CBS News is reporting that there are 11 more Solyndras in the Obama Administration’s green-energy program:
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. . .Standard and Poor’s had given the [Beacon] project a rating of ‘CCC-plus.’
(A CCC rating is also shared by Greece, a virtually bankrupt nation embroiled in a massive debt crisis).
A liberal Congress must share the blame for this fiasco, since the massive $800 billion stimulus package it passed in 2009 funded these boondoggles. As a Solyndra stakeholder exulted, “there’s never been more money shoved out the government’s door in world history.” But as the Washington Post noted, energy programs were “infused with politics at every level” under Obama. His Administration hastily approved subsidies for Solyndra, whose executives are now pleading the 5th Amendment, despite obvious danger signs and warnings about the company’s likely collapse. (Later, federal officials successfully pressured Solyndra to delay its announcement about upcoming layoffs until just after the 2010 election, to avoid embarrassing the Obama Administration).
The Obama Administration also used green-jobs money from the stimulus package to outsource American jobs to countries like China: “Despite all the talk of green jobs, the overwhelming majority of stimulus money spent on wind power has gone to foreign companies, according to a new report by the Investigative Reporting Workshop at the American University’s School of Communication in Washington, D.C.” As the Investigative Reporting Workshop noted, “79 percent” of all green-jobs funding “went to companies based overseas . . .In fact, the largest grant made under the program so far, a $178 million payment on Dec. 29, went to Babcock & Brown, a bankrupt Australian company.” (The stimulus package also funnelled money to left-wing community organizers and liberal lobbying groups.)
The Washington Examiner argued that the global-warming bill backed by Obama would similarly backfire, leading to deforestation, and thus increasing greenhouse gas emissions in the long run. Obama’s so-called “cap-and-trade” legislation was full of pay-offs for special interests. Obama once admitted that under his cap-and-trade scheme, electricity bills would “skyrocket” and coal-fed power plants would go “bankrupt.” Treasury Department analysts estimated it could increase costs for the average household by $1761 per year. It contained environmentally-harmful provisions, such as ethanol mandates that damage “water supplies, soil health and air quality.” Ethanol mandates have helped destroy forests in the Third World, and spawned famines that have killed countless people in the world’s poorest countries.
The Obama Administration claimed that if the stimulus package were passed, unemployment would never go above 8 percent, but it peaked at over 10 percent. Obama relied on exaggerated claims to push through the stimulus package, claiming it was needed to prevent the economy from suffering an “irreversible decline,” even though the Congressional Budget Office admitted that the stimulus package will shrink the economy “in the long run.” Ill-conceived provisions in the stimulus package ended up destroying thousands of jobs by wiping out exports.
The billions in taxpayer money wasted on foreign green jobs are yet another breach of Obama’s 2008 pledge of a “net spending cut,” which he broke by proposing budgets that would add $4.8 trillion to the national debt.