September 3, 2011

"Bush was flayed for Enron. Where does that put Obama and his green-energy pet?"

Rich Lowry on Solyndra.

Via Hot Air.
The White House insists it didn’t intervene with DOE on Solyndra’s behalf, but — go figure — the company’s key investor was a foundation headed by George Kaiser, a billionaire known for raising boatloads of money for Barack Obama.
Via Instapundit.

103 comments:

ndspinelli said...

Hold the presses..big scoop! There's a double standard!!! This is example 248,399.

pbAndjFellowRepublican said...

Parallel to Enron?

Naw. It won't work.

There's already a Boy George. So, "Georgey Boy" is a no go.


BTW, are Rs sure that the Enron stuff stuck to W?

TMink said...

If we had a functioning press, we would hear plenty about it as the situation would be investigated.

If I had gills I could swim underwater for long periods of time without surfacing.

I think the latter is a more likely development than the former.

Trey

J said...

Hardly to the level of the Enron fiasco.

Enron: another overlooked chapter in the legacy of Dick Cheney, Hero, and inveterate liar

Shouting Thomas said...

Yes, green energy, despite all the high sounding rhetoric, is the Democratic Party's mechanism for kickbacks and payoffs to campaign contributors.

Green energy doesn't work, not on a scale sufficient for an advanced economy. So, green industry must be deemed into existence by government fiat.

For the foreseeable future, fossil fuel is what we've got. Environmental tradeoffs are just reality. Oil, gas and coal are great products. Without them, Woodstock wouldn't even exist.

Green energy = political corruption.

The Enron analogy doesn't work for me, because Obama's corrupt green scam is far more wide ranging and systematic.

franglo said...

Shame on anyone for actually comparing these two companies. Enron went bankrupt because the people running it, including Bush's friend Ken Lay, were CROOKS. Enron committed massive fraud. Is that what anyone is saying about Solyndra?

Also, how was Bush 'flayed' for Enron? Is 'flayed' the same thing as, some liberals noted it in liberal publications? Because by that measure, Obama has been flayed, drawn and quartered in every conservative publication since before he took office.

The Drill SGT said...

The best para I have seen goes something like this:

"It costs them $6/unit to make each unit, they sell them for $3/unit. To be competitive, they'd need to sell for $1.50-2.00 / unit. This isn't a business plan"

sounds like that old B-school joke:

CFO stands up at the board meeting and says:

"bad news, is that we're losing money on every widget we sell. The good news is that we'll make it up with volume sales. Even better, we're making money on accounting practices."

both ENRON and Solyndra's business models were based on making money on accounting practices.

AllenS said...

Next time you get to view a Solyndra sign or logo, check out the "o" part of it, and tell me what you think of.

America's Politico said...

There is _No Way_ the Press will buy the GOP tactics to hurt the greatest POTUS since Lincoln. It will be snowing on 4th of July in Madison, WI, but no one will buy it. Even voters will laugh at this accusation.

Obama-Biden White House is the most ethical, most respectful, most honorable, and most humble. You all are just jealous.

The fact is that GOP has nothing honorable to show-case, thus it is going to be devastatingly defeated in Nov. 2012. You are about to be creamed, and you know a year in advance, what are you going to do?

A few suggestions: Leave the US. Go to another country. Become a French citizen. Travel to Mars. Form a new party. GOP_L (L for Loser).

Shouting Thomas said...

Enron committed massive fraud. Is that what anyone is saying about Solyndra?

Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying.

Solyndra was mandated into existence by federal fiat to pay off its CEO for his campaign donations to Obama.

Solyndra knew that it didn't have a marketable profitable product.

Solyndra, with the help of the Obama administration, defrauded the taxpayers.

I'm saying exactly that.

ricpic said...

Green Energy? Why not just call it Crony Energy and quit yer kiddin'.

ricpic said...

Hey AP, why the hard sell on this board of all places?

Tyrone Slothrop said...

The amount of money here is truly astonishing, and coupled with the lightning speed with which it was squandered, leads to the inescapable conclusion that this was a scam from beginning to end. Can you picture Eric Holder pursuing this past his office threshold? Me neither.

pbAndjFellowRepublican said...

"Why not just call it Crony Energy and quit yer kiddin'."

Ha ha.

Now the cons can recycle the libs quotes re the W admin and big oil/coal. And so earnestly, too.

Hilarious.

The Drill SGT said...

Two other comments,

1. I saw a report yesterday that Solyndra’s interest rate on the loans was half of what the other borrowers were paying from the Feds. That smells like dead fish.

2. The wife, Fede contracts lawyer, and I were talking about how the grant process from DOE wasn't like anything she ever saw. You don't announce grants before the eval is complete and the Source Selection Authority has selected, and legal has reviewed. This reeks.

PS: If DoD were sinking $500 million into a manufacturing contract, that warrants putting oversight from the Defense Contract Management ASgency onsite to protect the DoD interests.

Shouting Thomas said...

Place your bets!

I'll wager that Obama's centerpiece for his job creation speech will be more of that green jobs magic!

Tyrone Slothrop said...

franglo said...

Is that what anyone is saying about Solyndra?


Good point. You have highlighted the corruption of the main stream media, which refuse to publicize anything that might damage Obama, their creature.

edutcher said...

Gibson Guitar is GodZero's Enron.

Along with Gunrunner.

And Government Motors.

Tim said...

Next to the ponzi schemes of Social Security and Medicare, this Solyndra business is small beans.

But yes, the crony capitalism evidenced here is corrupt. The Dali-Obama will surely get a pass, as does Algore for his infinite carbon footprint, for all the all-to-obvious reasons...

AllenS said...

Everything that obama touches, turns to shit.

pbAndjFellowRepublican said...

Right on schedule, Mother Jones is trying to prop up this alt energy stuff.

Shouting Thomas said...

From the article pb&j cites:

But Solyndra’s failure, while unfortunate, is hardly an indictment of federal energy technology policy. Failure is to be expected with emerging, innovative companies, whether they are financed by the government or the private sector.

Yes, but when you're risking your own money, instead of ripping off the taxpayers, you tend to be a lot more reluctant about flushing that money down the drain.

John Smith said...

It will be proven that the Obama Administration intervened directly to help Obama's friend and his "green" company and the media and the Left will not care one bit.

FedkaTheConvict said...

Exactly. Apparently the plan was to prop up the company with taxpayer money, then flip it to Wall Street investors but the investment banks handling the deal realized that it was a bad business and backed out the deal making. Otherwise the public would have been screwed two ways.

The Drill SGT said...

Watch for the next wave of O'bama Crony Solar policy. The same Federal Teat sucking approach used by the Ethanol piggies. Now for Solar:

1. Mandate the use
2. subsidize production
3. enshrine in the tax code
4. forbid imports

Quayle said...

VC fund or PE companies aren't getting in so idiots in the government think it is a good time to get in?

What does the government know about green energy technology and ROI that the greedy VCs and PE guys don't know?

Nothing.

It shows the lie of the Democrat world view: they keep condemning the greed of the rich guys, but they apparently don't really believe the rich guys are greedy or the Dems would go more cautiously where the even the greedy dare not tread.

Or in other words, if, say, the Kochs are as evil and greedy as portrayed, wouldn't they be all over green investments if there were a return to be had?

Shouting Thomas said...

The New York Times' take on Solyndra: the federal subsidies should have been much larger.

EDH said...

Remember, a government created "carbon exchange" was the Holy Grail for Enron.

Calypso Facto said...

Wisconsin has it's very own Solyndra called ZBB Battery. It's a company that has never made a dime, but through wily self-promotion, the dirty battery company marketed itself as part of the green-energy chain and then hosted an Obama visit during a 2010 fundraising tour. Obama's visit sent the money-losing company's stocks up 30% because investors correctly ascertained that the President's visit meant large subsequent no-bid purchases by the DoD and a special handout contract with China during the 2010 Chinese trade negotiations in Washington.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Why the government shouldn't be picking winners and losers, right here.

Half a billion in loan guarantees thrown away for what is essentially wishful thinking.

We could have had a nuclear plant or two for that money.

edutcher said...

Shouting Thomas said...

The New York Times' take on Solyndra: the federal subsidies should have been much larger.

Once again, Amity Shlaes smiles.

WV "ovaride" What guys like to do several times a week.

Phil 3:14 said...

And we could have seen it coming

Coketown said...

This whole story just SCREAMS for the Glenn Beck blackboard treatment. "And where do they have lots of sunshine? KENYA!"

Gabriel Hanna said...

If the government wants to fund R&D, then the government needs to fund R&D, not give money companies that are in no position to deliver what they promise in the forseeable future without a whole slate of innovations that haven't happened yet.

Similarly we throw billions every year down the rathole of wind energy. Before Washington States' voters mandated wind energy, only 14% of their energy production was fossil fuels. Today it is 18%--wind power has only succeeded in displacing hydro power, which is needed to balance the wind energy on the grid. How does that make sense from the standpoint of carbon emissions? It doesn't.

geokstr said...

ndspinelli said...
Hold the presses..big scoop! There's a double standard!!! This is example 248,399.


This week.

Unexpectedly, up 3.74658% from last week.

Shouting Thomas said...

If the government wants to fund R&D, then the government needs to fund R&D, not give money companies that are in no position to deliver what they promise in the forseeable future without a whole slate of innovations that haven't happened yet.

An interesting point, but in need of a bit of re-interpretation.

Doesn't the term R&D indicate a degree of curiosity about what will actually work, both in terms of production and marketability?

In other words, it isn't R&D when you've already decided to deem your solution into existence, without regard to practical implementation.

Gabriel Hanna said...

I know it's off topic but wind energy angries up my blood. It's straight out of one of Bastiat's reductio ad absurdum parables.

It would make more sense to pay wind producers to build wind generators and throw them in a hole than it does to put that wind energy on the grid at the expense of hydro power. We'd avoid the grid management problems and the annual spring runoff/wind overproduction conflict that requires BPA to pay people to buy the wind energy.

roesch-voltaire said...

GH the government has been subsidizing nuclear energy through guaranteed loans for over fifty years, and recently the amount approved by Obama will reach 58.5 billion, and still we have little to show for it but nobody seems to complain about this waste because we have been told this produces cheap energy-- sure thing.

A. Shmendrik said...

Interesting factoid which has been omitted from most of the coverage on this is that of the $535M in loans offered, $527M was drawn. So this is a big fucking deal.

I worked in the electric utility industry as a researcher for a time, before practicing law. One thing I can say is that the progress made in energy production, distribution or even conservation is very slow and incremental. One should be rather skeptical of the kinds of alleged breakthroughs claimed by these folks. That applies triple to any claims coming from, or in any way dealing with Elon Musk. I see a steaming financial train wreck in his future and I bet significant taxpayers dollars will be toasted in that event as well.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Shouting Thomas:In other words, it isn't R&D when you've already decided to deem your solution into existence, without regard to practical implementation.

These words deserve to be inscribed on jade in letters of gold.

You want solar power to work? Pay for the R&D to get the basic technology up to speed. What the government did here is like trying to build an Internet in the 40s based on pneumatic tubes and mechanical computers.

Dad29 said...

Drill Sgt. has all the relevant facts in just two posts!

Kaiser appears to be a bubblehead liberal "thinker"; smart, 'can't we all get along?' 'we are the world' kinda sloganeer sorta guy.

He did put his money where his mouth is, heavy duty philanthropist, but common sense-deprived.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Or it's like the Pony Express? Remember that? Great accomplishment, pushed the boundaries of what was possible with contemporary technology. Went broke in two years.

They were hoping Congress would pay them to be the transcontinental courier system, economics be damned. Congresses in those days had marginally more sense.

Within 20 years technology had made the Poney Express obsolete.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@RV:GH the government has been subsidizing nuclear energy through guaranteed loans for over fifty years

Yes, but nuclear power actually works. It's 20% of our energy production.

Subsidies for energy are not my ideal, but if we have to have energy pork, is it so unreasonable to demand that the energy actually be produced?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@RV: France's energy production is about 85% nuclear.

Shouting Thomas said...

Yes, but nuclear power actually works. It's 20% of our energy production.

Subsidies for energy are not my ideal, but if we have to have energy pork, is it so unreasonable to demand that the energy actually be produced?


I was thinking the same damned thing.

The green energy fantasy is Utopian nonsense. The reasoning seems to go like this:

1. We deserve absolutely clean energy.

2. Energy production should have no environmental impact.

3. Somebody must produce absolutely clean energy for us because we deserve and want it.

4. Therefore, the technology must exist to accomplish this magical feat.

Anybody who says otherwise is a stooge of the oil, gas and coal industries.

The Drill SGT said...

Quayle said...
Or in other words, if, say, the Kochs are as evil and greedy as portrayed, wouldn't they be all over green investments if there were a return to be had?


No! No! The NYT and the Nation will tell you that the evil Kochs are sitting on proven cold fusion tech, 100mph car engine tech and nanofilm solar panel tech. They won't bring them to market, because it would ruin their oil business.

OTOH, that doesn't explain why O'bama supporter Buffet wasn't in this firm for a couple of billion, unless of course he knows the industry is a loser....

chickenlittle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PaulV said...

Enron's paid shill Paul Krugman was big dem proponent of Enron's corrupt energy dealing and proposed carbon credit exchange. Which is why big Clinton man Rubin pressed Bush administration for bailout of Enron. Nothing says corrupt democrat party crony capitalism like Enron.

Quayle said...

We'd avoid the grid management problems and the annual spring runoff/wind overproduction conflict that requires BPA to pay people to buy the wind energy.

And the largest problem with wind energy is that it is almost 180 degrees out of phase with demand.

Peak demand for electricity is at 5 - 7 PM but drops sharply as people go to bed.

Wind production doesn't peak until people are in bed.

The Drill SGT said...

Gabriel Hanna said...
Within 20 years technology had made the Poney Express obsolete.


the Pony Express ran from 1860 to Oct 1861.

Given that the Intercontinental Telegraph line was authorized by Congress in 1869, and started operating on Oct 24, 1861, I'd say the new tech wasn't 20 years out, but more like than 20 months.

America's Politico said...

You all are just jealous of Obama-Biden success and the success of their appointments. Sec. Chu is the NOBEL LAUREATE. Be proud of him.

The GOP has no Nobel winners. No such winner would be caught dead with the GOP.

GOP will be trashed in Nov. 2021. The Press is already writing the obituary.

sorepaw said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Drill SGT said...

Shouting Thomas said...
The green energy fantasy is Utopian nonsense. The reasoning seems to go like this:


You left off:

5. If it isn't 100% clean, we don't want our environment sullied. We'll just import the power from Arizona


PS: as Quayle implied, the whole solar/wind scam is just rent seeking until somebody solves the issue of industrial strength energy storage. Right now, if you have excess wind generation, the only thing to do with it is to pump water up hill behind your hydro plant, with big energy losses on both sides of that transaction.

chickenlittle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shouting Thomas said...

Isn't it time to say the following to the Utopian fantasists when they carry on about their green energy nonsense:

OK. I get it. You are absolutely convinced that this green energy stuff is the wave of the future, that it is marketable and profitable.

So, put your money into it. Stop demanding taxpayer money. Take the risk out of your own pocket.

Put up or shut up!

The Drill SGT said...

whoops:

Given that the Intercontinental Telegraph line was authorized by Congress in 1869,

I meant 1860, 0 is next to 9 :)

sorepaw said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edutcher said...

Gabriel Hanna said...

Or it's like the Pony Express? Remember that? Great accomplishment, pushed the boundaries of what was possible with contemporary technology. Went broke in two years.

They were hoping Congress would pay them to be the transcontinental courier system, economics be damned. Congresses in those days had marginally more sense.

Within 20 years technology had made the Poney Express obsolete.


More like 2.

William Russell also tried to make the Central Overland stagecoach route pay, but couldn't, while Butterfield and Ben Holladay did, along with Western Union.

Russell, Majors, and Waddell had lost its collective shirt supplying the Army in the Mormon War and even the government mail contract couldn't save it.

In them thar days, carrying the mail, and many other postal functions including post offices, were awarded to private contractors, like Wells, Fargo and, gee, it often worked a whole lot better than what we have today.

virgil xenophon said...

No sorepaw, it is worse than mere "crooks." (tho there may have been some of those in the mixture too) Solyndra's personnel and all in the government from Obama on down who promoted the company are "true believers." Mere crooks can be bargained with and bought off--and in any case their numbers are limited by comparison with the legions of greenie "true believers" whose ability to do widespread damage is almost unlimited. As French Foreign Minister Tallyrand once commented to an associate who opined that some ill-conceived action or another of the French bureaucracy was nothing less than criminal, replied: "Mais non, it is far worse than a crime--it is a mistake!"

Bruce Hayden said...

Gibson Guitar is GodZero's Enron.
Along with Gunrunner.
And Government Motors
.

I respectfully disagree. Gibson Guitar is peanuts, at least to most of us. Somewhat like those piddling $20M, $50M, etc. green energy failures. Rounding error, with this Administration. And, GM is still building cars. A couple of them are even partially electric. Yes, they cost a lot, and the federal government is apparently the bulk of their market (thanks to an executive order).

As for Gun Runner/Fast and Furious - I don't think that it is going to be Obama's Enron, as much as his Watergate, only probably a bit bigger, so maybe throw in Tea Pot Dome too.

Every week something more comes out. This last week, there were several interesting developments. The ATF guy who had testified (w/o a DoJ atty) to Congress was moved to a do-nothing job. Three key players were moved, some apparently given promotions, to possibly keep them quiet. The US Atty for AZ, a Napolitano protege, and formerly a likely candidate for governor, abruptly resigned. An AZ AUSA apparently tried to hush up the murder by walked guns of a federal agent, right after it happened. And, evidence emerged that at least three White House staff had been briefed on the project - after repeated denials by the WH that they had any knowledge. All in the last week or two.

Also, interestingly, the ties between the Obama Administration and one of the Mexican cartels seem to becoming more evident, week by week (in a week where several gangs have told the local teachers that if they didn't pay them 1/2 their salaries, they or their families would be murdered - and so half the teachers in several border cities have stopped work). Apparently, a lot of the guns, along with possibly some military surplus, have gone to that gang.

Is this going to get Obama impeached? I doubt it. Not a year and a half from an election, and I seriously doubt that it will be proven that he actually knew. Besides, there is no way that this Senate will convict.

My prediction right now is that the Republicans in Congress will ultimately force the Administration to allow the appointment of an independent prosecutor. The AG is stone walling as best he can (while promoting those involved to keep them quiet). Supposedly, the DoJ IG is investigating - but that office has been compromised, and so is moving much more slowly than is Congress. I expect that Holder, or at least some of his underlings, will be found in contempt of Congress before year end.

And, this is what the Dems are going to face coming into election year - billions shoveled to their campaign contributors, along with other special favors, and either a full-boat show Congressional trial or at least investigation, or an independent prosecutor.

We shall see. This should be a very interesting election year.

edutcher said...

Bruce Hayden said...

Gibson Guitar is GodZero's Enron.
Along with Gunrunner.
And Government Motors.


I respectfully disagree. Gibson Guitar is peanuts, at least to most of us.


The money is irrelevant. Holder's DoJ is making war on a company for enviro stuff whose owner is a Republican donor, while its chief competitor, whose owner donated to GodZero, violates the same regs and is left alone.

Chicago ethics.

And, GM is still building cars. A couple of them are even partially electric. Yes, they cost a lot, and the federal government is apparently the bulk of their market (thanks to an executive order).

And the stock has plummeted while the Administration has made clear it wants to divest, leaving the taxpayers holding an $11 billion bag.

I'd say that's plenty of money.

And Gunrunner is about the lives of Federal agents lost.

So we have big money, dead Feds, and the kind of violation that sent Haldemann and Ehrlichmann to jail for many years.

Do the math.

SaintCroix said...

All you have to is look at the candidate who is the "#1 fundraiser in his party" and see that their might be a problem.

This is Rick Perry's #1 worry for me, by the way.

See this.

This the one area where both parties are exactly the same. Shrinking the government helps but there is such a thing as Republican corruption too. (See Alaska for an obvious example).

This is why Palin was so popular with ordinary people in both parties in Alaska. Her approval ratings were through the roof. And it's why she was so unpopular with the political class. She refused to play that game.

Carol_Herman said...

He was?

I thought it was Ken Lay who committed suicide (by doctor), so that his estate could keep the loot.

Ken Lay thought Dubya would keep him out of trouble. Connections didn't work. Ken Lay faced prison time.

And, for a good side-effect, because of ENRON, the governor of California, Grey Davis. Who had his eyes set on the White House ... got thrown off and out. In a recall election. That was started by a conservative (named Campbell). But as soon as Schwartzengegger saw the opportunity ... he swooped in. And, took it. Instead.

Politics?

It's like going to the movies. Sometimes the movies, themselves, stink. But the tabloids fill ya in on the details that went on behind the scenes.

As an example. In the current cropper ... Where Modonna directs a film about Wallis Simpson ... Wallis is judge less crazy than Diana.

Worth seeing for the clothes and the apartments?

While over in Wall Street, where the customers have left, there seems to be some amount of suffering due to the fact that those shits aren't worth trusting with your money.

Can't fix it.

Dubya, here, didn't do it.

And, he won't be the competition in the race, ahead.

AllenS said...

Would somebody please tell me what Carol just said.

Bruce Hayden said...

Some here might fault me for banging away about the Fast and Furious/Gun Walker scandal. Sorry, but I think that it will ultimately turn out to be more important than most everything else that the Obama Administration has done wrong since taking office.

Solyndra, and really Enron, were about money, and in the former case, corruption. But right now, these scandals are just numbers. Sure, the Dems in general, and the Obama Administration, have traded these sorts of things for campaign contributions, etc. Some call it rent seeking. Others call it corruption. And, some just point out that it is the natural result of big government. Nevertheless, for most it is just numbers, and numbers that in most cases don't add up to rounding errors, when we are talking the trillions of dollars that the Obama Administration has squandered.

Fast and Furious on the other hand is a lot more visceral. The Obama Administration, or at least the Holder Department of Justice and the Napolitano Department of Homeland Security, actively expedited and encouraged the illegal sale and shipment of thousands of guns to violent gangs in Mexico, apparently over strong resistance by career employees at least in the ATF. As a result, one, maybe two, federal agents died, along with many hundreds of Mexicans, including a large number of Mexican police and military, and a lot more innocent civilians. And, the guns illegally sold under this project are now routinely showing up at crime scenes on our side of the border. Americans are also dying as a result. Maybe not nearly as many as those brown skinned people across the border. But still, they are dying.

Let me repeat. Hundreds have died right across our border with Mexico from us as a result of this hair-brained project, that appears to have been set up to justify limiting gun right in this country by (illegally) expediting the selling and shipping of a large number of guns to Mexico, then blaming our gun culture and weak gun laws for the devastation caused by those guns.

As I mentioned before, this scandal is visceral for a lot of people. At least with Watergate, no one died. Not so here. A lot have died, and more are fated to, as a result of this project by the Obama Administration. Dead people are much more visceral than just a bunch of numbers, even if the dead people are mostly brown and live on the other side of the border from us.

AB said...

Anyone notice that the "Enron/Bush" story line kind of disproves itself?

You see, Ken Lay and Bush were buddy-buddy.

That special relationship meant that Enron had a close advocate in charge of the federal government - the fox guarding the chicken coop, so to speak.

So when push came to shove, Enron avoided financial collapse, and Kenneth Lay got away scott-free.

...oh, wait...

Bruce Hayden said...

So we have big money, dead Feds, and the kind of violation that sent Haldemann and Ehrlichmann to jail for many years.

But a lot more people are involved this time. So, the trials are likely to go on for some time.

The Drill SGT said...

AllenS said...
Would somebody please tell me what Carol just said.


I'm surprised an 11 Bush can't figure this out:

WE'RE SCREWED!

FUBAR!

Methadras said...

Urkel is a fucking fool to think that the nations economy can rest on green jobs. Now look at where they are. You leftards and your insipid childish policies of fairies, unicorns, and utopias are killing our abilities to be prosperous.

virgil xenophon said...

That's EXACTLY what I meant to convey with my Tallyrand quote to sorepaw, Methadras. Zerobama et all REALLY ARE "true believers" who worship at the greenie alter of AGW eco-stalinism style..

roesch-voltaire said...

GH -- nuclear actually work, but my point is no one wants to build new ones-in a total free market. Further, I believe in Germany 17% of their energy is from wind and solar-- so that also actually works. My view is that we will need a mix of energy supplies if we are to survive, along with a new super grid, and the only way to get that is to put money into R&D-- yes perhaps this company, based on the wrong direction it took, was not the best investment, but they started asking for money during the Bush administration, not that there is anything wrong with that.

Marshal said...

" roesch-voltaire said...
GH -- nuclear actually work, but my point is no one wants to build new ones-in a total free market. "

Many companies would like to invest in nuclear energy. But the US's shitty legal system increases the risk to such a degree insurance companies won't cover nuclear plants. This in turn means banks won't lend to them, hence the US guarantees.

Nuclear energy companies by and large make their own debt payments. So lets consider that RV justifies a subsidy where the US government will actually be footing the bill by pointing out one where they don't. Hardly surprising since he's grasping at the quickest justification for his preferences he can think of without even caring whether it makes sense.

The Drill SGT said...

roesch-voltaire said...
Further, I believe in Germany 17% of their energy is from wind and solar-- so that also actually works.


17% from "renewables, the bulk of the actual power generation (one must be careful of the words "installed capacity" when looking at wind figures) actually comes from hydro and "Bio-mass" (e.g burning stuff)

as for shutting down the German nukes, the fine print will note that they are building gas turbine plants to match the nuke capacity, cause the wind doesnt always blow.

The Drill SGT said...

PS: Germany will move from being a net power exporter to umporter, depnding on French and Chech nuke plants.

PPS: The wind power is up North, the Nukes down South, and they lack the grid to bridge the gap.

PPPS: The German "plan" was a political document, not an engineering plan.

AllenS said...

Drill,

If we're talking about this blog, there are two issues that need to be addressed:

The Fast and Furious/Gun Walker scandal, and

The Fast and Furious/Carol_Herman typing scandal

Chuck66 said...

The appearence of impropriety can be just as bad as actual proven scandel.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@edutcher and Drill SGT:

Why am I being jumped on for "within 20 years the Pony Express was obsolete" when I clearly said it "Went broke in two years"?

I don't mind you pointing put things I got wrong; just be sure I got it wrong first.

@sorepaw: All right, Hanna, does this mean that when a Republican in Congress proposes the closure of the "Goddard Institute of Space Studies," you'll be in favor?

I'm not opposed to climate research. I'm not opposed to solar power research.

I'm opposed to the government dumping a half billion on a private company that can't get a technology to the market because it is decades premature.

I'm for fusion research too, and if Obama dropped half a billion on a company promising to deliver fusion and it went broke I'd be just as mad about that.

AprilApple said...

But loads of DEMOCRAT money - just fine and dandy.
Does George Kaiser, a billionaire known for raising boatloads of money for Barack Obama, pay "his fair share"?

AprilApple said...

His fair share.. in taxes, I mean.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@RV:Further, I believe in Germany 17% of their energy is from wind and solar-- so that also actually works.

Of that 17%, 40% wind, 20% hydro, 30% biomass and biogas, 7% solar.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:RE_Germany_2009_pie_chart.svg

I read the same wikipedia article you did, but I didn't lie about what it said.

They're 11% nuclear and the rest (72%) fossil fuels.

And for their increased wind/solar usage, they pay correspondingly higher prices for energy and they have the same grid balancing problems as anywhere else that gets into wind in a big way.

David said...

How about flaying Obama for this:

Black unemployment rate: 16.7%
Black teen unemployment rate: 46.5%

A complete disaster.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

@Bruce Hayden

You are absolutely correct that Fast and Furious is of far greater significance than the squandered fortune of Solyndra. I believe it will become apparent that the purpose of the Obama administration was to create a cross-border gun smuggling problem in order to shut down the lawful purchase of guns by American citizens. Obama gave the game away when he told Sarah Brady that he was working on gun control "under the radar" The only question is when this will become apparent-- before November 2012, or in the first detached history of the Obama administration written in, say, 2045.

wv:biases-- does it really show that much?

jerryofva said...

J and Franglo:

I call big lie on Eron. Eron happened on Clinton's watch and blew up on Bush's watch. Ken Lay was Al Gore's buddy, a supporter of the global warming scam and creator of cap and trade. Let's also not forget that Paul Krugman was on the Enron payrole.

Enron is like the housing bubble: Created by corrupt Democrats and blamed n the Republicans by the Party controlled MSM,

AJ Lynch said...

So Germany gets only 1% of its energy from solar and 6-7% from wind.

We could be getting more wind energy if the Kennedys and Walter Cronkite had not blocked that Cape Cod wind farm.

Night2night said...
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Night2night said...

Yeah, RV knows. Let's be true believers and adopt Germany's poorly conceptualized mandate based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the actual risks involved. Even the NY Times has it's doubts.

‘Germany Dims Nuclear Plants, but Hopes to Keep Lights On’ - New York Times

Hagar said...

I have had a little to do lately with sites for "solar farms." It is striking that everyone involved say the selected site must be convertible to other uses in case the Federal subsidies are withdrawn.

Fred Drinkwater said...

I participate in an Angel investor group (mostly as an advisor, due to limited personal funds). Over the last year or so, about 10% of the startups presenting to us, are somehow in the Green Energy space.

Experience has led me to believe that one invests primarily in the founders and their team, rather than in their specific product. In the case of Green Energy companies, though, there is a fourth party (Party 1. founder 2. investor 3. customer): namely, government subsidies, and the regulatory environment.
For some reason, many experienced small investors are reluctant to invest in that fourth party. Go figure.

WV: teerifi - golf + horror movie + finance strategy = you're not getting any money from mee.

Jo said...

America’s Politico: The GOP has no Nobel winners. No such winner would be caught dead with the GOP.

Hmm. Top of my head: Henry Kissinger and Milton Friedman.

Hagar said...

... in case/when ...

GH,
The Pony Express was not about tecnology; it was about keeping California in the Union until the telegraph line could be connected.

And wind farms I think will wind up with a large Federal program to dismantle them and restore the ground.

Paul said...

The MSM, being Obamalovers, won't in any way report what really happened here nor in any other scandal.

Their keyboards are sealed.

sorepaw said...
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Dudley Do-right said...

@Tyrone S.:
"You are absolutely correct that Fast and Furious is of far greater significance than the squandered fortune of Solyndra. I believe it will become apparent that the purpose of the Obama administration was to create a cross-border gun smuggling problem in order to shut down the lawful purchase of guns by American citizens."

Ohhhh, I think he's more clever than that, Tyrone. To take this kind of risk, the stakes had to have been greater. Curtailment of gun rights was only a side benefit.

In the future, I believe we'll find that he was paying off debts to the cartels. All that campaign funding had to come from somewhere.

When you OWE the cartels, the stakes are high enough to undertake almost any risk. You agree?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@sorepaw:Hanna, as an alleged libertarian, you should know the difference between privately funded and taxpayer funded research.


I do know the difference, yes. There are libertarians who oppose any and all government spending of any kind, but I'm not one of them. I don't mind roads, libraries, museums, fire departments, police, courts, armed forces, or science funded by taxpayers. There are libertarians all over the spectrum on that. I am familiar with their arguments.

Do you think that the leading climate researchers would more closely resemble power players than scientists, if taxpayer funding were not involved?

Climate scientists do not control the government. Sometimes they get the ear of the government and sometimes they don't. They're not the only ones who do. Creationists, for example, got appointed to Texas's textbook committee by Rick Perry, but he's responsible for putting nutjobs in charge of textbooks. Bobby Jindal chose to sign into law a bill legalizing the use of creationist textbooks, but thats' HIS poor judgement for listening to nutjobs.

When the government listens to nutjobs, that's government's fault. Jim Hansen had no influence over that $500 million wasted that solar power company.

Do you think that if governments and transnational organizations were not in the thick of "climate research" activity, the editor in chief of Remote Sensing would have been pushed into resigning.

Creationists who pass bogus papers into journals get forced out too. It's up to the journal. Creationists invoke a Darwinist conspiracy similar to your climate conspiracy--they made that movie with Ben Stein about it.

When an editor shows poor judgement about scientific issues you can bet that scientists will hold him accountable. That's what science is about.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

I don't know, Dudley. If it was Obama's purpose to give the cartels a bunch of guns, he would have dropped off a freight car full of 'em in the Sonoran desert and not left a paper trail ten miles long. I don't think that would be such a huge boon to them anyway since they can easily get guns from China or Venezuela. U.S. gun shops had to be involved so they could be vilified later on.

Carol_Herman said...

Enron was involved in grabbing money out of California's pocket. And, what I said is that it cost Grey Davis his governorship. Done by recall.

And, done, actually, by a conservative guy, named Campbell. Who raised the money for the recall. That cost Grey Davis his job as governor.

That's when Schwartzenegger barreled in and took the prize. Which was to become the republican governor of California.

When ENRON finally crashed, it took down the accounting firm of Arthur Anderson (I believe.)

Ken Lay went to Dubya, thinking he'd get his ass "bailed and saved."

Ken Lay, instead, was sentenced to prison.

Well. Because Ken Lay died before stepping foot into prison ... his estate got to keep all the loot.

The reasoning? Well, he "could have appealed." Hence, by death, he commuted his own prison sentence. And, his estate collected all the profits it got to keep from ENRON.

Why blame Bush?

If only we had been so lucky in 2008, and Bush did NOT bailout the stinking Wall Street bankers.

And, also IF the moron McCain had not canceled his campaign ... so he could sit in around Dubya's meeting ... dealing with the bailout, history would have been different.

Heck, it would have even been different for the Bush family fortunes ... where they'd love to run Jeb ... but he can't get his ass into one of the gates.

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin gave a speech in Iowa and, she NAILED IT!

We are handing out corporate welfare! Both sides! So pay attention.

KARMA eventually shows up. Ain't dat da' truth?

Bruce Hayden said...

This is also a cautionary tale about the government picking winners and losers.

It appears that The Solyndra Debacle Gets Worse. In 2008, Goldman Sachs analyst Michael Molnar predicted that with lowered subsidies and increased capacity, that the solar industry was not really a good place to invest.

" Since Goldman was advising Solyndra on this project, did anyone in Chu’s Department of Energy question why taxpayers are guaranteeing the debt on a new solar plant for a market that Goldman’s own analysts have downgraded? Has President Obama’s election changed Goldman’s view on alternative energy to the point that it is now recommending the sector?

Clearly, the DOE wasn’t smart enough to think that China might figure out a way to make solar panels cheaper.

The bankruptcy raises questions about the ”deals” Solyndra announced on its website. In the wake of the bankruptcy decision, Congress needs to look at these contracts to see if any of them were ever real.
"

By all means investigate - but hopefully by a committee other than Rep. Issa's, because that one needs to concentrate on operation Fast and Furious.

Back to my original point though - this is a perfect example of the government being horrid at picking winners and losers. It picked a "winner" based on political connections and pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking economics, and ignored a couple of key points. One was that solar needs a lot of subsidies to be viable, and under Obamanomics, those subsidies are more and more problematic, esp. at the state level, because the states can't print their own money, must balance their budgets, and have exploding budgets, vastly accentuated by their expanding pension and health care costs.

So, just how were we going to manufacture solar panels, etc. more cheaply than China could? Did they have some sort of new technology protected by iron clad patents (which are about to get gutted when the Senate passes the House version of Patent Reform Tuesday night)? What was their competitive edge over the Chinese, etc.?

The reality, I suspect, is that they did not have one that could be maintained long enough to make money.

Soyndra needed money from the feds because they couldn't get it in the private markets. They couldn't get the money privately because those stupid capitalists asked the type of questions that green energy zealots like Sec. Chu skipped over, and didn't like the answers they got.

This is basic manufacturing, and the U.S. doesn't have and edge there. Rather, due to lower costs, the Chinese tend to. So, why again, was the U.S. guaranteeing loans to this company, despite the investment industry knowing that it was a bad investment? (Yes, that is a rhetorical question, given the Kaiser connection and Chu heading DoE).

The moral of the story is that when a government tries to pick winners and losers, most often, the only winners are the rent seekers, with the cost being born by the taxpayers.

Bruce Hayden said...

This is mostly off topic, but I made a comment in my last post about "patent reform".

One of the advantages that U.S. industry has had for 200+ years has been a patent system that is moderately pro-inventor, and, esp. if he is in the U.S. That is about to change, and change for the worst.

This coming Tuesday evening, the Senate is scheduled to adopt the House version of what was Orwelliangly called the "America Invents Act". Now, at least it is better named, as the Leahy-Smith Patent "Reform" act for the two rent accepting Congressional chairs that have pushed it through.

Currently, the first to invent will most likely get a/the patent. Ostensibly, the system is being changed to a first-to-file system. There are supposedly safe guards built in to protect against derivation - except that they are easily circumvented. Worse, there will now be a high cost (for an additional maybe $4k) way to fast track applications - that magically slides right around those derivation proceedings introduced to protect against inventors having their inventions stolen by others (i.e. the Chinese).

Everyone involved, including those who actually drafted the language, admit that it is a horribly written piece of legislation. But it has sufficient momentum to pass, thanks to the $50 million or so in lobbying thrown at it by the likes of IBM, Intel, Microsoft, etc., who think that is a small price to pay to invalidate all the patents being asserted against them in court. Never mind that these companies are becoming American in name only (IBM now has less than 1/4 of its employees in the U.S., with more employees in India than here).

So, at a time when the U.S. needs whatever edges it can get in the global economy, we are intentionally throwing away one of our biggest ones - our pro-inventor patent system.

Sorry to vent here - we have been lobbying against this legislation for 5 or 6 years now, with trips to the Hill, letters to Congress, etc., but we are volunteers, and were massively out gunned by the 500 or so paid lobbyists on the other side.

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