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Larry O'Connor

Greenjobs-Gate: House Probes Obama’s Connection to Failed Solar Company Solyndra’s Massive Federal Loan

by                   Larry O’Connor  

As the nation tunes in to hear President Barack Obama’s “Jobs Speech” this Thursday, it would be instructive to learn how the last bundle of Keynesian billions were spent on those fabled “Green Jobs” that were supposed to save our economy in 2009.

Meet Solyndra, the latest Darwinian example of how not to run a capitalist economy.  The President’s magic bullet to save America’s job disaster and help “Win the Future” was to be a whole host of “Green” businesses designed to take advantage of the enormous market demand for solar energy, electric cars and high speed rail.  Of course, since that demand did not actually exist, Obama spent an additional bundle of billions to provide incentives for businesses and individuals to purchase the white elephant products he spent to build.

Solyndra was one of the crown jewels in the President’s plan.  He even made a high-profile appearance at the San Francisco factory complete with hard hat tour, and speech to adoring workers who were paid to sit and look thankful for their Green Jobs.  Those workers, 1,000 of them, are all part of the Obama Unemployed now as Solyndra shut its doors and declared bankruptcy.

The green workers got pink slips and no sign of a severance package.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 4th 2011 at 9:25 am in EconomicsEnvironmentNewsObamaPoliticsUncategorizedenergy |

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AWR Hawkins

White House Cover-up Makes Continuation of Fast and Furious Investigation Imperative

by                   AWR Hawkins  

Last week, I had a post wherein I discussed the fact that the DOJ had re-assigned Kenneth Melson, Acting Director of the ATF, and accepted the resignation of Dennis Burke, U.S. Attorney (Arizona), in hopes that Fast and Furious could be swept under the rug.

In other words, can’t we let bygones be bygones?

My position then, which I’m stating again now, is “no,” we can’t just look the other way on Fast and Furious. It has cost too much in human life and literally broken too many laws to simply be forgotten.

And since my last post on the topic so much more has been learned that even CBS News is now wondering how far up the chain of command the cover-up reaches. We know for sure it reaches the White House, but who is it connected to there?

According to CBS, there were three people in the White House who received email updates on Fast and Furious. One of these three, Kevin O’Reilly, has long been known to have received updates from the ATF’s William Newell. But news of the other two – Dan Restrepo, senior Latin American advisory; and Greg Gatjanis, a national security official – only surfaced days ago.

What this means is that the Obama administration has some explaining to do.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 4th 2011 at 7:25 am in Justice/LegalNewsObamaPolitics |

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Natalie Nichols

Palin Shines Through the Rain

by                   Natalie Nichols  

Sarah Palin arrived to a packed house in the farm-themed “Machine Shed Restaurant” in Urbandale, IA Friday night.  The ever-amassing crowd began arriving at about 6:30 p.m. to congregate and socialize with fellow “Palinistas” from across the country.  Supporters stood around talking and catching up, many long time online-friends were meeting for the first time in person.  The atmosphere was more like a family reunion than a political gathering.  There were children playing, doting parents, young professionals, and the elderly maneuvering through the crowd with the assistance of canes.  I encountered people like myself and my family, who had driven in from Dallas, TX, those who had flown in from Virginia, some who hailed from Florida, Georgia natives, Iowa hometown fans, and even a woman from the president’s neck of the woods, Hawaii.


Sarah Palin at the Restoring America TEA Party – Photo by Chet Nichols

The meet and greet went on for an hour and a half when the front entry way suddenly began to buzz.  When the camera crews darted for the doors, all eyes turned to see that those “Guess who’s coming to dinner” rumors were true…Sarah was in the building.  She had a twinkle in her eye as she greeted those whose lucky positioning had placed them in the right place at the right time.  She shook hands and held mini-conversations with her loyal supporters.  She asked people where they were from and asked about their families…and she waited for the answers.

I spent some time with the Governor, but it was my 4 year old daughter who got Sarah’s attention that day.

When I introduced her to my daughter, Sarah had genuine adoration on her face.  She asked my daughter her name.  She was shy, so I answered, “Etta.”  She said, “Ooh, that’s a pretty name, Etta!  How old are you?”  Etta spoke up then and told her that she was 4.  I told Sarah that Etta had been asking if she could play with “Hyper.”  And with that Sarah laughed, looked at Etta and said, “We call her ‘Hyper Piper’ too!”  We chatted for a moment or two more, before she was beckoned away.

Palin continued to make her way through the crowd to the dining room which was already full.  She worked the room and visited with those who had come out to join together to support her in her endeavors.  Unlike the typical “politician,” Palin held real conversations with those present.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 4th 2011 at 5:36 am in 2012 Election |

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Publius

Sunday Open Thread: Edsel Edition

by                   Publius  

Today, in 1957, Ford introduced the Edsel. Think Chevy Volt.


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    Posted Sep 4th 2011 at 12:01 am in Open Threads |

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John Nolte

Root Causes: In Iowa, Sarah Palin Lays Out a Governing Philosophy that Should Worry Both Sides of the Aisle

by                   John Nolte  

Today in Iowa, home of that all-important Caucus (hint-hint?), Governor Palin spoke as clearly as she ever has on a subject near and dear to my heart and one I’ve been waiting to hear from a serious GOP contender. Palin calls it, quite appropriately, “crony capitalism,” where the moneyed and powerful receive preferential treatment from our political class in exchange for the financial support that puts and keeps the political class in charge of the rest of us.

This is the vicious circle currently tanking our economy and Palin’s own words sum it up best:

“Corporate welfare is just socialism for the very wealthy.”

Indeed.

And while Governor Palin rightfully trained most of her rhetorical fire on President Obama (the most corporatist president of my lifetime), she also took on Republican members of that “permanent political class” who selfishly dole out our hard-earned money to those who keep them in power.

This is nothing more than a racket and it’s a disgusting one at that that explains why deficits and wasteful spending occurs regardless of which party is in charge — it is, as the Governor made clear, the disease that’s killing our free market economy. But she has a cure that will both cut these insidious ties and create jobs: end loopholes, end corporate welfare, end bailouts (amen) AND end the corporate income tax. In other words: Corporate America — we’ll get out of your way but you are now on your own.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 5:01 pm in ExclusivesFeatured StoryPolitics |

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James Hudnall and Batton Lash

Obama Nation: Jobs Program

by                   James Hudnall and Batton Lash  


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    Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 3:38 pm in Political Humor |

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Christopher C. Horner

Why the Special Treatment: Is there a Solyndra/ObamaCare Connection?

by                   Christopher C. Horner  

Chatter began to emerge on Thursday about the unique treatment received by the bankruptcy-declaring Solyndra, a government-dependent maker of solar panels whose scheme, shaped somewhere between a pyramid and a trapezoid, was described in the Washington Post no less the following way:

“You make something in a factory and it costs $6, you sell it for $3, but you really, really need to sell it for $1.50 to be competitive,” Lynch said of Solyndra. “It was an insane business model. The numbers just don’t work, and they never did.”

And yet, as the LA Times editorialized:

“Solyndra was the first company to be awarded a federal loan guarantee under the stimulus, worth $535 million. Taxpayers are likely to end up on the hook for much if not all of that amount, a highly embarrassing development for President Obama because he was among the company’s biggest cheerleaders. He visited its Fremont plant in May 2010 even though PricewaterhouseCoopers had weeks earlier raised doubts about its plans for an initial public offering by questioning whether it could continue as a going concern. …”

Also, “Other flags have been raised about how the Energy Department pushed the deal forward. The Center for Public Integrity’s iWatch News and ABC disclosed that Energy Department officials announced the support for Solyndra even before final marketing and legal reviews were in. To government auditors, that move raised questions about just how fully the department vetted the deal — and assessed its risk to taxpayers — before signing off.”

Given the obvious rat-hole nature of the lost half-billion, LAT piquantly inquired, “is Obama using stimulus funds to reward his political contributors?” By all means, follow the odor of the ties between major Solyndra backer, key Obama fundraiser George Kaiser of Tulsa.

But there is another question about what political deal may have been involved in the Solyndra boondoggle.

Solyndra resides in Fremont, California, which in turn rests within the then-cozy confines of California’s 13th Congressional District, represented by Fortney “Pete” Stark. As chairman of the tax-writing Ways & Means Committee’s Health Subcommittee during Obama’s push for Obamacare, Stark was critical to Obama’s signature step in ‘fundamentally transforming America.’

(more…)


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 1:33 pm in Uncategorized |

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Brian Garst

Years Later, Land Seized in Kelo Decision Used for Debris Dump

by                   Brian Garst  

In 2005, Kelo v. City of New London made eminent domain infamous. The widely reviled Supreme Court ruling gave the go ahead for the city of New London to use eminent domain for taking private property in order that it be given to a private company for “economic development.”

The public response was one of outrage. Facing the potential wrath of voters,  politicians across the country moved to add new protections against such abusive seizures. But that wasn’t enough to save the homes of the folks in New London, whose property never would be developed. Pfizer, the intended beneficiary of the land theft, walked away years ago from their development plans.

Now, to add new insult to injury, the vacant lot is a dump. Literally.

Following hurricane Irene, the city designated the site as a place to dump storm debris, and citizens can be seen doing just that in this video on the local paper’s website.

Doesn’t that make you feel all warm inside? The Supreme Court reassured us in Kelo that the government orchestrated theft “would be executed pursuant to a “carefully considered” development plan.” What they forgot to mention is that careful consideration from politicians is worth about as much as the city’s new debris dump, which is to say: diddly squat.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 11:26 am in Justice/LegalNewsPoliticsUncategorized |

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Publius

Palin Tells Supporters: ‘Room for More’ in GOP Race

by                   Publius  

From The Washington Post:

Sarah Palin tantalized supporters on the eve of her appearance at a tea party rally by telling reporters “there’s room for more” candidates in the contest for the Republican presidential nomination. But she gave no hint as to whether she was talking about herself.

The former Alaska governor was mobbed by enthusiastic supporters who chanted, “Run, Sarah, run!” when she arrived at a Des Moines suburb Friday evening. Many had come hundreds or thousands of miles to attend Saturday rally in Indianola and many believe that Palin will become a candidate.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 9:12 am in 2012 ElectionPolitics |

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Ari David

Another Insult to Ronald Reagan and His Memory

by                   Ari David  

Of all the political figures in history, Ronald Reagan is the target of the most contempt by people on the left. Reagan, through his personality, vision and actions is the one person who has done more to undermine the flimsy ideas that liberals hold than any other.

Reagan was born in 1911 so 2011 has been a year celebrating the centennial of his birth. Many of the events commemorating the centennial have been held at the Simi Valley California, Reagan Presidential library.

A flagship event at the library for the centennial year is obviously the Republican Presidential debate scheduled for next week. It was revealing that Obama would make a bid to upstage the debate by scheduling his own “urgent” jobs speech to a joint session of congress on the same night. It revealed the Olympian level of contempt that Obama and his democrat cronies have for Reagan’s legacy and memory.

Sure, it is true that Obama may have sought simply to undermine the momentum Rick Perry and others in the GOP field have garnered against him in the last few weeks as the president has suffered political stumbles on myriad issues but there is no way that team Obama was ignorant of the bigger issue surrounding this particular GOP debate which was the specific stage and location it was being held at as well as the specific year it is being held in.

This is not the first time Obama has gone after Reagan’s legacy or family in word and deed.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 7:06 am in 2012 ElectionCultureObamaPolitics |

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Jeannie DeAngelis

Barack Obama’s NASCAR Blues

by                   Jeannie DeAngelis  

During the 2008 presidential campaign NASCAR chairman and CEO Brian France invited candidates John McCain and Barack Obama to a race.  John and Cindy graciously attended in New Hampshire, but bicycle-loving Barack was a “no show.”

In an article entitled “Don’t assume all NASCAR equates to Republican,” Raygan Swan concluded that Obama failed to attend because “Obama’s brain trust chose to end associations with NASCAR, because the sport shares the same stereotypes as Republicans.”

Barack Obama’s people must have surmised that point because NASCAR races open with public prayer, are traditionally attended by flag waving, “smokin’ hot [pastor’s] wives” and everyone in attendance enthusiastically sings along to patriotic renditions of the national anthem.

Now, three-plus years later, on a typical Wednesday-is-Funday-at-the-White House, the President has plans to honor NASCAR champion/John McCain supporter Jimmie Johnson and the “11 other Chase drivers from last year in a White House ceremony.”

Ironically, in a week where scheduling problems are widespread, “nearly half of the 2010 playoff contenders won’t be there.” NASCAR claims that the five drivers – “Greg Biffle, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart – will not be attending the White House visit due to ‘schedule conflicts.’”

In light of the jobs speech/Republican debate/NFL Football kerfuffle, who more than Obama should understand how schedules can upset the best-made plans? Apparently he doesn’t, because the President who lacked consideration for NASCAR in the past has become a schedule-stickler, demanding a level of consideration from others that oftentimes he refuses to extend to anyone else.

Between unemployment, the economy, and the general mood of the nation, Barack must feel like a political race car driver in an out-of-control vehicle with a stuck accelerator, traveling 200 miles per hour on Talladega’s Super Speedway.

To add insult to injury, first the President was banned from holding a joint session of Congress speech on Wednesday night, where he planned to tout his plan for job creation during a week where, for the first time in 66 years, it was announced that job growth was 0% for the month. Following that initial humiliation, Obama was then forced to postpone until the following night and is now scheduled to address a distracted audience anxiously awaiting to see the Green Bay Packers challenge the New Orleans Saints.

Now we come to find out that earlier that same day, the President was dissed by a quintet of NASCAR drivers who probably remember the President declining the invitation to a NASCAR race in 2008, and who would rather airbrush a vehicle than meet with Barry.

In the future, Barack Obama should spare himself the embarrassment and restore Wednesday to its original function as the night he and Michelle originally designated for weekly cocktail/Conga parties.

The White House’s response to having the invite declined by five guys in sunglasses and colorful jumpsuits was at best a tad off-putting. Tongue-in-cheek, a testy spokesperson acknowledged that “They must be very busy people.”

Following up with a defensive rebuke, a White House spokesperson maintained that “Regardless of one’s political views, the president is still the president – and an opportunity to speak with the leader of the free world is a rare and special one.”

Snippy, snide and sarcastically chiding the NASCAR no-shows, an irritated Obama advocate argued: “You’d think whatever photo shoots or sponsor appearances these drivers have lined up on Wednesday afternoon – if that’s indeed the reason – could be rescheduled. After all, this is the President of the United States we’re talking about here.”  Ouch!

The truth is that, while not justifiable, White House causticity is understandable, especially after being barked off the hydrant after attempting to mark political territory by disregarding the Republican debate and scheduling a speech that should have been given weeks ago.

Either way, it’s not surprising that a typically patriotic group would turn down the President’s invite, but what is a little strange is that a White House that so recently had a very public struggle with a scheduling issue would react in such a huffy manner to an identical excuse.

Nonetheless, honorees Jimmie Johnson, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Clint Bowyer, Jeff Burton and Matt Kenseth will attend.  For the other five, if during his Thursday night job-creation speech the President should happen to mention creating jobs for car mechanics, in the future it might be wise to know who’s hanging around the pit stop, tightening the lug nuts on the cars of the drivers who chose to respectfully decline the President’s invitation.


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Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 5:08 am in CultureFeatured StoryObama |

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Publius

Saturday Open Thread: Lee Edition

by                   Publius  

Tropical Storm Lee is bearing down on the Louisiana coast. The storm isn’t expected to threaten New York City, so your cable news programming this weekend should be normal.


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    Posted Sep 3rd 2011 at 12:01 am in Open Threads |

32439648 Comments »http%3A%2F%2Fbiggovernment.com%2Fpublius%2F2011%2F09%2F03%2Fsaturday-open-thread-lee-edition%2FSaturday+Open+Thread%3A+Lee+Edition2011-09-03+07%3A01%3A29Publiushttp%3A%2F%2Fbiggovernment.com%2F%3Fp%3D324396

Steve Grammatico

Obama War Room: Misdirection

by                   Steve Grammatico  

BILL DALEY: Boehner’s office just called, sir.  He’s changed his mind.  Says you can address the joint session next Friday at 2:00 a.m.

OBAMA:  Cheeky b**tard.  All right, accept.  Eric, have Federal marshals available to round up and escort legislators to the Chamber.  Encourage them to be rough with Republicans.

JAY CARNEY: Our dirty tricks team affixed a wireless speaker under Joe Wilson’s seat, sir. We’ll trigger it to replay “You lie!” four minutes into your remarks.

BRIAN WILLIAMS:  Afterward, our technicians will enhance the audio, pinpoint the source, and nail him.  Wilson will deny, but voiceprint analysis confirms it’s his voice.

OBAMA:  And another firestorm.  Man never learns.

DAVID PLOUFFE:  Lotta voters throwing the Kool-Aid back in our faces, sir.  I wonder if a speech touting investment in urine-powered cars and prefabricated bamboo homes will help your numbers.

OBAMA:  Anyone with a better idea?

CARNEY:  Do a 180, sir: have a “Come-to-Jesus Moment” before the whole country, announcing you’ve finally realized you’re a socialist ideologue. (more…)


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Posted Sep 2nd 2011 at 6:05 pm in Political Humor |

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William Kelly

Jobs Talk is More Hot Air from ‘Hurricane Obama’

by                   William J. Kelly  

President Obama’s sit down with weighty media figure, radio talk show host Tom Joyner, resulted in an interesting prediction Tuesday:

“There is no doubt that we can take steps that would mean the economy was growing a percent or a percentage and a half faster. That could mean half a million to a million additional jobs,” said Obama.

After almost three years in office, 13.9 million unemployed, and more than 42 million on food stamps, is the President just blowing more hot election cycle air? Can DC handle yet another blundering blowhard? You decide.


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Posted Sep 2nd 2011 at 4:16 pm in ObamaUncategorizedunemployment |

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Deanna Murray

Why 9/11 Talking Points Are Un-American

by                   Deanna Murray  

Talking points. Anyone standing in front of a group of people, representing an organization or focused message has ‘em, just in case the person speaking decides to veer off topic and start discussing the lunch that gave him heartburn.

Yeah, most of us see the need for ‘em.

But when our own government sends out a list of  9/11 talking points in order to curb and dilute the message of this terrible sacred day, it shows how far gone this administration really is when it comes to knowing the pulse and sentiments of its people.

According to a the New York Times report, the adminstration said its goal in issuing 9/11 talking points is to “present a positive, forward-looking narrative.”

“As we commemorate the citizens of over 90 countries who perished in the 9/11 attacks, we honor all victims of terrorism in every nation around the world. We honor and celebrate the resilience of individuals, families and communities on every continent, whether in New York or Nairobi, Bali or Belfast, Mumbai or Manila, or Lahore or London,” the guidelines state.

We all understand people of many different nationalities perished on 9/11. We also understand the global impact of 9/11 and how it changed the face of terrorism in the world. Suddenly, we were all acutely aware of the danger out there – the fact we, as Americans were being targeted and hated as a country for our beliefs in freedom, independence and liberty. So, to globalize the 10th anniversary into a memorial to victims of terrorism around the world seems to demean the significance and importance of this one, very real event in America’s history.

(more…)


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Posted Sep 2nd 2011 at 2:24 pm in Obama |

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Capitol  Confidential

AT&T, Google and the Obama Administration

by                   Capitol Confidential  

It’s funny what a million dollars in political contributions, support for the right candidate and a liberal meme can buy you in Washington these days.  For Google, it is buying them a free pass as they amass growing power in Washington and the marketplace.

AT&T, while unionized, does not have the same liberal bent as Google.  They are more a traditional Beltway player.  Open Secrets.org describes their strategy as “Although the company has historically favored Republicans in its political giving, people and political action committees associated with AT&T have as of late generally split their contributions between Democrats and the GOP.”

Recently both Google and AT&T made strategic acquisitions.  How they were treated by the politicized Department of Justice makes an interesting statement.

Google is a giant and growing by the day. Google purchased Motorola and ITA Software, which builds online flight and ticket information software for travel websites.  Google paid $700 million for ITA and Motorola for $12 billion.  The acquisition of ITA allows Google to corner the market for travel and Motorola gives Google monopoly on thousands of patents that will help stave off competitive threats and patent-i

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