Winners And Losers: Oil Companies, AT&T, Solyndra And LightSquared

As Bernie Sanders says in that clip, we're picking winners and losers. Sure we are. And the Republicans are working hard to make solar energy a big loser. In the case of Solyndra, they're also hoping to smear the Obama administration with the "crony politician" label at the same time.

This Solyndra "story" is a non-story and just another smear, but as digby points out:

Progressives are very concerned that the right isn't out there misinforming the rest of the public and go to great lengths to "set the record straight." By contrast, during the Bush years, when liberals criticized the president, the other side would say "Yeah. So what? He did the right thing." They'd stage a symbolic hissy fit every once in a while to prove their moral/patriotic bonafides, usually over a perceived slight from a hippie somewhere, but they really didn't care if the left "understood" what they were doing or if they approved. In fact, they consciously try to offend them.

It's not limited to the Bush years. They still do it, every single day. Cheer the death of a hypothetical 30-year old? It's totally justified because "Obamacare is socialism." Climb into bed with Big Pharma? No problem, as long as you feign outrage that someone would dare suggest you can be bought for a mere $5,000.

Add to that the right-wing custom of ritual defamation, and the Solyndra smears begin to make more sense, particularly when it's clear what constituencies the right serves.

Still, as a lefty-type, it seems to me that facts do and should matter, so here is the Solyndra non-story/scandal in a nutshell, summarized from this Think Progress timeline.

The Solyndra loan guarantee process began in 2006, under the Bush administration, as part of a loan guarantee program under the newly-passed Energy Policy Act of 2006. It took three years for those loan guarantees to be approved, despite the efforts of the Bush administration to push the process in order to have something to show for their energy policy efforts. In that three-year period, the market changed for alternatives to silicon-based solar panels after China flooded the market with cheap silicon-based panels.

Free markets being what they are, Solyndra failed.

There it is, in a nutshell. The beginning, middle and end of the Solyndra story. There is no "there", there, despite all the concern trolling going on in the right-wing nutosphere. It is a tale of free markets.

Now that you know the real story, please go read Dave Johnson's post on the 5 biggest right-wing lies about Solyndra. And remember the biggest lie:

Something bad happened.
The right has been trying to push the idea that something bad has happened involving Solyndra. They are calling it a "scandal." But it is entirely a manufactured scandal, like those from the Clinton era. This is what they do. Nothing bad happened.

The supposed campaign donor/investor is not an investor. The timing of the loan is not suspect, it followed the proper, transparent, accountable procedures. The loan assisted the development of a promising technology. The green-energy industry stands to create millions of jobs and trillions of dollars for the countries that are smart enough now to make the investments that help them grab a chunk of it. The loan was good for the country, even though one company went bankrupt.

But by the time this smear is refuted, five more will have taken its place.

If I may be so bold, allow me to point to another "scandal" brewing right now. There's LightSquared, which is building a wireless broadband network that might compete with established corporate interests, like AT&T and Verizon.

Reality, courtesy of Daily Kos:

So the White House allegedly asked Shelton to to say (1) that he supports commercial wireless broadband and (2) that he would seek to expedite the Pentagon's review of the technology used by LightSquared.

So Republicans are pissed off that the Obama administration might be trying to fast track the regulatory approval process. Uh, isn't that exactly what they have been demanding ever since President Obama took office? A day doesn't go by that you don't hear some Republican or another demand that President Obama lift the regulatory burden on America's "job creators."

But as soon as there's a rumor that President Obama may have helped a "job creator" clear one of those regulatory hurdles, it's proof that he's corrupt—even though he was just doing what Republicans said they wanted him to do in the first place. He's damned if he does, damned if he doesn't.

Winners and losers. They're being chosen, and the right wing is simply trying to tilt the table toward their winners. Believe it. Let this clip from Morning Joe sink in, where that shill Jim Cramer is arguing for oil and gas development over solar.

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[h/t Heather]

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