The Stimulus was nothing more than a giant slush fund for Obama and his supporters. It’s one of the greatest thefts in history. Second only to the Bankers with TARP and the Wall Street bailouts!
- How taxpayers are left holding the bill when political favors go wrong -
The nearly $1 trillion stimulus bill that President Obama pushed after taking office was supposed to revive the economy, but it was really all about installing the Left’s vision to transform America. A major part of the transformation is an attempt to defy the laws of economics and have politically-connected campaign donors and Washington central planners decide what kind of energy the country should use. The stimulus was packed with giveaways that allowed dozens of so-called “green” energy projects to sap taxpayer funds to advance Obama’s vision. However,they could only ignore market economics for so long and now the projects are starting to collapse. Who’s left holding the bill? Taxpayers.
$535 Million, Bankrupt
The California solar panel manufacturer received the very first stimulus green energy loan guarantee on September 4, 2009. Despite repeated warnings by Obama administration career and political staff that the company was not sound, the loan guarantee was rushed out the door.Two years later the company closed its doors, laid off 1,100 employees, and filed for bankruptcy.Two days after that, agents from the FBI raided the company’s headquarters. Solyndra CEO George Kaiser and other executives bundled more than $100,000 in Obama campaign donations;they also visited the White House over 20 times while the loan was being reviewed.
$43 Million, Bankrupt
The Massachusetts-based company received a $43 million loan guarantee to build a 20-megawatt flywheel energy storage plant in Stephentown, New York. Beacon was one of the first three recipients of federal backing. Despite the steep price-tag Obama administration officials estimated that it would “create or save” just 14 permanent jobs and create 20 temporary construction jobs. Citing the “current economic and political climate,” the onerous terms of the federal loan guarantee, and the company’s inability to obtain equity financing due to its recent delisting from the NASDAQ stock exchange, the company filed for bankruptcy on October 30.The company also got $29 billion in federal and Pennsylvania state grants for a 20-megawatt plant in the Keystone State.
$79 Million, Failing
Nevada Geothermal Power received a partial guarantee of a $98.5 million loan to build a geothermal power plant in Blue Mountain, Nevada in September 2011. The federal government is liable for the credit risk on 80 percent of the loan (or $79 million). The plant also received $66million in grants from another stimulus fund, the Energy Grants Program, in July 2011. The plant was projected to create 200 temporary construction jobs and “save or create” just 14permanent jobs. The New York Times is now reporting that the company’s own auditor expressed “significant doubt about the company’s ability to remain a going concern.” The plant still does not produce enough revenue to pay off the company’s high-interest loans and expensive operating costs. The company’s stock has plummeted, from $1.24 per share when its plant opened to as low as 8 cents per share.Senator Harry Reid has been one of the strongest supporters of geothermal energy in his state.Two of his former aides are currently tied to another geothermal company that has also received$350 million in Section 1705 loan guarantees and is currently in partnership with NGP.
$529 Million, Stimulus for Finland
Collapsing companies aren’t the only green stimulus scandal. The Obama administration has also approved a plan by electric car company Fisker to use part of its $529 million federal stimulus loan guarantee to build its manufacturing facility, and the 500 jobs it supports, in Finland. The company is more than a year behind schedule to roll out its $97,000 luxury electric car, Karma. There have also been questions about the energy savings that Fisker says its electric car would bring. In a free market, companies should seek out the best place to produce their products. However, once politicians start handing out taxpayer dollars to support projects they prefer, sending our money to Finland to support manufacturing jobs is highly suspect.
$55 Million, Failing
Ener1, which produces electric car batteries and received grants from the 2009 stimulus package,had its shares de-listed from NASDAQ after the company failed to submit its required quarterly report on time. The company’s stock had fallen from $4.04 per share in 2010 to just 9. The company has thus far drawn down $55 million of the $118.5 million grants they were awarded by the Department of Energy. The company previously received over $10 million in grant sunder the Bush administration.
$730 Million, Under Investigation
In an October 20th letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa questioned why Severstal North America, a subsidiary of a leading Russian steel and mining company owned by wealthy business tycoon Alexei Mordashov, received a $730 million loan guarantee from the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program. The loan supports improvements to the company’s advanced high strength steel plant in Dearborn, Michigan. Issa questioned the necessity of the loan given the company's ample ability to self-finance. He also questioned whether it was appropriate to support the project under a program designed to advance clean-energy vehicles, especially given the strong supply of high quality steel already available in the U.S.