Green Jobs Are a National Scandal

More bankruptcies are to come – Solargate is just the tip of the iceberg.

National Review On Line, by Deroy Murdock,October 7, 2011 –This cliché within a mixed metaphor reflects the madness of President Obama’s obsession with “green jobs.” It would be bad enough if this disaster were limited to possible criminality at Solyndra — the solar-panel maker that Obama stimulated with loan guarantees, despite repeated warnings about its rickety finances.

“The true engine of economic growth will always be companies like Solyndra,” Obama proclaimed at its Fremont, Calif., headquarters on May 26, 2010. Not quite. Solyndra’s August 31 bankruptcytransformed 1,100 green jobs into pink slips and marinated taxpayers in $527 million of red ink.

But many green-jobs programs that have not been raided by the FBI — as Solyndra was last September 8 — nonetheless are fiscally reckless enough to merit a five-alarm national scandal.

Consider these other green bankruptcies:

SpectraWatt, Inc., of Hopewell Junction, N.Y., scored $500,000 from the Energy Department in June 2009 and $150,000 from the National Science Foundation in June 2010, Bloomberg reports. Last August 19, the solar-power company went bust.

  • Evergreen Solar was stimulated with $5.3 million of Massachusetts government cash and praised by the White House for helping to “kickstart the economy.” Evergreen went bankrupt last August 15.
  • Mountain Plaza, Inc., went bankrupt in 2003. Nonetheless, its “truck-stop electrification” technology won $424,000 in EPA stimulus funds administered by Tennessee’s transportation department. Yet again, Mountain Plaza filed for bankruptcy in June 2010.
  • Notwithstanding its February 2009 bankruptcy and default on a $58 million loan from BNP Paribas, Wisconsin-based Olsen’s Mill Acquisition was stimulated with $10 million in January 2010, along with Olsen’s Crop Services. Jeff Bollier of the OshKosh Northwestern reported that Olsen’s Mill “buys crops grown by farmers across the eastern and central parts of Wisconsin and sells it to end users such as Utica Energy’s ethanol plant on State Highway 91.” ADM purchased the defunct operation’s assets last month.
  • Beyond outright bankruptcies, Team Obama has subsidized projects that may be neither fraudulent nor failed, per se, but severely abuse taxpayers:
  • As the Wall Street Journal reports, cash-strapped Americans are changing babies’ diapers less frequently and doubling down on diaper-rash ointment. What a perfect time for Team Obama to subsidize foreign solar companies! Energy last June 18 gave Solar Trust, an American subsidiary of Germany’s Solar Millennium, a $2.1 billion loan guarantee for a Blythe, Calif., solar-power facility. Last June, Energy handed Spain’s Abengoa Solar a $1.2 billion guarantee for its Mojave (Calif.) Solar Project and backstoppped $1.45 billion last December for Abengoa’s Gila Bend, Ariz., outpost.
  • On September 28, Energy approved a $737 million loan guarantee for Nevada’s SolarReserve Project. It promises 600 construction jobs at $1.23 million each and 45 permanent jobs at $16.4 million per position. Energy also guaranteed $337 million for Sempra Energy’s Mesquite Solar Project in Arizona. Its 300 construction jobs cost $1.12 million each, while its seven permanent positions equal $48.1 million per job created. The only good news here is that this program ended September 30. So its damage is done.
  • In Seattle, an Energy grant provided $20 million to weatherize homes. Sixteen months later, this outlay has generated 14 administrative jobs at $1.42 million apiece. How many homes have been retrofitted? Three.

Energy’s Better Buildings Neighborhood Program has fared better in Toledo, Kansas City, and Phoenix. In those locales, $65 million has underwritten 72 jobs. That comes to $902,777 each. Overall, this initiative has spent $508 million in 41 states and “created or saved” 600 jobs — a real bargain at $846,666 apiece.

2 responses

  1. You folks mocking green energy (which to me means simply getting off these rag-heads oil and our coal industry and killing off corporate america so the REAL small businesses can be rejuvenated) will one day have your children or grandchildren looking back on your comments as barbaric. Without getting off of oil and coal, we will continue to decline as a nation. We don’t produce XXXX compared to what we did during the 40’s 50’s and 60’s and will never be a producing nation until the small mom and pop shops return to the base of american manufacturing.
    One walmart (there are 17 or so in Albuquerque) could translate into 60 plus small community companies each supporting 10 or so persons. 600 local people put to work or having their work enhanced by killing off one walmart. If all 17 were closed would equal @ 10000 more jobs and or existing jobs being enhanced in one small city in NM. 10000 jobs in Albuquerque NM with a total population of 1.8 million in the entire state, is a huge increase. Take Texas for example with ? 25 million people and hundreds of walmarts and you would have 300 thousand plus new or enhanced jobs by killing off walmart.
    This is just one company. Think of kmart, target all the corporate conglomerates that have killed the american dream of owning a business in the guise of free capitalism. It’s a lie. We have what britain had when our founders left britain, a socialist capitalist form of trade. Only a small few control it all. Republicans believe in this process of a few owning and controlling everything. Democrats believe in the robin hood form of government. Neither works.
    We will like all democracies, one day destroy ourselves. They all have without exception even as far back as Athens Greece.
    Live and learn.

  2. I don’t believe anyone is mocking green energy just the ability of the fed to make it happen, as all major breakthroughs have occurred in the private sector and will happen when the cost profit ratio makes it important. In the meantime why would you want to cut off what works for an as yet unproven and inefficient source of power. Use what you have until you have something better. market driven alternatives will become available.

    The Wal Mart thing really concerns me for several reasons, mostly because even tho wally world is my least favorite place to go, but I do go there, I don’t go there for anything other than price, There is not a mom pop out there that can purchase products and beat them on most items, however as the mom pops went out of business wally’s prices went up. Competition is the key to both of your thoughts. Question? do you really believe we should shut down businesses based on their sucessful business plan? Have you ever seen a business going under and the employees buy it out, I have, the reason some of them make it and some don’t is productivity, when an employee believes in capitalism and creating wealth and has a dog in the hunt (ownership) things change. If they don’t change the business will go under anyway. Sso what do you have as an alternative to wally that will not necessarily increase my cost of surviving. The president has already guaranteed that energy cost will necessarily skyrocket in cost to press the green agenda.

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