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In Another Blow For "Green Industry" A123 Files For Bankruptcy After Collecting Hundreds Of Millions In Government Grants

Tyler Durden's picture


That troubled battery-maker A123 has just filed for bankruptcy (and no, in this case bankruptcy is not equal with deleveraging) should not be news to anyone who has followed the US government subsidized trainwreck of a company (especially since as we updated yesterday it was known it would miss its bond payment today). Well actually we take that back. The bankruptcy may come as a surprise to the president. Recall that Obama called A123 Chief Executive Officer David Vieau and then-Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm during a September 2010 event celebrating the opening of the plant in Livonia, Michigan, that the company received the U.S. grant to help build. Surprise and epic humiliation that is. "This is about the birth of an entire new industry in America -- an industry that’s going to be central to the next generation of cars," Obama said in the phone call, according to a transcript provided by the White House. "When folks lift up their hoods on the cars of the future, I want them to see engines and batteries that are stamped: Made in America." Needless to say if the car is a flaming Fisker Karma or Chevy Volt, the hoods may be too hot to lift but that's another story. Most importantly, it will come as a big loss to the firm's equity holders (who have already lost their entire investment so hardly a surprise) creditors, who will likely be wiped out almost entirely (listed below), but most importantly US taxpayers, who funded the firm not on one occasion as conventional wisdom will have it, but with four distinct Federal and State agency grants, as is highlighted in the first day motion affidavit by David Pyrstash in support of the Chapter 11 petition.

Some more on the actual bankruptcy:

A123 Systems Inc. (AONE), a maker of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries for electric cars, filed for bankruptcy after failing to make a debt payment that was due yesterday.

The company listed assets of $459.8 million and debt of $376 million as of Aug. 31 in Chapter 11 documents filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware.


The bankruptcy filing may fuel further political debate over government financing of alternative-energy and transportation businesses. Federal grants and loans to companies including A123, Fisker Automotive Inc. and Tesla Motors Inc. have drawn scrutiny from congressional Republicans following the September 2011 bankruptcy filing of solar-panel maker Solyndra LLC two years after it received a $535 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Energy Department.


Electric-vehicle sales since 2011 totaled fewer than 50,000 through September, just 5 percent of Obama’s target to have 1 million such vehicles on U.S. roads by 2015.


Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said last month that Obama has picked “losers” for alternative-energy loans and grants. His running mate, Paul Ryan, has called for all green-energy subsidies to be eliminated.


A123 has posted at least 14 straight quarterly losses. Its shares have fallen 85 percent this year to 24 cents at yesterday’s close in New York and traded at 16 cents at 8:29 a.m. before the start of regular trading.

And with a few hours left until the next presidential debate, here is the full list of US government grants that will have funded a negative IRR initiative, and which will likely be quite prominently featured in tonight's theatrical spectacle.

The Department of Energy Grant


In December 2009, A123 entered into an agreement establishing the terms and conditions of a $249.1 million grant awarded under the U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE”) Battery Initiative to support manufacturing expansion of new lithium-ion battery manufacturing facilities in Michigan. Under the agreement, as amended, the DOE is providing cost reimbursement for 50% of qualified expenditures incurred from December 1, 2009 to December 2, 2014. The agreement also provides for reimbursement of pre-award costs incurred from June 1, 2009 to November 30, 2009. There are no substantive conditions attached to this award that would require repayment of amounts received if such conditions were not met. Through June 30, 2012, A123 has incurred $260.6 million in qualified expenses, of which 50%, or $130.3 million, are allowable costs for reimbursement. Nearly all of the allowable costs have been reimbursed.


Center of Energy and Excellence Grant


In February 2009, the State of Michigan awarded A123 a $10 million Center of Energy and Excellence grant. Under the agreement, the State of Michigan will provide cost reimbursement for 100% of qualified expenditures based on the achievement of certain milestones by March 2012. There are no substantive conditions attached to this award that would require repayment of amounts received if such conditions were not met. A123 received $3 million of this grant in March 2009 and $6 million of this grant in July 2010, with additional payments to be made based on the achievement of certain milestones in the facility development. Through June 30, 2012, A123 used $8.8 million of these funds, of which $7.9 million and $0.9 million was recorded as an offset to property, plant and equipment and operating expenses, respectively.


Michigan Economic Growth Authority


April 2009, the Michigan Economic Growth Authority offered A123 certain tax incentives, which can be used to offset the Michigan Business Tax owed in a tax year, carried forward for the number of years specified by the agreement, or be paid to A123 in cash at the time claimed to the extent A123 does not owe a tax. The terms and conditions of the High-Tech Credit were established in October 2009 and the Cell Manufacturing Credit in November 2009. The Cell Manufacturing Credit agreement authorizes a tax credit or cash for A123 equal to 50% of capital investment expenses related to the construction of A123’s integrated battery cell manufacturing facilities in Michigan, commencing with costs incurred from January 1, 2009, up to a maximum of $100 million over a four year period. The tax credit cannot exceed $25 million per year and can be submitted for reimbursement beginning in tax year 2012. Through June 30, 2012, A123 has incurred $200 million in qualified expenses related to the construction of the Livonia and Romulus facilities. When A123 has met the filing requirements for the tax year ending December 31, 2012, A123 expects to begin receiving $100 million in proceeds related to these expenses.


Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth


In December 2009, the State of Michigan awarded A123 $2 million to assist in funding A123’s smart grid stabilization project, the purpose of which is to develop and improve the quality of application of energy efficient technologies and to create or expand the market for such technologies. A123 received an advance of $0.9 million in December 2009 and another $0.9 million in February 2011. Through December 31, 2011, A123 incurred $1.6 million in allowable costs, which was recorded as an offset to operating expenses. During the year ended December 31, 2011, the remaining $0.4 million in funding was cancelled.

Sumtotal of grant funds and incentives used (and now forever lost): $249.1+$8.8+$100+$1.6 or let's round it down to $300 or so million.

The full pre-petition creditor breakdown.


The full creditor matrix is presented below. Anyone who sees their name on this list, our apologies.



The complete affidavit with all the juicy details of the rise (not so much) and fall (much more) of A123 can be found here:



And the obligatory Chevy Volt video:


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Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:12 | 2894993 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

All you need to do is take out the battery & cut out the floor & Fred Flintstone would be proud to own it...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:18 | 2895007 DUNTHAT
DUNTHAT's picture

Do we have this much trouble with golf carts??? I mean, c'mon, use their technology for crying out loud!!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:26 | 2895049 Richard Chesler
Richard Chesler's picture

This is about the birth of an entire new industry in America --

The Obama Campaign Contributors Industry?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:36 | 2895094 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

I think that the timing was orchestrated by the Romney campaign to take the wind out of Obama's sails just prior to the second debate.

Can anyone tell me if any green companies who received Obama stimulus funds are still in business?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:10 | 2895510 TradingChief
TradingChief's picture

Can anyone think of ONE Green business that is worthy of remaining in business? All we did was make a bunch of 1960s treehuggers rich with technology that does not work or work efficiently?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:23 | 2895847 redpill
redpill's picture

This is what happens when you let a band of not-as-smart-as-we-pretend-to-be academics and leftist activists try to centrally plan their impossible utopia on a national scale.  It's akin to thinking if you flap your arms hard enough you'll fly; it doesn't matter how hard to try, there are some things you can't force.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:25 | 2895856 yrbmegr
yrbmegr's picture

Yes, I think there are 1 or 2 still in business.  Or more.

Wed, 10/17/2012 - 12:07 | 2898187 ghosticks
ghosticks's picture

Corrupt govs wrong using our money!

pex tubing

pex plumbing

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:45 | 2895126 iDealMeat
iDealMeat's picture

The attached Volt commercial is awesome..  +1

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:53 | 2895163 El Viejo
Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:07 | 2895225 spekulatn
spekulatn's picture

Building a better tomorrow.... one bankruptcy at a time.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:47 | 2895399 franzpick
franzpick's picture

A123, you didn't build this bankruptcy case by yourself, someone helped you along the way

Corrupt government agencies misusing taxpayer money, led by the head dreamer-and-schemer, mr. NoBama.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:48 | 2895137 Anglo Hondo
Anglo Hondo's picture

Otherwise known as Bull-OCCI.  Yes, I do smell something.


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:06 | 2895767 Turin Turambar
Turin Turambar's picture

Lefties have always been better with abortion than birth, so this is just par for the course. :-O

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:41 | 2895113 Stock Tips Inve...
Stock Tips Investment's picture

These are times of trouble. Unfortunately, many companies like this to stay in the road. However, do not think this is a problem that is repeated across the board.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:19 | 2895269 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Sure, if you want a 10k mile life, a 10 mph top speed, and well, a golf cart.  Personally, I'll take my Volt over that and love kicking ricky rice-racer's ass on the twisties around here with it - and solar power made in America - at my place.  FWIW, a Volt doesn't use A123 batteries, they use LG. It's a lot closer to a 3 series beemer than a golf cart in the bargain.

A123 had some BIG quality control problems and had to recall most of their output, used in Fiskar cars which DID catch on fire in the wild, not just in a total-loss crash test.  Several Volts have been total-lossed in the wild and not one has caught fire, FWIW.  GM was going to use them in a new model (spark) but I guess we're safe now.

Cute chick with Volt:

Another Volt owner after a year owning one (I know this guy):




Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:35 | 2895681 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Lieutenant Maverick clears his throat and tells you that your data is incorrect on the Mig [golf cart]...

10K = 6.2 miles... On my EZ-Go, I can get 3 rounds of golf (that's 7,000 yards, plus, green to tee boxes, plus, not driving in a straight line (when I'm not finding the fairways with the drives)...

21,000 yards = 63,000 feet = 12 miles... & it'll do more than 30MPH before the governor kicks in... I'm not trying to compare it, but it didn't cost $40k either (and it offroads like a champ because it's firred with offroad tires & suspension)...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:44 | 2895710 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

What's your handicap?

I mean aside from being a Libertarian.....

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:54 | 2895741 The Shootist
The Shootist's picture


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:54 | 2895970 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture


Back in the day I was a [+2]... Missed qualifying for the US Amateur by one shot (in 2001) when I tripled a hole on the back nine of the 2nd round... Then again ~ I sucked ass in two US Open qualifiers by shooting a 79 & an 81... I got the dreaded letter (after the 2nd time) from the USGA that told me my services were no longer required...

My game was that I couldn't hit an airport runway with a drive (but I could get up & down from a picnic basket within 50 yards)... Those were the days...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:27 | 2896051 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture


I'm stuck at +9.... I simply don't play enough to get it lower... I'm the opposite, short game is erratic, but I'm very capable with the Irons and the Driver....

My fav golf anecdote, after finishing a round, the pro asked me how it was, I said great since I eagled #1 (345 yd par 4, slight dogleg left), he said "Great, how far did you pitch in from" and I replied that I made a 7 ft putt....

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 19:35 | 2896420 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Hitting par 4's in one reminds me of this story...

WAY back in the day I was a member at Wood Ranch GC out in Simi Valley, Ca. (famous for the Rodney King trials)... Anyway ~ there was this dude there who, up until that time, was the biggest scam artist I'd ever met...

He was a nice guy (& funny as shit)... Nobody ever really knew what his deal was but I guess he was into real estate in some way (this was around '90-'91)... He was always on credit for something because he had this story that he was waiting on a $5 million dollar settlement on some deal (which never seemed to come)... I'd been to his mansion in the hills a couple of times which was very nice, about 15,000 sq ft. (but was practically unfurnished)... He even hooked me up with [pretty hot] girlfriend of his wife at a SuperBowl party he hosted [Cowboys vs. Bills I]...

Anyway... (par 4's)... This dude could hit the ball a country mile... & we had this one par 4 (downhill over water), that you could reach with a driver when the Santa Ana winds were blowing... & that was with one of those old Taylor Made steel head 'Burners' that probably look like a 5 wood today... From the tee though ~ the hole was sort of blind though because a huge pompous bush kind of hid a back right pin placement... Moving on ~ there was this 'Hole in One' club that we had as members (about 400 members), that if anyone got a hole in one on the course [witnessed], then EVERYBODY's bar tab would get charged $10 (=$4,000)... A notice would go up & everyone could order a free drink at the bar (for a week's period)... Then ~ the BALANCE would go to whoever made the hole in one as a clubhouse credit... After drinks it usually amounted to $2,000 - $2,500...

This son of a bitch made 2 holes in one on that PAR 4 (8th hole)... The second time, though, I was playing in his foursome I think I discovered the scam... Remember ~ a back right pin was BLIND to the tee... He had his wife playing in the foursome ahead of us... My guess is that she left a strange ball in the hole (like a 'Titelist 8')... So all the guy had to do was basically hit one in the direction of the hole, that looked about the right distance, then he said... 'I was playing a TITELIST 8'... Who could argue?... What was I gonna say?... The dude was about 6'4" & prolly 290...

He'd have probably done well on Wall St... Those were fun days... Steve [Volcano] Pate would come off the tour & play with us (as well as Keith Clearwater)... Charlie Wi (who is still winning on the PGA)  used to play with us too)... I sold him a set of 'numbered' MacGregor Nicklaus '67 irons... Also ~ Mitch Voges (who won the 1991 US Amateur at the Honors Course)... I still have the 1991 signed bag from the Kiawah Island Ryder Cup that Steve Pate brought to our club charity auction (he was on that team)...

(BTW ~ you're a [-9], not a "+"... Even Rory McIlroy is probably only a +6... Gotta shoot a lot of rounds in the 60's to get to a +9 under both the USGA & R&A systems...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 20:07 | 2896496 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Re: the Handicap... you are correct, my bad...

Good story though,...


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:36 | 2895098 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture

You didn't bankrupt that company.

(but you did pay for it)

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:15 | 2894999 Plymster
Plymster's picture

Oh Noz.  Another green start-up collapses.  That 300 million must've taken the Fed a full 3 hours to print up.  How many restaurants have gone under in this period?  If only the US were supporting more useful companies with trillions of dollars of lifetime support, like Boeing, Winchester, Goldman Sachs, Monsanto, etc. 

Oh wait.  That's right, we are.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:16 | 2895004 mckee
mckee's picture

Batteries being made to power engines? Maybe that should have been the red flag.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:17 | 2895006 The big unzip
The big unzip's picture

Will someone tell me when I gan release my ankles, stand up stright, and put my pants back on, or shoud I just learn to like it?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:20 | 2895022 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

If obummer gets back in ,you will need a bigger butt plug.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:24 | 2895040 knukles
knukles's picture

FDA is having a special on Gubamint Approved Vaseline today...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:28 | 2895059 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

...and if Mitt gets back in, you get a voucher with which to buy a brand new butt plug.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:23 | 2895015 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Grants don't work. Try billion dollar money transfers directly to the patient a la The Fed.

It worked for the banksters.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:29 | 2895065 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Are you telling me governments aren't very good at picking winners?

Are you telling me that governments do not guide the invisible hand?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:46 | 2895132 Terminus C
Terminus C's picture

They do indeed control the invisible hand... its the one that reaches in to your bank account and steals your capital while most are unaware.  We also call it inflation.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:28 | 2895874 yrbmegr
yrbmegr's picture

By "winners", you mean defense contractors, right?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:19 | 2895017 Sixdeuce062
Sixdeuce062's picture

bend over america time for your helping of the "green" weenie

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:21 | 2895028 Midas
Midas's picture

Could we have built a natural gas grid across the entire nation with the money the FEDs have blown on failed "green" companies?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:27 | 2895051 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Didn't see that whole "misallocated capital" thing coming.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:46 | 2895129 Offthebeach
Offthebeach's picture


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:54 | 2895166 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture


Wed, 10/17/2012 - 04:22 | 2897473 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

"Mistakes were made..."

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:21 | 2895031 Da55id
Da55id's picture

Current annual self immolation score for gas cars = 287,000 each year.

Score for the Volt in actual use = zero


Funny thing is when I was a kid, my parents taught me that facts matter. Silly me.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:23 | 2895283 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Yeah, silly you.  I own one myself and love it.  These guys seem to live in a fantasy world only slightly less weird than Bernankes, though.   Only they can't print gas for their guzzlers, not even the bernank can do that, but we can print electricity with our solar panels.  My Volt hasn't used a single nickels worth of power company power in the over a year I've had it.  And I have 30 year old PV panels that still put out.

You'd think that guys who claim to be good with money would figure that one out, but maybe it's just claims, not reality - overcompensated inferiority complex or something?  Go ahead, junk away, I won't even check.  Why pay attention to the opinions of the ignorant?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:49 | 2895411 Da55id
Da55id's picture

DCFusor, In case you do check back, I'd like to talk to you about your solar setup. I live in northern VA and need to work out a tree line problem so I can arbitrage net metering to fuel my volt. For all you preppers out there, I'm engaging in micro-prepping by decoupling from as much as I can. Risk off where possible.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:50 | 2895414 Da55id
Da55id's picture

You can find me at info at mfoundation dot org

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:19 | 2895519 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

  "I have 30 year old PV panels that still put out."


How many semolians did you PUT OUT to buy those PV panels 30 years ago (on top of the $40K you wasted on your flamethrowing batmobile)?

@Da55id ~ don't worry about the treeline... Just park your Volt right underneath those babies & they'll be burned to a crisp sooner than you cn say 'net metering'...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:58 | 2895453 Papasmurf
Papasmurf's picture

You must be coming pretty close to break even on your 30 year old solar panels if we neglect the opportunity cost of investing that capital elsewhere.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:15 | 2895533 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Last week I calculated that, at $1.00 more per gallon of gas, & with normal driving habits, it would take 87 years to recoup the $40K for the MATCHBOX car...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:11 | 2895789 Cpl Hicks
Cpl Hicks's picture

As if 30 year old solar panels would still be producing anything more than shade. No way.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:29 | 2895876 californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

How much radiation was released into the environment, making its way into the oceans, as the rare earth minerals (that are used in your "green" car and solar panels) were mined in China, a country that is not exactly known for how much care it takes to avoid polluting the environment? 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:24 | 2895041 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

You naysayers are taking this all wrong.

What you SHOULD be doing is brainstorming the next half-assed crazy-eyed unicorn vision of the utopian future, and subsequently petitioning your local government representative for funds.  I'm thinking it would take nothing more than a few blowjobs and you'll be on your way down the Yellow Brick Road!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:51 | 2895151 Sixdeuce062
Sixdeuce062's picture

but unicorns are real and nice and i get subisdies from the fed every month to feed him and take care of him and we both got an obama phone

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:54 | 2895164 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I'm too busy trying to figure out how much [LESS] catfood granny will be able to afford with her $21 a month [COLA INCREASE] in social security...


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:30 | 2895662 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

I'm afraid Fancy Feast is out of the question.  Try Purina (with Fiber, of course) and a little tap water if you need to go the money-saving route. 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:37 | 2895690 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I'm waiting for the Greeks to put some discounted catfood that's past its expiration date on the shelves...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:20 | 2895833 Cpl Hicks
Cpl Hicks's picture

Barry feeds his unicorn federally-subsidized corn mixed with rainbows and it's real healthy!

But if Barry doesn't do well in tonight's debate he may go home and take his frustrations out on the unicorn's tender little heinie.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:27 | 2895052 Mercury
Mercury's picture

Green is just the latest shade of the black and red of central planning and cultural masochism.

First the political banners turn black and red, then the accounting ledgers go from black to red, then reality goes black...and red.



Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:28 | 2895054 patb
patb's picture

This is a Chapter 11 filing,  they think they have customers and product, they just can't make a go with the debt

burden they have.


So they wipe out the debt, make the creditors the new owners, and see if they can work it out.


The Treasury department just boughta battery company.


Perhaps they make it perhaps they die.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:14 | 2895253 Offthebeach
Offthebeach's picture

Treasury fedgov " Security Administrators( TSA's ) will use the cylinder shaped A123 batteries in their anti-Muppet combo baton/cattle prod. ( .357's 'taint cheap y'know.)

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:31 | 2895071 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Heavens to Murgatroyd. Green flame throwing scorched earth policy shoots abound. Time to exit stage left.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:26 | 2895865 Cpl Hicks
Cpl Hicks's picture

Snaggletooth... excellent!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:31 | 2895073 Fix It Again Timmy
Fix It Again Timmy's picture

GRANT MONEY - easy come, easy go - what's so hard to figure out about that?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:54 | 2895167 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Here you go: $324,000 on a squirrel, RoboSquirrel.

Looks like something middle-schoolers could have made out of roadkill, motors off some clown's windshield wiper glasses, and an Energizer battery...WTF?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:33 | 2895077 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

Chump change. General Dynamics blows that much every second of every day. Pandit's bone-us is bigger than that.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:34 | 2895082 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

One by one the only chances at a revived high value manufacturing sector are dying....

Given the domestic  investments made by corporate America of late (slim to none) and the cash they hold on the books this does not bode well... $300,000,000 is almost mad money for many of the large caps and only underlines the risk aversion dominating the board rooms. They see nothing worth investing in as too much capacity already exists in existing tecnologies, the "current" future techologies are dominated by the Chinese who shamelessly undercut any competition, and future technologies show slim prospects (e.g. just how many EVs are going to be sold with a $50,000 price tag..)

In about 5 years time, all the naysayers are going to be wishing that the EV could have been made to work... Bank on it...


As for "Drill Baby Drill" and the hypothesis that it would lower domestics gas prices, well that puppy has been put to rest in the WSJ of all places...

The Failure Of ‘Drill, Baby, Drill’: Wall Street Journal Reports ‘Oil Boom Providing Little Relief For Consumers’


BAU is about to become no longer Usual...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:28 | 2895305 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Yup, right you are, we're dying.

FWIW, sales of the Volt exceed 50% of all other car models - and are made in America.  Eg, they are right at the median if you sort them all by numbers sold this year.  And those are made here, but the hate for GM here means no one here (well, only a couple of us) own them, and yet they cost much less than 50 grand (mine cost me about 35k after taxes).  And no kidding, it's a nice car, drive one and you'd not think GM built it - you'd think it was built by beemer or something (and it does use the same part numbers in the suspension...interesting).

That's what you get on a "bet the company" product.  The quality is very high.

At least GM and Ford used their alt energy subsidies to make cars.  Chrysler?  Why don't we see Mopar hate here - they're by far the worst offenders.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:37 | 2895346 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

CHRYSLER MAKES CARS?   i thought that was a building in new york.


anyway,  moochelle got her 5 million consultant fee before the bk, so it's all good.



Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:02 | 2895474 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

my first down arrow?   pussy anonymous down arrower.  Hang, cur, hang, you whoreson, insolent noise- maker!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:10 | 2895509 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Maybe because your comment was content free....

PS It wasn't me...  

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:00 | 2895981 J in Vegas
J in Vegas's picture

All the Volt hating..really?... I rarely post but read ZH everyday, but enough is enough. I got a Volt 3 weeks ago, and the car is great. 270lb of torque instantly, interior is nice, nav, bluetooth... light years ahead of my 2002 Subaru WRX that I still own(paid off). And this is coming from a libertarian, gun owning, urban garden growing, silver owning person. I might not have to fill up the Volt with gas until sometime in 2013. Charging costs about $1 a day v.s $6 a day for gas in the WRX. And I have to put in 91 octane gas to boot since I drive a turbo charged car. I don't understand all the hating. Yes GM is ran bad. Yes GM should of went BK 4 years ago. Yes I think a $7500 dollar tax credit distorts the market, but I get a mortgage tax credit and a small bussiness credit for my rental and I don't hear anyone crying over that. The car is quick... very quick. I average 45 miles per charge, which gets me to work and back with ease. My girl drives the car on my days off and I drive my old car. She has a caddi that gets 22mpg versus the volts 250mpg+. Haters.... I'm going back to work.

J in Vegas

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:18 | 2896035 Papasmurf
Papasmurf's picture

"FWIW, sales of the Volt exceed 50% of all other car models - and are made in America.  Eg, they are right at the median if you sort them all by numbers sold this year. "


Really?  The WSJ reports GM sold 13,000 Volts this year (reported Aug 30 WSJ) with 6,450 Volts sitting in inventory. 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:34 | 2895086 azengrcat
azengrcat's picture

I can't wait for the Obama to fund my water powered car company. 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:41 | 2895103 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

You'd be better off opening a bank, paying yourself a quarter billion dollars while decreasing the banks value by 90%. That way you can get bailed out to the tune of trillions and not just mere millions.

At least a battery company tries to create a product that has some beneficial use in everyday life. What the fuck does a bank create but debt, homelessness and fraud?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:51 | 2895150 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

He's already got the patent on the Kool-Aid powered economy and car. And yes, he built that, using your money and a bunch of Skittle-shitting Unicorns you also paid for...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:35 | 2895092 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Losers Nothing but Losers !!!!.......seriously, no one could be this BAD !!!!!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:39 | 2895096 El Viejo
El Viejo's picture

I made a little off A123.  It was a good idea at the time. As you may recall Laptops were bursting into flames because they used Lithium ION batteries.  A123 had almost exclusive use of the MIT patent rights for Lithium Iron phosphate technology. They had a video of someon shooting a battery with a 45 and it not catching fire. The world is a lesser place if you only have one choice for batteries. I keep my lithium ION batteries in a fire proof box. Green is Good. It's just a bad time for it now.

Sleep well tonight.


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:40 | 2895106 patience...
patience...'s picture

6 cents and falling...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:41 | 2895107 surf0766
Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:56 | 2895155 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Maybe you should link the original report and the rebuttal the MET office put out...

Or do you believe any shit that you read which confirms your biases???

Here is the reply from the UK MET office....

An article by David Rose appears today in the Mail on Sunday under the title: ‘Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report quietly released… and here is the chart to prove it’

It is the second article Mr Rose has written which contains some misleading information, after he wrote an article earlier this year on the same theme – you see our response to that one here.

To address some of the points in the article published today:

Firstly, the Met Office has not issued a report on this issue. We can only assume the article is referring to the completion of work to update the HadCRUT4 global temperature dataset compiled by ourselves and the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit.

We announced that this work was going on in March and it was finished this week. You can see the HadCRUT4 website here.

Secondly, Mr Rose says the Met Office made no comment about its decadal climate predictions. This is because he did not ask us to make a comment about them.

The article then goes on to show Mr. Rose is full of shit...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:00 | 2895196 surf0766
surf0766's picture

It is always better to belive left wing shit.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:13 | 2895218 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

If you are going to play this game you should really bring something of substance to the table...

Puff pieces from a Murdoch rag that crudely cherry pick data simply don't cut it...

I suggest you study the figures here and get back to us....

And if you like some more to chew on check these 10 figures

Ten Charts that make clear the planet just keeps warming

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:53 | 2895431 hawk nation
hawk nation's picture

I wont believe anything and i mean anything coming from our federal government about global warming/cooling since its just anoher attempt to control more of society

Any reports issued that receive grant money from the government or siera type organization is just more lies in my opinion


Besides global warming would only mean a longer growing season that would benifit society

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:24 | 2895503 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

So what you are saying is that you don't believe anything unless you instinctively know it to be true...

Tell us who the straight shooters are on Global Warming? Is it Exxon? Or maybe Shell? You know, those guys that committed 6 billion dollars to drilling in the Arctic ocean? Do you think they would do that if they thought the ice had any chance of returning soon? Didn;t think so...

Or is the Bible that gives you your strength of conviction? In that case, I suggest you brush up on Isaiah....

Only means a longer growing season? Maybe tell that to the farmers in the Corn Belt, they must have had a bumper crop this year according to your logic....Ooops, I guess they didn't...


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:43 | 2895118 Shizzmoney
Shizzmoney's picture

And the United States Government continues to be the worst investor in the history of forever.'s gone.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:47 | 2895138 El Viejo
El Viejo's picture

Yeah, they lost a lot of money investing in the space program too.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:55 | 2895170 Downtoolong
Downtoolong's picture

And how much did the senior execs and seed investors take out of the deal for themselves. Plenty I bet, even net of their contributions to the Democratic Party.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 12:58 | 2895188 Zymurguy
Zymurguy's picture

Agreed, grants don't work (here, have millions of dollars, now try to be successful).

Rewards work... give 'em a bonus if they reach specific goals.

A large city near me offers rewards to renovators who take condemned buildings and bring them up to code in steps - it's worked wonders to renovate previously decrepid neighborhoods.

Rewards, not grants.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:14 | 2895252 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Yep, that's what the oil industry lobbyists say.

"We make a lot of money by overcharging Americans for a product they must give us some of their tax dollars as a reward so we can keep overcharging them"

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:49 | 2895406 Zymurguy
Zymurguy's picture

Are you arguing that because "A" receives subsidies that makes it okay for "B" to receive subsidies?

If you are then you'd be dead wrong!

Neither "A" nor "B" should receive subsidies.  The U.S. govt. should not be in the business of taking my tax dollars and giving them to any business.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:49 | 2895725 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Apart from killing brown people you never met in countries whos name you can't pronounce, what exactly WOULD you like to see your tax dollars spent on?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:01 | 2895195 Poetic injustice
Poetic injustice's picture

That sure was one hell of a blow.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:04 | 2895219 QE49er
QE49er's picture

Obama to Taxpayers:  You'll get nothing and like it

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:10 | 2895231 jtmo3
jtmo3's picture

Can someone explain to me why these fuckers can backrupt these grants coming from the .gov, yet a student loan can not be? 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:44 | 2895384 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Never fear young man! 

They will soon FORCE you to buy health insurance under ObamaCare whether you want it or not.

They're always looking after their best "interest".

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:12 | 2895516 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

It is Romney care, give credit where credit is due....

Actually, it is a rehash of the Republican plan from the early nineties that sprang from conservative think tanks like the Cato Inst. (among others).....

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:40 | 2895701 Midas
Midas's picture

I call it Obamacare since his name is the one signed on the legislation next to "President of the United States."

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 19:09 | 2896385 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Why not Boehnercare? Or Reidcare?

Or better yet,  Written-by-the-United-Healthcare-Lobbyist-care....

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:53 | 2895426 PeaceLover
PeaceLover's picture

The student loan program goes in profit to the banks.


Google it one of the Banks TBTF has a wife raking in the profits on a student loan program and some said she got the start off the no intrest money from the Inverstment bank...



Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:13 | 2895248 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

At least those jobs shoveling the stacks of cash on the fire were shovel ready.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:14 | 2895250 Augustus
Augustus's picture

MEDC Removes Video of Obama, Top Dems Praising Failed Battery Company


YouTube promotion showed Obama, Granholm, Levin and Stabenow promising thousands of jobs

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:17 | 2895260 americanspirit
americanspirit's picture

Any company that relies on grants or subsidies to make its business model work is not a viable operation to begin with, period. If you can't fund your company with debt or equity capital then you have no business, period. If you can't operate your company without subsidies then you don't have a real business, period. And if you can't figure out how to make and sell a product or service that people will buy on its merits alone, get a job, period.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:21 | 2895580 TealDrops
TealDrops's picture

Yes, exactly, so let's please revoke protectionism for fossil fuel industries, their land grants, tax breaks, subsidies, and protected rates of return, etc. etc. Revoke it all and have a REAL even playing field.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:18 | 2895266 youngman
youngman's picture

This is so typical liberal group think...they can feel that green electric cars are sooooooo they throw money at it..other peoples money of course..the liberal way...they have ALL heard it can work at the latest art show in SOHO.... its just the big oil companies keeping it down..and when it fails...oh well...its not their money....and the funny part is how much was donated to Obama´s campaign....funny not...but Chicago politics yes...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:30 | 2895312 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Did you hit the cough syrup this morning??

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:46 | 2895395 hawk nation
hawk nation's picture

Good response Forest Gump

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:52 | 2895424 Zymurguy
Zymurguy's picture

Flakmeister = govt. employee paid to troll this site

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:15 | 2895529 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

You clearly have me confused with someone else...

Actually, I am on the ZH payroll, they felt that the site needed intelligent commentary since fucktards like yourself were incapable.... 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:22 | 2895278 TideFighter
TideFighter's picture

Someone should ask the Bamster tonight where the You Tube video on A123 is? 

Que the bears. 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:23 | 2895282 CashIsTrash
CashIsTrash's picture

Could it be that the market is trying to tell us something about government green energy??

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:35 | 2895339 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

I suppose you have complete faith in Kochs to ensure your energy future?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 13:39 | 2895353 Quarky Gluon
Quarky Gluon's picture

Consider that everyone on the long list of creditors could be PIF if the government would have just taken over the company and started doing the manufacturing themselves and change the name to something like 'The People's Battery Company.' 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:06 | 2895496 nowhereman
nowhereman's picture

Did anyone else notice that most people (not organizations) listed give their address as

200 West Street, Waltham, MA?

What's up with that?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:12 | 2895515 slightlyskeptical
slightlyskeptical's picture

Not everything worth doing is always going to be profitable. Such thinking holds us back. A123 has come a long way in their development. Are they perfect? No. Have they reached mass scale yet. No. Can they? I believe they can. Will it take more government money to get them there? Most certianly.

It is worth it. A few years down the road when electric cars get 500 mile range, topout at speeds above 100 MPH, recharge at the same speed as filling your tank, and cost less than there non-electric equivelants, electric cars will be a no brainer and companies such as A123 will have great success. It's coming, you just have to have some patience, and some foresight. Short term gain / loss is not what everything should be measured by.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:15 | 2895532 TealDrops
TealDrops's picture

If you want to quit subsidizing green energy, whatever. But let's not forget that fossil fuels have enjoyed 100+ years of nanny state perks. People who talk of unlevel playing fields in the energy industry forget that most of it is protected by regulation. A few green bankruptcies and people are up in arms. I agree that wasteful government spending is not the answer to energy concerns, but people who harp on these technologies stymie progress. The attitude of "it'll never work" never got anyone anywhere.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:54 | 2895746 blu
blu's picture

It's okay, we don't need to make things in the US. As we build out our electric fleet we'll buy all our batteries and electronics from our dear strategic partners in China.

By the time oil starts to play out in a serious way we'll be in good shape to keep the American middle-class motoring along!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:23 | 2895620 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

When I hear people at the pizza shop and the car wash talking about how bad these global financial criminals need to be arrested, I know what's on the mind of everyone else on Earth who has had their pockets plundered or their nation plundered by the U.S. Corporation over the years. The stories about financial super criminals, JFK, 9/11, Al-CIAda, and the whole rotten fix have gone mainstream.


The jig is up... the bankster-politicians must be arrested EN MASSE at just the right moment, or they'll try to start WWIII when the dollar gets dumped by the non-aligned nations. The network to bypass the dollar in international trade exists, they just need to flip a switch. Not to mention the world wants it's stolen gold back from the rotten FED and BIS. The showdown is at hand.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:26 | 2895635 blu
blu's picture

According to the Cato Institute, the US provides as much as $150B (billion) in subsidies annually to the oil industry.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:53 | 2895735 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

The US federal road system is subsidized to the tune of $100 billion per annum, i.e. compare expenses with revenues from gas/diesel taxes...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 20:38 | 2896566 Ckierst1
Ckierst1's picture

I have a great idea! Let's end all subsidies to everybody! Oh no, we can't do that! Gummint wouldn't be able to pick winners and losers and "internal improvements" would go out the window, reversing Father Abraham's Whiggish agenda imposed at bayonet point. Where would the fun of being an elitist be?

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:27 | 2895640 Hohum
Hohum's picture

So does ZH think that we'll have our cherished "growth" (more growth, please) through the expanded use of fossil fuels?  Or will everyone drive a Tesla?  Both are really bad plans.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:54 | 2895740 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

That is the question, isn't it....

No one wants to touch the answer with a 10 foot pole....

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:56 | 2895750 blu
blu's picture

Growth is dead. Only contraction remains, that's why Benny went all QE3 on us.

There is no Plan B because no such thing is possible here.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 18:50 | 2896350 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Quick! Somebody account for all the gold that has been stolen from around the world!

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 14:31 | 2895665 ZFiNX
ZFiNX's picture

I considered speculating in this one. The name was too cheesy though.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 15:57 | 2895976 Walt D.
Walt D.'s picture

Green Energy is a takeoff on Mel Brook's "The Producers" - "Spring Time for Hitler". It turns out that Solyndra was just a tax scam - the IRS has just found out.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:01 | 2895987 sosoome
sosoome's picture

This is your government speaking.

Since you folks won't see the light and buy our green cars, we will have to mandate you buy them. Well, we can't actually mandate you buy them, but what we can do is impose a severe penalty tax for not buying them. See? We's for your own good. Trust us.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:12 | 2896018 Walt D.
Walt D.'s picture

All these Green Energy projects are kickbacks to campaign bundlers and trial lawyers. Bakruptcy attorneys bill out at over $1000 an hour.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:16 | 2896029 metachron
metachron's picture

Good article, a lot of work went into the presentation. A bunch of horseshit comments that don't add anything to the discussion. I thought ZH vetted their commentators.

Like most, I would advocate few direct industry subsidies. But there should be money for R&D tech transfer. This would have been a good case.

Certainly this bankruptcy pales in comparison to Big Oil kickbacks and the Farm Bill boondoggle. Its peanuts, invested into a risky industry. Personally, I think battery tech has a huge future, and if China invests in their industiral base to kick US butt, why should the US not do anything? If an industry is that risky, who will invest? Hedge fund managers? VCs? So what industries do people think gov should invest in? Or let the "free" market decide? 

Do you all really think South American oil and the Bakken witll fuel American 21st century?


Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:28 | 2896058 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Re: Brazil, at their current pace, they will always be a net importer...

As for the Bakken, surely you jest...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 16:56 | 2896122 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

A123 is a Massachusetts based company. Here is a little more cronyism for you including Mafia ties...

Here is a case of a governor who is a bundler for Obama that appointed wind executive(s) to certain advisory roles.

Moving along, Also involved in this wind boondoggle is Angus King, Former Governor of Maine, wind speculator and senate candidate, whose son works for First Wind.


Summers picks up fundraising pace, but King still brings in double the money


King’s fundraising report shows that trips he made to Washington, D.C., to raise campaign cash paid off. His contributors include a number of employees of the Podesta group, which held a July fundraiser for King. The report also shows a number of contributions from employees of the Washington, D.C., lobbying firm Patton Boggs, including former Louisiana Sen. John Breaux, a Democrat, and Patton Boggs chairman Thomas Hale Boggs.

On Tuesday, King will travel to New York City for a fundraiser at the home of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has contributed $500,000 to a third-party, pro-King ad campaign by the nonprofit group Americans Elect.

Oh, and about Bloomberg from a few days ago...

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 17:42 | 2896234 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

There is a shitload of info regarding the green scam here...


Enjoy the song but do READ the comments and start from the last comment. There will be several hundred comments and links, a mosaic (a notepad of sorts but a project in the works) naming names and all kinds of little goodies. 

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 18:58 | 2896354 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Have you never seen this level of cronyism and corruption in government? Republicrats covering for each others money-drenched crimes. Regular citizens will never have 895 page campaign finance reports.


Politicians for sale have never been this naked or brazen, that's for sure.

Tue, 10/16/2012 - 19:33 | 2896437 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

I've seen some shit (Enron) but this takes it all. BTW, this is Enron all over again including the executives (former Enronites) of certain companies.


Now that we have seen where stimulus money went, we have to look at where certain companies have gone (besides bankrupt), relocated or established foreign 'affiliates' overseas. 

How much have those companies like UPC Wind Managemant (First Wind) /UPC Wind Asia recieved in foreign aid directly or indirectly?

This may be a golden opportunity to short ENRON again.


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