45 

You can't use Democrats and honest in the same sentence Lil' Man Andy.

Dimick
Dimick

@RoadScholar @AndyManUSA#45 @McGarnagle

The Republicans were never a populist Party after Lincoln until Trump won the Presidency. And the Courts will look more like Antinen Scalia  after eight years of Trump's time.   

McGarnagle
McGarnagle

@AndyManUSA#45


Political parties will not change. And thats on both sides. If you think about it, Trump is not a republican candidate. He was voted in because he does things his way. If Cruz, Rubio, or any other Republican candidate was nominated, they would NOT have broken through that "blue wall". 


Trump did not legitimize the republican political platform. In fact in some cases, he went against it. The future of the Republican party after Trump will be very interesting. The democrats will be alright.  

Dimick
Dimick

How many immigrants has Obama deported? :)!

McGarnagle
McGarnagle

@Dimick


You mean illegal immigrants. My understanding is that last few years Obama has deported more illegal immigrants. The news of our borders being flooded with illegal immigrants is what you would call "fake news". 

Dimick
Dimick

@McGarnagle @Dimick  correct on the first part.

Got proof on the fake news? Truth is no one knows if there is a flood or a trickle. No matter though what Trump is has been distorted. He wants to get rid of the illegal aliens who have committed a crime and have been ordered to leave the US, the dreams as they are called presents a difficult situation ( Trump took a softer tone on them) but as for the rest expect to see extreme vetting take place and greater internal enforcement of visa overstays. People voted for Trump because they want secure borders not open borders and to know not guess what  reason the people are coming to our country and what  intend to do if we accept them. 

We have every right to know who they are, why they came and what they intend to do while here and to see they leave when their visa runs out.    

lvg
lvg

Of course GOP will NOT hold hearings on  Michael Flynn,  who is going to  be Trump's  National  security adviser clearly violating federal security rules:


""""A secret U.S. military investigation in 2010 determined that Michael T. Flynn, the retired Army general tapped to serve as national security adviser in the Trump White House, “inappropriately shared” classified information with foreign military officers in Afghanistan, newly released documents show.

Although Flynn lacked authorization to share the classified material, he was not disciplined or reprimanded after the investigation concluded that he did not act “knowingly” and that “there was no actual or potential damage to national security as a result,” according to Army records obtained by The Washington Post under the Freedom of Information Act.""""""



https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trumps-national-security-adviser-shared-secrets-without-permission-files-show/2016/12/13/72669740-c146-11e6-9578-0054287507db_story.html?utm_term=.a0b6717b775b



This guy is more likely to have shared secrets with the Russians than Hillary ever did.




AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@lvg he did not act “knowingly” and that “there was no actual or potential damage to national security as a result,” according to Army records


It went right over your head, didn't it?