"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

Thursday, May 31, 2012

What's Wrong With Subsidizing Green Energy? Well, I'll Tell You... It's Actually Quite Simple

As posted below, Mitt Romney made a savvy campaign stop outside the Solyndra headquarters today, highlighting one of the most obvious failures of Obamanomics.   The White House predictably issued a statement:

White House press secretary Jay Carney defended the government's investment in Solyndra on Tuesday, after a Romney-campaign Web ad criticized the president for the loan aid.

"I would simply say what we've said all along, which is that this president is committed to the proposition that we will not cede the industries of the future to the Chinese or the Europeans or the Brazilians or the Indians, or any other nation," Carney said. "Clean tech industries will continue to grow. And some, apparently, in this country are willing to see those industries developed and the jobs created, those industries created in other countries than the United States."

The problem with trying to subsidize green energy -- or any other "industry of the future" -- in a nutshell is that, until the free market decides through willing consumers deciding to spend scarce resources on  new products, we simply do not know what the industries of the future will be!   We can't know.   This is the seventy-plus year-old wisdom of Hayek and it's why all socialist schemes inevitably fail.  

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