The president is asking Congress to approve another unpaid-for "stimulus" package, supposedly designed to execute all of the urgent infrastructure projects that his previous $825 billion effort somehow failed to accomplish (ba-dum-bum). Since we're on the subject, let's check in on Stimulus 1.0, shall we? From the Wall Street Journal:
The Obama administration's electric car efforts took another hit on Wednesday after a federal inspection found a South Korean advanced battery maker never scaled up U.S. production despite receiving $142 million in federal grants. A Holland, Mich., factory owned by LG Chem Ltd., part of LG Corp., was half-funded by a government grant and estimated to add some 440 jobs building battery cells for General Motors Co.'s Chevrolet Volt and other vehicles. When demand for the plant's batteries didn't meet expectations, the company filled orders with cells made at a factory in South Korea, leaving the Michigan plant largely idle, according to the report by the Department of Energy's Inspector General, Gregory Friedman. LG Chem said in a statement that production delays at the Michigan facility were "market-driven," adding that it is "developing specific plans for the start of production." The company said it regretted that it applied for reimbursement for "employment costs that were not allowed" under its U.S. grant.
So if LG chem's workers weren't scaling up domestic production of batteries for electric cars at their Michigan plant, what were they doing?
The inspector general said that to avoid layoffs at the factory LG Chem paid idle workers $1.6 million in the third quarter of last year, about half of which was covered by its U.S. grant, even though there was nothing for them to do. The workers played board games, watched movies, and volunteered at local animal shelters during regular work hours, Mr. Friedman said. LG Chem has since paid back the government's share of those charges.
Your tax dollars were certainly at work, even if these workers were not. Caught red-handed, LG Chem has paid this money back -- which begs the question: How many other stimulus recipients have squandered or embezzled federal funds? Chalk this up as another costly misfire of the president's costly, blundering and corrupt "green jobs" boondoggle. Say, Obama didn't happen to visit this particular plant to lavish praise on its operations and hail it as a symbol of his agenda's success, did he? Of course he did. Let him be clear:
"What I’m absolutely clear about and what this plant will prove is that we are headed in the right direction… This is a symbol of where Michigan is going, this is a symbol of where Holland is going, this is a symbol of where America is going."
Now hurry up and pass another stimulus, you damned Republican obstructionists. I'll leave you with a flashback video of Obama giving another memorable speech touting another gleaming monument to his green energy revolution:
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography
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