That’s right fellow taxpayers, we took another one on the chin recently as we learned that the White House’s darling of Green Energy, Solyndra, shut its doors the last day of August. The company was supposed to be one of President Obama’s highly touted green energy companies specializing in solar energy products.
Stimulus funds to the tune of $575,000,000.00 were loaned to the company in 2009 through the Department of Energy (DOE). The quandary with this situation is just how much pressure was applied by the White House on the DOE to make sure this now belly-up company got the taxpayers hard-earned tax dollars? A number of emails that are surfacing from 2009 show a number of key White House officials corresponding with the DOE and the Office of Management and Budget. Fingers have been pointed at the two agencies, but these emerging emails are beginning to show that the White House wanted this project rushed through. The agencies even warned that they needed more time to confirm the financial strength of Solyndra.
A report in The Washington Post states the e-mails also raise questions about whether the administration should have foreseen the oncoming financial trouble of Solyndra. In August 2009, e-mail exchanges between Energy Department staff members pointed out that a credit-rating agency predicted that the project would run out of cash in September 2011. Again, Solyndra shut its doors on the final day of August.
Oh by the way, Solyndra’s biggest investors were funds operated on behalf of the family foundation of billionaire and Obama fundraiser George Kaiser. Although he has been a frequent White House visitor, Kaiser has said he did not use political influence to win approval of the loan to Solyndra.
“We need to invest in the jobs of the future and in the industries of the future, because the country that leads in clean energy and energy efficiency today ... is going to lead the global economy tomorrow,” Obama said last March. “I want that country to be the United States of America.”
The $575,000,000.00 million sounds like a tremendous amount of money and it is a large amount. But consider this...$93 billion (with a “b”) in stimulus funding has been distributed into the “green energy”. President Obama claims that as a result of this investment 225,000 jobs have been “saved or created”. If you do the math on the return on investment, that’s $410,000.00 per job. A lot of green for one green energy job.
It’s time for big government to get its nose out of the private sector. If President Obama wants to help the economy grow, let free enterprise operate in a friendly environment (i.e. less bureaucracy and less government involvement). And again, I firmly believe that we can’t buy our way out of debt or this recession.