Hot Air Blog
Buck-passing fun via Andrew Stiles and the Washington Free Beacon.
OBAMA: We are doing the all of the above strategy right. Obviously, we wish Solyndra hadn’t gone bankrupt. Part of the reason they did was because the Chinese were subsidizing their solar industry and flooding the market in ways that Solyndra couldn’t compete. But understand, this was not our program per se.
Congress–Democrats and Republicans–put together a loan guarantee program because they understood historically that when you get new industries–it’s easy to raise money for start-ups, but if you want to take them to scale sometimes there’s a lot of risk involved, and what the loan guarantee program was designed to do was to help start-up companies get to scale. And the understanding is that some companies are not going to succeed, some companies are going to do very well, but the portfolio as a whole ends up supporting the kind of innovation that helps make America successful in this innovative 21st century economy. Do I wish that Solyndra had gone bankrupt? Absolutely not. And obviously it’s heartbreaking it happened for the workers who were there.
If not for Congress, there never would have been any half-billion dollars to blow on Solyndra. So when you think about it, it’s really America’s fault, isn’t it? I wonder if that reasoning would work for a bank manager forced to explain why he made a terrible loan to a fledgling company with bad prospects whose board of directors just happened to include a buddy of his. It’s really kinda sorta the bank’s fault for offering loans in the first place, isn’t it? Never mind that the previous “bank manager” had enough sense not to throw money into this sinkhole the first time it applied for cash.
Needless to say, his whole argument is based on a lie. As Stiles notes, the money for Solyndra came from the stimulus, not the loan program established for clean-energy companies a few years earlier. And The One’s been perfectly content to point that out when it’s politically convenient for him: Watch the second clip below from the RNC (via Matt Lewis) for a little then-and-now. What a perfect little bookend this is to today’s other big energy charade, his attempt to pretend that fast-tracking the southern half of the Keystone pipeline — which doesn’t even need his approval — makes him some kind of warrior against rising gas prices or something.