Tag Archives: Solyndra

Obama’s Pet Solar Company Solyndra Leaves Massive Toxic Waste in it’s Wake

By Gary P Jackson

By now everyone knows about the Obama regime’s solar company Solyndra and the massive amounts of money that the regime sent their way, only to see the company go bankrupt. Now it seems the shuttered company has left massive amounts of toxic waste at their facility, and are trying to just walk away from it.

From CBS San Francisco:

MILPITAS (CBS 5) — Three months ago, CBS 5 caught Solyndra tossing millions of dollars worth of brand new glass tubes used to make solar panels. Now the bankrupt solar firm, once touted as a symbol of green technology, may be trying to abandon toxic waste.
It’s a tedious process. Slowly but surely, the shattered remains of brand new solar panel tubes head to a recycling plant in Hayward.

Meanwhile the next phase of the company’s liquidation is under way. It involves getting rid of all the heavy metals left inside the building that were used to make the panels.

The Fremont Fire Department’s Jay Swardenski oversees the cleanup. He said some materials, such as cadmium, are toxic, and hard to dispose of.

They don’t degrade at all, so we want to make sure we don’t allow these materials to get into the environment,” he said.

It’s not just the leftover hazardous materials, but also the machinery used to apply them to the glass tubes. “Certainly those tools will need to be decontaminated, cleaned up, handled correctly as they are taken apart,” he said.

Swardenski told CBS 5 the disposal process is going smoothly in Fremont, but what about nearby Milpitas? Solyndra leased a building on California Circle for the final assembly of its solar panels. But the cleanup at the leased building in Milpitas is in limbo, because Solyndra doesn’t want to pay.

CBS 5 found the building locked up, with no one around. At the back, a hazardous storage area was found. There were discarded buckets half filled with liquids and barrels labeled “hazardous waste.

The building’s owner, a company called iStar, claimed in court documents, “there may be serious environmental, health and safety issues” at the premises. According to the documents, they include, “numerous containers of solvents and chemicals…and processing equipment contaminated with lead.

Essentially it looks like they left a pretty big mess behind,” San Jose State Assistant Professor Dustin Mulvaney told CBS 5. Mulvaney has written a white paper (.pdf) on solar industry waste for the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition.

Looking at CBS 5’s video, Mulvaney said it’s hard to tell how much hazardous waste is at the Milpitas facility. But he said one thing is for sure.

Materials labeled hazardous waste require a lot more protocol, so its actually a lot more expensive to clean,” Mulvaney said. “It’s very sad looking at this facility taken apart like this, because a lot of money went into building this.

Swardenski feels the same way. “It is hard. They are beautiful buildings; there was a lot of effort put into them. But we’ll work as hard to put them back into productive use,” he said.

More failure from Obama’s insane energy policies. Not only have billions of dollars been wasted funding these unstable enterprises, now we are finding they are leaving the world a more dangerous place than it was before they existed.

Is it too much to ask that we start putting people in jail? These are some seriously evil goings on, and those involved [including Obama] must be made to pay.



Filed under In The News, Politics

Subsidized, Bankrupt, Corrupt: Solyndra Managers Got $368,500 in Court-Ordered Bonuses

By Gary P Jackson

One could spend all day, every day, writing about nothing but corruption involved in the so-called “green” industry. While there are hundreds of stories like Solyndra, this company is, without a doubt, the poster child for the culture of greed, corruption, and malpractice fostered by the Obama regime.

The latest though, is mind-blowing. Instead of jail sentences for all involved, Solyndra managers got court-order bonus instead, “in the best interests of the Debtors, their creditors and all other parties in interest.

Crime pays, especially if it’s in the Obama sanctioned “green” industry.

From CNS News:

CNSNews.com) – A bankruptcy court ordered $368,500 in bonuses for 20 top managers and employees of Solyndra, the solar panel firm that received $535 million from taxpayers two years before filing for bankruptcy and laying off 11,000 employees. The bonuses kicked in on March 31.

The 20 high-level workers earned a total base pay of $2.49 million before the bonuses. One of the executives earned a base annual salary of $206,499 and received a $30,000 incentive under the court order handed down on Feb. 22 by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Mary F. Walrath in Delaware.

Another executive earning $189,000 in base pay was awarded a $20,000 bonus and a third, who earned $190,800,  received $15,000 more.

Most of the bonuses awarded were between $15,000 and $25,000, with the three top beneficiaries receiving $30,000, while the three lowest received $10,000 each.

The Energy Department finalized a loan guarantee of $535 million to Solyndra on Sept. 3, 2009, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – better known as the $787 billion stimulus.

On Aug. 31, 2011, Solyndra filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chapter 11 allows a debtor company to restructure and work out agreements with creditors without being liquidated.

Court documents referred to the bonuses as a “Key Employee Incentive Plan.” The ruling determined the payouts to be “in the best interests of the Debtors, their creditors and all other parties in interest.

For a list of all of the bonuses paid, click here.

Only in Obama’s America are failures, who steal tax payer money, rewarded handsomely, while the rest of the nation suffers.


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Crony Socialism Run Amuck: 11 More “Solyndras” Discovered in Obama Energy Program

By Gary P Jackson

More failure from the socialist Obama regime and it’s attempt to shove unproven “green technology” down our throats. This came out on Friday, when a lot of people may not have been paying attention:

From Real Clear Politics:

CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson takes a look at 11 more Solyndras that were part of Obama’s Energy program. Attkisson was one of the original reporters that uncovered the Solyndra scandal.

CBS News counted 12 clean energy companies that are having trouble after collectively being approved for more than $6.5 billion in federal assistance. Five have filed for bankruptcy: The junk bond-rated Beacon, Evergreen Solar, SpectraWatt, AES’ subsidiary Eastern Energy and Solyndra.

According to CBS News, Beacon Power, a “green energy storage company,” received $43 million from the government. Standard and Poor’s had given the project a rating of “CCC-plus.”

Lots of hard earned taxpayer dollars thrown at companies tied to the Obama regime. This rush to fund non-viable “green” energy companies is insane.

None of these technologies are commercially viable. If the government wasn’t subsidizing them through loan guarantees [and outright grants] as well as huge tax breaks for end users, there would be no way any “green” company could survive.

This should anger every American.

I’m for clean energy, and finding alternatives, but at a time our debt is 105% of our yearly GDP we have no business funding any of this nonsense. Of course, even in good times government has no business picking winners and losers. I could see government funding a modest amount of research, but actually funding companies? No way.

It’s time government get out of the way of all businesses. It’s time government get out of the business of funding businesses. It’s time government gets out of the business of subsidizing or otherwise incentivising any business or product. It’s time government allow the free market to work.

It’s also time we start sending people, be they politicians, or their cronies, to prison for a very long time.

You might also want to read More Misadventures in Ethanol Production

A little dedication to all of the “green” con artists bilking the taxpayers out of their hard earned money. This should be their official theme song. A love song to the government stooges who hand out your money …. well…. like candy!


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New AFP Ad: Obama Regime Asked Solyndra to Hold Up Layoffs Until After 2010 Elections, Jake Tapper Hardest Hit

By Gary P Jackson

Jake Tapper really carries the Obama regime’s water as he attacks Americans for Prosperity the group that has created an ad that is scheduled to start running around the time of President Obama’s State of the Union speech.

Tapper drones on forever about the Koch brothers and so on, trying to take focus off the fact Solyndra is an abject failure, and Obama asked them to hold off firing workers until after the 2010 mid-term elections. A cold blooded political calculation intended to fool the American people and save some democrats from political annihilation at the polls.

While Tapper whines, here’s the meat of the subject: [emphasis mine]

The ad depicts the president as giving “Solyndra half a billion in taxpayer money. Politics as usual. Within the administration, the company’s potential collapse had long been discussed. Knowing all along Solyndra would have to fire their workers. But Solyndra held off until after the 2010 elections.”

That White House officials “knew all along” that Solyndra would have to fire their workers isn’t true. The ad is referring to an email released two months ago indicating that an adviser to the company’s main investor, Argonaut Equity, wrote on Oct. 30, 2010, that officials from the Department of Energy “did push very hard for us to hold our announcement” of layoffs “to Nov. 3rd – oddly they didn’t give a reason for that date.”…

Seriously? Like nothing big was happening on November 3? One really has to be dumb not to figure out why the regime wanted that information held. I don’t think Tapper is dumb. Just in the bag for Obama.

Here’s more:

The ad says: “1,100 workers had no idea that they would be fired, but the Obama administration knew. All that mattered was the 2010 election – ‘optics,’ not workers.”

While it may be that White House officials wanted the announcement to be made after the November 2010 elections – the only proof of that is that one e-mail, and the White House denies the charge — the layoffs that were announced were not as AFP describes. What is true: the day after the 2010 elections, on November 3, Solyndra announced it would lay end its contracts with more than 100 contractors, lay off 40 employees, and close one of its factories.

I bet the regime does deny the charge!

Yeah, the ad does make it seem all of the layoffs come at once, but so what. The facts are the facts, no matter how bad Tapper tries to make it sound like they aren’t.

Solyndra was a massive failure. The principles involved in the company were Obama cronies. They should have never been given a loan in the first place. No responsible lender would have touched this bunch with a 10 ft pole!

Here’s the ad. I think it’s quite effective:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Though Tapper claims there is no evidence of foul play, Bloomberg’s Jim Snyder begs to differ: [emphasis mine]

The Obama administration knew before the 2010 election that Solyndra LLC, a solar-panel maker that received a $535 million U.S. loan guarantee, planned to fire workers, according to e-mails released today.

The messages don’t indicate that anyone from the White House directed Solyndra to delay announcing the layoffs until after the vote. Previously released e-mails, indicating the Energy Department urged Solyndra to postpone the cuts, have been cited by House Republicans who say politics influenced Solyndra’s award and last-ditch rescue bid that put taxpayers behind $75 million in private investment.

Here’s the deal — Solyndra is going to announce they are laying off 200 of their 1200 workers,” Heather Zichal, a White House adviser, wrote to Carol Browner, then director of the office of Energy and Climate Change Policy, and other officials on Oct. 27, 2010. “No es bueno.”

If your Spanish is rusty, “No es bueno” roughly translates to “is no good.

Read more here.

Very disappointed in Jake Tapper, but it just goes to show you, when push comes to shove, the left wing media is going to do all of the Obama regime’s heavy lifting.

Obama and his cronies should all go to prison for what they have done to this country. It’s nothing less than wholesale theft. The regime has stolen taxpayer money and given it to cronies. Cronies who were totally unqualified to be in the business the loans were made to.

Until we get serious and start throwing corrupt politicians and their underlings in prison, and start going after their cronies as well, nothing is ever going to change. Oh, people will hoot and holler, some congresscritter will “investigate” but nothing real will happen.

America deserves better than this, and Americans need to get off their butts and demand it!


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President Obama’s “Sputnik Year”

by Whitney Pitcher

When President Obama gave his State of the Union address over 11 months ago, he referred to America’s “Sputnik Moment”–our need to invest massive amounts of money in innovations, particularly green innovations, to keep pace with a changing world (emphasis added):

Half a century ago, when the Soviets beat us into space with the launch of a satellite called Sputnik, we had no idea how we would beat them to the moon. The science wasn’t even there yet. NASA didn’t exist. But after investing in better research and education, we didn’t just surpass the Soviets; we unleashed a wave of innovation that created new industries and millions of new jobs.

This is our generation’s Sputnik moment. Two years ago, I said that we needed to reach a level of research and development we haven’t seen since the height of the Space Race. And in a few weeks, I will be sending a budget to Congress that helps us meet that goal. We’ll invest in biomedical research, information technology, and especially clean energy technology -– (applause) — an investment that will strengthen our security, protect our planet, and create countless new jobs for our people.

Following that speech, Governor Palin criticized President Obama’s reference to Sputnik, noting how spending so much money on things like Sputnik lead to the eventual demise of the Soviet Union:

That was another one of those “WTF” moments, when he so often repeated this Sputnik moment that he would aspire Americans to celebrate. And he needs to remember that what happened back then with the former communist USSR and their victory in that race to space, yes, they won, but they also incurred so much debt at the time that it resulted in the inevitable collapse of the Soviet Union.

So I listened to that Sputnik moment talk over and over again, and I think, No, we don’t need one of those. You know what we need is a “spudnut” moment. And here’s where I’m going with this, Greta. And you’re a good one because you’re one of those reporters who actually gets out there in the communities, find these hard-working people and find solutions to the problems that Americans face.

Governor Palin was lambasted by the media for making what they saw as a huge historical gaffe. In reality, it turned out to be a history lesson for the biased media. Peter Schweizer (prior to being hired as an adviser to Governor Palin) wrote at Big Peace following the media mocking that Governor Palin that she was indeed correct:

Palin is right: Sputnik was the typical government solution; symbolism over substance. The Soviets did not really create a satellite, and Washington really wasn’t threatened by it. They “welcomed it.”

Palin’s other point is that Sputnik was the sort of government bureaucratic program that got the Soviet Union in trouble; it’s an example of what eventually did them in. Citing Wikipedia (what journalistic ingenuity!), Stromberg [Washington Post author] argues that actually the Soviet Union didn’t have a debt problem until some “thirty years after” Sputnik. Perhaps instead of relying on Wikipedia, Stromberg might have consulted Robert Gates’ book From the Shadowswhich chronicles, in part, his career as a Soviet analyst at the CIA. (Just in case they are unaware at the Post, this is the same Robert Gates who is now the Secretary of Defense.) On page 173, he accurately points out that the CIA knew early on of the “Soviet economic crisis. From the late 1950s, CIA had clearly described the chronic weaknesses as well as the formidable military power of the Soviet Union.” Hmmm. Do you think this “chronic weaknesses might have had something to do with excessive bureaucracies and the size of government? Note to Stromberg: you will have to close Wikipedia and actually crack a book for this one.

In a post today, the Heritage Foundation points out that President Obama’s pie in the sky promises have done just the opposite of what he promised. Solyndra has become the notorious posterchild for the green cronyism–driven by politics, not policy— that is so pervasive in this administration:

Of course, central to the story is solar energy company Solyndra, which received a $535 million taxpayer-funded loan guarantee. President Obama spoke at the company’s newly unveiled factory in May of last year, bragging that “[W]e can see the positive impacts [of the stimulus] right here at Solyndra.” Despite the President’s boosterism, Solyndra went bankrupt last summer, leaving 1,100 people out of work. The jobs the President promised didn’t stick around long, and they came at a heavy price.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the “Sputnik” investments President Obama made with taxpayer dollars. Four other solar companies that received stimulus money also went bankrupt this year. There is also Brightsource,a failing solar energy company connected to Obama donor Robert Kennedy Jr, who received more than a billion dollars in taxpayer guaranteed loans. In late September, President Obama’s Department of Energy extended more green energy loans to companies like Exelon and General Electric whose leadership and employees were also big donors to his campaign.Most recently, President Obama has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the company Solazyme to fuel a Navy ship with algae based biofuels. Solazyme’s strategic adviser is non other than T.J.Glauthier who was part of President Obama’s transition team and who worked on the energy part of the 2009 stimulus bill. Solazyme is receiving $16 a gallon for this fuel-– 4 times the average price for such a fuel.  Pretty good payback from a friend, huh?

President Obama’s promised to invest in more than just clean energy, though, and that he did investing in both information technology and medicine. Take for example the companies Lightsquared and Siga Technologies.  Lightsquared, which received hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars for a broadband project and has ties to both the infamous George Soros and Phillip Falcone (another Obama donor) is another company which has been part of President Obama’s “Sputnik Year”. President Obama indeed also invested in “information technology” as he promised in his State of the Union address, but such an investment did not help ” strengthen our security”. In fact, testing showed that Lightsquared internet signals interfered with military GPS signals. In essence, President Obama is willing to compromise the military’s technological abilities in order to fill the wallets of his cronies.  President Obama also has extended a hundreds of millions of dollars no bid contract to Siga technologies  a company who manufacture small pox treatments. This company had ties to former SEIU leader and Obama friend, Andy Stern, and to mainly Democratic donor Ronald Perleman.

President Obama indeed chose to invest in those areas that he sees will pave the way for what he sees as America’s Sputnik moment, but he has done so at the expense of the American taxpayer and at the cost of our financial future. There’s nothing like repaying your campaign donors and cronies with taxpayer money to truly “win the future”. Yet again, Governor Palin was right. It was just another “WTF” moment turned into a “WTF” year for our President.


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Shining Sunlight on the Crony Capitalism of President Obama and Solar Energy Companies

by Whitney Pitcher
On a recent appearance on Judge Napolitano’s show , Governor Palin stated that the failed solar panel company, Solyndra, was just the beginning of what she calls “crony capitalism on steroids”. She noted:

We’re going to see much revelation of other companies too that are receiving our tax dollars that we don’t have, that we’re borrowing from China and we’re printing out of thin air in order to fund some of these entities that have friends in the White House and on Wall Street. And we’re the ones in the end, the middle class, who are made to suffer. People are going to understand more and more the dangers of crony capitalism, and that is why so many of us are saying, “whatever it takes to retire this permanent political class that has embraced it. We’re going to do to it!”

As usual, Governor Palin was correct in predicting pervasive crony capitalism in Washington DC. On Friday, the Obama administration doled out $5 billion more dollars in energy loan guarantees. One of those loans went to the company, Exelon (emphasis added):

The deals announced Friday include a $1.5 billion loan guarantee to Florida-based NextEra Energy and other investors that bought a planned 550-megawatt solar farm on federal land in Southern California from First Solar, as well as $646 million to Illinois-based Exelon Corp. for a 230-megawatt solar plant near Los Angeles. Next Era Energy Resources and GE Energy Financial Services bought the Desert Sunlight project from First Solar, while Exelon bought the Antelope Valley project. First Solar will continue to build and operate both projects.

Interesting to note is that Exelon was President Obama’s fourth largest donor in 2008, and this was not the only time he was involved in crony capitalism tainted political maneuvers with this company. He did so while he was in the Senate as well:

The New York Times reported earlier this year that Obama accepted more than$225,000 in contributions from Exelon executives while watering down an antinuclear bill he had introduced in the Senate. Exelon is the nation’s largest provider of nuclear power.

Next Era Energy, who partnered with GE, received $1.5 billion dollars in loan guarantees, but that’s not the only time Next Era Energy and GE have teamed up. President Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness is headed by GE CEO, Jeff Imelt, while Next Era CEO, Lew Hay III, also served on this council. This becomes crony capitalism defined, as President Obama stated when he established this council, “[i]t’s critical for us to have input from folks who are actually hiring, putting people to work, making payroll, making the products and services that make our economy so powerful”. Isn’t it funny that these companies’ input potentially played a role in steering loan guarantees to their companies? Governor Palin has recently highlighted the crony capitalism of GE, including the loans (emphasis mine):

This icon of American industry is a company full of good employees who make some good products (and is the parent company of a huge media outlet), but GE is also a large American corporation that pays virtually no corporate income taxes despite earning worldwide profits of $14.2 billion last year, $5.1 billion of it in the United States. In fact, they claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion, meaning they received more of our hard earned tax dollars than they contributed. How is that possible? It’s because not only do they shelter their money from taxes, but they also get many tax credits, loans, government grants, and other benefits from the federal government that our smaller businesses couldn’t even imagine being able to profit from.

It should also be noted that GE-affiliated donors were among his larger contributors in 2008 to the tune of more than half a million dollars. It’s amazing what you can discover when you shine a little sunlight on solar energy companies!

Governor Palin’s career has been marked by fighting cronyism and corruption. As a member of the city council, she called out a fellow councilmember for trying to modify Wasilla’s garbage regulations in order to steer business to his garbage collection company. She blew the whistle on the head of the Alaska GOP, Randy Ruedrich, who was working with her as a commissioner with the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, when he was doing party business on state time. This resulted in the largest ethics fine in state history. As Governor, she continued this consistent fight against crony capitalism and corruption. Her three major legislative victories focused on this fight. She signed into all major ethics reform that disallowed trading votes for campaign funds. Her major energy reforms were passed in a transparent manner that did not allow oil companies to write the legislation to disproportionately benefit them. This includes restructuring Alaska’s oil tax system after the previous administration had developed a plan that was good for Governor Murkowski’s cronies, but not for the people of Alaska. Her natural gas pipeline project allowed companies to submit proposals for public consumption before state government officials made decisions, preventing backroom dealing. In her interview with Judge Napolitano, she noted that Americans want to do “whatever it takes to retire the permanent political class that has embraced [crony capitalism]”. An easy way to do this is to elect the woman who already done this every step of the way.

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Governor Palin’s Free Market Populism Bests the Boys’ Crony Capitalism

by Whitney Pitcher

Under the false premise that the government can create jobs, the Obama administration is proposing yet another stimulus/jobs bill that would use nearly half a trillion in taxpayer dollars as another supposed attempt to help the American economy. This new jobs bill is considered by some, however, to primarily be a bailout for blue states. This comes on the heels of the Solyndra scandal  where President Obama’s hybrid of crony capitalism and corporatism meant taxpayer dollars went to funding a failed solar panel company with strong ties to his campaign donors. Solyndra is not the only company to fall under the Obama administration’s “too green to fail” mentality when it comes to stimulus funding, as four other “green” companies who received stimulus funding also have gone bankrupt. This loan guarantee program for green companies that was a key component of the 2009 stimulus bill has cost American taxpayers $38.6 billion, but has yielded fewer than 4,000 of the promised 65,000 jobs from the loan program. The stimulus bill as a whole was supposed to prevent unemployment from going above 8%, but instead it has been above 8% since February of 2009.

Additionally, although Governor Romney’s healthcare reform bill was not specifically intended to spur job creation, it’s big  government action has impacted jobs– for the worse. A report published this week estimates that Romneycare has cost Massachusetts more than 18,000 jobs. Beyond their similar approaches to healthcare reform, Governor Romney’s policies and stances are similar to President Obama’s in that he feels that subsidies and corporatism are part of a “pro business/big government” mindset, as his administration offered special technology loans to lure business from other states. As a presidential candidate for 2008 and 2012, Romney has supported both energy subsidies and insurance subsidies, and he still supports TARP—all means of government funnel taxpayer dollars towards business.

Governor Perry, who is touted by many as the “jobs” candidate, may have had a lot of jobs come to Texas during his tenure, but he also implemented “pro business” loans like both President Obama and Governor Romney. Like President Obama, he scratched the back of his political donors at the expense of taxpayers. His Emerging Technology Fund also proved to be a mechanism of reciprocity to his political donors to the tune of 200 million in taxpayer dollars. The Wall Street Journal  reports that one such donor invested more in Perry’s campaign than the company for which they were seeking a grant. Interestingly, the grant was initially denied by a regional committee, but was later approved by a Perry appointed committee:

In 2009, when Mr. Nance submitted his application for a $4.5 million Emerging Technology Fund grant for Convergen, he and his partners had invested only $1,000 of their own money into their new company, according to documentation prepared by the governor’s office in February 2010. But over the years, Mr. Nance managed to invest a lot more than $1,000 in Mr. Perry. Texas Ethics Commission records show that Mr. Nance donated $75,000 to Mr. Perry’s campaigns between 2001 and 2006.

The regional panel that reviewed Convergen’s application turned down the company’s $4.5 million request when it presented its proposal on Oct. 7, 2009. But Mr. Nance appealed that decision directly to a statewide advisory committee (of which Mr. Nance was once a member) appointed by Mr. Perry. Just eight days later, on Oct. 15, a subcommittee unanimously recommended approval by the full statewide committee. On Oct. 29, the full advisory committee unanimously recommended the approval of Convergen’s application. When asked why the advisory committee felt comfortable recommending Convergen’s grant, Lucy Nashed, a spokesperson for Mr. Perry, said that the committee “thoroughly vetted the company.”

This was only one example of the reciprocity between Perry donors and grant recipients. The Dallas Morning News shares this graphic depicting hundreds of thousands of campaign donations from companies who would later receive grant funding from Governor Perry’s initiative:

Governor Palin, on the other hand, realizes that government neither creates jobs, nor is supposed to be a channel to funnel taxpayer dollars back to political donors. She recognizes that government’s role is not to be pro business, but pro market, where through billions of transactions the American public determines the success and failure of business by what they choose to buy, not by what government chooses to subsidize. In her Tea Party speech earlier this month, she spoke of the need for less federal government intervention, not only in less regulation and more federalism, but also in removing subsidies, loopholes, and bailouts—the very things her potential political opponents engage in– from the economic equation (emphasis added):

But here’s the best part: To balance out any loss of federal revenue from this tax cut, we eliminate corporate welfare and all the loopholes and we eliminate bailouts. This is how we break the back of crony capitalism because it feeds off corporate welfare, which is just socialism for the very rich. We can change all of that. The message then to job-creating corporations is: We’ll unshackle you from the world’s highest federal corporate income tax rate, but you will stand or fall on your own, just like all the rest of us out on main street.

Governor Palin knows better than anyone else the need to remove crony capitalism from politics. As she noted on Greta van Susteren’s show earlier this week she has the “bumps and bruises to prove it”. ACES, her oil tax plan, reformed Governor Murkowski’s crony corruption tainted plan that was written to favor certain oil companies and ultimately also led to the arrest of oil company personnel, gubernatorial staff, and state legislators.  ACES was not a behind closed doors deal. In fact, Governor Palin did not allow lobbyists in her office at all.  Instead, it was a plan written and passed in a transparent manner, was presented to the people of Alaska more than two weeks before it was presented to the legislature, and did not involve undue influence from the oil companies.  Following the passage of ACES, Alaska saw a record number of oil jobs during Governor Palin’s tenure.  Not only were the number of jobs increasing, the legislation made development more attractive for other companies beyond the “Big Oil” companies favored by Governor Palin’s predecessor. Since the passage of ACES, the number of companies filing with the state of Alaska has doubled.

Even though a third of Alaskan jobs are tied to the oil industry, Governor Palin’s stellar jobs record extends behind solely that industry. Critics may argue that in an energy rich state, jobs naturally increase during a time when oil prices are high (as was the case during Governor Palin’s tenure) as more energy industry jobs are created. When Governor Palin took office in December of 2006, Alaska was pulling up the rear when it came to jobs, ranking 49th out of the 50 states and Washington D.C. In her first year in office, Alaska was 6th best in improvement in unemployment. By the end of the final year of her tenure, Alaska was ranked 21st in the country. This kind of impressive record on jobs is how Alaska was 2nd best in job growth during her tenure.  Data from the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development, showed that in addition to a 13.7% increase in resource development jobs, Alaska saw a nearly 5% increase in business service jobs and a 6.4% increase in education and health related jobs during Governor Palin’s time in office.

Governor Palin’s record reinforces her rhetoric. Instead of giving companies  millions or billions in taxpayer dollars in an attempt to create jobs or giving preferential treatment to favored companies or campaign donors, Governor Palin sought to remove the ties of cronyism and truly create a level playing field where businesses are neither too influential to fail, nor too small to succeed. This is what separates Governor Palin from all of her potential political opponents who have gained for themselves the moniker of crony capitalist or corporatist. Instead, she is, in the words Jim Pethokoukis of CNBC, a free market populist. This doesn’t make her William Jennings Bryan in skirt railing against big business, but instead a conservative warrior fighting against entangled web of business, political donors, and big government.

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Sarah Palin: Crony Capitalism on Steroids from GE to Solyndra

By Gary P Jackson

Sarah Palin ripped Barack Obama for the massive corruption surrounding his relationships with General Electric and Solyndra:[emphasis mine]

In my recent speech in Iowa, some eyebrows were raised when I took on our government’s enormous economic problems caused by crony capitalism. As if on cue, just days later President Obama selected someone who exemplifies a major crony capitalism problem to sit next to the First Lady when he delivered his “jobs plan” speech before Congress. He selected General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt as his honored guest.

Having grown up with great respect for GE thanks to stories my grandfather shared with us about his days working for the company and even meeting GE spokesman-at-the-time Ronald Reagan during a company event, I am saddened at GE’s leadership evolution. This corporation is now the poster child of corporate welfare and crony capitalism.

This icon of American industry is a company full of good employees who make some good products (and is the parent company of a huge media outlet), but GE is also a large American corporation that pays virtually no corporate income taxes despite earning worldwide profits of $14.2 billion last year, $5.1 billion of it in the United States. In fact, they claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion, meaning they received more of our hard earned tax dollars than they contributed. How is that possible? It’s because not only do they shelter their money from taxes, but they also get many tax credits, loans, government grants, and other benefits from the federal government that our smaller businesses couldn’t even imagine being able to profit from.

Joining GE in the pantheon on crony capitalism is another Obama favorite that has been in the news of late: Solyndra. The President hailed this “green energy” company in a speech last May as “the true engine of economic growth.” When he announced the $535 million guarantee to Solyndra, Vice President Biden said that investments like this are “exactly what the Recovery Act is all about.” (Dear God…If the failed Solyndra venture has been what it’s “all about,” then that explains a lot.) As I pointed out in my speech at the Reagan Ranch Center last February: “History has proven again and again, when government picks the winners and losers, we’re stuck with the losers, and we the taxpayers subsidize failure!” And that’s what we’re seeing now, as the FBI raids the solar energy company’s headquarters to glean more information after the company was handed half a billion dollars in “green energy” Stimulus funds from the American taxpayer only to later declare bankruptcy. More than one thousand Solyndra workers lost their jobs. Now as the truth comes out, we discover that the White House was heavily involved in the Department of Energy’s rushed decision to give the Stimulus funds to Solyndra, and they tried to move the money through so quickly they seem to have ignored concerns that the company was not viable. Why would they do this? Perhaps it’s because a large investor in the company (about 35%) is Obama campaign bundler George Kaiser. And with the way the deal is structured, Kaiser will get his debts paid before we the taxpayers see any relief. That is sickening. And that’s how it works: workers lose their jobs, wealthy political cronies stand a good chance of getting their money back, and the U.S. taxpayer gets the shaft. Again.

President Obama has his sights set on raising $1 billion for his reelection campaign. Raising that money won’t be easy. But if you can hand out other people’s money to friends, it must get a whole lot easier. This crony capitalism and government waste is at the heart of our economic problems.

It will destroy us if we don’t root it out. It’s not just a Democrat problem or a Republican problem. It’s a problem of our permanent political class. This won’t stop until “we the people” say enough is enough, and we retire the permanent political class that votes for this.

~ Sarah Palin

Mark Levin has more. He talked to a Solyndra employee who said “everyone knew the plant wouldn’t work.”

Click on the image to listen to the interview:


Filed under In The News, Politics, sarah palin