Tuesday, December 31, 2013

TRUTH, JUSTICE AND THE AMERICAN WAY ...

MRAP: From Symbol of Iraq War to Symbol of Washington ‘Waste’?
MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicles operated by US Marines from 1st Battalion 7th Marines Regiment leave PB Fulod in Sangin, Afghanistan in June 2012. (ADEK BERRY/AFP/GettyImages)
MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicles operated by US Marines from 1st Battalion 7th Marines Regiment leave PB Fulod in Sangin, Afghanistan in June 2012. (ADEK BERRY/AFP/GettyImages)
The massive 14-ton, blast-resistant vehicles called MRAPs became the symbol of America’s misadventure in Iraq. And now, the Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected trucks are, one US senator says, the symbol of Pentagon and congressional waste.


Sen. Tom Coburn, a self-described “fiscal hawk,” on Tuesday unveiled his “Wastebook 2013,” which identifies a long list of federal government programs the Oklahoma Republican says the nation could really do without.

The report is written in a style befitting Coburn: Informed, blunt and targeting just about everyone. That includes the Pentagon. Not only does Coburn dub the US military’s pricey MRAPs “the Afghanistan scrap market’s flavor of the month,” but he also hits the National Guard for spending “$10 million on Superman movie tie-ins while plans were being made to cut the strength of the Guard by 8,000 soldiers, the real supermen and women who fight for truth, justice and the American way.”

Ouch! And there’s more. Much more.

More on Superman in a moment. Let’s get back to the MRAP issue.

Coburn’s “Wastebook” notes Pentagon brass have determined the military no longer needs around half of the massive bomb-resistant vehicles. In fact, “about 9,000 will be shipped to the United States and U.S. military bases in Kuwait and elsewhere, but thousands of remaining vehicles, each worth at least $500,000, will simply be shredded,” the report states. Coburn also has some harsh advice about the US defense industrial base as America exits another war:

“There is worry the defense industry might suffer if the Pentagon unloads tons of used equipment on the market at vastly reduced prices. This should be viewed as market correction and a positive outcome of the drawdown, not a reason to send valuable equipment to the scrap heap.”

Back to the “Man of Steel.” Let’s let the “Wastebook’s” words speak for themselves:

“Sequestration, the across-the-board spending cuts agreed to by Congress and the President, will reduce the strength of the Army National Guard by more than 8,000 soldiers. So perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising that in the face of these cuts, the National Guard is turning to Superman for help.
  
WOULD YOU BUY A VEHICLE FROM THIS SUPERMAN?
“Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, not even the menacing threats of sequester or a government shutdown could furlough the caped crusader and his fight for truth, justice, and the American way. This year, the Army National Guard teamed up with Superman on a $10 million ‘Soldier of Steel” promotional campaign, intended “to increase awareness and consideration of service opportunities in the National Guard’.”

During the partnership, the Army was forced to cut its ranks — including Guard members — due to sequestration. The latest “Superman” flick made millions. Thoughts, Dr. Coburn?

“The Army still spent $10 million to subsidize the promotion of Superman with the hopes of enlisting new recruits. This money could have been better spent on the real life supermen and superwomen in the Army National Guard who are courageously risking all in the fight for truth, justice, and the American way.

“As Superman flies away with massive profits from sponsors and ticket sales and the force size and budget of the Army National Guard shrinks, the U.S. national debt continues to go up, up and away.”

Yikes. Coburn was equally blunt during a thought-provoking press conference Wednesday where he rolled out the “Wastebook.”

“Whether you agree with my opinion or not isn’t the issue. The fact is, is if you look at $750 billion in deficits, and almost an $18 trillion debt, some grownup in the room has to question whether or not we’re spending money wisely and effectively.

“And so, inside the ‘Wastebook’ this year is $30 billion of stupid — what I would consider stupid or at least poor judgment — when it comes to spending money in a time when we have very little money to spare.”
To watch Coburn’s entire press conference, click here.










Monday, December 30, 2013

WORDS FROM YOUR WALLET ... HARDLY SURPRISING BUT STARTLING NONETHELESS ...


I received this from a classmate whose friend is still working as a consulting engineer. He recently signed up for the Bronze Plan, the lowest level of Obamacare, and was surprised to find that his lady friend got the same plan for much, much, less. He concludes that Obamacare is an income transfer scheme designed to maximize political power (and dependency).

The actual numbers are staggering.

Eyes wide shut ... but not for long!!!
  

What ObamaCare is Really About ... moving the goal post daily!

I'm a 54 year old consulting engineer and make between $60,000 and $125,000 per year, depending on how hard I work and whether or not there are work projects out there for me.


My girlfriend is 61 and makes about $18,000 per year, working as a part-time mail clerk.


For me, making $60,000 a year, under ObamaCare, the cheapest, lowest grade policy I can buy, which also happens to impose a $5,000 deductible, costs $482 per month.
  

For my girlfriend, the same exact policy, same deductible, costs $1 per month. That's right, $1 per month. I'm not making this up.
   

Don't believe me? Just go to www.coveredca.gov, the ObamaCare website for California and enter the parameters I've mentioned above and see for yourself. By the way, my zip code is 93940. You'll need to enter that.


So OK, clearly ObamaCare is a scheme that involves putting the cost burden of healthcare onto the middle and upper-income wage earners. But there's a lot more to it. Stick with me.

Now consider this:

If I want to upgrade my policy to a low-deductible premium policy, such as what I had with my last employer, my cost is $886 per month. But my girlfriend can upgrade her policy to the very same level, for just $4 per month. That's right, $4 per month. $48 per year for a zero-deductible, premium healthcare policy - the kind of thing you get when you work at IBM (except of course, IBM employees pay an average of $170 per month out of pocket for their coverage).


I mean, it's bad enough that I will be forced to subsidize the ObamaCare scheme in the first place. But even if I agreed with the basic scheme, which of course I do not, I would never agree to subsidize premium policies. If I have to pay $482 a month for a budget policy, I sure as hell do not want the guy I'm subsidizing to get a better policy, for less that 1% of what I have to fork out each month for a low-end policy.

HOW MANY JOBS WOULD BE CREATED IF EVERYONE PAYING THIS AMOUNT INSTEAD DROVE A SLK250 ROADSTER IN PERPETUITY?
Why must I pay $482 per month for something the other guy gets for a dollar? And why should the other guy get to buy an $886 policy for $4 a month? Think about this: I have to pay $10,632 a year for the same thing that the other guy can get for $48. $10,000 of net income is 60 days of full time work as an engineer. $48 is something I could could pay for collecting aluminum cans and plastic bottles, one day a month.

Are you with me on this? Are you starting to get an idea what ObamaCare is really about?

ObamaCare is not about dealing with inequities in the healthcare system. That's just the cover story. The real story is that it is a massive, political power grab. Do you think anyone who can insure himself with a premium policy for $4 a month will vote for anyone but the political party that provides him such a deal? ObamaCare is about enabling, subsidizing, and expanding the Left's political power base, at taxpayer expense. Why would I vote for anyone but a Democrat if I can have babies for $4 a month? For that matter, why would I go to college or strive for a better job or income if it means I have to pay real money for healthcare coverage? Heck, why study engineering when I can be a schlub for $20K per year and buy a new F-150 with all the money I'm saving?


And think about those $4-a-month babies - think in terms of propagation models. Think of just how many babies will be born to irresponsible, under-educated mothers. Will we get a new crop of brain surgeons and particle physicists from the dollar baby club, or will we need more cops, criminal courts and prisons? One thing you can be certain of: At $4 a month, they'll multiply, and multiply, and multiply. And not one of them will vote Republican.

ObamaCare: It's all about political power.

PS: 


I live in Monterey County, in Central California. We have a large land mass but just 426,000 residents - about the population of Colorado Springs or the city of Omaha.

But we do have a large Hispanic population, including a large number of illegal aliens, and to serve this group we have Natividad Medical Center, a massive, Federally subsidized county medical complex that takes up an area about one-third the size of the Chrysler Corporation automobile assembly plant in Belvedere, Illinois (see Google Earth View). Natividad has state-of-the-art operating rooms, Computed Tomography and Magnetic Resonance Imaging, fully equipped, 24 hour emergency room, and much more. If you have no insurance, if you've been in a drive-by shooting or have overdosed on crack cocaine, this is where you go. And it's essentially free, because almost everyone who ends up in the ER is uninsured.

Last year, 2,735 babies were born at Natividad. 32% of these were born to out-of-wedlock teenage mothers, 93% of which were Hispanic. Less than 20% could demonstrate proof of citizenship, and 71% listed their native language as Spanish. Of these 876 births, only 40 were covered under [any kind of] private health insurance. The taxpayers paid for the other 836. And in case you were wondering about the entire population - all 2,735 births - less than 24% involved insured coverage or even partial payment on behalf of the patient to the hospital in exchange for services. Keep this in mind as we move forward.










Sunday, December 29, 2013

IF WE BELIEVE ... IN HOPE AND CHANGE ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE ... WELL EXCEPT A FEW THINGS LIKE HOPE AND CHANGE

List of Failed Obama Green Energy$olar Companies in the Billion$
BUT WAIT, "THAT'S NOT ALL" ... SHAMWOW


“If we believe the government can make a difference in people’s lives, we have the obligation to prove that it works – by making government smarter, and leaner and more effective…”

APRIL 13, 2011

Full Obama failed green energy companies list below

Update: October 15, 2012:
Obama Green Investments Said Would Take The Country Forward Are Going Belly Up, Taking Jobs And Taxpayer Cash With Them

ELECTRIC CAR BATTERY MAKER A123 SYSTEMS HAS FILED FOR BANKRUPTCY AFTER $249 MILLION IN TAXPAYER SUPPORT

A123 Files Bankruptcy – Another Obama Green Failure

Today, Taxpayer-Backed A123 Systems, A Maker Of Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Batteries For Electric Cars, Filed For Bankruptcy. “A123 Systems Inc. (AONE), a maker of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries for electric cars, filed for bankruptcy after failing to make a debt payment that was due yesterday. The company listed assets of $459.8 million and debt of $376 million as of Aug. 31 in Chapter 11 documents filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware. Chapter 11 is the section of the Bankruptcy Code used by companies to reorganize.” (Dawn McCarty and Craig Trudell, “Electric Car Battery Maker A123 Systems Files Bankruptcy Papers,” Bloomberg Businessweek, 10/16/12)

A123 Systems Has Posted At Least 14 Straight Quarterly Losses With Shares Falling 85 Percent This Year. “A123 has posted at least 14 straight quarterly losses. Its shares have fallen 85 percent this year to 24 cents at yesterday’s close in New York and traded at 16 cents at 8:29 a.m. before the start of regular trading.” (Dawn McCarty and Craig Trudell, “Electric Car Battery Maker A123 Systems Files Bankruptcy Papers,” Bloomberg Businessweek, 10/16/12)
(List of Obama Failed Green Energy Companies below)
FLASHBACK: In July 2011, President Obama Touted A123 Systems As A Job-Creating Company With Soaring Demand For Its Vehicle Components. OBAMA: “There’s A123, a clean-energy manufacturer in Michigan that just hired its 1,000th worker as demand has soared for its vehicle components. Companies like these are taking root and putting people to work in every corner of the country.” (President Barack Obama, Remarks By The President On Fuel Efficiency Standards , Washington, DC, 7/29/11)

After A $249.1 Million Federal Grant And Struggling With Costs Of Recalled Batteries, A123 Systems Is Looking To Make A “Deal With Wanxiang Group Corp., China’s Largest Auto-Parts Maker, For Financing In Exchange For A Majority Ownership Stake.” “A123, which received a $249.1 million federal grant in 2009 to build a U.S. factory, needed a financial lifeline after struggling with costs from a recall of batteries supplied to Fisker, the plug-in hybrid luxury carmaker. A123 announced in August that it was working on a deal with Wanxiang Group Corp., China’s largest auto-parts maker, for financing in exchange for a majority ownership stake.” (Dawn McCarty and Craig Trudell, “Electric Car Battery Maker A123 Systems Files Bankruptcy Papers,” Bloomberg Businessweek, 10/16/12)

With Wanxiang’s Large Stake, Obama’s “Made In America” Dream Is Unlikely To Come True For Electric Vehicles And Batteries. “President Barack Obama called A123 Chief Executive Officer David Vieau and then-Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm during a September 2010 event celebrating the opening of the plant in Livonia, Michigan, that the company received the U.S. grant to help build. ‘This is about the birth of an entire new industry in America — an industry that’s going to be central to the next generation of cars,” Obama said in the phone call, according to a transcript provided by the White House. “When folks lift up their hoods on the cars of the future, I want them to see engines and batteries that are stamped: Made in America.’” (Dawn McCarty and Craig Trudell, “Electric Car Battery Maker A123 Systems Files Bankruptcy Papers,”~Bloomberg Businessweek, 10/16/12)

A123 Is Saddled With A Costly Recall Due To Faulty Batteries Supplied To Fisker Automotive – Another Obama Green Energy Boondoggle

Fisker Karma’s Catch Fire – Another Green Obama Failure
A123 Incurred Heavy Losses Due To A Recall Of Defective Battery Packs It Supplied To Fisker Automotive. “The losses stem from A123′s recall of defective batteries built at its Livonia, Michigan, plant. The flaw came to light earlier this year when a Fisker Karma plug-in hybrid with an A123 battery failed during a test by Consumer Reports magazine. The repairs will cost nearly $67 million and force A123 to rebuild its inventory. A123 makes the battery for the Fisker Karma, the BMW hybrid 3- and 5-Series cars and GM’s all-electric Chevy Spark due in 2013.” (Deepa Seetharaman, “A123 Sees ‘Going Concern’ Risk Due To Steep Losses,” Reuters, 5/30/12)

IS THAT A BLOW UP MISTY?

One Of Fisker’s Karmas Broke Down In The Middle Of A Consumer Reports Test, Spawning A Battery Recall. “Earlier this year, one of the Karmas stopped working in the middle of a Consumer Reports road test — an embarrassing breakdown that Fisker later blamed on a faulty battery. The lithium-ion batteries became the subject of a recall, including for a defect that raised the risk of fires.” (Matthew Mosk, “Fisker May Never Build Electric Cars In US,” ABC News, 5/30/12)

Consumer Reports Calls Government-Financed, Luxury-Hybrid Fisker Automotive’s Karma An “Ergonomic Disaster” That “Does Not Fare Well Against Most Other Luxury Vehicles” Where “The Karma’s Problems Outweighed The Good.” “An influential consumer magazine said Fisker Automotive’s Karma plug-in hybrid has a variety of flaws, from limited visibility to a poorly designed touch-screen system that amounts to an ‘ergonomic disaster.’ The less-than-glowing report from Consumer Reports magazine is the latest blow for Fisker, which is looking to raise funds after being denied access to more than half of a $529 million government loan that was the cornerstone of its business plan. Consumer Reports tested a $107,850 Karma – the most expensive vehicle the magazine has tested – and said it does not fare well against most other luxury vehicles, due partly to its cramped interior and overly complex controls system. ‘Although we found its ride, handling and braking performance sound and it has first-class interior materials, the Karma’s problems outweighed the good,” said Jake Fisher, director of Consumer Reports’ auto test center.” (Deepa Seetharaman, “Fisker’s Pricey Karma Car Plagued With Flaws’:Consumer Reports,” Reuters, 9/25/12)


Fisker Automotive announced the strange, spontaneous combustion of a Karma plug-in hybrid due to A123 battery defect ...
Fisker Drew Down $193 Million From An Obama Administration Energy Loan Prior To the Funds Being Frozen. “Fisker intends to build the Atlantic at a former General Motors Co. factory in Delaware, he said. The company had cast doubt on the future of the Delaware factory earlier this year after the Obama administration last year suspended payments on a $529 million U.S. Department of Energy loan that was funding the Atlantic project. Fisker drew about $193 million of the loan to engineer its hybrid before the funds were frozen.” (Joseph White, “Fisker Held Funding Talks,” The Wall Street Journal , 10/1/12)
AFTER BILLIONS SPENT ON ELECTRIC VEHICLES AND BATTERIES, SALES ARE NOWHERE CLOSE TO OBAMA’S GOAL OF 1 MILLION CARS
“Electric-Vehicle Sales Since 2011 Totaled Fewer Than 50,000 Through September, Just 5 Percent Of The President’s Target.” “Whether the technology itself is a loser or consumers are merely slow to adapt to new things, car buyers so far haven’t embraced electric vehicles in numbers close to Obama’s goal. Electric-vehicle sales since 2011 totaled fewer than 50,000 through September, just 5 percent of the president’s target.” (Angela Greling Keane, “Obama’s $5 Billion Slow To Charge Electric Car Purchases,” Bloomberg, 10/16/12)

Brett Smith, Co-Director At The Center For Automotive Research: “The Reality Is: That Business Model Isn’t There Yet …” “‘The reality is: that business model isn’t there yet,’ said Brett Smith, co-director of manufacturing, engineering and technology at the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan. ‘It isn’t there yet for volume. It isn’t there yet for reaching the mass consumer. And it probably isn’t going to be there for a while.’” (Angela Greling Keane, “Obama’s $5 Billion Slow To Charge Electric Car Purchases,” Bloomberg, 10/16/12)

The Washington Post : “The American Taxpayer Has Gotten Precious Little For The Administration’s Investment In Battery-Powered Vehicles, In Terms Of Permanent Jobs Or Lower Carbon Dioxide Emissions.” “No matter how you slice it, the American taxpayer has gotten precious little for the administration’s investment in battery-powered vehicles, in terms of permanent jobs or lower carbon dioxide emissions. There is no market, or not much of one, for vehicles that are less convenient and cost thousands of dollars more than similar-sized gas-powered alternatives – but do not save enough fuel to compensate. The basic theory of the Obama push for electric vehicles – if you build them, customers will come – was a myth. And an expensive one, at that.” (Editorial, “GM’s Vaunted Volt Is On The Road To Nowhere Fast,” The Washington Post , 9/14/12)

The Failures Of Subsidized Car Manufacturers Are Dragging U.S. Advanced-Battery Industry Down With Them, Leaving The Battery Companies Vulnerable For Foreign Purchase. “As these companies flail, they are taking the much-ballyhooed U.S. advanced-battery industry down with them. A Chinese company had to buy out distressed A123, to which the Energy Department has committed $263 million in production aid and research money. Ener1, which ran through $55 million of a $118 million federal grant before going bankrupt, sold out to a Russian tycoon.” (Editorial, “GM’s Vaunted Volt Is On The Road To Nowhere Fast,” The Washington Post , 9/14/12)

Despite The Commitment Of Millions Of Taxpayer Dollars, It is Increasingly Clear That Obama’s Paltry Campaign Promise To Get 1 Million All-Electric and Plug-In Hybrid Vehicles Will Not Hit 2015 Target. “As a candidate for president in 2008, Barack Obama set a goal of getting 1?million all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles on the road by 2015. In February 2011, the Obama administration’s Energy Department issued an analysis purporting to show that, with the help of subsidies and tax credits, ‘the goal is achievable.’ This was a paltry claim in the first place, since 1 million cars amount to less than 1?percent of the total U.S. fleet. Yet it is increasingly clear that, despite the commitment of many millions of taxpayer dollars, the United States will not hit Mr. Obama’s target by 2015.” (Editorial, “GM’s Vaunted Volt Is On The Road To Nowhere Fast,” The Washington Post , 9/14/12)

“Analysis Suggest That We’ll Be Lucky To Get A Third of The Way There.” “A recent CBS News analysis suggested that we’ll be lucky to get a third of the way there. The Energy Department study assumed that General Motors would produce 120,000 plug-in hybrid Volts in 2012. GM never came close to that and recently suspended Volt production at its Hamtramck, Mich., plant, scene of a presidential photo-op. So far, GM has sold a little more than 21,000 Volts, even with the help of a $7,500 tax credit, recent dealer discounting and U.S. government purchases. When you factor in the $1.2?billion cost of developing the Volt, GM loses tens of thousands of dollars on each model.” (Editorial, “GM’s Vaunted Volt Is On The Road To Nowhere Fast,”The Washington Post , 9/14/12)

EVEN IN BANKRUPTCY, OBAMA’S FAILED INVESTMENTS HAUNT TAXPAYERS

Solyndra’s Investors Stand To Make Millions Off Of Tax Benefits The Energy Department Transferred To Them To Avoid Political Embarrassment

Solyndra, Cornerstone of Obama Green Energy Failures

The Wall Street Journal : “In The Latest Twist, Solyndra’s Investors Could Be Rewarded For Their Failure, Thanks To A Tax Benefit The Administration Handed Out In A Bid To Evade Political Accountability.” “Perhaps you thought the Solyndra scandal amounted to a $535 million government loan that will never be repaid. No such luck. In the latest twist, Solyndra’s investors could be rewarded for their failure, thanks to a tax benefit the Administration handed out in a bid to evade political accountability.” (Editorial, “The Solyndra Memorial Tax Break,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/15/12)

Solyndra’s Investors Are Trying To Take Advantage Of $350 Million In Tax Benefits They Received As Part Of The Company’s Bankruptcy. “Having sold off its manufacturing plant, fired nearly 1,000 workers and proven the non-viability of its business model, Solyndra’s only real assets are what the IRS calls ‘tax attributes.’ These are between $875 million and $975 million in net operating losses that can reduce future taxable income, which the IRS values as high as $350 million. Before it went toes up, Solyndra also accumulated $12 million in solar tax credits that can reduce tax liabilities dollar for dollar.” (Editorial, “The Solyndra Memorial Tax Break,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/15/12)

The Wall Street Journal: “Energy Created The Tax Avoidance Problem In The First Place By Gifting Argonaut And Madrone The Net Operating Losses To Delay The Solyndra Crack-Up That Was Fast Becoming Inevitable.” “But this is little more than an ex post facto double-cross. Energy created the tax avoidance problem in the first place by gifting Argonaut and Madrone the net operating losses to delay the Solyndra crack-up that was fast becoming inevitable. That left taxpayers worse off than if they simply let Solyndra fail.” (Editorial, “The Solyndra Memorial Tax Break,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/15/12)

The Wall Street Journal: “The Larger Problem Is Mr. Obama’s Economic Model That Seeks To Picks Winners And Losers And Misallocates Capital.” “The larger problem is Mr. Obama’s economic model that seeks to picks winners and losers and misallocates capital. That’s bad enough. But does he have to stick it to taxpayers twice for the same failed investment?” (Editorial, “The Solyndra Memorial Tax Break,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/15/12)

Taxpayers Will Only Recover A Fraction Of The Money Invested In Solyndra Due To The Obama Administration’s Political Calculation

In February 2011, The Department Of Energy Agreed To “Waive Its Privilege As First Creditor In The Event Of A Bankruptcy.” “The political brawl over Solyndra, the solar array manufacturer that received $528 million in government aid and then went bankrupt, shifted focus Friday to a decision by the Energy Department that allowed another lender to step in to help rescue the company. That decision in February gave Solyndra a temporary reprieve and a chance to survive, but it also forced the government to waive its privilege as first creditor in the event of a bankruptcy – which then occurred at the end of August. … The Energy Department’s approval was required for Solyndra to borrow any new funds, because if the loan was consummated, the federal government would have to surrender its status as the most senior lender, in favor of the new lender.” (Matthew L. Wald, “Questions Raised Over Letting Another Lender Help A Failing Solar Company,” The New York Times , 9/16/11)

As A Result, Obama’s Department Of Energy Allowed Taxpayers To Take A Back Seat To George Kaiser’s Argonaut Investments. “Complicating the politics of the situation for the Obama administration, part of the new loan came from Argonaut, the investment company backed by George Kaiser, an Oklahoma oil billionaire who is an Obama campaign contributor. Argonaut was already heavily invested in Solyndra, and provided another $69 million in cash in exchange for taking over $75 million that Solyndra was owed by its customers.” (Matthew L. Wald, “Questions Raised Over Letting Another Lender Help A Failing Solar Company,” The New York Times , 9/16/11)

In 2008, George Kaiser Bundled Between $50,000 And $100,000 For Obama. (Center For Responsive Politics, Accessed 10/16/12)

Solyndra’s Private Equity Investors Are Expected To Recoup $70 Million Through The Sale Of Solyndra Assets. “Documents filed Friday evening in a Delaware bankruptcy court say that private-equity firms, including one whose chief has ties to the Obama administration, will get back at least half of the $70 million they put into Solyndra early last year as the company battled for survival.” (Peg Brickley, “Solyndra Outlines Its Bankruptcy Repayment Plans,” Dow Jones Newswires, 7/31/12)

“Unsecured Creditors Owed $50 Million To $120 Million Will Recover 2.5 Percent To 6 Percent, According To Solyndra’s Chapter 11 Estimates.” (Peg Brickley, “Solyndra Outlines Its Bankruptcy Repayment Plans,”Dow Jones Newswires, 7/31/12)

Taxpayers Are Expected To Recover $24 Million Of The Loan To Solyndra. “Court papers estimate that one piece of the U.S. loan, nearly $143 million, could go unpaid, or it could receive as much as a 17 percent recovery. A second piece, $385 million, is in for a recovery of ‘$0 plus, depending on outcome of liquidation efforts,’ court papers say. … $24 million Amount predicted to be repaid under its Chapter 11 plan” (Peg Brickley, “Solyndra Outlines Its Bankruptcy Repayment Plans,” Dow Jones Newswires, 7/31/12)
Failed Green Energy Companies Backed by President Barack Obama


President Obama’s Energy Secretary, Steven Chu who infamously said, “We have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”


Below is a list offailed energy companies backed by President Barack Obama and funded with tax dollars. President Obama has gone to great lengths to support policies to advance so-called green energy technologies but so far has met with utter failure. The President plans to double down on these unproven, expensive failed technologies if he gets a second term.

In his acceptance speech at the DNC in Charlotte, President Obama announced his plans to continue support of these same green energy technologies despite the fact that they remain unproven alternatives to gas, coal and oil. Most green energy or “renewable” energy developments currently being tested are years away from being put to a practical use.

President Obama has proven himself to be a rigid ideologue who is unwilling to let go of the failed policies that plagued his first term. This has many Americans fearful of the future of the United States. As of now there is no technology or renewable energy on the planet that can lift an airplane off the ground and keep it in the air or propel a cargo ship across the vast ocean-ways.
Most Americans are asking, “Can the United States of America REALLY afford FOUR MORE YEARS of President Obama?
List Of Failed Green Energy Jobs & Companies – By Obama

Update: 7/19/12: The Amonix Solar: FAIL! – manufacturing plant in North Las Vegas, subsidized by more than $20 million in federal tax credits and grants given by Obama Administration, has closed its 214,000 square foot facility a year after it opened.

Solar Trust of America: FAIL! - Filed Bankruptcy in Oakland, CA, April 3, 2012

Bright Source: FAIL! -Bright Source warned Obama’s Energy Department officials in March 2011 that delays in approving a $1.6 billion U.S. loan guarantee would embarrass the White House and force the solar-energy company to close. Bright Source lost billions of dollars but is getting more money to keep trying. Can you say, “This isn’t working Mr. President?”

Solyndra: FAIL! - Obama gave $500,000,000 (that’s a HALF BILLION!) in taxpayer money to Solyndra who shut its doors and laid off 1100 workers in August 2011 after billions in losses due to failure to make a solar product that works! Barack Obama was not vetted before being elected President and neither was Solyndra before Mr. Obama threw that taxpayer money down the drain of unproven technology.

LSP Energy: FAIL! -LSPEnergy LP filed bankruptcy protection and a sale of its assets in Feb 2012
Energy Conversion Devices: FAIL! – On February 14, 2012 Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. and its subsidiaries filed for bankruptcy

Abound Solar: FAIL! - Abound Solar received a $400 million loan guarantee from Barack Obama then announced in June, 2012 that it would file for bankruptcy. Many of these failed corporations, such as Abound, donated MILLIONS and continue to donate to Barack Obama’s campaign. Can you say, “Democrat Slush Fund”? Yes this is illegal. But Democrats are being protected from being prosecuted, for now.

SunPower: FAIL! - SunPower stopped producing solar cells in 2011 at near bankruptcy then restructured with the help of, get this, oil giant TOTAL, Inc. who owns 60% stake in SunPower. Irony? The company is still struggling.

Beacon Power: FAIL! – Beacon Power Corp filed for bankruptcy protection in October, 2011 just a year after Obama approved a $43 million Government loan guarantee. They remain barely in business, still struggling to make energy that makes sense or that works at all.

Ecotality: FAIL! - ECOtality, a San Francisco green-tech company that never earned any money and remains on the verge of bankruptcy after receiving roughly $115 million in two loan guarantees from President Obama, who wants to do some more of this kind of Democrat Slush Fund Guarantees after he is elected to a 2nd term.

A123 Solar: FAIL! - A123 Solar received $279 million from taxpayers thanks to President Obama’sDepartment of Energy loan guarantees even after the Solyndra bankruptcy and is getting another $500M from Obama after a loss of $400M.
UniSolar: FAIL! - Uni-Solarfiled for Ch 11 bankruptcy in June 20, 2012 after laying off hundreds of workers. UniSolar received even more Obama money after showing now progress, no profits and is still failing… yet they still remain in business with Obama’s help.

Azure Dynamics: FAIL! -Azure Dynamics filed for bankruptcy in June , 2012 wasting millions in Obama “Stimulus” money and received abatement on taxes owed and and several tax credits. Azure Dynamics LLC filed for bankruptcy protection in Canada and the US. Azure laid off 120 of its 160 employees in Oak Park; Boston; Vancouver, British Columbia; and the UK.

Evergreen Solar: FAIL! - Evergreen Solar received $527 Million in Taxpayer money from Obama and filed bankruptcy in late 2011. Evergreen, which closed its taxpayer-supported Devens factory in March, 2011 cut more than 1800 jobs. Evergreen’s $450 million factory, turned out to be a colossal “waste” of taxpayer money.

Ener1: FAIL! Ener1 Inc. received a $118 million U.S. Energy Department grant from President Obama to make electric-car batteries but filed for bankruptcy protectionJanuary 2012 after defaulting on bond debt.

Update: In May 2012 Obama visited a dusty, desert town 30 miles outside Las Vegas Wednesday to declare he’s doubling down on failed federal efforts to boost the solar industry which has NEVER proven to produce a single working product. Like Socialism, no evidence ot works, but they just keep doubling down on the failed ideals!.

Republicans believe Obama is gambling with taxpayer dollars as he continues to aggressively push alternative forms of energy proven to be more than 20 years off in working effectively and being affordable. After the failure of Solyndra, which resulted in the loss of half a billion dollars in taxpayer dollars President Obama is going to give America more of teh same: FAIL.

This is one of those interesting left-wing ideas which works theoretically as long as it’s not real,” Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrichcharged on the campaign trail Wednesday. “And then you put in a half billion dollars and you go, ‘Oh that didn’t quite work.’”

Obama sharply disagrees and used the world’s largest solar power plant of its kind — with one million solar panels dotting the desert here — to assert it is his critics who are out of touch with reality.

“some companies will fail, some companies will succeed.”-Pres. Obama
But None you have backed have succeeded. Your record is 0 for 300, rather 0 for $6 Tillion in taxpayer debt.

And many many more on the horizon…
Mar 29, 2012

Obama’s Epic Fail of Solar and Green Energy Companies

Washington- At his weekly press briefing today, Congressman John Boehner (R-West Chester) called on the Obama administration to provide information the House Energy & Commerce Committee has requested pertaining to the $10 billion taxpayer dollars that have been spent on the Energy Department’s failed Solyndra-style Section 1603 ‘stimulus’ loan program.

The Congressman has vowed that oversight of the administration’s policies and their impact on job creation will be a major focus for the House this year. Congressman Boehner also highlighted House Republicans’ continuing focus on addressing rising gas prices and creating a better environment for private-sector job creation with the American Energy Initiative. Following are video and excerpts of Congressman Boehner’s remarks:

ON REPUBLICANS’ EFFORT TO HOLD THE ADMINISTRATION ACCOUNTABLE FOR ITS FAILED DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ‘STIMULUS’ LOAN PROGRAM:

“You know, I made clear earlier this year that oversight of the Obama administration’s policies on jobs, on the economy, and its spending taxpayer dollars was going to be a priority.Two weeks ago, Chairman Upton at the Energy & Commerce Committee began looking into the Department of Energy’s Section 1603 grant program, a Solyndra-style ‘stimulus’ program that offers cash payments to renewable energy companies. More than $10 billion – that’s with a ‘b’ – $10 billion has been spent on this, and Secretary Chu said it created ‘tens of thousands of jobs,’ except there’s no evidence to support that.

“The Energy & Commerce Committee set a deadline for today for the Energy Department & Treasury Department to produce documents or information about what taxpayers got for their $10 billion. The administration thus far has failed to provide the committee with any information to justify this claim.” “Listen, the American people continue to ask the question ‘Where are the jobs?’ They deserve answers and they deserve the truth.”

ON THE NEED FOR BIPARTISAN, COMMON-SENSE SOLUTIONS TO EXPAND AMERICAN ENERGY & ADDRESS SOARING GAS PRICES:

“Instead of wasting taxpayer dollars on failed ‘stimulus’ programs, we should be working together on common-sense solutions to expand American energy production and address rising gas prices. With or without the Democrats’ cooperation, Republicans here on Capitol will continue to work toward this objective.”

ON HOUSE REPUBLICANS TAKING ACTION TO ADDRESS SOARING GAS PRICES WITH THE AMERICA ENERGY INITIATIVE:

“One month ago today, during a conversation at the White House, I was encouraged by the president’s willingness to discuss the possibility of working together on some of the bipartisan, House-passed energy bills. Many of these bipartisan proposals have received support from the president’s own jobs council. But gas prices have gotten worse, and the administration has taken absolutely no action. Republicans aren’t going to wait for the Obama administration to act on behalf of families and small businesses.

“Yesterday, the HEAT team launched the next phase of the American Energy Initiative focusing on rising gas prices. This phase include bills – for example – to responsibly increase energy production on federal lands and freeze new regulations on refineries that will have a harmful impact on our economy. Our committee chairmen are hard at work on both additional legislation to address this issue.”

If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. Milton Friedman












Saturday, December 28, 2013

ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST ...

NSA collection of phone data is lawful, federal judge rules

ANOTHER CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT RIPPED FROM OUR COLLECTIVE MEMORY AND PROTECTIONS ... WHERE DOES IT STOP?    PREFACE TO PLATO A GOOD READ ...


A federal judge in New York ruled Friday that the massive collection of domestic telephone data brought to light by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden is lawful, rejecting a challenge to the program by the American Civil Liberties Union.

The decision marked a victory for the government less than two weeks after a District Court judge ruled against it, finding that the NSA’s program was almost certainly unconstitutional. If the split in rulings continues through the appeals process, it is likely the Supreme Court will have to decide the issue.

In a 53-page opinion, U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III said Friday that the program, which collects virtually all Americans’ phone records, represents the U.S. government’s “counter-punch” to eliminate the al-Qaeda terrorist network and does not violate the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable search and seizure.

HERE'S MY QUESTION, IF THE UNITED STATES HAD THE PHONE DATA COLLECTION BEFORE THIS GUY WAS ELECTED ... THEN MIGHT WE HAVE HAD A BETTER CHANCE AT PREVENTING IT?

GO FIGURE
Pauley endorsed the assertion made by government officials that if the United States had the phone data collection program before 2001, they might have had a better chance at preventing the Sept. 11 attacks.

“The government learned from its mistake and adapted to confront a new enemy: a terror network capable of orchestrating attacks across the world,” Pauley wrote. “It launched a number of counter-measures, including a bulk telephony metadata collection program — a wide net that could find and isolate gossamer contacts among suspected terrorists in an ocean of seemingly disconnected data.”

He added: “This blunt tool only works because it collects everything.”
  
JUST GOES TO SHOW YOU, YOU CAN'T DEPEND ON THE COLLECTIVE
Justice Department spokesman Peter Carr said the government is “pleased the court found the NSA’s bulk telephony metadata collection program to be lawful.”

In a statement, the ACLU said it intended to appeal the case to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit.


“We are extremely disappointed with this decision, which misinterprets the relevant statutes, understates the privacy implications of the government’s surveillance and misapplies a narrow and outdated precedent to read away core constitutional protections,” said Jameel Jaffer, an ACLU deputy legal director.

The ACLU filed its lawsuit on June 11, just days after the telephone data collection program was revealed by Britain’s Guardian newspaper, based on documents obtained from Snowden.

In granting the government’s motion to dismiss the case, ACLU v. Clapper, Pauley said that the sweeping collection of phone records is lawful under Section 215 of the Patriot Act and under the Fourth Amendment. But he added that the issue of whether the program should be conducted is “for the other two coordinate branches of Government to decide.”  The ACLU brought the suit against James Clapper, the director of national intelligence (DNI).

The NSA program collects records of the numbers that Americans call and the duration of those calls, but not content. Civil liberties advocates have argued that the collection and storage of that data represent a violation of Americans’ right to privacy.
 

Ow
Ow
I'm the man in the box
Buried in my shit
Won't you come and save me? Save me
Feed my eyes, can you sew them shut?
Jesus Christ, deny your maker
He who tries, will be wasted
Oh feed my eyes, now you've sewn them shut
Ow
Ow
I'm the dog who gets beat
Shove my nose in shit
Won't you come and save me? Save me
Feed my eyes, can you sew them shut?
Jesus Christ, deny your maker
He who tries, will be wasted
Oh feed my eyes, now you've sewn them shut
Feed my eyes, can you sew them shut?
Jesus Christ, deny your maker
He who tries, will be wasted
Oh feed my eyes, now you've sewn them shut
Ow
Ow
The government has based its legal justification for the program on a 1979 case, Smith v. Maryland, in which the Supreme Court found Americans have no expectation of privacy in the telephone metadata that companies hold as business records and ruled that a warrant is not required to obtain such information.

In a series of decisions made in secret since 2006, judges on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which hears only the government’s side of cases, also held that the program is lawful.

In a Dec. 16 ruling, however, a District Court judge rejected the government’s arguments in a strongly worded ruling that said the program “infringes on ‘that degree of privacy’ that the founders enshrined in the Fourth Amendment.”

In that opinion in the case Klayman v. Obama, U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon granted a request for an injunction that blocked the collection of the phone data of conservative legal activist Larry Klayman. Klayman brought his lawsuit against the president with a co-plaintiff, Charles Strange, the father of Michael J. Strange, a slain Navy cryptologic technician who was killed with a SEAL team in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan.

Leon stayed his ruling to give the government time to appeal. Leon was nominated to the U.S. District Court in Washington in 2002 by President George W. Bush, while Pauley, who upheld the NSA program, was nominated to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in 1998 by President Bill Clinton.


“Judge Leon’s ruling is a dream ruling for the ACLU. And Judge Pauley’s opinion is the dream ruling for the NSA,” said Orin Kerr, a law professor at George Washington University. “Substantively and rhetorically, they are really different. Point and counterpoint.”

Kerr also said that the appellate precedents are different in Washington and in New York, so that both courts could be correct on their interpretation of Fourth Amendment issues for their jurisdictions.

“Both of the opinions are just grist for the mill for the appeals courts,” Kerr said.

As the issue plays out in the courts, Congress is debating whether the NSA’s powers should be curtailed. A panel appointed by President Obama recommended that the NSA should no longer store the data. Obama said that in January he will make a statement on what NSA reforms he supports.











Sunday, December 22, 2013

A CHRISTMAS GREETING FROM THE REGIME ...

The White House, Washington


Good afternoon --
  


The OBAMACARE has been in the news a lot recently -- and increasingly for the right reasons.
  


The law is working: (WELL WE KEEP CHANGING IT ON A DAY BY DAY BASIS) More than half a million Americans have enrolled through HealthCare.gov in the first three weeks of December alone -- and 800,000 more are on track to get Medicaid through their states. These are people for whom health insurance might not have previously been an option -- people who in the past might have been discriminated against for simple medical conditions like asthma, or who may have been dropped from their coverage just because they got sick.


Now, thousands of Americans are signing up for coverage every day. That matters. It means financial security for families all across the country. It means freedom from the fear that one illness or accident might cost you everything you've worked so hard to build.
 


If you don't have health insurance, go to HealthCare.gov right now and sign up. You can compare plans based on your own needs and budget, and you can sign up for coverage.

And if you do it before December 23rd, you can be covered on the first day of the New Year.

Now, if you already have health insurance, I'm asking you right now to help make sure that your friends, neighbors, coworkers, and the people you go to college or church with know the facts about how they can get covered, too. Moms and dads, remind your kids this holiday season. And if you've recently signed up, tell your friends.
  
I'm asking you to spread the word about getting covered -- and we're providing some tools to help you do it.
Whether you talk to a family member, share a photo or a story on Facebook, tweet using the hashtag #GetCovered, or walk a friend or colleague through the website -- your effort will make a difference right now.
 

That's because the most important source of information about this law isn't going to be me, or anyone here at the White House. It's going to be you, telling the people you know to check out HealthCare.gov for themselves, and make their own decision about getting covered.
 
Tens of millions of people have already felt the benefits of reform, from free, recommended preventive care like mammograms, to more affordable prescription medications. But there are millions more of our fellow citizens who stand to be helped -- and we've got to make sure they know exactly how.
  

Thanks for your help.
  






President Barack Obama



The White House • 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW • Washington, DC 20500 • 202-456-1111



Government Opening Free Gas Stations in Poor Neighborhoods
 

Oct 29, 2013
First 'Obamastation' Debuts in Detroit, Seventy Planned Nationwide
  


As the battle over Obamacare rages in Washington, the White House is quietly using a little known provision of the law to roll out a nationwide network of free gas stations for minorities and the poor.


According to a report in The Detroit News this morning, the administration is using its authority under the Affordable Care Act to "improve transportation routes to hospitals" to dispense gasoline free of cost in disadvantaged neighborhoods.

The $2 billion-a-year program aims to distribute 40 million gallons of free gasoline each year through 70 new gas stations constructed in major metropolitan areas. The Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) will be responsible for operating the network, whose first station opened yesterday in Detroit.

"It's not something we're publicizing very much, for obvious reasons," explains Dori Salcido, assistant DHS secretary for public affairs. "But under the law we are well within our rights to offer this service, and we think it's good public policy.

"How are people supposed to get to the doctor's office if they don't have gas in their cars? Health insurance is worthless if you can't make your appointment. This is just another fine example of government stepping in and solving big problems."

No Gas for You
Although some developing oil-rich nations like Venezuela and Indonesia subsidize gasoline for the poor, the practice has never before been tried in the United States. The plans are proving controversial with some taxpayers who are loathe to see their money go to subsidize others.

"So basically I'm being punished for not living in the ghetto," says Colin Blair, a white person from the affluent Detroit suburb of Farmington Hills. "I have three kids and a mortgage. Life isn't cheap for me either. I could use some free gasoline too."

An investigation into the station's operations, however, reveals that Blair is unlikely to be able to use the service.

"Supposedly access to the station is determined by income," says Ebony Jackson, manager of the first Obamastation. "But it's pretty unrealistic to do an income check on each and every driver. So what we do is basically let all the black people pump for free, and charge all the white people the market rate."

The Obamastations scandal was uncovered by Nolan Finley , a conservative Detroit News columnist widely lauded for his
groundbreaking exposé on Obamaphones. Finley says the blatant racial bias in the program is only one of its many outrageous aspects.

"The stations have Obama campaign logo on them and giant photos of the president," he explains. "He's trying to buy votes ahead of the midterm elections. This is something you normally only see in third world countries. I've never been more scared for our democracy."

THEY DON'T GET ANY BIGGER ... SIZE MATTERS, I'M YOUR BOGGIE MAN?

The lie of the year, according to Politifact, is “If you like your health care plan, you can keep it.” But the story of the year is a nation waking up to just how radical Obamacare is — which is why it required such outright deception to get it passed in the first place.
  



President Liar-Fraud is a self imposed Dictator. It's time to Impeach President Liar-Fraud on multiple counts of Title 18 U.S.C. Sections: 1341 - 1343 and 1347....all of which are federal felonies.

FREE

Obamacare was sold as simply a refinement of the current system, retaining competition among independent insurers but making things more efficient, fair and generous. Free contraceptives for Sandra Fluke. Free mammograms and checkups for you and me. Free (or subsidized) insurance for some 30 million uninsured. And,mirabile dictu, not costing the government a dime.

In fact, Obamacare is a full-scale federal takeover. The keep-your-plan-if-you-like-your-plan ruse was a way of saying to the millions of Americans who had insurance and liked what they had: Don’t worry. You’ll be left unmolested. For you, everything goes on as before.

That was a fraud from the very beginning. The law was designed to throw people off their private plans and into government-run exchanges where they would be made to overpay — forced to purchase government-mandated services they don’t need — as a way to subsidize others. (That’s how you get to the ostensible free lunch.)

It wasn’t until the first cancellation notices went out in late 2013 that the deception began to be understood. And felt. Six million Americans with private insurance have just lost it. And that’s just the beginning. By the Department of Health and Human Services’ own estimates, about 75 million Americans would have plans that their employers would have the right to cancel. And millions of middle-class workers who will migrate to the exchanges and don’t qualify for government subsidies will see their premiums, deductibles and co-pays go up.
  


It gets worse. The dislocation extends to losing one’s doctor and drug coverage, as insurance companies narrow availability to compensate for the huge costs imposed on them by the extended coverage and “free” services the new law mandates.

But it’s not just individuals seeing their medical care turned upside down. The insurance providers, the backbone of the system, are being utterly transformed. They are rapidly becoming mere extensions of the federal government.
Look what happened just last week. Health and Human Services unilaterally and without warning changed coverage deadlines and guidelines. It asked insurers to start covering people on Jan. 1 even if they signed up as late as the day before and even if they hadn’t paid their premiums. And is “strongly encouraging” them to pay during the transition for doctor visits and medicines not covered in their current plans (if covered in the patient’s previous — canceled — plan).

On what authority does a Cabinet secretary tell private companies to pay for services not in their plans and cover people not on their rolls? Where in Obamacare’s 2,500 pages are such high-handed dictates authorized? Does anyone even ask? The bill itself is simply taken as a kind of blanket warrant for HHS to run, regulate and control the whole insurance system.

Remember the uproar over forcing religious institutions to provide contraception coverage? The president’s “fix” was a new regulation ordering insurers to provide these services for free. Apart from the fact that this transparent ruse does nothing to resolve the underlying issue of conscience — God sees — by what right does the government order private companies to provide free services for anyone?

Three years ago I predicted that Obamacare would turn insurers into the lapdog equivalent of utility companies. I undershot. They are being treated as wholly owned subsidiaries. Take the phrase “strongly encouraging.” Sweet persuasion? In reality, these are offers insurers can’t refuse. Disappoint your federal master and he has the power to kick you off the federal exchanges, where the health insurance business of the future is supposed to be conducted.

Moreover, if adverse selection drives insurers into a financial death spiral — too few healthy young people to offset more costly, sicker, older folks — their only recourse will be a government bailout. Do they really want to get on the wrong side of the White House, their only lifeline when facing insolvency?

I don’t care a whit for the insurance companies. They deserve what they get. They collaborated with the White House in concocting this scheme and are now being swallowed by it. But I do care about the citizenry and its access to a functioning, flourishing, choice-driven medical system.

Obamacare posed as a free-market alternative to a British-style single-payer system. Then, during congressional debate, the White House ostentatiously rejected the so-called “public option.” But that’s irrelevant. The whole damn thing is the public option. The federal government now runs the insurance market, dictating deadlines, procedures, rates, risk assessments and coverage requirements. It’s gotten so cocky it’s now telling insurers to cover the claims that, by law, they are not required to.

Welcome 2014, our first taste of nationalized health care.