Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
September 6, 2011
POLITICS/BUSINESS: Green Jobless

Great nutshell summary of why government-funded "Green Jobs" have failed yet again, and why this should tell us something about the kinds of people who could be surprised by this. Like Joe Biden: "One role of government is to go where venture capital won't."

Posted by Baseball Crank at 3:35 PM | Business • | Politics 2011 • | Science | Comments (13) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

I think there are places where the government played a bigger role, and without them, we wouldn't have had either nuclear or space technologies, and the probable two-5 trillion dollar businesses they create. Possibly more if you factor in what computer technology became as a result of space. In other words, there are no hard and fast answers. and the truth is Crank, if a Republican decided tomorrow to fund green technology, all you little right wingnuts would immediately fall in line. Republicania is at war with Eastasia. Republicania has always been at war with Eastasia.

Posted by: Daryl at September 6, 2011 4:25 PM

See, government sometimes invests in things that serve a legitimate governmental purpose - e.g., fighting a war - and that can lead to technological progress that has commercial applications. Fine. But (1) the government deploys its own resources somewhat more efficiently when it's pursuing traditional government ends than when it's trying to replicate private sector functions and (2) it still takes commercial companies to take a thing like a Jeep, a Humvee or the Internet or cellular phone technology and turn it into a viable commercial product.

Where the Democrats so often go wrong, as I have noted before, is looking at things the government does when fighting wars and assume those can be translated into 'moral equivalent of war' programs at home. They can't, and you end up with domestic programs that make the proverbial $700 hammer look like a bargain.

Posted by: Crank at September 6, 2011 4:34 PM

Good job*, Crank.

*Not writing about government waste and how scary the deficit is.
If you did, we'd have to acknowledge your cheer-leading for stuff like this:
http://www.presstv.ir/usdetail/196949.html

Cheers.

Posted by: Berto at September 6, 2011 4:55 PM

So what we are back to is deciding just what the government is for and what constitutes a national purpose. I submit that if all that unites us is war, then we have no reasonable right to exist, at least not as we see ourselves. The space race was not war; but a call for national pride through massive spending, generally investing in industries that had lots of smart people. So when I see a nation that needs energy on a large scale, but political parties that would rather see resources spent on exploiting a 19th century technology (coal) or a 20th century one (oil), both of which have definite limits, I see trouble. You know, the vision thing.

Posted by: Daryl at September 6, 2011 8:39 PM

There is a difference between the government picking winners and losers on the one hand and setting standards and letting the market choose the best way to meet them on the other.

I'm not in favor of the former, for the very reasons the article discusses. I don't have a big problem with the latter, as long as the standards the government sets are reasonable and feasible, and as long as I think it's a worthwhile effort to begin with.

The way lightbulbs have been regulated, for example, is the better approach. Set a feasible standard, then let the market determine the rest. The government didn't pick and choose technologies, apart from doing away with incandescents. Now you have a number of different competitors, including LED's, halogens, CFC's and perhaps future entrants.

Of course, whether or not you think that's a worthwhile regulation mostly depends on your opinion on global warming.

Posted by: MVH at September 6, 2011 8:54 PM

The crony capitalists who are favored by this administration are money losers. But it does not bother the democrats as long as they get political contributions. Sucks for the taxpayers.

Posted by: PaulV at September 6, 2011 10:22 PM

Wow, PaulV. Aren't you embarrassed to be echoing the talking points of Princess Sarah?

Crony capialism is largely the province of the GOP, as the history of the GWB/Darth Cheney Administration demonstrated so thoroughly.

Are you a moron? You betcha!

Posted by: Magrooder at September 7, 2011 10:08 AM

Teh stoopid with mogrooder, it is impenetrable.

No matter that the evidence is all in, that Obama is right at the top of crony capitalists, and that he's terrible at it. He cannot even read a business plan or hire someone who can. If he could or had, then he'd have known a FAIL when he saw one.

In this case, it imploded so quickly the ink on the fat campaign check hadn't even dried. If Obama were Republican he'd be in front of Congress for this.

But to his lickspittles, it doesn't matter because they just know the GOP is actually the party of crony capaitalists, so he's off the hook.

Posted by: spongeworthy at September 7, 2011 2:09 PM

spongeworthy,
Sure. Who could possibly forget when W and Cheney were impeached together for for starting a war to line the pockets of The Carlyle Group and Halliburton, etc?
Have you got your $6 Billion, no-bid contract today?

Posted by: Berto at September 8, 2011 5:22 AM

What I really enjoy about Crank's responses when someone points out that his pronouncements of irrefuatable truths are contradicted by the facts --"Oh. Those don't count."

Use of the "moral equivalent of war" phrasing does not mean literally that the mechansims of war should be used in addressing a domestic problem. All that phrase means is that the government will/should/intends to focus resources on the problem, as opposed tothe GOP approach of just ignoring it so long as it doesn't impact their base.

Oh, Spongeworthy, I assume you have support for your claim that the President "cannot even read a business plan or hire someone who can. If he could or had, then he'd have known a FAIL when he saw one." Also, plesase provide a copy of the outrage you expressed when Haliburton recieved no-bid contracts for Ira.

Posted by: Magrooder at September 8, 2011 10:50 AM

Crony capitalism - handing out government favor (or exemption from government burden) to friends in business is a longstanding problem of both parties. But it will always be a larger problem for the Democrats, for two reasons. One, it's the Democrats who are constantly pressing to create more government favors in the first place, to create more govenrment burdens (like the tax code and Obamacare) from which exemptions, waivers and loopholes can be given to favored groups, and in general to "target" government benefits rather than provide them across the board. These are all recipes for more corruption.

And second, let's face it: GOP policies are, all things being equal, better for wealthy people and businesses than Democratic policies, something the Democrats even claim as a virtue of their policies. That means that the Democrats always have to find other ways to raise campaign cash from deep-pocketed sources - a lot can come from billionaire ideologues and compulsory union dues, but the difference still needs to be made up by gearing up the favor factory.

Posted by: Crank at September 9, 2011 10:36 AM

Sure, Crank. No such thing as lobbyists working Republicans.
BTW, what color is the sky in your world?

Posted by: Berto at September 21, 2011 3:01 PM

Or "What in the name of Tom DeLay and Jack Abramoff are you babbling about?

Posted by: Berto at September 21, 2011 3:03 PM
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