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September 22, 2011

Solyndra Insiders: Once We Got That Fat Loan, We Overspent Like Crazy

Of the myriad problems with socialism, one is this: People take good care of their own money. They earned it, they sweated it. They are reasonably careful about how they dispose of it.

When bureaucrats have millions (even billions) that is nothing to them but numbers on a piece of paper, do they exercise the standard of care that people do with their own blood sweat & tears property?

No, they do not.

Former employees of Solyndra, the shuttered solar company that exhausted half a billion dollars of taxpayer money, said they saw questionable spending by management almost as soon as a federal agency approved a $535 million government-backed loan for the startup.

A new factory built with public money boasted a gleaming conference room with glass walls that, with the flip of a switch, turned smoky-gray to conceal the room’s occupants. Hastily purchased state-of-the-art equipment ended up being sold for pennies on the dollar, still in its plastic bubble wrap, employees said.

As the $344 million factory went up just down the road from the company’s leased plant in Fremont, Calif., workers watched as pallets of unsold solar panels stacked up in storage. Many wondered: Did we even need this new factory?

“After we got the loan guarantee, they were just spending money left and right,” said former Solyndra engineer Lindsey Eastburn. “Because we were doing well, nobody cared. Because of that infusion of money, it made people sloppy.”

The Washington Post makes news (I think) as regards the status of that second loan, for $469 million-- they say it was never approved.

We need to see those documents and emails, the ones concerning this second loan. Because I have a feeling they say something like: "This company is a bad risk and the first tranche of loans never should have gone out, let alone this second tranche."


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posted by Ace at 01:05 PM

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