Planet Gore

Obama’s LG Chem Trifecta

President Obama’s LGChem boondoggle is a trifecta.

Per Brother Pollowitz’s post nearby, the administration’s ill-advised $151 million stimulus grant to foreign battery-maker LGChem here in Michigan displays a president disrespecting his fellow pols, shoveling money to foreign companies, and wasting tax dollars on his Green dreams.

Partisan Hackin-Chief. Announcing the multi-million-dollar grant in 2010, Obama addressed a bipartisan crowd in Holland, Michigan,at the ground-breaking — and promptly insulted the local congressman in attendance, Pete Hoekstra. “Some of (my opponents) have made the political calculation that it’s better to obstruct than lend a hand. They said no to the tax cuts, to the small business loans, to the clean energy projects,” said Obama in a not-so-veiled shot at Hoekstra sitting just feet away. “Of course, it hasn’t stopped many of these same people from turning up at ribbon-cuttings and groundbreakings, just like this one.”

The insult burnished a partisan presidential style. Members of both parties lament Obama’s refusal to build Washington relationships — thus further polarizing Congress. “It was un-presidential,” a startled Hoekstra told me in 2010 of the telepromptered put-down.

President Outsource. Obama has made it a campaign theme to criticize his Bain Capital opponent for outsourcing jobs and benefiting the wealthy. Yet, LGChem is one of South Korea’s richest chemical firms. Obama envies the green government-industrial complex in Korea and Europe, and the Holland stimulus was an attempt to bring foreign giants to U.S. shores — despite evidence that his overseas industrial policy models weren’t working.

The “green economy looks like a lot of green for the well-connected,” I reported at the Michigan reported in 2010. “The president handed $150 million in stimulus money over to Korean CEO Peter Bahnsuk Kim of LG Chem. LG Chem is an $11 billion Korean conglomerate that hardly seems a candidate for the American Recovery Act. No wonder the program is so unpopular.”

President Waste. Despite Obama’s massive green investments in everything from solar panels to battery-powered cars, the green market has been a bust. The result? Bankruptcies for A123 and Solyndra following similar Michigan boondoggles under Governor Jennifer Granholm, like Fisher Coachworks and RASCO.

LGChem has become the latest poster child for Obama incompetence. WoodTV reports:

Workers at LG Chem, a $300 million lithium-ion battery plant heavily funded by taxpayers, tell Target 8 that they have so little work to do that they spend hours playing cards and board games, reading magazines or watching movies. They say it’s been going on for months. “There would be up to 40 of us that would just sit in there during the day,” said former LG Chem employee Nicole Merryman, who said she quit in May.

Your tax dollars at work.

Henry Payne — Henry Payne is the auto critic for the Detroit News.

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