Green Stimulus Spending: A Litany of Failure

by William Yeatman on March 1, 2012

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An ongoing theme of this blog is that green energy spending in the Stimulus was a gigantic waste of money. This is for one of two reasons: Invariably, either (1) a Members of Congress tried to influence Stimulus spending as a constituent service or (2) the Obama administration steered investments to friends and campaign contribution bundlers. Whether it’s parochial politics or crony capitalism, the results are the same—bad bets and taxpayer losses.

It takes a while to spend scores of billions of dollars, so the returns of the Stimulus are only now coming in…And they are terrible for proponents of venture socialism. Nary has a week gone by without another green Stimulus beneficiary hitting the skids. In previous posts, I’ve addressed these failures in real time, as they’ve happened. I’ve compared this depressing litany of bankruptcies, layoffs, and production cutbacks to a green albatross burdening President Barack Obama‘s 2012 electoral prospects.

Last week, for example, we learned that engineers at Tesla Motors, which makes Brad Pitt’s favorite green car and also received Stimulus largesse, overlooked a fatal design flaw that easily renders the engine a “brick,” and therefore useless. This is what happens when the Energy Department operates an investment bank.

Yesterday, another government-picked “winner” announced it is “losing.” Reports Paul Chesser of the National Legal & Policy Center,

Yet another solar company that received loan guarantees from the Department of Energy has dismissed factory workers, lopping off 70 percent of its U.S. employees. Loveland, Colo.-based Abound Solar announced Tuesday it would lay off 280 workers at its production plant near Longmont, leaving 120 still employed. The start-up (2009) company attributed the cutbacks to the need for upgrades at the plant to manufacture more efficient solar panels, with plans to restore production levels and rehire most employees within six to nine months.

Mr. President, are you still sure that you want to “double down” on green energy?

nofreewind March 2, 2012 at 4:10 pm

39 billion to create 61,000 jobs. That’s 634K/job!!!

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