Well played, Gov. Romney.
This is what happens when government picks winners and losers from the private sector. Actually, with B.O.’s track record, has he even picked any actual winners?
Beacon Power, a Massachusetts-based company that won praise from renewable power activists and loan guarantees from the federal government, has filed for bankruptcy, potentially leaving taxpayers on the hook for $43 million.
The company, which promised to build storage devices for intermittent power produced by wind and solar power facilities, was never able to attract investors. Coming on the heels of the Solyndra bankruptcy and ensuing scandal, the Beacon Power bankruptcy has a growing number of people calling for an end to federal loan guarantees for risky alternative energy start-ups.
No word yet on whether or not there were any political connections involved in this one, or if this was just another in a long list of stunning and expensive failures of the administration.
Despite many in the MSM’s attempts to wish the scandal away, a number of media outlets are engaging in random acts of journalism.
Today, the House will engage the hopelessly corrupt administration’s Energy Dept. head, Stephen Chu, about why the taxpayers are on the hook for a half a billion when the signs were there that this was a money pit.
Energy Secretary Steven Chu is prepared to say he made the final decisions on a half-billion-dollar loan to a California solar company that later went bankrupt, essentially taking responsibility for a debacle that has embarrassed the Obama administration.
Chu, in testimony prepared for delivery Thursday to a House committee, claimed he made all decisions on Solyndra Inc. with the best interests of the taxpayer in mind.
“I want to be clear: Over the course of Solyndra’s loan guarantee, I did not make any decision based on political considerations,” Chu said in testimony prepared for the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Yeah, where would you get the crazy idea that there were any “political considerations” involved? Oh, I dunno…
The Obama administration, which gave the solar company Solyndra a half-billion-dollar loan to help create jobs, asked the company to delay announcing it would lay off workers until after the hotly contested November 2010 midterm elections that imperiled Democratic control of Congress, newly released e-mails show.
The announcement could have been politically damaging because President Obama and others in the administration had held up Solyndra as a poster child of its clean-energy initiative, saying the company’s new factory, built with the help of stimulus money, could create 1,000 jobs. Six months before the midterm elections, Obama visited Solyndra’s California plant to praise its success, even though outside auditors had questioned whether the operation might collapse in debt.
As the contentious 2010 elections approached, Solyndra found itself foundering, and it warned the Energy Department that it would need an emergency cash infusion. A Solyndra investment adviser wrote in an Oct. 30, 2010, e-mail — without explaining the reason — that Energy Department officials were pushing “very hard” to delay making the layoffs public until the day after the elections.
The announcement ultimately was made on Nov. 3, 2010 — immediately following the Nov. 2 vote.
Yeah, well, I’m just some wingnut who always reads political motives into every Chicagoland thug politician’s decisions! I mean, no one else thinks there were any “political considerations” involved, right? Yeah, right:
In the two years preceding its collapse, Solyndra and its biggest investor aggressively asserted themselves in dealings with the Obama administration, pushing Energy Secretary Steven Chu to visit the company’s headquarters to help it raise private money and later suggesting it would file for bankruptcy if the Energy Department rejected its proposed rescue plan.
Executives associated with the California solar panel company also privately described Energy Department officials as more concerned with appearances than with sound business decisions. (Considering the Marxists in this administration have never run so much as a hot dog stand, how in the Sam Hill would they know a sound business decision if it bit them in their leftist backsides? – CL)
“The DOE really thinks politically before it thinks economically,” a Solyndra board member wrote in December to George Kaiser, an Obama fundraiser whose family funds owned a third of the company.
At another point, an investment adviser to Kaiser wrote in an e-mail: “DOE is willing to accommodate Solyndra . . . but they appear to be concerned about ‘looking bad.’ ”
So even Solyndra knew that this regime placed politics and appearance before practicality and propriety.
Let’s face it: this was another boneheaded AND corrupt example of crony capitalism by the administration. There isn’t a single honest official in this administration, and it starts at the top. The sooner we repeal Obama in November of 2012, the sooner this nation can begin to heal from the deep wounds he has intentionally inflicted on a country he regards so very little.
Boy, that Mika Brewsizinskydinkydo (or whatever the heck her name is) sure is a buzzkill on MSDNC, no? From Newsbusters (video clip at link):
Ever been watching Morning Joe, and wished you could stop the steady stream of liberal blather? Simple. Say the magic word—Solyndra—and watch the gabby guests fall suddenly silent.Today’s show offered a prime example of the phenomenon. For the first ten minutes, the panel had a great old time cackling and crowing on the theme that the Republican presidential field is a mass of morons. They laughed at the mere mention of Herman Cain, likened the GOP field to a vaudeville show, dragged out the shopworn “bar in Star Wars” simile, and called the Republican candidates “jokes,” “clowns” and “stupid.” But then, 13 minutes in, Mika Brzezinski mentioned a story reporting that the Obama admin had suppressed the announcement of layoffs at Solyndra until after the 2010 elections. Despite Mika looking around the table at her guests as she wondered out loud “why this story hasn’t picked up more,” there wasn’t a peep out of the quickly clammed-up crew and Brezinski breezed on to another topic.
Nope…no liberal media bias!
Yeah…”a good bet”:
More: One of Solyndra’s own investors said “One of our solar companies with revenues of less than $100 million (and not yet profitable) received a government loan of $580 million,” the investor, Brad Jones, an executive at Redpoint Ventures, wrote in December 2009 to Lawrence H. Summers, then the president’s chief economic advisor, referring to Solyndra. “While that is good for us, I can’t imagine it’s a good way for the government to use taxpayer money.”
More: Like Solyndra, more taxpayer-funding of untenable “green technology” companies that are unable to make it on their own yields expected fruit. About $200 million funded a company that…lost 110 jobs. Once again, this is what happens when government picks the winners and losers in a free market system.
Learns nothing, that is. Here we go again:
The Energy Department on Wednesday approved two loan guarantees worth more than $1 billion for solar energy projects in Nevada and Arizona, two days before the expiration date of a program that has become a rallying cry for Republican critics of the Obama administration’s green energy program.
Energy Secretary Steven Chu said the department has completed a $737 million loan guarantee to Tonopah Solar Energy for a 110 megawatt solar tower on federal land near Tonopah, Nev., and a $337 million guarantee for Mesquite Solar 1 to develop a 150 megawatt solar plant near Phoenix.
The loans were approved under the same program that paid for a $528 million loan to Solyndra Inc., a California solar panel maker that went bankrupt after receiving the money and laid off 1,100 workers. Solyndra is under investigation by the FBI and is the focal point of House hearings on the program.
Corruption. Incompetence. Crony capitalism. 2012 can’t get here soon enough.
UPDATE (09/29/2011 – 11:00 AM EST): As Kanaka Girl points out in the comments, the aforementioned Tonopah Solar Energy company getting $737 million in our money to fund 45 jobs (a bargain at $16.3+ million per job) has connections with Nancy Pelosi’s brother-in-law. Details here. Yep, Ron Pelosi is executive director of Pacific Corporate Group, an “investment partner” with Tonopah’s parent company SolarReserve. But hey, I’m sure this is just another big ol’ coinkidink and not a case of the crony capitalism we’ve come to expect from the Chicagoland Thug-in-Chief.
I’m sure this is a big coinkidink:
Out of the hundreds of out-of-work employees, vendors, investors and other creditors in the bankruptcy of government-backed solar-panel maker Solyndra LLC, one name stands out: the California Democratic Party.
Why California Democrats would be creditor to a company that received more than a half-billion dollars in federal loans to build a solar-panel plant isn’t clear. Even party officials say they’re not sure.
The California Democratic Party’s communications director, Tenoch Flores, said the organization was not owed “any funds in any form” by the California-based company. He said he was unclear why the party would be listed as a creditor in Solyndra’s bankruptcy filing.
Under a policy first issued by the White House in 2009, federal agencies were required to disclose lobbying for stimulus funds. McBee Strategic Consulting, a lobby firm then under contract with Solyndra, said it had contacted the Energy Department in the first and third quarters of 2009 regarding the Recovery Act, according to records filed under the Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA).
Yet a review by The Hill of the more than 40 lobbyist contact disclosure forms regarding the stimulus posted online by the Energy Department reveals no contact between the department and Solyndra’s lobbyists.
The only capitalism that the Economic Illiterate in Chief and his party’s mouth-breathing retards understand is crony capitalism. And he’s not any good at that, either.
Once again, Chicagoland thugonomics on full display.
Obama administration pressured not one, but TWO, witnesses to alter testimony regarding donor’s company
The four-star Air Force general who oversees U.S. Space Command walked into a highly secured room on Capitol Hill a week ago to give a classified briefing to lawmakers and staff, and dropped a surprise. Pressed by members, Gen. William Shelton said the White House tried to pressure him to change his testimony to make it more favorable to a company tied to a large Democratic donor.
The episode—confirmed by The Daily Beast in interviews with administration officials and the chairman of a congressional oversight committee—is the latest in a string of incidents that have given Republicans sudden fodder for questions about whether the Obama administration is politically interfering in routine government matters that affect donors or fundraisers. Already, the FBI and a House committee are investigating a federal loan guarantee to a now failed solar firm called Solyndra that is tied to a large Obama fundraiser.
Now the Pentagon has been raising concerns about a new wireless project by a satellite broadband company in Virginia called LightSquared, whose majority owner is an investment fund run by Democratic donor Philip Falcone. Gen. Shelton was originally scheduled to testify Aug. 3 to a House committee that the project would interfere with the military’s sensitive Global Positioning Satellite capabilities, which control automated driving directions and missile targeting, among other things.
Philip Falcone, the billionaire political donor whose hedge fund owns a majority financial stake in the satellite-wireless company LightSquared, says he told anyone in the federal government willing to listen that testing his company’s signal for GPS interference on commercial and military equipment “should not take that long.”
“Everything is already set up, the labs are set up. All we need are the list of devices that need to be tested. We have been telling the people who are asking for the testing of this for months now,” he said in an interview Monday.
Not all the bureaucrats who deal with GPS for the military and the federal government agreed. Still, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget urged federal officials testifying before two House oversight hearings in the last month to say they hoped testing for GPS and LightSquared interference would take only 90 days, according to interviews.
The Daily Beast obtained the paragraph the OMB asked government witnesses to insert into their recent congressional testimony, which says in part, “We hope that testing can be complete within 90 days.”
How many more examples of this kind of typical Chicagoland corruption will be emerging in the coming weeks? Looks like the corruption inherent in the Solyndra debacle was not an isolated incident.
I’ll shoot straight with you, folks: I haven’t been following the Solyndra scandal all that closely. But I am now.
The White House faced mounting political complications as a second top fundraiser for President Obama was linked to a federal loan guarantee program that backed a now-bankrupt Silicon Valley solar energy company, and as two California lawmakers called for investigations of a state tax break granted to the firm.
Steve Spinner, who helped monitor the Energy Department’s issuance of $25 billion in government loan guarantees to renewable energy projects, was one of Obama’s top fundraisers in 2008 and is raising money for the president’s 2012 reelection campaign.
Spinner did not have any role in the selection of applicants for the loan program and, in fact, was recused from the decision to grant a $535-million loan guarantee to Solyndra Inc. because his wife’s law firm represented the company, administration officials said Friday.
But Spinner’s role as a top official in the Energy Department program, which had not been previously revealed, is likely to spur new inquiries into whether political influence played a role in the handling of the “green” energy fund. Solyndra faces a congressional probe, a criminal investigation and separate internal inquiries at the Energy and Treasury departments.
As Ace notes, Spinner “recused himself from formally making the decision, they say, but he may not have recused himself from influencing the decision”.
In the beginning, all I knew about Solyndra was that B.O. touted them as model of efficiency in developing clean energy, only to watch them go belly-up and take half a billion of our tax dollars with them. That was irritating enough. But now to see that the administration was warned to NOT subsidize the company and proceeded anyway, only to discover that B.O.’s fundraisers were linked to the loan program? The corruption inherent in Chicagoland politics is on full display in the White House, and with the economy (and his poll numbers) in the crapper, this is the last thing that Chairman Zero needs to have happen right now.
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