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    Thread: When innocent taxpayers are forced to 'invest' in defective technology

    1. 04-06-2012 07:35 PM #1
      A123 Systems – the taxpayer-funded electric vehicle battery manufacturer that famously shipped duds to Fisker Automotive, which caused one of its luxurious Karma EVs to shut down just before a Consumer Reports test – is now the defendant in an investor class action lawsuit and its stock has tanked to below $1.

      The process of picking winners and losers only invites appearance of cronyism at best and outright corruption at worst. Let private investors who can best afford to take the risks decide which corporate management and technological innovation holds the most promise.

      Meanwhile, sales of the Toyota Prius continue to climb.
      "You'll have to answer to the Coca-Cola company."

    2. Member 2.0T_Convert's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 07:40 PM #2
      I thought the Japanese government helped fund Toyota hybrid development.


      Oh wai... would that sink your little rant ship before it sails?
      Sent from my tablet while sipping weak drinks over fancy brunch with a view

    3. 04-06-2012 07:42 PM #3
      An investor revolt is not a sign of defective technology. Technology advances happen quickly, but much R&D has to be done and you can not simply manage technology "by the quarter". Investing is speculating, legalized gambling. These people took a gamble and had no patience to bring up new technology.

      Innocent taxpayers; lol. You getting this from Faux News?
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      04-06-2012 07:42 PM #4
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      I thought the Japanese government helped fund Toyota hybrid development.


      Oh wai... would that sink your little rant ship before it sails?
      Ever flown on a Boeing? Same thing too.
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    5. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 07:43 PM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      I thought the Japanese government helped fund Toyota hybrid development.
      I think a lot of people are OK with funding/bailing out major players that know what they're doing like GM and Chrysler. It's when taxpayer money is playing fast and loose in speculation and penny stocks and startup companies that it doesn't make sense. That's just plain gambling at that point because the companies have no track record and likelihood of success beyond a pure gamble.

      Investing in huge companies = OK
      Investing in tiny startups = High Risk / NOT OK

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      04-06-2012 07:57 PM #6
      Quote Originally Posted by Brendan@bwalkauto View Post
      Ever flown on a Boeing? Same thing too.
      Ever fill up with ethanol? How appropriate. Popcorn!

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      04-06-2012 07:58 PM #7
      Quote Originally Posted by Brendan@bwalkauto View Post
      Ever flown on a Boeing? Same thing too.
      How bout an Airbus? Thank the European taxpayer.

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      04-06-2012 08:01 PM #8
      How about (insert Chinese car company)? oh wait......

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      04-06-2012 08:13 PM #9
      Another Republican rant about Volt and EV.
      It's oil companies lobby money at work. We don't need EV. We want our money to be used in rebuilding Iraq and Afganistan, soon Iran and Syria. Forget domestic companies and local jobs, let's support other countries.
      "Your pants too tight,your wheels too bright"

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      04-06-2012 08:16 PM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by JLJetta View Post
      The process of picking winners and losers only invites appearance of cronyism at best and outright corruption at worst. Let private investors who can best afford to take the risks decide which corporate management and technological innovation holds the most promise.
      Get this neo-conservative copypasta out of here.

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      04-06-2012 08:22 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by 03GTI4Me View Post
      How bout an Airbus? Thank the European taxpayer.
      I drove a VW today at work. I'd like to thank the German Tax Payer for subsidizing that company. Touareg Hybrids are pretty nice, and the warm fuzzies I felt while driving the hybrid was actually the fingers of all of the German tax payers trying to reach into my wallet to get their money back.
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    12. 04-06-2012 08:29 PM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      I think a lot of people are OK with funding/bailing out major players that know what they're doing like GM and Chrysler. It's when taxpayer money is playing fast and loose in speculation and penny stocks and startup companies that it doesn't make sense. That's just plain gambling at that point because the companies have no track record and likelihood of success beyond a pure gamble.

      Investing in huge companies = OK
      Investing in tiny startups = High Risk / NOT OK
      These huge companies are directly funding startups though. A123 Systems received millions from companies such as GE, Procter & Gamble, Motorola as well as venture capital firms like Sequoia. Ford, GM, and Chrysler also helped fund A123 Systems through their own battery consortium.

      It's ridiculous to see the story being spun as A123 Systems being some fly-by-night operation randomly chosen to receive government funding. Private investors invested heavily in the company.

    13. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 08:39 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by uniseriate View Post
      It's ridiculous to see the story being spun as A123 Systems being some fly-by-night operation randomly chosen to receive government funding. Private investors invested heavily in the company.
      This iteration is sensationalized, absolutely. However the fact remains that the current administration has seen quite a lot of companies funded and then fail to pay back the government loans before going bankrupt. This is just the latest of many. I think that's what's starting to bother taxpayers - knowing that they are paying taxes, being told to pay MORE taxes, and meanwhile a tiny group of businessmen, mainly ones who made large campaign donations to the current administration, got to become 1%'ers and then walk away with the money.

      I am the 99%. I want my tax money back from the ones who took it on government loans and promised to pay it. If you accept a government loan and can't repay it, all the executives at the company and anyone being paid over $150,000/yr should have to have all their personal assets turned over to a bankruptcy court for liquidation to pay back as much of the money as possible. They are the 1% anyway, they can afford it.

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      04-06-2012 08:53 PM #14
      what about GM? still in business and doing well, keeping millions of americans employed all across the supply chain.

      just shut the **** up and go melt your brain with some more fair and balanced.
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      04-06-2012 08:58 PM #15
      The government has their hands in everything. Best get used to it.
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      04-06-2012 08:58 PM #16

    17. 04-06-2012 08:59 PM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by JLJetta View Post
      **moronic "rant"**
      Oh god this guy again.
      Why don't you try actually doing some research on something before posting pointless crap.
      In every EV thread, you come in showing just how idiotic your notions of the industry are and it is starting to be rather depressing. The fact that people like you are so clueless, yet feel the need to spout off random drivel.

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      04-06-2012 09:06 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      This iteration is sensationalized, absolutely. However the fact remains that the current administration has seen quite a lot of companies funded and then fail to pay back the government loans before going bankrupt. This is just the latest of many. I think that's what's starting to bother taxpayers - knowing that they are paying taxes, being told to pay MORE taxes, and meanwhile a tiny group of businessmen, mainly ones who made large campaign donations to the current administration, got to become 1%'ers and then walk away with the money.

      I am the 99%. I want my tax money back from the ones who took it on government loans and promised to pay it. If you accept a government loan and can't repay it, all the executives at the company and anyone being paid over $150,000/yr should have to have all their personal assets turned over to a bankruptcy court for liquidation to pay back as much of the money as possible. They are the 1% anyway, they can afford it.
      i understand where youre coming from, and i do personally disagree with the government deciding to fund fisker. i dont think they have a competitive business plan and arent offering anything new to the marketplace, although i do think they have a chance, albeit a small chance, of succeeding.

      i dont disagree with government loans in the first place, sure businesses fail but banks, especially right now, arent in a position to give out high risk loans. these sorts of high risk loans are what helps create new and innovative industries that will keep america competitive. im pretty deep in ows, and while i disagree with behind closed doors political dealings to get government loans, i dont disagree with the fact that the government can help make winners.
      Quote Originally Posted by Cousin Eddie View Post
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      04-06-2012 09:06 PM #19
      I'm about as (non religious) right as you can get, but quite honestly, funding R&D on stuff we actually NEEd is pretty far down the list of stuff the govt wastes money on. What did we spend on Iraq? Would we have to if we didn't need their oil? F nah. I understand we're going to lose some money here and there, but it pales in comparison to the cost of not doing anything.

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      04-06-2012 09:12 PM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      This iteration is sensationalized, absolutely. However the fact remains that the current administration has seen quite a lot of companies funded and then fail to pay back the government loans before going bankrupt. This is just the latest of many. I think that's what's starting to bother taxpayers - knowing that they are paying taxes, being told to pay MORE taxes, and meanwhile a tiny group of businessmen, mainly ones who made large campaign donations to the current administration, got to become 1%'ers and then walk away with the money.

      I am the 99%. I want my tax money back from the ones who took it on government loans and promised to pay it. If you accept a government loan and can't repay it, all the executives at the company and anyone being paid over $150,000/yr should have to have all their personal assets turned over to a bankruptcy court for liquidation to pay back as much of the money as possible. They are the 1% anyway, they can afford it.
      I'm sorry to say, but your answer is just as sensationalized as the prior iteration. The Federal Budget in 2011 was 3.8 Trillion dollars. The Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program (ATVM) which was appropriated back in 2007, was $25 Billion. You are not "being asked " to pay more taxes due to this kind of government support of new technology. That $25 billion is less than one half of one percent of one year's spending by the U.S. Moreover, of that $25 billion from the ATVM, most of it went to FORD ($5 billion) to upgrade plants in the US to make more fuel efficient vehicles, and over $1.5 billion went to Nissan. Who are these companies that "borrowed money and didn't pay it back" that have caused your taxes to grow? I'll tell you the answer: its a very small number of companies. And the amount is infinitesimal compared to our annual DEFICIT of $1.5 TRILLION, most of which is caused by medicare spending, social security, defense, and interest on debt. See this breakdown:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:U...._-_FY_2011.png

      And as for the "one percent" - don't blame them for your tax issues, they are paying more than you, regardless of what the media likes to say. See this:

      http://davesenergy.blogspot.com/2012...s-paid-by.html

      Oh yeah, and the government has done its share of investing in all kinds of networking technologies that are the current backbone of the internet. So don't think they shouldn't try. For every 100 ideas that don't work, there is one that can change the world. Private investors won't always do the heavy lifting.

      Don't listen to everything the media feeds you. "Left-wing" or "Right-wing", more than half of it is complete BS. Think for yourself and be logical - don't bash companies for trying to make a difference.

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      04-06-2012 09:14 PM #21
      Funding two wars, rebuilding iraq and giving tax breaks to countries that shipped jobs to other countries with our tax dollars makes so much sense but helping out a company that provide 70% jobs in this country is waste of money, love the republicans they are so pro american and patriotic but hate American companies and jobs, if it was up to the repos we would all work for China

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      04-06-2012 09:15 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by hardcore4life View Post
      Funding two wars, rebuilding iraq and giving tax breaks to countries that shipped jobs to other countries with our tax dollars makes so much sense but helping out a company that provide 70% jobs in this country is waste of money, love the republicans they are so pro american and patriotic but hate American companies and jobs, if it was up to the repos we would all work for China
      Don't make this right versus left, brah. Because it isn't.

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      04-06-2012 09:15 PM #23
      Stock is under a dollar??? I'm in.
      A solution exists, and is left for the reader as an exercise.
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      04-06-2012 09:23 PM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stack View Post
      Don't make this right versus left, brah. Because it isn't.
      Then what is it?

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      04-06-2012 09:25 PM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by David802 View Post
      Then what is it?
      A bunch of knee-jerk idiots against rational people? I dunno.

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      04-06-2012 09:27 PM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stack View Post
      A bunch of knee-jerk idiots against rational people? I dunno.
      Sounds about right to me.
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      04-06-2012 09:28 PM #27
      Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stack View Post
      A bunch of knee-jerk idiots against rational people? I dunno.
      So it is right V left?

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      04-06-2012 09:31 PM #28
      You tards wanna debate politics, have a blast. I'm out.

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      04-06-2012 09:32 PM #29
      Quote Originally Posted by David802 View Post
      So it is right V left?
      You mean left V right. Right?

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      04-06-2012 09:46 PM #30
      I thought posting political rants in TCL was a banable offense?
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      04-06-2012 10:37 PM #31
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      I think a lot of people are OK with funding/bailing out major players that know what they're doing like GM and Chrysler. It's when taxpayer money is playing fast and loose in speculation and penny stocks and startup companies that it doesn't make sense. That's just plain gambling at that point because the companies have no track record and likelihood of success beyond a pure gamble.

      Investing in huge companies = OK
      Investing in tiny startups = High Risk / NOT OK
      I strongly disagree. Certainly homework should be done and we should make sure we aren't investing in frauds and only investing in things that are useful, but the whole point of a government loan is to back something that is too high risk to get a loan, yet too important and potentially useful to leave to the free market.

      If it was a sure thing, they wouldn't need government loans because investors would be lining up.

      Research and development is a risk, often a large risk, of money. Failure is a huge, and important part of science because it rules something out. If we were things worried about losing money, we wouldn't have the polio vaccine or the internet.

      Most of this is stuff that should have gotten grants, but we're avoiding trade regulations or fear that we might seem even slightly less than distrustful of the free market.
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    32. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 10:54 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by nm+ View Post
      I strongly disagree. Certainly homework should be done and we should make sure we aren't investing in frauds and only investing in things that are useful, but the whole point of a government loan is to back something that is too high risk to get a loan, yet too important and potentially useful to leave to the free market.

      If it was a sure thing, they wouldn't need government loans because investors would be lining up.

      Research and development is a risk, often a large risk, of money. Failure is a huge, and important part of science because it rules something out. If we were things worried about losing money, we wouldn't have the polio vaccine or the internet.

      Most of this is stuff that should have gotten grants, but we're avoiding trade regulations or fear that we might seem even slightly less than distrustful of the free market.
      Let's find a common ground then. Agree that any technological breakthrough that is had by government money is not eligible for an exclusive patent. Instead, the technology is available to all, since it was paid for by all. Say - a 3 year patent instead of a regular 17 year patent? Otherwise the government is putting up all the money and all the risk, but the only ones who stand to gain are the ones running the company. Either denial of patentability or at least a dramatically shortened patent life would let everyone benefit from the taxpayer sponsored advance in technology. Agree?

      Alternately, don't even send the grants to private startup companies. Send them to labs run by universities. Some of the best and brightest minds in the nation are up and coming in the universities. BLS stats prove that higher education leads to higher productivity and income. Create an incentive to stay in college by sending that government money to university labs where, again, the breakthroughs can be made for credit and bragging rights, but not patentable. That way the technology is then free for use to all and the whole nation benefits. Who can argue against spending more on education?
      Last edited by AZGolf; 04-06-2012 at 10:56 PM.

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      04-06-2012 10:56 PM #33
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      Let's find a common ground then. Agree that any technological breakthrough that is had by government money is not eligible for an exclusive patent. Instead, the technology is available to all, since it was paid for by all. Say - a 3 year patent instead of a regular 17 year patent? Otherwise the government is putting up all the money and all the risk, but the only ones who stand to gain are the ones running the company. Either denial of patentability or at least a dramatically shortened patent life would let everyone benefit from the taxpayer sponsored advance in technology. Agree?
      I completely agree, particularly if it is a grant.
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    34. 04-06-2012 11:01 PM #34
      Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stack View Post
      You tards wanna debate politics, have a blast. I'm out.
      For sure, If I had a nickle for every person that whined about Fox News....well you know the rest. I'm out.

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      04-06-2012 11:26 PM #35
      Quote Originally Posted by Iroczgirl View Post
      The government has their hands in everything. Best get used to it.
      it'll collapse under its own weight, I will love it. just wait until the recipient class has no one to steal money from..ah it would be sooooooooo nice, have all the productive people go john galt lol.

      btw I do like the volt but I think gm shouldve went bankrupt and there shouldnt be any subsidies for buying "green eco-schit" if you like it buy it.
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