Tags: Barack Obama | Climate Change | Global Warming | Money | energy | green | taxpayers

Taxpayers on the Hook for Green Energy

By Thursday, 23 June 2016 11:47 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Brent Scher of The Washington Free Beacon has an interesting account of the insider dealing that characterizes the conspiracy against the taxpayer known as Washington, D.C.

It’s the place where people enter “public service” and work for powerful politicians or learn the levers of bureaucracy.

Then leave government to sell insider knowledge to individuals and companies who want a place at the trough.

There are no “non-compete” or “trade secret” clauses in “public service” work. Only a revolving door between the public and the parasitic sector that expels individuals and fortunes.

It’s a system that’s morally corrupt and perfectly legal.

This time it’s a revolving cast: lobbyist Steve McBee, former Department of Energy loan office Executive Director Jonathan Silver, and Democratic Senate candidate Katie McGinty.

Most recently Silver hosted a fundraiser for McGinty’s campaign. The event wasn’t the first time Silver showered money on her — although for a change this time he may have used some of his own. During his DOE stint Silver approved two “loans worth over $331 million in fiscal 2010 alone” to NRG Energy while McGinty was a member of the firm’s board.

That’s a considerable amount of money, but it pales in comparison to the giveaway for which Silver is famous: The half billion dollars he poured down the rat hole known as Solyndra.

Yet if it hadn’t been for a change in federal law, the loans, the Senate campaign and the donations might never have happened.

Prior to Obama, applicants for loans on highly speculative “green energy” projects were required to attach a “down payment” of the company’s money with the paperwork.

The requirement to use the investor’s own money had a sobering effect on applicants.

It’s one thing to use tax dollars, which are essentially free and renewed each year, and quite another to use their own.

Which is where McBee enters the picture. According to the Washington Examiner’s Timothy Carney, McBee is a former Senate staffer who left to open his own lobbying firm.

When Democrats came back into power with Obama, he persuaded his old bosses to introduce legislation removing the requirement for companies to invest their own money.

Happy days were here again.

For you and me this would be like going to 7/11 and instead of paying for the Powerball ticket, our good friend the clerk gives us the ticket and a portion of the winnings.

While McBee is working his no–down–payment magic — which was such a success in the housing market during the Bush administration — McGinty is wrapping up her time as secretary of Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection.

Besides the state’s environment, she had no problem protecting the environment at home either, as she approved government grants to clients of her husband’s firm.

After the Hillary-like investigation, McGinty left “public service” for a soft landing, on the NRG Energy board where she moved from showering Pennsylvania tax dollars over applicants she deemed worthy, to accepting federal tax dollars for her new firm.

In only five years on the board McGinty made over $1.1 million, which is not bad for part-time work. To fill up her free hours she also took a board seat at Iberdrola USA, a Spanish company, which just happened to get a $10 million grant from her former employer after she arrived.

Silver leaves DOE and joins the parasitic sector most recently as managing director of Tax Equity Advisors where he “helps large U.S. corporations benefit from the tax incentives available to them for investments in clean power projects.”

I don’t imagine the work is too onerous. He’s massaging his buddies at DOE who wouldn’t mind a future slot doing what Silver does. All it takes to keep the relationship going is tax dollars, which are free for the asking!

And what about McBee? He helped NRG Energy (McGinty’s outfit) land a $1.6 billion loan guarantee from the feds to build the Ivanpah solar electric generating system — the world’s largest bird microwave — located in the Mojave Desert.

While not as big a failure as Silver’s Solyndra, Ivanpah is close.

It has 350,000 mirrors directed toward water towers where the sun’s heat fries birds and boils water. Only a watched solar plant hardly boils. Ivanpah is only producing a quarter of the power promised.

Not that it matters to McBee. He is now president  and CEO of NRG Home, a subsidiary of McGinty’s NRG Energy.

It should be obvious the only way to rein in the constant waste and expansion of big government is to legislate a lifetime ban on federal staff and officeholders going to work for any firm that lobbies the government, or is regulated by their former department.

Otherwise McGinty, McBee, Silver and all the rest will continue to be rainmakers while taxpayers are forced to supply the cloud.

Michael R. Shannon is a commentator, researcher (for the League of American Voters), and an award-winning political and advertising consultant with nationwide and international experience. He is author of "Conservative Christian’s Guidebook for Living in Secular Times (Now with added humor!)." Read more of Michael Shannon's reports — Go Here Now.


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There are no non-compete or trade secret clauses in public service work. Only a revolving door between the public and the parasitic sector that expels individuals and fortunes. It’s a system that’s morally corrupt and perfectly legal.
energy, green, taxpayers
Thursday, 23 June 2016 11:47 AM
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