"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Friday, November 4, 2011

More Solyndra B.S.

Powerline blog has a good post up about the bonuses that Solyndra executives received in the months before the company went bankrupt.   It makes for appalling reading:

Solyndra’s executives [paid themselves] substantial bonuses shortly before their company declared bankruptcy, having run out of your money. The taxpayers likely will be stuck with a $530 million bill. Here is where some of it went:
Karen Alter, senior vice president of marketing, received two $55,000 bonuses on April 15 and July 8 of this year, on top of her $250,000 annual salary.
If it weren’t our money, this would almost be funny: how can you award someone in charge of marketing $110,000 in bonuses when the company wasn’t making enough sales to stay out of bankruptcy? Ms. Alter’s recent political contributions, according to Open Secrets: Barack Obama, $2,300; David Sanders (D), $1,000; Alan Khazei (D), $3,000.
Ben Bierman, executive vice president of operations and engineering, received $120,000 in bonuses this year on top of his $276,000 salary.
Mr. Bierman’s recent political contributions, per Open Secrets: Barack Obama, $2,300; DNC Services Corp., $1,950; Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, $1,950; Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, $2,750; Priorities USA Action, $500; Women Vote!, $250.
Paula Camporaso, vice president of information technology — $80,000 in bonuses on top of her $107,000 salary.
Dave Sanat, vice president of supply chain — $80,000 in bonuses on top of his $111,000 salary.
Bill Stover, the company’s CFO who took the fifth before Congress at a September hearing, was awarded at least $120,000 in bonuses on top of his $367,000 salary.
And, finally:
The document also reveals that Chris Gronet, one of Solyndra’s founders, was “transitioned to the role of adviser and consultant” from his position as CEO on July 1, 2011, and negotiated a severance package worth more than $450,000.
Mr. Gronet’s recent contributions: Barbara Boxer, $1,000.

I’m sure they all really appreciate your tax dollars.

My father built his small business without government handouts over thirty years.   He employed 20-25 people, giving them health insurance and a pension plan and a living; he served his community in a variety of ways (too numerous to list); and he always (I mean always) paid himself less than he might have, because he never wanted to be caught short and be unable to pay either his creditors or his employees.   In short, he was an ethical, honest businessman.   He didn't think of himself as special in that way; honesty was important in the real world, and was expected.

That ethos still exists in parts of America, but it obviously didn't exist at Solyndra, a Potemkin Village of a company created, it appears in retrospect, solely for the purpose of giving liberal elites an opportunity to access taxpayer dollars.   It's almost as if the company was set up purely to get government grants that you could turn into bonuses to executives who could then recycle that cash back into Democratic campaign coffers.

Ya think?

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