President Barack Obama has dramatically ramped up the Washington, D.C., giant Crony-fest. Where economic sectors and companies Obama and his Democrats like get the gold mine – and the rest of us get the shaft. For instance, there was $80 billion for “green energy” in the awful 2009 “Stimulus” bill –80% of that coin went to Obama donors.
An electric truck manufacturer that was awarded $32 million from President Obama’s stimulus program has informed one of its investors that it is on the verge of bankruptcy, if it did not raise $4.5 million by Friday and $10 million by the end of October.
Washington, D.C. is a dysfunctional mess. Just about nothing gets done unless it absolutely has to get done. And when things do get done – they are just about always horrible. Bigger and bigger government, over and over again, as far as the eye can see.
There are few things more dangerous to private enterprise than government bureaucrats with time on their hands. And since most bureaucrats have no legitimate reason for being – they have lots and lots of time on their hands.
They first tried to say the cause of the crash was a lack of government money. Except Amtrak has received over $30 billion since its 1970 inception. The last spending bill signed by President Barack Obama included $1.4 billion for Amtrak.
A stimulus-backed Department of Energy loan program that has not been tapped for four years, and was deemed unwanted two years ago by the Government Accountability Office, is suddenly ready and willing to dole out more taxpayer millions again – to a corporation that doesn’t need it.
For governments everywhere, taxes and regulations are like Lays Potato Chips – no one can eat just one.
In part, of course, because governments’ appetite for taking our money and controlling our lives is insatiable. It’s their nature.
And because government intervention just about always makes things worse.
Competitive Enterprise Institute senior fellow John Berlau joins The Heartland Institute’s Budget & Tax News managing editor Jesse Hathaway to talk about the U.S. Treasury Department’s recent announcement that the “auto bailout” portion of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) had officially ended with the final repayment of taxpayer-funded loans to Ally Financial, formerly known as GMAC.
According to the Commerce Department, the economy based on its Gross domestic product–the value of its goods and services–fell at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 2.9% in the first quarter of this year. That was the largest recorded drop since the end of World War II in 1945!
The most recent report (reflecting up until March 31) under the $32 million grant shows that Smith delivered 421 of its vehicles, with $27,343,311 reimbursed to the company with government funds thus far. That calculates to a whopping $64,948 taxpayer subsidy per vehicle.
President Obama’s speech last week that re-emphasized his commitment to reduce US carbon dioxide emissions brought dismay to those who appreciate affordable energy, but it sparked a celebration among corporate types who have long sought caps and taxes on CO2.
The Heartland Institute recently hosted renowned economist and political commentator John Lott, who gave an enlightening talk about this new book “At the Brink: Will Obama Push Us Over the Edge?”
The report this month about the shutdown of Vehicle Production Group – beneficiary of a $50-million stimulus loan from the Department of Energy – means the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing initiative within the Loan Program Office has been a thorough failure.