Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Solyndra - Worse than it appears

Andrew McCarthy, writing at The National Review -
... If the Solyndra case came walking into a competent prosecutor’s office, the theory of the investigation would be fraud. We have the loss of over half a billion dollars in public money (in the form of government credits), which was pledged to back a company that had a hopelessly flawed business model and that was gushing losses with no realistic prospect of a turn-around. We have grossly misleading rosy-scenario pronouncements by key players (including President Obama and Vice President Biden) at a time when Solyndra backers were gearing up an initial public offering of stock — and when Solyndra’s independent auditors had issued a dire warning that it was doubtful the company could continue as a going concern. In addition, we have executive-branch officials renegotiating the loan arrangement so that corporate insiders, including Obama administration cronies, would be given priority over taxpayers in the liquidation of assets when the company inevitably went belly-up — a novation that appears to be as illegal as it is inexplicable.

On the surface, it appeared to be just a well-connected investor making good use of his network to secure a nice contract. But in fact, we have a well-connected investor making good use of his network to secure a federally subsidized loan that the firm could not have qualified for on its merits.

I don't understand how even conscientious liberals can accept this state of affairs. If they truly despise "crony capitalism," then surely they despise this! Don't they?

Mr. McCarthy's commentary is worth reading. You'll find it here: The Solyndra Non-Investigation

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Growing corruption

The stink surrounding the so-called Fast and Furious gun-running scandal is growing by the week. On Friday, reported that a "third gun linked to 'Operation Fast and Furious' was found at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry." This contradicts earlier reports that only ... ONLY! ... two guns linked to the program were found at the site. The report goes further to say that "Unlike the two AK-style assault weapons found at the scene, the third weapon could more easily be linked to the informant. To prevent that from happening, sources say, the third gun 'disappeared.'"

So not only did a major, legally suspect and morally indefensible operation result in the death of a law-enforcement officer. But now we learn that there is even more of a coverup going on than first suspected.

Why isn't the mainstream media covering this?

Why isn't the New York Times calling for the resignation of Eric Holder, and for a special investigator?

Why indeed!

Credit where credit is due: Read more more at

Temporary tax policies never work

I'd like to focus on one small part of the President's big address from Thursday... this notion of a Payroll Tax Holiday. On Friday, Sen. Paul Ryan had this to say on CNBC :
"The payroll tax cut that, to me, is not a bad idea. It's always good to let people keep more of their own money," Ryan said. "But it's no substitute for fundamental tax reform--for certainty. It's temporary stuff.

"See, what we've learned already from the Keynesian playbook is demand side spending stimulus, temporary tax rebates, which were tried in the Bush administration and didn't work, and this administration--all this stimulus hasn't worked."

This has nothing to do with which party has the majority in Congress, or whether it's a conservative or a liberal in the White House. The bottom line is that temporary fiscal measures never work. The Bush administration tried them. And the Obama administration has tried them. They don't work. Stop doing it!

They might have worked when information moved slowly. But not any more. Decision makers in business look at all of the available information before making a choice. And if that choice involves hiring another employee, their planning horizon is at least three years. An ethical business owner ... and most are highly ethical ... will not make the implied promise of a livelihood to a new employee unless he is confident that he will still be part of the company three years from now. Otherwise, it's better to simply hire a contractor.

Monday, September 5, 2011

There is no hiding from a record

Obama was elected on the promise of changing the direction of government. He would reverse the rightward leanings of the executive branch that have been in place since 1980 with an aggressive, leftward, progressive agenda. No longer would federal bureaucracies react to the economy ... the federal bureaucracies would drive the economy. And how has he kept that promise?

Steven Hayward writes in PowerLine:

Obama has collapsed on the Bush tax cuts, the debt ceiling, expanded the war in Afghanistan, said “never mind” to his promise to close Gitmo, went to war against Libya without congressional authorization or UN resolution, and retracted several key environmental regulations while signaling that he will approve the Keystone pipeline. Progressives are starting to notice.

This is a short list of his failures. But what about his accomplishments?

ObamaCare was passed along a strictly party line vote. The voters' response? A Rasmussen Poll of likely voters indicates that 57% of likely voters favor repeal of this unprecedented expansion of the federal government's impact on our very personal lives.

The financial reform has created more uncertainty in the banking sector, keeping investment cash on the sidelines. It's too complicated for the evening newscast, but the stifling effect that this has had on our economy is stunning in its breadth and depth. It's often said that generals fight the last war ... the Dodd-Frank bill is no exception: It blatantly ignores the huge role that the federal government played in causing the ongoing housing crisis.

And then there is, of course, nearly $1 Trillion in so-called "stimulus" ... again passed along party lines. All that has gotten us is zero net job growth for the first time in over 55 years; an explosion in sovereign debt; and some really snazzy signs to litter our roadways.

Obama's record of failure has exposed leftist policies for the sham that they are. The policy initiatives that he has endorsed have resulted in consistently poor results for the country. The conservative policies that he has grudgingly accepted are the only ones that he can claim have enjoyed any kind of success. The progressives will vote for him because they have no one else. But he cannot run on his record, even with the media pulling for him.