The Solyndra Fiasco: The Gift That Keeps On Giving
The U.S. may not be bankrupt yet, but if our government keeps making idiotic “investments” it may not be long. After putting the taxpayers at the bottom of the list to recover funds from the foolhardy and politically motivated energy loan to the defunct solar cell manufacturer Solyndra, one last kick in the gut appears on the horizon as the lavish Solyndra headquarters gets ready to sell for a fraction of its original price.
Documents filed in U.S. bankruptcy court detail an arrangement for Seagate Technology, the manufacturer of storage technology products such as hard drives, to purchase the Solyndra facility for $90.3 million; thanks to taxpayer loans to the company, Solyndra built the facility for approximately $300 million.
Though the deal remains in the early stages, the Romney campaign was pleased to remind voters of the $528 million crap-shoot the Obama administration took with taxpayer dollars.
“Solyndra is the ultimate symbol of President Obama’s failed attempts to pick winners and losers in the free market,” Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said. “The Obama administration’s decision to put its friends and donors ahead of taxpayers was wrong, and even the sale of Solyndra’s palatial headquarters won’t make things right.”
The sale of the headquarters isn’t likely to yield taxpayers a dime since the Obama Administration put all private investors above the taxpayers in bankruptcy court. The auction of property from the Solyndra headquarters last November barely made a dent in investor losses and given the “special” status granted to taxpayers by the Obama Administration the sale of the Solyndra building in all probability won’t land a cent in the U.S. treasury.
A report released earlier this month by the House Energy and Commerce Committee concluded that “political pressure” by a White House eager to tout its stimulus spending was largely to blame for fast-tracking the loan guarantee.
According to the report “it is clear the Department of Energy should never have issued the loan guarantee to Solyndra.”
The White House responded by claiming the investigation affirmed “this was a merit based decision made by the Department of Energy” as opposed to an attempt to reward political cronies.
During a congressional hearing last November, Energy Secretary Steven Chu was asked how much money taxpayers might see; Chu responded: “Well, that remains to be seen. I’m anticipating that not very much.”
It seems clear the best thing that will come out of the Solyndra fiasco is that a successful and privately funded company like Seagate will get a bargain-basement price on a new building and, in turn, will hire many people to work there. Taxpayers could’ve been saved several hundred million dollars had the Department of Energy simply bought the building and handed the keys to Seagate in 2010.
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