President Obama made a political and an economic case for solar energy Monday, telling an industry summit in Las Vegas that the explosive growth in solar power “has some big fossil fuel interests pretty nervous.”
“Now, it’s one thing if you’re consistent in being free market. It’s another thing when you’re free market until it’s solar that’s working and people want to buy and suddenly you’re not for it any more,” he said.
“When you start seeing massive lobbying efforts backed by fossil fuel interests, or conservative think tanks, or the Koch brothers pushing for new laws to roll back renewable energy standards, or to prevent new clean energy businesses from succeeding, that’s s problem,” Obama said, singling out industrialists Charles and David Koch for the first time in a climate speech.
“That’s not the American way. That’s not progress. That’s not innovation. That’s rent seeking. That’s standing in the way of progress,” Obama said
Charles Koch was having none of it. The Koch’s are not against clean energy- and pay attention- they work to end all corporate welfare:
But Koch, who is chairman and CEO of Koch Industries, said his opposition to subsidies for clean energy companies — or any other private businesses — doesn’t mean he’s against their success. Rolling back corporate welfare is one of the top issues Koch is pursuing with his richly funded political network.
Koch said his company also opposes subsidies for fossil fuels. And he portrayed Obama’s remarks as an unwarranted personal attack.
“I was absolutely flabbergasted that he could say so many things about us that were the opposite of the truth,” Koch said. “I was really dumbfounded. And I know he was there with Harry Reid. So we expect that with Harry Reid, but I didn’t expect that from the president.”
Koch said he has never met Obama. “The only thing I can think of is he was there with Harry Reid, and it was kind of a farewell gesture to help Harry Reid,” Koch added. “I can think of no other reason to single us out in his remarks in his efforts to promote his favorite forms of energy.”
Koch said his company is “opposed to renewable energy subsidies of all kinds — as we are all subsidies, whether they benefit or help us.”
“We are not trying to prevent new clean energy businesses from succeeding,” Koch continued. “Any business that’s economical, that can succeed in the marketplace, any form of energy, we’re all for. As a matter of fact, we’re investing in quite a number of them, ourselves — whether that’s ethanol, renewable fuel oil. … We’re investing a tremendous amount in research to make those more efficient and create higher-value products.”
Obama went on to prove he knows squat about free markets:
Obama continued: “I mean, think about this. Ordinarily, these are groups that tout themselves as champions of the free market. If you start talking to them about providing health care for folks who don’t have health insurance, they’re going crazy: ‘This is socialism, this is going to destroy America.’ But in this situation, they’re trying to undermine competition in the marketplace, and choke off consumer choice, and threaten an industry that’s churning out new jobs at a fast pace.”
Koch shot back: “I don’t know whether he knows what that phrase means, but ‘rent seeking,’ of course, is, in economic terms, is getting the government to rig the system in your favor. And that’s exactly what these so-called ‘renewable energy’ proponents are doing.”
Having singled out private citizens for ridicule and having those private citizens respond, the pissy Obama again took to another personal attack.
“I’m not sure whether to describe those comments as remarkably rich or utterly predictable,” Earnest said in response to a question from a POLITICO reporter. “It’s that when the president is advocating, for example, the end of tax subsidies that benefit oil and gas companies, that somebody who has made billions of dollars leading an oil and gas company, might not think very highly of that policy proposal.”
“We think it is hypocritical that Mr. Earnest attempted to tout the merits of a free-market system while promoting a new round of taxpayer-funded loan guarantees for the Administration’s politically friendly special interests. That said, Mr. Earnest’s statement about Koch is inaccurate. We have not lobbied for government subsidies or mandates, and we have lobbied against subsidies that directly benefit Koch. The fact is – and the White House should know this – we have fought against government boondoggles for decades because corporate welfare wastes resources, stifles innovation and has pushed our country to the brink of bankruptcy,” Ellender said in a statement.
“Now, if the question is, ‘Has Koch accepted subsidies?’ the answer is ‘Yes,’ and we’ve been clear about that. We participate in these types of programs where they already exist so that we can protect our 60,000 U.S.-based employees and not put ourselves at a competitive disadvantage. But to reiterate, we would eliminate all subsidies and mandates today if we could, including those we receive. ”
Earnest continued the ad hominem attacks;
“I guess. Yeah,” he said, remarking that Obama is not particularly surprised to see criticism of his policies from people like the “millionaires and billionaires” who “start to squeal.”
And I guess one billionaire special-interest benefactor chose to squeal to a POLITICO reporter,” Earnest said.
This is disgusting and intolerable, especially from the pantywaist President who started the whole thing.
As long as we’re talking hypocrisy, let’s throw Obama into the pile of dog doo. Despite the millions of dollars he’s made during his Presidency, despite his calling for “fairness” Obama still takes all the tax deductions he can to avoid paying his fair share. Obama paid only 18% on $600,000 income in 2013.
And what of the magnificant solar energy that Obama touts? Solyndra, which misrepresented facts to get loan guarantees from the government, failed gloriously at a $500 million cost to the US taxpayer. A list of 36 Obama solar energy failures can be found here. These “clean energy” projects are usually more about crony capitalism than not and are veiled in the costume of progress. Let us not forget that Obama not only called out and vilified Romney donors, he managed to persuade the IRS to audit them. Now he personally attacks industrialists who employ tens of thousands of people, pay millions in taxes and are big time philanthropists. They are America and liberals hate them for it. Obama does what he can to nurture this hatred of them.
About these personal attacks, Charles Koch said :
“It’s beneath the president, the dignity of the president, to be doing that.”
He would have a point except for one thing- Obama has no dignity. Every day he further demeans and soils the highest office in the land. Obama wouldn’t recognize dignity if it bit the head off his putter. He is an ass.