As the nation, and indeed the world, celebrates the victory in Standing Rock over the Dakota Access Pipeline, thanks to the Army Corps of Engineers denying the pipeline easement, the reality of the incestuous relationship between U.S. government and the corporate robber-barons is already setting in. It appears, as usual, the long fought-for victory is as hollow as a Trojan horse, as indicated by a Dec. 4 statement issued by Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners following DAPL’s “defeat.”

In their joint statement, Energy Transfer And Sunoco Logistics Partners call the recent blow from the Army Corps of Engineers a “purely political action—which the Administration concedes when it states it has made a ‘policy decision’—Washington code for a political decision.”As far as these Big Oil companies are concerned, “This is nothing new from this Administration, since over the last four months the Administration has demonstrated by its actions and inaction that it intended to delay a decision in this matter until President Obama is out of office.” That’s one statement from these malicious companies that actually rings true. Unfortunately for the rest of us, the incoming president is said to have financial ties to the Dakota Access Pipeline, so Obama kicking the can down the road to avoid involvement in such a contentious predicament really gathers together the letters needed to spell “d-i-s-a-s-t-e-r” for Standing Rock, and the thousands upon thousands who live downriver from the proposed crossing point of the pipeline across the Missouri River. This is not to throw mud on the just decision by the Army Corps of Engineers and the Obama Administration for finally getting off their duffs and doing the right thing, but the reality of the intentions of Energy Transfer and Sunoco Logistics means that decision won’t amount to a hill of beans on a free-range goat farm, nor will it likely result in the quasi-military presence out there turning around and protecting the land and water protectors from private security as they fight to stop Energy Transfer and Sunoco Logistics from illegally continuing the completion of the pipeline through Indigenous land, and right across the great Missouri.

The joint statement from Energy Transfer and Sunoco reads, in part:

“For more than three years now, Dakota Access Pipeline has done nothing but play by the rules. The Army Corps of Engineers agrees, and has said so publicly and in federal court filings. The Corps’ review process and its decisions have been ratified by two federal courts. The Army Corps confirmed this again today when it stated its ‘policy decision’ does ‘not alter the Army’s position that the Corps’ prior reviews and actions have comported with legal requirements.’

In spite of consistently stating at every turn that the permit for the crossing of the Missouri River at Lake Oahe granted in July 2016, comported with all legal requirements, including the use of an environmental assessment, rather than an environmental impact statement, the Army Corps now seeks to engage in additional review and analysis of alternative locations for the pipeline.

The White House’s directive today to the Corps for further delay is just the latest in a series of overt and transparent political actions by an administration which has abandoned the rule of law in favor of currying favor with a narrow and extreme political constituency.”

Apparently, the worldwide effort to stop the Dakota Access pipeline is considered a “narrow and extreme political constituency,” which is perhaps the heaviest load of horseshit projection ever stated. What could be more narrow than the agenda and driving force behind these companies’ actions, and how much more extreme can you get than the deplorable footage the world has witnessed coming out of Standing Rock? It just goes to show that money can’t buy you logic, but unfortunately, it can buy you enough clout to ignore the law and do whatever you like just so long as you pay the fees. But, what good are fines against such monstrous, wealthy companies if the fines are not enough to be the deterrent they are designed to be? Clearly, these fines need to be astronomically raised.

Cutting to the chase, if you believe Standing Rock has won the war and DAPL is no more, allow Energy Transfer and Sunoco to dispel the confusion for you, themselves:

“As stated all along, ETP and SXL are fully committed to ensuring that this vital project is brought to completion and fully expect to complete construction of the pipeline without any additional rerouting in and around Lake Oahe. Nothing this Administration has done today changes that in any way.”

Considering how long Obama dragged his feet on this issue in the face of clear human rights violations, what hope can be had that this recent “victory” is anything more than another kicking of the can down the road in order to drop this mess into President-elect Donald Trump’s lap? What hope do we have that the Obama Administration will now insist that all that riot-clad law enforcement sporting military equipment will follow the law and turn around to defend the people, the land and the water from the illegal actions of a corporation hell-bent on having its way? What hope do we have that if those companies succeed in paying off the law and completing the Dakota Access Pipeline illegally that it would then be promptly removed? After all, if any common citizen were to build illegally, even on his or her own property, he or she would be forced to tear it down.

The answer to the above is none. This is yet another means by which our government bends over to yield to corporate interests. Don’t let the jargon and strategic maneuvering fool you. If the cops won’t protect water protectors now that the pipeline will move forward illegally, and the Obama Administration will not do anything to forcibly prevent the unlawful moving forward of the completion of the pipeline, it’s all illusion simply to diffuse the movement in order to trail-blaze a clear path for a pre-designed goal—installing the Dakota Access Pipeline to completion. It’s no different than doing nothing and continuing to pass the buck to Donald Trump, whose conflict of interest in the matter does not bode well for those of us fighting with our very lives to maintain the integrity of the land and water for life itself.

This is how the incestuous relationship between U.S. government and its corporate owners  work together to pull the people into their dirty, oil-slicked ménage à trois, even as a vast majority of the country demands their castration. Keep standing, Standing Rock—this fight is not over by a long shot.

You can read the joint statement by Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics Partners, here.

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