Jobs Are at Stake When Profits Are at Stake (Extra!)

Why oil pipelines are “job creators” but unemployment benefits aren’t. (Not yet online, either sign up for a cheap $15 one-year digital subscription or cool your heels for a month or so.)

When debate heated up in November over the Keystone XL pipeline–a 1,700-mile-long structure that would carry oil from Canada’s tar sands deposits to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast–reporters soon found themselves chasing the answer to a question: How many jobs would be lost if the pipeline didn’t happen?

Wall Street Journal senior editor Mary Anastasia O’Grady suggested on Fox News (10/28/11) that the pipeline would create “118,000 indirect jobs” from “feeding and housing all of these people who are gonna work on the pipeline,” a number that her Journal editorial board colleague Collin Levy repeated in a web item (11/7/11) accusing the Obama administration of “dithering” on the pipeline decision…