President Joe Biden has finally come forward with sanctions against Russia and Vladimir Putin for invading Ukraine. Don’t expect much. Thanks to Biden’s economically destructive climate-change policies, Putin holds a decisive advantage in this conflict.
“This aggression cannot go unanswered,” Biden said, speaking Thursday as he unveiled what he called “devastating” financial punishments. “If it did, the consequences for America would be much worse. America stands up to bullies. We stand up for freedom. This is who we are.”
During his campaigns and while in office, Biden has often posed as a tough guy against the Russians – even as his family pocketed millions from Russian and pro-Russian Ukrainian politicians, corruption virtually ignored by the American big media.
“Putin knows, if I am president of the United States,” Biden said in a 2019 fundraising video, “his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over.”
So far, mission not accomplished.
Then there’s this:
“Vladimir Putin doesn’t want me to be president. He doesn’t want me to be our nominee,” Biden tweeted on Feb. 21, 2020. “If you’re wondering why – it’s because I’m the only person in this field who’s ever gone toe-to-toe with him.”
Well, he’s now going “toe-to-toe” with Putin for real, and it doesn’t look so good. His sanctions, which may pinch Russia a bit but don’t go nearly far enough to reverse Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine, sound tough. Among them are restrictions on Russian financial institutions, bans on technology exports, and financial restrictions on some members of Putin’s government. But not Putin himself.
“Putin is the aggressor. Putin chose this war. And now he and his country will bear the consequences,” Biden said Thursday, outlining his actions, which, he predicted, would “impose severe costs on the Russian economy, both immediately and over time.”
In fact, Biden pulled his punches, leaving Russia’s economy still standing.
One sanction that would have really hurt would have been to remove Russia from the SWIFT global bank payment system, which much of the world depends on.
Both the United Kingdom and U.S. wanted to do just that. Unfortunately, our “ally” Germany – which depends on Russia for much of its energy, and thus has its own vulnerabilities to consider – vetoed the idea.
True, in response to Putin’s action, Germany suspended final approval of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline that will bring a steady flow of natural gas straight to the German industrial heartland. And Biden has done the same.
But does anyone believe that pipeline suspension will be permanent? In a word, no.
Meanwhile, as Putin’s grip tightens on Europe (which already gets a third of its energy from Russia), it’s clear that Biden’s been Putin’s patsy all along. His green patsy.
America’s president has made it easy for Putin by pursuing economically damaging climate-change initiatives that do little to curb carbon dioxide output but instead helped set off an upward spiral in energy prices.
The surge in energy costs has exacerbated already soaring inflation and made many working Americans suddenly much poorer, adding $1,000 to the average household’s costs last year.
Today, with natural gas prices climbing and oil approaching $100 a barrel, Biden’s energy policies couldn’t be more foolish. As everyone can now see, higher energy prices strengthen Putin and weaken us. Even China is kowtowing to Russia: It’s now in talks to buy 100 million metric tons of coal from Putin.
The best thing Biden now could do would be return to Trump’s energy-friendly policies.
Yet Biden shows no inclination at all to end the damaging green policies that push prices higher.
Last year, he approved Russia’s Nord Stream 2 energy pipeline that increased Europe’s energy dependency on Russia, while shutting down the badly needed Keystone XL Pipeline in the U.S., killing thousands of jobs and crimping U.S. energy supplies.
Recently, he also removed support for Greece’s EastMed pipeline, which would have sent Israeli natural gas to energy-hungry Europe. Again, benefiting Putin, not to mention Iran.
That was bad enough. Even more recently, Biden halted federal oil and gas leasing activity after a federal judge ruled his administration could no longer use bogus “social cost of carbon” analysis in its approval process. By challenging the ruling, Biden will drag out the drama in court, possibly for years.
The misplaced priorities don’t end there. Indeed, the Biden administration seems gripped by a kind of “green insanity” that is ruining our nation’s economy and damaging our relations with allies. And, while our military might not be ready to fight Russia or China, it at least recently unveiled its “climate change priorities.”
Former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, now Biden’s “climate czar,” had this to say about Russia’s brutal takeover of Ukraine: “I hope President Putin will help us with respect to what we need to do to stay on track with the climate.”
This administration has clearly gone off its green rails.
The U.S. was energy independent for the first time 63 years in 2020, thanks to former President Donald Trump’s moves to free up energy producers. It led to a domestic energy boom, the biggest in 40 years.
Last year, Biden’s first in office, we began importing oil again and this year we’ll import even more, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Last year marked another milestone: The U.S. imported more oil from Russia than ever in its history.
And Trump was in Putin’s pocket? Please. Biden’s insane climate-change policies bear the blame for this mayhem. They have impoverished Americans, and enriched a Russian tyrant. It’s time for this green insanity to end.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board