Saturday, September 17, 2011

My Boyne City Gazette Column; Obama racing towards $3 Billion more green energy loans; We lose $14 billion in auto company bailout, and that's good news?; A union raids a grain terminal, smashes windows and threatens security guards; House passes law protecting jobs from government interference; Government protected Obama investors over taxpayers in Solyndra deal

   President Obama, the EPA, and  job losses

   As have presidents before him, President Obama has enacted part of his agenda through signing statements and Presidential orders, thereby bypassing the consent of Congress.  Having failed to pass Cap and Tax, he has given the EPA the authority to impose any regulations it desires using the Clean Air Act to force companies to pay for expensive new equipment or to pay for greenhouse gas emissions. Those companies then must raise their prices to consumers. If a state refuses those mandates as Texas has, the EPA has delayed or refused gas permitting authority.  
   Petoskey recently quashed plans to erect a large windmill because of the unacceptable levels of noise it would create, noise associated with human illnesses such as high blood pressure and infrasonic waves generated by the rotors.  Add to this many other problems: they require vast amounts of land space; they don't work when it is not windy; they need to be heated when the temperature is low; they require very expensive repairs; they kill hundreds of birds; and at best they produce only 2% of needed electricity. 
   Michigan Country Lines wrote, "Even if Congress grants a reprieve on greenhouse gas regulations, red tape from the other EPA rule-making efforts will trigger higher electric bills.  Co-ops expect EPA's rule making will eventually have the practical effect of eliminating coal as a power plant option." As Barack Obama actually said during his campaign, "So if somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can.  It's just that it will bankrupt them because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that is being emitted."  Country Lines finished its newsletter to customers by writing, "We are expecting a number of power plants to simply be retired.  The cost to comply....will simply be too much.”
   The President and CEO or the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity warns of job losses totaling 1.4 million and a 23% increase in electric rates if the EPA mandates are followed.  Green energy companies paid for by taxpayer dollars via Stimulus money, such as Solyndra ($535 million) are frequently going bankrupt.
   The Wall St. Journal called for a suspension to EPA rules; The New York Post warned of an “economic train wreck” if EPA rules take effect; the Texas Public Utility Commission predicted rolling blackouts.  Even John D. Rockefeller (D) asked for a two year delay of rules.   The EPA just sought further delay in their rules, saying the regulations would cost $900 billion per year.
   Even as we hope for alternative energy to fulfill our needs in the future, it is far from being able to do so at this time.  Alternatives are fraught with problems of all kinds, which is why their production needs taxpayer dollars to sustain their production.  America does not have the revenues to keep supporting unworkable projects just to provide a few more, and increasingly temporary jobs.
   In an obvious effort to be re-elected, and knowing that this fall the Republican House planned to legislate to cancel the EPA rules,  President Obama recently did the right thing by using  a proviso allowing him to overrule the EPA.  If he is truly interested in jobs, he should also end his de facto ban on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and permit the building of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to the Midwest and the Gulf coast. I imagine he will instead cast the Tea Party as the terrorist, racist group which keeps him from his stated plans to “fundamentally change America.”
   Perhaps his next step should be the repeal of Obamacare, as it is a major reason for current unemployment in the health care fields, as well as freezes on hiring in many companies.  But don’t count on it.  
   Some members of Move On, a very liberal, George Soros-funded organization, are “wondering how they can ever work for Obama’s re-election.”  I’m quite sure they will find a way to continue to support Obama, as they will come to understand that this EPA reversal is but a temporary move.  Jimmy Hoffa, on the other hand, failed to fault Obama, proclaiming that unions are “at war” with the Tea Party and that they will “take these SOBs out.”

National Journal writes: The Obama administration is in a race against the clock to close by month’s end more than a dozen renewable-energy loan guarantees totaling $9 billion. Of that, just over $3 billion would come from the federal government’s coffers.
It now has to do that amid an escalating political battle over a federally backed solar company spiraling into bankruptcy and facing an FBI probe. President Obama once praised the company, California-based Solyndra, as “the true engine of economic growth.”
At a House hearing Wednesday, there was bipartisan concern about risking more taxpayers’ dollars on renewable energy projects that ultimately fail. While Republicans’ rhetoric was more heated, Democrats agree it is a critical
The loans conditionally committed to the companies borrowing from the government total $3.18 billion. The other half loaning from private lenders totals roughly $5.8 billion. Most of the companies are in the solar industry. Of the companies seeking to borrow from the Treasury Department, the biggest loan—worth $1.18 billion—would go to SunPower Corporation Systems to build a solar farm in California. Another hefty loan of $737 million would go to SolarReserve to build a solar farm in Nevada. Most of the money Treasury has available—if loans are closed by Sept. 30—is targeted to solar companies. Of the seven companies borrowing from the government, four of them are in the solar industry, two in biofuels, and one in the wind sector, according to DOE’s website.
US News reports: Taxpayers will lose about $14 billion in the government's $80 billion bailout of Chrysler and GM, the White House said Wednesday, portraying the outcome as good news since the losses are far lower than originally anticipated.
Seizing on the figures, the Obama administration took credit for the resurgence of the U.S. auto industry, assuring taxpayers that the government's bailout of Chrysler and GM was an investment worth making.
A report by the president's National Economic Council noted that as Detroit automakers rebound, the taxpayers' loss from the bailout will be about $14 billion, or less than 20 percent of the $80 billion that the Bush and Obama administration used to prop up the companies in 2008. The Treasury Department had expected losses closer to 60 percent."  [Let's not forget that the unions now own a substantial part of GM.]
The AP reports: A federal judge found a union in contempt of court Thursday, a week after police said hundreds of its members raided a grain terminal in southwestern Washington, smashed windows and menaced security guards.
U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton said he wants the operator of the Longview grain terminal, EGT, to provide him an accounting of the damage for purposes of gauging how much he should fine the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Locals 4 and 21.
US Representative Sue Myrick (NC-09) today voted in favor of HR 2587, The Protecting Jobs from Government Interference Act, introduced by Rep. Tim Scott (SC-01).
The bill amends the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) to prohibit the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from ordering an employer to relocate, shut down or transfer employment. This is especially important given the ongoing situation in South Carolina involving the NLRB and The Boeing Company, which may destroy thousands of jobs on which hardworking Americans were depending.,22&itemid=929
Expose Obama writes: On February 23,the government restructured its agreement with Solyndra to entice investors to sink another $75 million into the failing firm. The restructuring agreement provides that,in case of bankruptcy,those investors get to recoup their funds before taxpayers are repaid. Republican Congressman say this is a clear violation of the Energy Policy Act of 2005,which states taxpayer dollars must “not [be] subordinate to other financing.”
As such,the restructuring alone may be an impeachable offense

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