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Editorial: Allow free market to lead the way to sustainable future
About politics and other thingsMay 8, 2013 | 1,014 views | 1 comment
This administration has funneled billions of dollars into so-called green-industry projects in the hopes of achieving a global sustainability to meet the lofty objectives of the United Nations’ Agenda 21.
These green opportunities also were supposed to jump-start the economy after a nasty recession. Unfortunately, many of the taxpayer-funded ventures went belly up after swallowing hundreds of millions of dollars.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, commonly called the stimulus, was signed into law in 2009 by President Barack Obama to the tune of $787 billion. (It was later revised to $831 billion to be spent between 2009 and 2019.)
A good chunk of this stimulus money was funneled toward new green energy and technology companies. The best known of these was Solyndra, a California manufacturer of solar cells. Shortly before it filed for bankruptcy, the company put in a state-of-the-art robotic fabrication plant with the help of $535 million in stimulus (i.e. taxpayer) funds.
Solyndra’s technology and supposed far-reaching benefits to the U.S. economy were still being flaunted as being on the cutting edge of the green industry. It was supposed to have employed 3,000 people and created 1,000 new jobs.
A mere eight months later, Solyndra was ready to lay off about 40 employees and discontinue 150 temporary workers. One year later, it was filing for bankruptcy, laying off more than 1,000 additional employees. Soon it was up for sale, but only after its top executives were handsomely rewarded with our “stimulus” tax dollars.
One of the reasons given for this sudden turn of events at Solyndra was that China could make these solar panels cheaper. And so it is with much of this new taxpayer-funded green industry. The ideas might be good on paper, but cannot hold their own when it comes to producing within the good old American free-market economy.
Other stimulus projects funneled billions of dollars to promote plug-in electric vehicles. One estimate is that $9.5 billion in stimulus money has been spent on this technology, with more to come. These experimental businesses are expensive to get established, so when the government starts throwing money at them, it appears that the ideas get going before they are well-thought-out. In other words, the money is there, so spend it. Figure out later whether or not it will pay off.
While electric cars are being promoted, the federal government is anxious to continue using our tax money to build them. That would indicate that there are still inherent problems waiting to be solved. For one, an affordable, long-range, reliable battery is yet to be designed. Still, the cars are being built and promoted using stimulus funds.
It’s a pretty safe bet that if the idea was good and profitable, the free market would have jumped on it long ago. Look what happened when Henry Ford recognized the benefits of the gasoline engine. He didn’t need government stimulus funds to start Ford Motor Co. He researched ways to mass-produce a quality motor, and began to build cars.
This should be a lesson to the government: If a product requires government support to build it, the time is not right. When the product is ready and can stand on its own, the free market will take over. Unless, of course, the government chooses to interfere with restrictive regulations, as with the production of oil and gas.
Rather than encourage and promote America’s own energy independence, this administration seems to want to keep us in the dark and dependent upon government for subsistence. Perhaps it is afraid of the independence and power of a real free market.
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The Marcelina Muse
Dry Tank, TX
May 8, 2013 1:15pm
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