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Green boondoggles are bleeding taxpayers

Taxpayers put up half the money for the $300 million Compact Power plant in Holland, Mich., which was designed to build 50,000 to 200,000 battery packs for electric cars such as the Chevy Volt.

"This is a symbol of where Michigan is going, this is a symbol of where Holland is going, and this is a symbol of where America's going," Obama told workers at the groundbreaking for the plant.

Unfortunately, all too true.

More than two years later, the plant has yet to produce its first battery for the Volt. Instead, according to a report by WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids, workers play cards all day.

"The 2009 stimulus set aside $80 billion to subsidize politically preferred energy projects, wrote Ashe Schow of the Heritage Foundation. "Of that $80 billion in clean energy loans, grants and tax credits, at least 10 percent has gone to companies that have since either gone bankrupt or are circling the drain.

"So far, 36 companies that were offered federal support from taxpayers are faltering - either having gone bankrupt or laying off workers or heading for bankruptcy."

Among the taxpayer-aided companies that Schow says have filed for bankruptcy:

* Solyndra, which received $545 million

* Abound Solar, $400 million

* A123 Systems, $279 million

* Ener1, $118.5 million

* Compact Power, $151 million

* Beacon Power, $43 million

* Evergreen Solar, $25 million

"The government's picking winners and losers in the energy market has cost taxpayers billions of collars, and the rate of failure, cronyism and corruption at the companies receiving the subsidies is substantial," Schow said.

What a way to run a bankrupt federal government.

At the rate world energy consumption is increasing, the world must explore new sources and technologies.

But capitalists actually assess risk before they put their money on the line. Government, which does not, should not "invest" Americans' money this way.

Taxpayers actually need their money for themselves.


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