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The Global Positioning of War (two stories)(let's see where it leads in time)
#1
#1) http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/20...donor.html

White House Pressure for a Donor?

Sep 15, 2011 12:24 AM EDT

The Pentagon has worried for months that a project backed by a prominent Democratic donor might interfere with military GPS. Now Congress wants to know if the White House pressured a general to change his testimony.

The four-star Air Force general who oversees Air Force Space Command walked into a highly secured room on Capitol Hill a week ago to give a classified briefing to lawmakers and staff, and dropped a surprise. Pressed by members, Gen. William Shelton said the White House tried to pressure him to change his testimony to make it more favorable to a company tied to a large Democratic donor.

The episode confirmed by The Daily Beast in interviews with administration officials and the chairman of a congressional oversight committee is the latest in a string of incidents that have given Republicans sudden fodder for questions about whether the Obama administration is politically interfering in routine government matters that affect donors or fundraisers. Already, the FBI and a House committee are investigating a federal loan guarantee to a now failed solar firm called Solyndra that is tied to a large Obama fundraiser.

Now the Pentagon has been raising concerns about a new wireless project by a satellite broadband company in Virginia called LightSquared, whose majority owner is an investment fund run by Democratic donor Philip Falcone.

According to officials familiar with the situation, Shelton's prepared testimony was leaked in advance to the company. And the White House asked the general to alter the testimony to add two points: that the general supported the White House policy to add more broadband for commercial use; and that the Pentagon would try to resolve the questions around LightSquared with testing in just 90 days. Shelton chafed at the intervention, which seemed to soften the Pentagon's position and might be viewed as helping the company as it tries to get the project launched, officials said.

"There was an attempt to influence the text of the testimony and to engage LightSquared in the process in order to bias his testimony," Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH) said in an interview. "The only people who were involved in the process in preparation for the hearing included the Department of Defense, the White House, and the Office Management and Budget."

[Image: 1316062967707.jpg]Philip Falcone, CEO, CIO, and senior managing director of Harbinger Capital Partners speaks at the 16th annual Sohn Investment Conference in New York May 25, 2011., Jessica Rinaldi / FILE / Landov
Turner is chairman of the House Armed Services subcommittee that oversees Shelton's space command and GPS issues; the panel explored the issues between LightSquared and the Pentagon at a hearing Thursday.

On Thursday, LightSquared CEO,Sanjiv Ahuja told The Daily Beast that his company was not trying to use politics to affect the regulatory process and the firm's goal was to expand broadband access across America.

"Any suggestion that we have run roughshod over the regulatory process is contradicted by reality: Our plans to begin implementing America's first privately funded, wholesale, affordable, coast-to-coast wireless broadband service have been delayed for a year and we have been forced to commit more than $100 million to find a solution that will allow consumers to benefit from both our service and GPS," Ahuja said.

"For a company that allegedly is wired' inside the Beltway, we've been unable to even get the House Armed Services Committee to allow us to have one representative today's hearing a hearing in which we are the subject," he said.

Shelton finally gave his testimony Thursday, and made clear the Pentagon's concern about LightSquared's project.

The general told Turner's committee that preliminary tests of a new LightSquared proposal to use only a portion of the band that it was licensed originally in 2004 would cause significant disruptions to GPS.

He said the GPS spectrum was supposed to originally be a "quiet neighborhood," meaning that lower strength signals could exist near the GPS spectrum. Speaking of the LightSquared plan, he said, "If you put a rock band in the middle of that quiet neighborhood, that's a different circumstance."

The White House confirmed Wednesday that its Office of Management and Budget suggested changes to the general's testimony but insisted such reviews are routine and not influenced by politics. And it said Shelton was permitted to give the testimony he wants, without any pressure.

OMB "reviews and clears all agency communications with Congress, including testimony, to ensure consistency in the administration's policy positions," said White House spokesman Eric Schultz. "When an agency is asked by a congressional committee to testify, OMB circulates the agency's proposed [draft] testimony to other affected agencies and appropriate [executive office of the president] staff. If a reviewer has a comment to the proposed testimony, that suggestion is typically conveyed to the agency for their consideration. When divergent views emerge, they are often reconciled through discussions at the appropriate policy levels of OMB and the agencies." The general's office declined to comment.

LightSquared has previously acknowledged it met with officials from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy as it tried to shepherd the project, which is consistent with President Obama's goal of trying to expand broadband wireless access nationwide. That office has a mandate to meet with members of private industry.

Melanie Sloan, who runs the nonpartisan ethics groups Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said the emerging allegations about possible White House involvement in LightSquared's matter seemed to mirrorearlier allegations in the Solyndra case.


"With this new set of facts, it starts to sound like a pattern of the White House improperly pressuring people at agencies involving decisions that affect companies tied to donors and fundraisers," Sloan said. "It's always a problem when the White House is pressuring anyone's testimony. I don't care if you are a four-star [general] or a GS-15 [career employee], you should be giving your true opinion and not an opinion the White House is seeking for political expediency."

Sloan recalled similar instances during the Bush administration, when officials were accused of trying to meddle with climate scientists' testimony. "It doesn't matter what party is in charge, money frequently trumps good policy in Washington," she said.

Mr. Ahuja gave a little more than $30,000 to both the Democratic and Republican parties in the last two years. Mr. Falcone and his wife have gave more than $60,000 in 2009 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Mr. Falcone has also given a smattering of money to Republicans.

At issue is a conditional Federal Communications Commission waiver granted in January to LightSquared to build cheap terrestrial wireless capacity in a section of the wireless spectrum close to the GPS bandwidth. Harbinger Capital, the hedge fund belonging to Falcone, owns a majority stake in LightSquared.

"There was an attempt to influence the text of the testimony and to engage LightSquared in the process in order to bias his testimony," said Rep. Mike Turner.
The FCC license has come under scrutiny because technical experts have warned that LightSquared's proposal to build tens of thousands of ground stations for a wireless network could drown out the GPS signal. On Tuesday, the FCC issued a public notice stating that LightSquared may not move forward on establishing its wireless service until further testing proves the GPS would not be harmed.

Falcone says the FCC waiver was spurred by the demands of the wireless industry. "LightSquared wanted the waiver because some of its wholesale partners wanted the choice of being able to sell devices with either satellite only, terrestrial-only or combined satellite-terrestrial service," he told The Daily Beast. "The waiver allows us to meet the specific needs of our customers but it in no way affected the spectrum issue."

The White House confirmed Wednesday that its Office of Management and Budget suggested changes to the general's testimony but insisted such reviews are routine and not influenced by politics. And it said Shelton was permitted to give the testimony he wants, without any pressure.

OMB "reviews and clears all agency communications with Congress, including testimony, to ensure consistency in the administration's policy positions," said White House spokesman Eric Schultz. "When an agency is asked by a congressional committee to testify, OMB circulates the agency's proposed [draft] testimony to other affected agencies and appropriate [executive office of the president] staff. If a reviewer has a comment to the proposed testimony, that suggestion is typically conveyed to the agency for their consideration. When divergent views emerge, they are often reconciled through discussions at the appropriate policy levels of OMB and the agencies." The general's office declined to comment.

LightSquared has previously acknowledged it met with officials from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy as it tried to shepherd the project, which is consistent with President Obama's goal of trying to expand broadband wireless access nationwide. That office has a mandate to meet with members of private industry.

Melanie Sloan, who runs the nonpartisan ethics groups Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said the emerging allegations about possible White House involvement in LightSquared's matter seemed to mirrorearlier allegations in the Solyndra case.


"With this new set of facts, it starts to sound like a pattern of the White House improperly pressuring people at agencies involving decisions that affect companies tied to donors and fundraisers," Sloan said. "It's always a problem when the White House is pressuring anyone's testimony. I don't care if you are a four-star [general] or a GS-15 [career employee], you should be giving your true opinion and not an opinion the White House is seeking for political expediency."

Sloan recalled similar instances during the Bush administration, when officials were accused of trying to meddle with climate scientists' testimony. "It doesn't matter what party is in charge, money frequently trumps good policy in Washington," she said.

Mr. Ahuja gave a little more than $30,000 to both the Democratic and Republican parties in the last two years. Mr. Falcone and his wife have gave more than $60,000 in 2009 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Mr. Falcone has also given a smattering of money to Republicans.

At issue is a conditional Federal Communications Commission waiver granted in January to LightSquared to build cheap terrestrial wireless capacity in a section of the wireless spectrum close to the GPS bandwidth. Harbinger Capital, the hedge fund belonging to Falcone, owns a majority stake in LightSquared.

"There was an attempt to influence the text of the testimony and to engage LightSquared in the process in order to bias his testimony," said Rep. Mike Turner.
The FCC license has come under scrutiny because technical experts have warned that LightSquared's proposal to build tens of thousands of ground stations for a wireless network could drown out the GPS signal. On Tuesday, the FCC issued a public notice stating that LightSquared may not move forward on establishing its wireless service until further testing proves the GPS would not be harmed.

Falcone says the FCC waiver was spurred by the demands of the wireless industry. "LightSquared wanted the waiver because some of its wholesale partners wanted the choice of being able to sell devices with either satellite only, terrestrial-only or combined satellite-terrestrial service," he told The Daily Beast. "The waiver allows us to meet the specific needs of our customers but it in no way affected the spectrum issue."

Falcone added, "The GPS industry decided not to oppose us in the early 2000's because they thought we'd never be successful. It was only after they realized we were not just a concept, but a viable technology with a viable business model, that they decided to oppose us. Meanwhile, LightSquared invested billions of dollars that is money that comes from private individuals all over the country based on the promise the FCC gave us under a Republican administration six years ago. The point is that any suggestion that the waiver created LightSquared out of thin air is both specious and absurd."

Turner said Shelton told his committee that LightSquared had obtained his earlier prepared testimony. But Jeffrey J. Carlisle, Executive Vice President for Regulatory Affairs and Public Policy for LightSquared said Thursday that the company never received Shelton's testimony scheduled for August 3.

A U.S. government official who spoke on the condition of anonymity said the White House specifically asked Shelton to include a paragraph in his testimony that stated the military would continue to test the proposed bandwidth for ways LightSquared could still use the spectrum space without interfering with GPS. The proposed language for Shelton's testimony also stated that he hoped the necessary testing for LightSquared would be completed within 90 days.

The White House has said it did not try to influence the licensing process for LightSquared at the FCC. Chairman Julius Genachowski also has said the White House never lobbied him about LightSquared. Republicans are now questioning whether the administration has been rushing approval of the project over the objections of experts ranging from GPS companies like Garmin to the military's own advisory committee on satellites.

"The FCC's fast-tracking of LightSquared raises questions about whether the government is rushing this project at the expense of all kinds of other things, including national security and everyone who uses GPS, from agriculture to emergency medical technicians," said Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA). "Without transparency, and with media coverage of political connections in this case, there's no way to know whether the agency is trying to help friends in need or really looking out for the public's interest."

In April, Grassley asked Genachowski to hand over all records of communications, including emails between Falcone and the FCC, and LightSquared and the FCC. Genachowski declined to turn over those records.

The Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit investigative journalism organization,published emails this week it had obtained showing meetings between White House technology advisers and LightSquared officials.


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*******

#2) http://therearenosunglasses.wordpress.co...-karabakh/

US or Israeli-Made Drone Shot-Down By Armenian Defenders At Nagorno-Karabakh

1709
2011[Look for this to become the new international tinderbox, if Azeri/Turkmen plans for undersea gas line take shape, or if Israel carries through on Lieberman's threats to escalate the Armenian/Turkish rift. If Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and the EU can pull-off the Nabucco deal, then look for the Georgian war to become red hot.]

New Discovery Links Downed Drone Parts to US Firm

[Image: 0915drone.jpg]The GPS splitter prototype reportedly part of the downed drone manufactured by the US-based GPS Source, Inc.
A new discovery Thursday linked an unmanned Azeri drone downed this week by Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense Army to a US Defense company that manufactures signal distribution products. This raises new questions about potential violations of U.S. arms export laws.
Saying that Azeri Air Force activity has "visibly increased" along the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic-Azerbaijan border, the Karabakh Army announced Wednesday that it downed an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)a droneearly Monday morning saying it had violated Karabakh airspace.
A close review of a video of the drone wreckage released by the Karabakh Army revealed that the Pueblo West, Colorado-based GPS Source Inc., which manufactures and sells signal distribution products is the maker of a GPS splitter that was one of the components of the downed drone. The GPS splitter allows a single GPS antenna to be shared between multiple GPS receivers.
An earlier examination of the video revealed that the Canadian-based company, NovAtel, which has offices in Texas, is the manufacturer of the GPS antenna used on the drone.
The Armenian National Committee of America Wednesday called on the State Department to look into whether the use of the NovAtel-manufactured components warrants an investigation into potential violations of U.S. arms export laws. The discovery that parts manufactured by the US-based GPS Source raises renewed concern about possible violations of U.S. laws.
"…We are especially troubled by the prospect that Azerbaijan's military escalation, threats of violence, and actual aggression may be, directly or indirectly, fueled by U.S. defense articles, in violation of U.S. law and in a manner contrary to the American people's commitment to a peaceful settlement of conflicts in the Caucasus and around the world," ANCA Chairman Ken Hachikian told Hillary Clinton in a letter Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Azeri media outlets released a brief statement by the Defense Ministry denying any role in the drone flights.
"Azerbaijan has nothing to do with an unmanned aerial vehicle that crashed in Armenian-occupied Nagorno-Karabakh."
Nagorno-Karabakh Republic President Bako Sahakian, through a spokesperson, told RFE/RL Thursday that the UAV reconnaissance flight constituted a serious violation of the cease-fire agreement.
"First of all, the [Azerbaijani] aggressor will now feel more restrained because the destruction of such military hardware also shows the extent of the technical sophistication of our army. That will certainly have a quite sobering impact on Baku's behavior," Sahakian's press secretary, Davit Babayan, told RFE/RL's Armenian service.
Babayan said that the downed drone was positive proof of continued violations by Azerbaijan, calling on OSCE monitors to expand the scope of their ceasefire monitoring missions.
RFE/RL also suggested that the drones were a product of an Azeri-Israeli joint venture, under which a plant opened in March in Baku that assembles Israeli-designed drones for the Azeri armed forces. RFE/RL added that the Azeri military has also reportedly purchased such aircraft from Israel and Turkey.
According to Colonel Nikolay Babayan, commander of Armenia's air-defense forces, Karabakh army units used special "radioelectronic" equipment to shoot down the spy plane, reported RFE/RL quoting Panorama.am
"It is very difficult to hit and even locate unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) because they are made of special composite materials," Babayan told Panorama.am on Wednesday. "But we managed to do that by using special devices."
The official did not specify the type of anti-aircraft weapon that was reportedly used to down the UAV. He said only that Azeri drones regularly carry out reconnaissance flights near Karabakh.
"This time, the UAV violated the border, as a result of which its flight was ended by the joint work of our air-defense troops and radioelectronic forces," added Babayan.








"Where is the intersection between the world's deep hunger and your deep gladness?"
Reply
#2

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2011

Cronyism, Corruption and the 'War on Terror'



[Image: VC_Empire.jpeg]

The partisan furor surrounding the collapse of solar equipment manufacturer Solyndra, a Fremont, Calif. firm which secured a $535 million government loan from the Energy Department, underscores congressional hypocrisy when it comes to widespread cronyism and corruption.

The Washington Post reported that "The Obama White House tried to rush federal reviewers for a decision on a nearly half-billion-dollar loan to the solar-panel manufacturer Solyndra so Vice President Biden could announce the approval at a September 2009 groundbreaking for the company's factory, newly obtained e-mails show."

According to Post stenographers Joe Stephens and Carol D. Leonnig, those "August 2009 e-mails released exclusively to The Washington Post," shorthand for a controlled leak by Republican staffers, "show White House officials repeatedly asking OMB reviewers when they would be able to decide on the federal loan and noting a looming press event at which they planned to announce the deal."

In response to White House pressure, "OMB officials expressed concern that they were being rushed to approve the company's project without adequate time to assess the risk to taxpayers, according to information provided by Republican congressional investigators."

Solyndra, a poster-child for the administration's PR campaign to expand "green jobs" was part of Obama's lifeless "stimulus package" which White House flacks argued would ameliorate unemployment through tax cuts and other perks to corporations in the wake of the on-going economic meltdown.

"It was alarming," Frank Rusco, a program director at the Government Accountability Office, told The New York Times.

GAO auditors found "Energy Department preliminary loan approvals--including the one for Solyndra--were granted at times before officials had completed mandatory evaluations of the financial and engineering viability of the projects."

"They can't really evaluate the risks without following the rules," Rusco said.

But in Washington, the well-connected follow their own rules so it was hardly surprising that Solyndra executives hired Washington lobbyists in early 2009, retaining McBee Strategic Consulting.

"Five lobbyists employed by the McBee group eventually worked on Solyndra's behalf," the Times disclosed, "including Michael Sheehy, a former top aide to Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the House Democratic leader. Solyndra has paid McBee Consulting $340,000 since 2009."

However, despite intense pressure to approve the loan the firm's business model in the highly-competitive solar energy market was flawed from the get-go.

Although the unique design of their solar panels may not have relied on silicon, and executives assumed their "competitors would continue to pay a relatively high price for silicon, allowing Solyndra to charge the premium required to turn a profit," industry experts "outside the federal government, going back to 2008, were predicting silicon prices were headed for a steep fall."

Between 2008 and 2009 when the loan was approved, sinking demand for solar energy as a result of the economic crisis, drove down the price of silicon from more than a $1000 a pound to less than $100 in the twinkling of an eye.

Despite high-profile investors, loan guarantees, a new factory, and frankly a better made, more efficient product, Solyndra was forced to sell its panels well-below production costs, seriously wounding the company.

Taxpayers and laid-off workers were left holding the bag.

Factor in the collapse of the commercial and home real estate markets, the dearth of new factory construction, and allegations of "unfair-trade complaints against China for out-sized subsidies to its clean-energy companies," Bloomberg Newsaverred, and the entire renewable-energy sector was in deep trouble.

"China provided $30 billion in credit to its biggest solar manufacturers last year, about 20 times the U.S. effort, Jonathan Silver, executive director of the Energy Department's loan program, told a congressional panel Sept. 14," Bloombergreported.

The former socialist republic, which learned a lesson or two from other Asian "tigers" and the United States for that matter when it came to development, "frequently provides both zero-cost financing, occasionally free land and other kinds of incentives and subsidies" to its wind and solar companies, Silver told Congress.

The problem is not that the Chinese state subsidizes manufacturing but that the United States refuses to do so. Witness the near hysteria by rightist troglodytes over modest efforts by the federal government to construct a network of high-speed bullet trains across the United States.

Grifters in Congress, academia and the business press however, in thrall to Reaganite fantasies of "free trade" and "free markets" are willfully blind to the historical role played by the American state, and it was hardly an "invisible" one, in directing national priorities and resources during the period of rapid industrialization.

As readers are well aware, Antifascist Calling does not carry water for the Obama administration, a government as duplicitous as the previous Bush regime. However, there is more than a hint of a manufactured scandal by congressional Republicans over the Solyndra affair. While political blood sport may titillate Washington pundits, something far more sinister than a questionable loan is going on here.

In fact, the targets of the Republican attack machine are two-fold: discredit any government efforts to boost the industrial sector while disparaging renewable energy entirely as a potential, albeit weak threat, to the multinational energy conglomerates who provided 77% of their $18.8 million in campaign contributions to the GOP, according toOpenSecrets.org.

Contrast congressional market fundamentalist zeal here with their deafening silence when it comes to the heavily-subsidized U.S. "defense" industry, where mammoth cost overruns and mega-profits for the Military-Industrial Complex are factored in to the acquisition of weapons systems which have cost the American people trillions of dollars in investments elsewhere.

Deepening Crisis

That Solyndra went belly-up and filed for bankruptcy protection last month, laying off nearly 1,100 workers, is another sign that the global crisis which eviscerated productive sectors of the economy, continues to have disastrous effects for the vast majority of Americans.

As the World Socialist Web Site reported, "census bureau figures that came out Tuesday, showing the largest number of Americans living in poverty since records began in 1959, are a damning indictment of American capitalism and the entire political system."

The manufacturing sector, long the staple of a healthy economy, has undergone a major transformation since the 1970s. As U.S. firms, challenged by stiff competition from their capitalist rivals, sought to lower costs and increase shrinking profit margins, jobs were offloaded to low-wage platforms.

Yankee corporations however, that fled offshore to hide their assets and dodge taxes in so-called "free trade" and other "special" industrial zones where high productivity and low labor costs were guaranteed by repressive, U.S.-allied comprador regimes, made out like proverbial bandits.

As a result, entire industries withered and died, and large swathes of America's industrial heartland were transformed into economic dead zones.

Those corporatist chickens, demented stepchildren of neoliberal globalization, have now come home to roost.

"In 2010 there were 46.2 million people--almost one out of every six residents--living below the official poverty line, including 16.4 million children," socialist critic Jerry White wrote. "Of these nearly half, or 20 million, were described as living in deep poverty, subsisting on less than half the income the US government says is needed for basic food, shelter, clothing and utilities."

Contrast deepening levels of poverty with administration moves to secure a "settlement" with financial elites who profited on both ends of the 2007-2008 crisis. Their reckless, and fraudulent, credit default swaps and brisk trade in worthless mortgage-backed securities have cost American taxpayers trillions of dollars with no end in sight.

But as New York Federal Reserve board member Kathryn Wylde told The New York Times, "Wall Street is our Main Street--love 'em or hate 'em. They are important and we have to make sure we are doing everything we can to support them unless they are doing something indefensible."

As the World Socialist Web Site noted, "In the name of the free market, they slashed taxes on the corporations and the rich, deregulated industry and the banks and backed a corporate offensive against the jobs and living standards of the working class."

And despite the fact that "corporations and the banks are now sitting on a cash hoard of $2 trillion," said economic gangsters are "refusing to hire any workers," thus exacerbating the crisis for average workers through unemployment, wage deflation and the loss of basic social benefits while boosting profits.

In his latest iteration as a "fighter" for "ordinary Americans," Obama's budget director told The New York Times that the president's new "deficit-reduction plan" would impose "a lot of pain," cutting some $320 billion from Medicare and Medicaid.

That proposal would impose higher premiums and deductibles for beneficiaries while slashing payments to "teaching hospitals and rural hospitals" as well as charging "co-payments to frail homebound older people who receive home health services," the Times reported.

Under the plan the federal government would also "reduce the growth of federal payments to states for treating low-income people under Medicaid," effectively telling older citizens and the poor, "hurry-up and die," the mantra of "libertarian" Tea Party loons who view the lack of affordable health care as "the price of freedom."

Meanwhile, Obama's Air Force Secretary Michael Donley "signaled the service is ready for a fight and vowed to 'protect' most big-ticket hardware programs from steep budget cuts," including the cost-overrun-plagued F-35 fighter program, The Hillreported.

As well, Donley "placed the multibillion-dollar effort to develop a new bomber aircraft on his don't-cut list" saying, "developing the 'long-range strike family of systems,' including the new bomber, is essential."

According to the Secretary, accepting cosmetic reductions in the bloated "defense" budget will mean "we will need to accept greater risk," if by "risk" Donley means shaving a penny or two off the share price of the largest defense corps.

Grifter's Ball

The Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) enacted by the Bush regime in 2008, and supported by then-candidate Obama and the Democrats, followed by 2009's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the so-called "stimulus package," were rushed through Congress under crisis conditions allegedly to "save the economy."

In practice however, both legislative edicts were fantastic boondoggles that rewarded "too-big-to-fail" investment banks that brought on the crisis in the first place while shortchanging foreclosed homeowners and tens of millions of laid-off workers.

A so-called "stimulus" that disavowed any direct creation of jobs by government action, such as massive spending on public works and infrastructure repair as was done during the Great Depression, was doomed to fail.

This failure is borne out by an official unemployment rate of 9.1% with some 14 million people looking for work. However, the government's broader, and more accurate index of the jobs crisis, which measures those who either stopped looking for work or are involuntary part-time workers rose to 16.2% in August, a staggering 25.3 million people.

As economist Michael Hudson observed: "From the outset in 2009, the Obama Plan has been to re-inflate the Bubble Economy by providing yet more credit (that is, debt) to bid housing and commercial real estate prices back up to pre-crash levels, not to bring debts down to the economy's ability to pay. The result is debt deflation for the economy at large and rising unemployment--but enrichment of the wealthiest 1% of the population as economies have become even more financialized."

How has this played out in the real world?

Marxist economist Richard Wolff wrote scant weeks before Solyndra's collapse: "As demand for goods and services shrank fast, businesses and the rich stopped investing in production. Their investible funds were idled, and that only aggravated the crisis. The self-regulating, efficient capitalist market system proved to be the myth its critics had mocked. However, the market system did spread the US crisis quickly to Europe and beyond."

"The bailout of casino capitalists vested a new ruling class with $13 trillion of public IOUs (including the $5.3 trillion rescue of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) added to the national debt," Hudson noted. "The recipients have paid out much of this gift in salaries and bonuses, and to 'make themselves whole' on their bad risks in default to pay off."

"An alternative," Hudson wrote, "would have been to prosecute them and recover what they had paid themselves as commissions for loading the economy with debt."

The result of these reckless policies are plain as day: from rising unemployment to collapsing infrastructure, and from a steady rise in home foreclosures to increased levels of immiseration, Bush-Obama policies have benefited those who wield real power in the capitalist world: the financial oligarchs and militarists who prospered from the bailouts and "War on Terror" military spending.

But the "government could have used its equity ownership and control of the banks to provide credit and credit card services as the 'public option'," Hudson noted. In other words, rather than bailing-out the fraudsters, the state could have invested public funds in programs that actually benefit the public, a novel idea rejected out of hand as "socialist tinkering."

However, Hudson averred, "this is not the agenda that the Bush-Obama administrations chose. Only Wall Street had a plan in place to unwrap when the crisis opportunity erupted."

"Stockholders were bailed out, counterparties were saved from loss, and managers today are paying themselves bonuses as usual," Hudson wrote. "The 'crisis' was turned into an opportunity to panic politicians into helping their Wall Street patrons."

But the bailouts did far more than merely enrich the thieves, it actually exacerbated the global meltdown.

"As the crisis flared in 2008," Wolff observed, "governments unfroze credit markets by pouring money into tottering banks and insurance companies. Governments printed and created new money to pay for part of these policies; to cover the other part governments borrowed."

And whom, pray tell, were the American people's new creditors? Why "the banks and insurance companies they had bailed out" of course! "Governments," Wolff wrote, "also borrowed from the companies and rich individuals who had withheld investing in the production of goods and services and had thereby worsened the crisis."

Is this a great system, or what!

Ponzi Republic

Not a single top executive of any Wall Street firm has been prosecuted by the federal government for their crimes. Take Goldman Sachs as a prime example, a firm which journalist Matt Taibbi memorably described as "a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money."

As McClatchy News investigative reporter Greg Gordon revealed, on the cusp of the housing bubble's collapse, "Goldman Sachs Group peddled more than $40 billion in securities backed by at least 200,000 risky home mortgages, but never told the buyers it was secretly betting that a sharp drop in U.S. housing prices would send the value of those securities plummeting."

Those fraudulent deals "enabled the nation's premier investment bank to pass most of its potential losses to others before a flood of mortgage defaults staggered the U.S. and global economies."

"Only later," Gordon wrote, "did investors discover that what Goldman had promoted as triple-A rated investments were closer to junk" and that "pension funds, insurance companies, labor unions and foreign financial institutions that bought those dicey mortgage securities are facing large losses."

Taibbi recounted last spring for Rolling Stone that the Senate Subcommittee on Investigations mammoth 650-page report,Wall Street and the Financial Crisis: Anatomy of a Financial Collapse, supplied "a panoramic portrait of a bubble era that produced the most destructive crime spree in our history--'a million fraud cases a year' is how one former regulator puts it."

"But the mountain of evidence," Taibbi wrote, "collected against Goldman by [Senator Carl] Levin's small, 15-desk office of investigators--details of gross, baldfaced fraud delivered up in such quantities as to almost serve as a kind of sarcastic challenge to the curiously impassive Justice Department--stands as the most important symbol of Wall Street's aristocratic impunity and prosecutorial immunity produced since the crash of 2008."

Contrast Justice Department inaction regarding Goldman Sachs, including ignoring potential perjury by Goldman's CEO Lloyd Blankfein as Taibbi and other investigators revealed, with their zeal to lower the boom on Solyndra.

In connection with the company's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, the FBI "executed a search warrant" on the firm September 8, the Los Angeles Times reported, "but declined to discuss what they were investigating. FBI spokesman Peter D. Lee said documents related to the search had been sealed."

This is the same secret state agency that is curiously indifferent to far-larger grifts run by the big money boys. Keep in mind, this is the Justice Department satrapy waging covert war against the antiwar movement, illegally spying on Muslim-Americans, ginning-up phony "terror" plots through their employment of paid informants and provocateurs while allowing real terrorists, such as the network which assisted the 9/11 plotters as The Miami Herald recently disclosed, run wild in Florida. Yes, thatFBI!

"Republicans," the Los Angeles Times observed, "have seized on Solyndra's downfall as a sign that President Obama's stimulus and 'green jobs' campaign were failures."

"They have also noted that key Obama backer George Kaiser was a major investor in Solyndra, the first company to receive a Department of Energy loan guarantee to boost alternative energy companies." But then again, so was Madrone Capitol, a private equity fund affiliated with the powerfully-connected Walton family of Wal-Mart fame, long-time GOP supporters.

Kaiser, a Tulsa, Okla. billionaire and head of The George Kaiser Family Foundation, "holds about 35.7 percent of Solyndra, according to a company filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Kaiser made 16 visits to the president's aides since 2009, according to White House visitor logs," Bloomberg Newsreported.

A "bundler" for Obama's 2008 presidential bid, Kaiser raised somewhere between $50,000 to $100,000 for the campaign and contributed some $2,300 personally, according to the Federal Election Commission. What Bloomberg fails to report however, is the more than $7.5 million in campaign contributions made over the last decade by the Walton family to the Republican party and assorted right-wing causes.

While evidence of irregularities may suggest that Solyndra executives were less than forthcoming in their application for federal loans, and that well-connected billionaire donors to the president's campaign may have helped tip the scales in their favor, their behavior, and potential losses to taxpayers, pale in comparison to the far larger, and more damaging, crimes of Wall Street con artists who continue to thumb their noses at the public and evade justice.

Crony Capitalism Gone Wild: The 'War on Terror'

While Republican bag men for the superrich point to the Solyndra scandal, and there is something fishy going on here, as evidence of corruption in the White House, the fact is, Obama, like every president who occupied the Oval Office before him, is a wholly-owned creature of the ruling class.

Never mind that Team Obama recently abandoned plans to beef-up national air quality rules to reduce the emission of cancer-causing chemicals in smog. That move followed an intense lobbying campaign by polluters in the chemical, mining and petroleum sectors and their bipartisan congressional pets who alleged that the $90 billion price tag would "kill American jobs." Or that the "environmental president," in a course reversal sure to have oil industry executives jumping for joy, will soon approve plans to build the Keystone XL pipeline that will carry mega-polluting Canadian tar sands oil to Gulf Coast refineries.

And never mind that the White House, the Republican-controlled House and the Democratic-controlled Senate are conspiring against the American people to gut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid through a congressional Supercommittee whilst continuing to bailout financial jackals to the tune of some $13 trillion, even as the Securities and Exchange Commission blithely shredded thousands of incriminating documents that let the gangsters off the hook as Rolling Stonerevealed in August.

And of course, pay no attention to the expansion of the imperialist Empire's endless wars and occupations, its extension of outsourced "War on Terror" CIA torture programs intoSomalia, or that the Obama administration, as The Washington Post recently reported "is assembling a constellation of secret drone bases for counterterrorism operations in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula," the on-going assault on civil liberties here in the heimat or mounting evidence that the provocateurs who murdered nearly 3,000 people on 9/11 may have been given a leg up by U.S. secret state agencies as they prepared to slam hijacked passenger airliners into buildings.

What partisan hacks in both corporatist political parties will never acknowledge, let alone investigate or prosecute, are orders of magnitude greater, "War on Terror" boondoggles. Two examples:

The National Security Agency's multibillion dollar fiasco, Trailblazer. As The Baltimore Sun revealed, the firm that NSA chose to head the project, Science Applications International Corporation, "forged close ties to several key defense and intelligence agencies, including the NSA. Among those who have served on SAIC's board of directors are former NSA Director Bobby Ray Inman; former CIA Directors John M. Deutch and Robert M. Gates; and former Defense Secretaries Melvin R. Laird and William J. Perry." As investigative journalist Tim Shorrock pointed out for CorpWatch, "SAIC is deeply involved in the operations of all the major collection agencies, particularly the NSA, NGA and CIA. SAIC, for example, managed one of the NSA's largest efforts in recent years, the $3 billion Project Trailblazer, which attempted (and failed) to create actionable intelligence from the cacophony of telephone calls, fax messages, and emails that the NSA picks up every day. Launched in 2001, Trailblazer experienced hundreds of millions of dollars in cost overruns and NSA cancelled it in 2005." Indeed, the Sun'sexposure of SAIC's shoddy work on the project, as journalist Jane Mayer disclosed in The New Yorker, led Obama's Justice Department to prosecute whistleblower Thomas Drake, not those responsible for ripping off taxpayers or standing-up illegal driftnet spying programs. Congressional action? Zero, but SAIC walked away with the money and continues to be rewarded by the secret state and now ranks No. 6 on Washington Technology's "Top 100" list of largest government contractors with some $5.1 billion in Defense Department contracts.

The Department of Homeland Security's Secure Borders Initiative or SBInet, a failed project to construct a "virtual electronic fence" along the border with Mexico. When DHS finally pulled the plug earlier this year, SBInet's lead contractor, Boeing Corporation, held contracts valued between $2 and $8 billion according to estimates by the Government Accountability Office. Boeing is a major "War on Terror" beneficiary, clocking-in at No. 3 on Washington Technology's"Top 100" list, with some $8.4 billion in revenue largely from the Defense Department. As the CIA's torture flight "booking agent," Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen Dataplan, Inc. profited handsomely from illegal Agency programs that secretly kidnapped and transferred "terrorist" suspects to foreign prisons and CIA "black sites." Victims who tried to litigate their claims against Jeppesen in the federal courts were rebuffed by Obama's Justice Department which asserted bogus "state secrets privilege" claims, alleging that litigating cases involving CIA kidnapping and torture would endanger "national security." In 2008, the GAO determined that there were "significant problems" with deployed technologies. Designed to detect a "target" with radar and then use video cameras to locate illegal entries, GAO investigators found that the radars were "too slow" and were often triggered by rain and "other weather phenomena." Information derived from sensors were to be forwarded to "command centers" where a "common operating picture" would be compiled by Customs and Border Patrol analysts and shared with other agencies. The so-called "common operating picture" would appear on computer screens as a geospatial map where "border entries" could be tracked in "real time." Despite congressional criticism, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said in January 2011, that the agency would be redirecting funding originally intended for SBInet "to a new border security technology effort." At the time of this writing, Boeing gets to keep the boodle already doled out and will soon rake-in even more. Last month, Defense Systems reported that Boeing's Phantom Ray, a jet-powered drone that can cruise at more than 600 miles per hour at 40,000 feet, is in the running to secure multibillion contracts for the Pentagon's next generation fleet of killer robots. "Key to its intended role," Defense Systems informed us, "the Phantom Ray can carry up to 4,500 pounds of ordinance, extra fuel and/or sensors in its payload bays. The bays are large enough to accommodate two 2,000 pound Joint Direct Attack Munition satellite guided bombs." There's no word yet from the Phantom Ray's intended targets--Somali herders and Afghan and Pakistani villagers--what theymight think about Boeing's latest technological marvel.

What lessons can we learn from the examples cited above? Not many, if we rely on corporate media.

As part of capitalism's manufactured "debt crisis," theAssociated Press reported that the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), a Washington, D.C. lobby shop which represents America's Military-Industrial-Security Complex, claimed that cuts to the bloated "defense" budget "would have a devastating impact on a defense industry."

To meet the challenge, AIA has launched their "Second to None" campaign and a related web site. According to industry flacks, which include usual suspects BAE Systems, Boeing, General Dynamics, L-3 Communications, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and dozens more, "American leadership in aerospace and defense is being threatened by forces in Congress and the administration. The security of our troops, our technological future and our economic stability are all at risk. We must preserve jobs across the nation that keep our nation strong. Join us and act now before it is too late."

Though there's little chance AIA's dire predictions will come to pass, alarmism sells particularly when the target audience are members of Congress.

As the bipartisan congressional Supercommittee prepares to gut the social safety net while leaving imperialism's war budget virtually untouched, an investigation by Alternet and Salonrevealed that "when it comes to the military budget," Democrats "have received far more money from Pentagon contractors than [Arizona Senator Jon] Kyl or any of their Republican colleagues on the panel."

"Since 2007," investigative journalist Nick Turse wrote, "Democrats on the supercommittee have received more than $1 million in defense industry donations, while contributions to the Republicans added up to only $321,000."

Indeed, "panel co-chair Sen. Patty Murray ... has received more defense industry dollars over that period than the combined total of the top four Republican recipients on the supercommittee. Even so, her haul from the Pentagon's weapons-makers isn't the largest by a panel Democrat, a distinction held by her colleague from South Carolina, James Clyburn."

"An analysis of official government data paints a disturbing picture of big money, cozy relationships and potential influence that, alongside a concerted lobbying effort by the Pentagon and its powerful defense contractors, makes substantial reductions to the Department of Defense's budget improbable and steeper cuts to entitlement programs, like Medicare and Medicaid, more likely."

"Before Thanksgiving," Turse notes, "Clyburn and his supercommittee colleagues will be forced to make a clear decision for cuts to programs like Medicare and Medicaid or the type of budgets that have resulted in nearly $8 trillion in national security spending since 2001."

Any bets on which way the axe will fall?

By the way, what was that $500 million loan flap to Solyndra about?

Posted by Antifascistat 11:19 AM
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#3
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[TD]September 27-28, 2011 -- Scandal-plagued Solyndra has ties abroad -- and you'll never guess where

Solyndra, the Fremont, California-based solar energy company that received a $535 million loan guarantee from the U.S. government in 2009 and a visit from President Obama in 2010, has a close relationship with some of Israel's top solar power companies. Solyndra's favorable loan guarantee, awarded to the firm after Solyndra's top Washington lobbyists met with Obama's top political adviser Valerie Jarrett, was followed by reports of massive internal fraud, bankruptcy, the laying off of 1,100 workers, and a raid by FBI agents.

Solyndra's main marketer of its products in Israel is Israsol, a solar and wind power firm headquartered in Jerusalem. Solyndra, in turn, has as its main supplier of small carbon footprint lighting, Metrolight, an Israeli company with its international headquarters in Netanya, Israel, U.S. headquarters in Dana Point, California; and U.S. operating center in Brentwood, Tennessee.

The Obama White House is being charged with applying political pressure on Department of Energy loan regulators, permitting Solyndra to bypass required evaluations of its corporate and product worthiness prior to being awarded the half-billion dollar government loan guarantee. Tulsa oil billionaire George B. Kaiser, a significant investor in Solyndra through his $4 billion George Kaiser Family Foundation
, was a major fundraiser for Obama's 2008 presidential campaign. Kaiser contributed more than $50,000 of his own money to Obama's campaign.

According to The New York Times, Solyndra employed leading Washington lobbyists to grease the skids for its loan guarantee approval. Among them was the firm McBee Strategic Consulting. One of McBee's lobbyists who lobbied for Solyndra, Michael Sheehy, was a top aide to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

[Image: enron.jpg] [Image: Solyndra.jpg]

Bush to Obama; Enron to Solyndra: Both presidents and both parties corrupt to their cores.

Another lobbying group that went to bat for Solyndra at the White House was the Glover Park Group, whose staff includes its founding partner and managing director Joe Lockhart, former White House Press Secretary for President Bill Clinton. Other senior staff at Glover Park include Lockhart's press secretary predecessor, Dee Dee Myers; Arik Ben-Zvi, former Clinton and Gore advance man and election consultant in Israel, the United States, Bulgaria, and the British Virgin Islands; Jason Boxt, the former National Deputy Political Director at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC); Carter Eskew, chief strategist for the 2000 Gore campaign; and Beth Tritter, former legislative aide to Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY) and board member for the Washington Chapter of the American Jewish Committee.

http://www.waynemadsenreport.com/articles/20110927




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#4

Dr. Obama's Miracle Green Job Elixir Gives $737 Million To Solar Firm Linked To Pelosi's Brother-In-Law

[Image: Dr-Obama-s-Miracle-Green_Job_Elixir.jpg....7401412357]

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#5

Solyndra Plant Had Whistling Robots, Spa Showers

Q
By Alison Vekshin and Mark Chediak - Sep 28, 2011 12:27 PM ET
The glass-and-metal building that Solyndra LLC began erecting alongside Interstate 880 in Fremont, California, in September 2009 was something the Silicon Valley area hadn't seen in years: a new factory.
It wasn't just any factory. When it was completed at an estimated cost of $733 million, including proceeds from a $535 million U.S. loan guarantee, it covered 300,000 square feet, the equivalent of five football fields. It had robots that whistled Disney tunes, spa-like showers with liquid-crystal displays of the water temperature, and glass-walled conference rooms.
"The new building is like the Taj Mahal," John Pierce, 54, a San Jose resident who worked as a facilities manager at Solyndra, said in an interview.
The building, designed to make far more solar panels than Solyndra got orders for, is now shuttered, and U.S. taxpayers may be stuck with it. Solyndra filed for bankruptcy protection on Sept. 6, leaving in its wake investigations by Congress and the Federal Bureau of Investigationand a Republican-fueled political embarrassment for the Obama administration, which issued the loan guarantee. About 1,100 workers lost their jobs.
Amid the still-unfolding postmortems, the factory stands as emblematic of money misspent and the Field of Dreams ethos that seemed to drive the venture, said Ramesh Misra, a solar-industry analyst in Los Angeles for Brigantine Advisors.

Cylindrical Modules

"When you don't have the demand, you can't go into something with the attitude, Build it and they will come,'" Misra said. "You have to make sure the customers are already there when you build it."
He is skeptical of the company's statement, in a press release on the groundbreaking for the plant, that it had a backlog of $2 billion in orders for its cylindrical solar modules for commercial rooftops, which it touted as cheaper to install and more efficient than competing flat panels. "Backlog" is a term sometimes used loosely in the industry and may not represent firm orders at all, he said.
David Miller, a Solyndra spokesman, didn't respond to a phone call and e-mail seeking comment.
Solyndra was the dream of founder Chris Gronet, who received a Ph.D. in semiconductor processing at Stanford University and had spent 11 years as an executive at Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT) He adopted as the company's motto, "What we do here will someday change the world." Gronet didn't return a phone call seeking comment.

Prices Plunge

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and then-California Governor Arnold Schwarzeneggerattended the 2009 groundbreaking for the plant. At the event, Chu said the U.S. solar-energy industry was losing out to countries like China and the loan guarantee, the first awarded by the department under President Barack Obama's 2009 economic stimulus plan, would ensure the company's orders would be filled by U.S. workers.
Even as Chu, Gronet and Schwarzenegger were thrusting their shovels into the dirt, market forces were working against Solyndra. The price of polysilicon, the main ingredient in competing traditional solar panels, had plunged. By the time the plant opened last January, the price would be down about 40 percent from when Solyndra got the loan guarantee. Chinese companies were ramping up production of their ever-cheaper competing flat panels.
Solyndra executives rushed construction in a race to fill orders, putting some work on a 24-hour, seven-day schedule. The factory was up and ready for equipment installation in 10 months. The project employed more than 3,000 union construction workers, according to a Solyndra background sheet.

First Class'

"They were anticipating large production," Juancho Suntay, 51, a former Solyndra equipment maintenance technician, said in an interview. "That's why they wanted to have a state- of-the-art factory."
The plant features 19 loading docks, four electric car charging stations in the parking lot and landscaping of wild grass and a rock garden. An automated rail system moved parts through the assembly process.
Robots that resembled "a big freezer with wheels" maneuvered around the factory transporting panels from one machine to another, said George Garma, 49, a former Solyndra equipment maintenance technician from Fremont. The Disney tunes alerted workers to the robots' presence.
"It was first class," David Chan, 51, who was an information-technology contractor for Solyndra, said in an interview. "I've been in the business for 25 years and have seen some elaborate buildings. I've never seen a facility like it."

Costly Real Estate

The plant caught the attention of competitors. "Everybody I know in the solar industry would remark on it and say Boy, that's a really, really big factory,'" said Barry Cinnamon, chief executive officer at Westinghouse Solar Inc., a Campbell, California-based solar-panel company that manufactures in China.
"That's a lot of money that went into that factory," Cinnamon said in an interview. "It's one of those neck-snapping things every time you drove down the highway."
Commercial real-estate agents in the region wondered why a new factory was being built in the Silicon Valley region, the epicenter of some of the priciest real estate in the country, where most new construction consists of office space.
"There hasn't been a factory or warehouse building built in Silicon Valley in well over 10 years," Jeff Fredericks, managing partner at Colliers International in San Jose, said in an e-mail.
The asking rate for industrial properties in Silicon Valley is the fourth-most expensive in the U.S., according to Jack DePuy, Bay Area research manager at CB Richard Ellis in Foster City, California.

Machinery Breakdowns

About 11.4 percent, or 950,801 square feet, of industrial space was vacant in Fremont in September 2009, according to data from Colliers.
"There was available space that we talked about with them," Bob Wasserman, Fremont's mayor, said in an interview. "It was their decision that they needed a new building. Was that a good decision? It didn't turn out to be."
John Olenchalk, senior vice president at Kidder Mathews, a commercial real-estate firm inRedwood City, said Solyndra executives considered existing space, including a former Sun Microsystems Inc. facility in nearby Newark that had 218,000 square feet of production space. The company wanted more space and to be near its existing operations, he said.
Solyndra used the new plant for the first phase of panel production. An older facility nearby finished and assembled the panels, former employees said. Problems developed at the old plant, when machinery wouldn't work properly and needed constant repair, workers said.
"Everybody was talking about it," said Edward Santos, 44, a former warehouse worker in Solyndra's logistics department.

Advantage Lost

"A significant percentage of the product we built went into a dumpster because it was defective," said Craig Ewing, 55, a former maintenance technician. "It seemed like the company accepted that," he said.
Even if the old plant hadn't had problems, by the time the company opened the new facility it was clear that Solyndra had lost whatever cost advantage it might have had, said Michael Butler, chairman and CEO of Cascadia Capital LLC, a Seattle- based investment-banking firm that advises renewable-energy companies.
"I'm sure there was a lot of panic at that point, because I'm sure that everyone saw the writing on the wall," Butler said.
Workers noticed inventory piling up. "The drivers would tell us that the warehouses are getting full," Santos said. "Sometimes, they'd stay there one or two days before the material was unloaded."
About two weeks before the company closed, Solyndra CEO Brian Harrison gave an upbeat speech at the new factory, said Romie Sumera, 58, a former equipment-maintenance technician.
Solyndra was getting leads on new orders from companies including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Harrison told them.
To contact the reporters on this story: Alison Vekshin in San Francisco atavekshin@bloomberg.net; Mark Chediak in San Francisco at mchediak@bloomberg.net.
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Mark Tannenbaum atmtannen@bloomberg.net; Susan Warren at susanwarren@bloomberg.net.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-09-28...owers.html
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#6

SolyndraGatePocalypse


A Mark Fiore animated cartoon

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwrNmRK_I..._embedded#!
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#7
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[TD]ANDREW C. McCARTHY
ARCHIVE | LATEST | LOG IN
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SEPTEMBER 17, 2011 7:00 A.M.

The Solyndra Fraud
The solar-energy company was a con game.

The Solyndra debacle is not just Obama-style crony socialism as usual. It is a criminal fraud. That is the theory that would be guiding any competent prosecutor's office in the investigation of a scheme that cost victims in this case, American taxpayers a fortune.
Fraud against the United States is one of the most serious felony offenses in the federal penal law. It is even more serious than another apparent Solyndra violation that has captured congressional attention: the Obama administration's flouting of a statute designed to protect taxpayers.



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The five-page article at Nartioanl Review Online (with 70 comments) can be read here:
http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/2...c-mccarthy





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#8
Quote:The Solyndra debacle is not just Obama-style crony socialism as usual.
:banghead:Pullhair:what:
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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#9

SOLYNDRAGATE: Huge Email Dump Implicates Obama And Rahm In Bankruptcy Scandal

Grace Wyler | Oct. 7, 2011, 6:49 PM

The White House released a bunch of emails related to the Solyndrabankruptcy scandal to Congressional investigators today, in what has become a regular Friday evening email dump.The emails, obtained by several news organizations, implicate the most senior levels of the Obama administration in the scandal, which has tainted the White House since the solar company went bankrupt last month, leaving taxpayers on the hook for a $534 billion federal loan.
Here are the highlights:
One email, obtained by the Washington Post, suggests that [B]Obama and/or his chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was actively involved in trying to get Solyndra's loan application approved in time for a September 2009 press conference.

"Ron said this morning that the POTUS definitely wants to do this (or Rahm definitely wants the POTUS to do this?)," one White House staffer told an Obama scheduler on Aug. 17, 2009, referring to Ron Klain, former chief of staff for Vice President Joe Biden.
Steve Spinner, an Obama fundraiser who worked in the DOE loan department, repeatedly pushed the chief loan officer to expedite approval of Solyndra's loan despite the fact that his wife worked for the law firm representing Solyndra. The firm received at least $2.4 million in fees related to the loan, according to the AP. DOE officials have previously stated that Spinner did not "actively participate" in Solyndra's application.
"How [expletive] hard is this? What is he waiting for? Will we have it by the end of the day?" Spinner wrote on Aug. 28, 2009. "I have OVP [Office of Vice President] and WH [White House] breathing down my neck on this. They are getting itchy to get involved if needed. I don't want that."
In 2011, the Treasury Department warned the DOE about the questionable legality of Solyndra's refinancing deal, which put investors ahead of taxpayers in the event the company went under.
"In February, we requested in writing that DOE seek the Department of Justice's approval of any proposed restructuring," an assistant Treasury secretary wrote in an August 2011 memo to the OMB. "To our knowledge that never happened."
Another email, obtained by TIME, suggests that Solyndra's bad finances and poor business model were well-known within the solar panel industry. A February 2009 letter from the CEO of Solyndra's main competitor, Nanosolar, basically asks what everyone in the country is asking now:
"In light of the DoE loan program application of a competitor of ours, Solyndra, and given the well-publicized rapidly deteriorating financial state of this company as well as its failure to secure new investors and maintain a balance sheet adequate for product introduction, I would appreciate clarification from you about whether the DoE loan guarantee program is suitable as a bail-out' program for failing private manufacturers."

Here are eight red flags the government totally ignored in the Solyndra disaster >




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Tags: Governance, Solyndra, Obama, Obama Administration, Campaign Contributions, Scandals, Rahm Emanuel

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#10
Ed Jewett Wrote:SOLYNDRAGATE: Huge Email Dump Implicates Obama And Rahm In Bankruptcy Scandal


The White House released a bunch of emails related to the Solyndrabankruptcy scandal to Congressional investigators today, in what has become a regular Friday evening email dump.The emails, obtained by several news organizations, implicate the most senior levels of the Obama administration in the scandal, which has tainted the White House since the solar company went bankrupt last month, leaving taxpayers on the hook for a $534 billion federal loan.
[url=http://www.businessinsider.com/category/rahm-emanuel][/url]

OK. Everybody knows that it is almost impossible to save emails [if you are the executive branch of the USG]. JWBush taught us that the incompetence of the White House IT department asymptotically approaches zero at close to the speed of light.

So this is a DP question. Why would Obama not know this? He has shown a penchant for secrecy. His administration has done a great job of covering for him. Why would they suddenly start handing out ammunition to a group of people who hate his very existence.
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