About that failed Fisker loan costing U.S. taxpayer $130+ million? Scratch that. It might be way more.

posted at 7:01 pm on November 25, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

On Friday, I mentioned that it seems that the odyssey of fail that was the Obama administration’s commitment to “investing” in Fisker Automotive was finally drawing to a merciful close, as the Department of Energy managed to (kind of shadily?) auction off the down-and-out company to some Chinese investors. With the deal, Americans taxpayers would only be taking a net hit of an oh-so-trifling $130 million or so. No big deal, right?

Wrong.

The Department of Energy originally extended Fisker a $529 million line of credit back in the 2009 stimulus effort, but cut off the already ailing Fisker in 2011 after having dished out only about $190 million. Including the recent auction, the DOE has managed to recover only about $53 million of that loan, which is where the number of the $130 million for which taxpayers will be on the hook came from — except that that specific loan guarantee apparently wasn’t the only tax break of which Fisker was one of the Obama administration’s anointed beneficiaries. According to Reuters:

The bankruptcy of Fisker Automotive could end up costing the U.S. government much more than the $168 million it loaned to the maker of the Karma plug-in hybrid sports car.

According to its bankruptcy filing on Friday, Fisker owns tax breaks worth $320 million.

Fisker’s bankruptcy papers said the Southern California-based company plans to sell its automotive operations to a business affiliated with Hong Kong tycoon Richard Li, but it will hold on to the tax breaks after it emerges from bankruptcy.

Fisker piled up some $800 million in net operating losses in recent years, which have a future cash benefit worth approximately $320 million, according to the bankruptcy filing.

That lost tax revenue would add to taxpayers’ pain from Fisker’s failure.

The Obama administration’s green-energy loan guarantees: The “investments” on behalf of the American taxpayer and overriding the obviously cretinous free-market signals of the private sector that just won’t die.


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What exactly does the Department of Energy do?

Personally, I would close the Department of Energy on the same day as I closed the Department of Education if I were president.

The District of Columbia has a crop of agencies ready for terminal harvest that looks like one of those forests that the guys on Ax Men devours every week.

Chop them all down, send them to the paper mill so that they can be turned into toilet paper.

turfmann on November 25, 2013 at 7:08 PM

Just like Government Motors’ $40-some billion in ill-gotten tax breaks they kept through their government/union seizu…er…bankruptcy.

Steve Eggleston on November 25, 2013 at 7:09 PM

What exactly does the Department of Energy do?

Personally, I would close the Department of Energy on the same day as I closed the Department of Education if I were president.

The District of Columbia has a crop of agencies ready for terminal harvest that looks like one of those forests that the guys on Ax Men devours every week.

Chop them all down, send them to the paper mill so that they can be turned into toilet paper.

turfmann on November 25, 2013 at 7:08 PM

DoE manages the production and maintenance of our nuclear weapons, if memory serves.

Steve Eggleston on November 25, 2013 at 7:10 PM

About that failed Fisker loan costing U.S. taxpayer $130+ million? Scratch that. It might be way more.

Dissolve the Department of Energy.

portlandon on November 25, 2013 at 7:10 PM

But not to worry, it was a smart investment in the future. Only the Impedors (I) don’t see it. I guess we are just too stupid.

pat on November 25, 2013 at 7:12 PM

What does the Department of Energy do? Why see to it America has no energy of course.

pat on November 25, 2013 at 7:12 PM

I’m so sick of this sh*t! They piss away $$ in DC faster than a trailer trash lottery winner! Why won’t these people ever look at the money as theirs as well as ours! We could be outta debt in 10 yrs. or less if DC quit wasting it on green crap, unions, and entitlement fraud!

JAM on November 25, 2013 at 7:23 PM

What exactly does the Department of Energy do?

That same thing that all Federal government agencies do…

nextgen_repub on November 25, 2013 at 7:29 PM

JAM on November 25, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Course they can, they have an ever unwilling populace to tax to ensure that the money just keeps on rolling in, we are the tree that grows money!

It is beyond time to chop down the govt to a more managable size, to disengage the the useless laws off the books and get back to commonsense and sensibility.

I am more than tired of hard working americans being abused and taken advantage of, because they are not lazy, do not want a hand out.

Surely the time is coming and soon, when we shall rise up and take back this nation?!! I know I want her taken back and freedom reinstated for the good of all…

About time I think :)

Scrumpy on November 25, 2013 at 7:48 PM

I’m pretty sure you can trace the demise of D of E back to Carter, around say, 1977. maybe on August 4th.

wolly4321 on November 25, 2013 at 7:56 PM

They were in charge of this, too.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_Genome_Project.

Makes sense, huh?

Seperate gubmint agencies started in 1942 under the Manhatten project morphed in to a behemoth all encompassing money monster under inept domocrap rule.

wolly4321 on November 25, 2013 at 8:08 PM

One would think that the DOE would be in charge of hiring guys with shovels and welder’s masks to build the
Keystone pipeline…

PointnClick on November 25, 2013 at 8:11 PM

One would think that the DOE would be in charge of hiring guys with shovels and welder’s masks to build the Keystone pipeline… PointnClick on November 25, 2013 at 8:11 Pm

Maybe they will be after barky appoints Hoffa to head DofE.

wolly4321 on November 25, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Wealth Redistribution at its best. Not the first time Hussein is distributing American wealth to China. Built with USA taxes, sold for nothing to China in fully operational mode free of debt.

riddick on November 25, 2013 at 8:33 PM

So we have $139 million in loan losses plus $320 million in FUTURE tax breaks, or a total of $459 million? Oh well, it’s not quite as bad as Solyndra!

But if Fisker is promised FUTURE tax breaks, couldn’t a future Republican Senate repeal future tax breaks for Fisker? After squandering Federal dollars, why should Fisker get tax breaks?

Steve Z on November 25, 2013 at 8:53 PM

costing U.S. taxpayer $130+ million

Are you sure you didn’t mean just $130+?

bgoldman on November 25, 2013 at 8:56 PM

costing U.S. taxpayer $130+ million

Are you sure you didn’t mean just $130+?

bgoldman on November 25, 2013 at 8:56 PM

Naughty poster.

slickwillie2001 on November 25, 2013 at 10:00 PM

While I think the interaction between the DOE and Fisker is one of the punchlines to the joke that has been the current administration, the complaints about the tax loss carry-forward benefit seem to me to betray a misunderstanding of how taxes work.

They’re not nearly the scandal people seem to think they are, though if someone wanted to suggest the government should have the ability to cancel and claim part of them, dollar for dollar, to offset the loan losses, I could understand the logic.

Patton on November 26, 2013 at 1:02 AM

I’m waiting for them to roll out Kermit the Frog singing “It’s Not Easy Being Green.

ProfShadow on November 26, 2013 at 7:10 AM