New e-mails reveal: White House closely monitored Energy Department’s deliberations of Solyndra

posted at 7:38 pm on September 13, 2011 by Allahpundit

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.”

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It’s Monopoly Money for Team BO.

David in ATL on September 13, 2011 at 9:11 PM

People know hat dems are evil.. The question is, how one deals with it. You have a dem brother-in-law. He is evil. How to handle this criminal. Same with a son, a mother-in-law. All criminals if they support dems. What to do?

proconstitution on September 13, 2011 at 8:42 PM

That’s not a trap I want to fall into. Our liberal brethren (I almost put scare quotes around that, but decided against it as I would have undercut my own point) do the same thing when they dehumanize us as “evil”, “stupid”, or both.

I have friends and relatives who are Democrats, too. Unfortunately I don’t have a general prescription for what to do about it. I’ve quietly drifted out of touch with the friends who were too obnoxious about their politics, and I just try to avoid talking politics with the relatives.

Mary in LA on September 13, 2011 at 9:11 PM

onlineanalyst on September 13, 2011 at 9:01 PM

I think in Spains defense, they were honestly trying to do better by their country. Obama? Not so much. He’s out to destroy this country that he hates, and mocks.

capejasmine on September 13, 2011 at 9:11 PM

As Shakespeare said, it’s “GOOSE TURD GREEN”.

Dhuka on September 13, 2011 at 9:15 PM

As long as Solyndra isn’t Halliburton, then all is cool, right?

ted c on September 13, 2011 at 8:19 PM

On Fox News, Jonah Goldberg compared the Enron ‘scandal’ to Solyndra, pointing out how long Enron rode the front pages during the administration of President George W. Bush, though his only connection to it was some kind of vague ‘culture of greed’ meme.

Constrast with how quickly the old media today is to move on from Solyndra.

slickwillie2001 on September 13, 2011 at 9:16 PM

it’s called a kickback. give some money to someone, they kick some back. pretty sure it’s illegal in the real world. and now another 1.2B to um (cough)invest.

kellyjane on September 13, 2011 at 9:22 PM

Incredible.

If this one finally manages to stick, the GOP needs to pile on with the $14B lost in the auto bailouts. Obama’s every inch the community organizer when it comes to business sense.

TexasDan on September 13, 2011 at 9:22 PM

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.

Accounting is not a settled science. It is a theoretical and hypothetical construct, open to an infinite number of interpretations.

logis on September 13, 2011 at 9:22 PM

I think in Spains defense, they were honestly trying to do better by their country. Obama? Not so much. He’s out to destroy this country that he hates, and mocks.

capejasmine on September 13, 2011 at 9:11 PM

Regardless of the difference in motivation, the example of how/why this was a poor investment for a nation to make was already apparent.

onlineanalyst on September 13, 2011 at 9:29 PM

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.

Hey it’s not like it’s Their money so they figured who cares?

Chip on September 13, 2011 at 9:33 PM

onlineanalyst on September 13, 2011 at 9:29 PM

Oh I agree with you. 100% However…Obama isn’t doing anything that really hasn’t been tried in other countries that rely on socialism. But nothing is going to stand in his way. Not logic. Not responsibility. Nothing! He’s hell bent on doing as much destruction as he can, and obviously robbing the people of this nation isn’t above what he’s capable, and willing to do, to achieve it.

capejasmine on September 13, 2011 at 9:33 PM

“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.”

I don’t care. Obama is awesome.

BobMbx on September 13, 2011 at 9:35 PM

Hey, if anyone has access to Lexis/Nexus, look up and see if Obama has even publicly uttered the word “Solyndra” in the last 6 months.

Odds are pretty good he’s already “DK’d” that deal.

DK = Don’t Know

BobMbx on September 13, 2011 at 9:42 PM

How much did they contribute to Democrats and Obama?

John the Libertarian on September 13, 2011 at 9:43 PM

In the past year, Solyndra has spend 480,000 on lobbying congress.

seven on September 13, 2011 at 9:48 PM

How much did they contribute to Democrats and Obama?

John the Libertarian on September 13, 2011 at 9:43 PM

If memory serves, when the story first broke, Kaiser bundled $50,000 for Obama.

capejasmine on September 13, 2011 at 9:53 PM

Looks like somebody’s chickens are coming home to roost.

chewmeister on September 13, 2011 at 9:54 PM

Who doubts that Obama is pillaging America as much as he can?

GaltBlvnAtty on September 13, 2011 at 8:08 PM

He’s doing a good job, while the suckers who voted for him make excuses.

disa on September 13, 2011 at 10:04 PM

I’m pretty sure that Clinton would have been smart enough to avoid this stupidity – both Bill and Hillary.

blink on September 13, 2011 at 9:20 PM

It was never their objective to fundamentally transform America.

disa on September 13, 2011 at 10:09 PM

Can’t wait to see further shoes drop when we find out how that $500billion was spent, how much was funneled into various political coffers, etc…

Midas on September 13, 2011 at 10:17 PM

People know hat dems are evil.. The question is, how one deals with it. You have a dem brother-in-law. He is evil. How to handle this criminal. Same with a son, a mother-in-law. All criminals if they support dems. What to do?

proconstitution on September 13, 2011 at 8:42 PM

Yes, roughly half the country is evil. If the right ever buys into that nonsense we really will have jumped the shark completely, and we’ll deserve the socialism that will inevitably follow from conservatives displaying such idiocy to the electorate.

At least half of my extended family is extremely left-leaning, to the point that a handful of them probably think Obama is a centrist. And not a single one of them is evil for it. Most of them aren’t particularly stupid either – reasonably intelligent people unfortunately adopt stupid ideas even more easily than stupid people sometimes.

By the way, that’s a rather nuanced interpretation of the constitution there.

That’s not a trap I want to fall into. Our liberal brethren (I almost put scare quotes around that, but decided against it as I would have undercut my own point) do the same thing when they dehumanize us as “evil”, “stupid”, or both.

I have friends and relatives who are Democrats, too. Unfortunately I don’t have a general prescription for what to do about it. I’ve quietly drifted out of touch with the friends who were too obnoxious about their politics, and I just try to avoid talking politics with the relatives.

Mary in LA on September 13, 2011 at 9:11 PM

Some friends are obnoxious about politics because they are genuinely jerks, but a lot of them simply don’t know any better, and have mistakenly concluded that everyone in the room, being reasonably intelligent, must share their liberal proclivities. The latter group is definitely worth staying in touch with, and even engaging – I’ve found that if you don’t push conservativism on them, but just poke holes in their arguments as gently as possible, then they gradually come to realize their views are not universal and are sometimes more polite.

RINO in Name Only on September 13, 2011 at 11:47 PM

throwing $500 million federal loan into a solar sinkhole

Owing $20,000 in student loans is bad enough, trust me. $500 million?!

RDE2010 on September 14, 2011 at 8:14 AM

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