A business filed for bankruptcy last week.
These have been tough times, so that’s not a shock. What makes the story juicy is that the FBI raided the company’s headquarters two days later.
The company? Solyndra, a solar panel manufacturer. A few months earlier, it had been boasting a profitable return on investment. And, as President Obama had proclaimed the previous year in a visit to the California outfit, Solyndra was precisely the kind of company that deserved federal government assistance. It was so cutting edge, so innovative, that it deserved a huge loan guarantee, to the tune of $535 million.
The raid occurred on the same day as the president’s “jobs” speech last week. Yet, Mr. Obama neglected to include an update on his administration’s previously self-praised policy of industrial subsidy pertaining to that very company.
Republicans are making much of this. They are themselves not immune to (indeed, during the Bush years they excelled at) just this sort of corruption.
And it is corruption. The Solyndra deal went down after major investors in the company gave millions in support of the Obama presidential campaign. It was fast-tracked as part of the federal government’s Keynesian “stimulus” spending.
This is how the politics of modern mercantilism — of systematic “business-government partnerships” — works. The moneymen support the politicians who support the moneymen.
It’s one way to get rich.
And gain (and maintain) power.
But it’s not good for the country.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.