Third Way Perspectives

Subscribe via RSS

Posts Tagged ‘solyndra’

When did Americans stop tolerating risk?

September 20th, 2011

by

This piece was originally posted The National Journal Expert Blog.

The real question we should ask about Solyndra is, “When did Americans stop tolerating risk?”

Loan guarantees inherently carry risk. If they didn’t, the loans wouldn’t need guarantors. The U.S. Department of Energy’s program was designed specifically to fund cutting-edge innovations that could not secure sufficient private capital. That’s the way to help potentially breakthrough technologies get off the ground without picking specific winners and losers. The expectation is that a handful of these companies might succeed spectacularly and that some of these companies would fail. This risk was explicitly built into the program by Congress and the Bush Administration at its inception. Read the rest of this entry »