Remember: Solyndra’s financial difficulties were an open secret in the industry. Everyone knew they couldn’t maintain their cost structure; in fact, before you watch the clip below, read this Bloomberg story about how accountants at PricewaterhouseCoopers were warning of “substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern” fully two months before Obama had his big photo-op at Solyndra HQ. Everyone knew. Except, of course, for the Energy Department officials who sat in on the company’s meetings and the White House supervisors who monitored their deliberations. Somehow, when that gang put their heads together, they decided that throwing $500 million federal loan into a solar sinkhole was a smart, savvy idea.
I may have to take the day off to watch these congressional hearings. Don’t want to miss a second.
The company’s solar panel factory was heralded as a centerpiece of the president’s green energy plan — billed as a way to jump start a promising new industry. And internal emails uncovered by investigators for the House Energy and Commerce Committee that were shared exclusively with ABC News show the Obama administration was keenly monitoring the progress of the loan, even as analysts were voicing serious concerns about the risk involved. “This deal is NOT ready for prime time,” one White House budget analyst wrote in a March 10, 2009 email, nine days before the administration formally announced the loan.
“If you guys think this is a bad idea, I need to unwind the W[est] W[ing] QUICKLY,” wrote Ronald A. Klain, who was chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden, in another email sent March 7, 2009. The “West Wing” is the portion of the White House complex that holds the offices of the president and his top staffers. Klain declined comment to ABC News…
Even after Obama took office on Jan. 20, 2009, analysts in the Energy Department and in the Office of Management and Budget were repeatedly questioning the wisdom of the loan. In one exchange, an Energy official wrote of “a major outstanding issue” — namely, that Solyndra’s numbers showed it would run out of cash in September 2011.
The big pushback from the left on this is that Bush’s Energy Department also considered a loan for Solyndra. True enough. Minor footnote: They ended up shelving the loan, only to have it revived by Team Hopenchange as part of the new golden age of “green jobs.” And lest you think this clusterfark with Solyndra has brought that age to an end, think again: Steven Chu, The One’s energy secretary, announced just today that he’s approved a new loan to another solar-energy company … for $1.2 billion.
I wonder if that’ll be Obama’s next infamously embarrassing photo-op, or if this one will. Place your bets. Exit quotation from the Bloomberg piece linked up top: “People including our government put blinders on and did not want to believe in the obvious… The fact that the government chose Solyndra as their white horse is mind-boggling.”