Solyndra Destroys Brand-New Equipment


Everything going according to plan at Solyndra headquarters.

Solyndra, the bankrupt Fremont, California maker of tube-component solar panel that lost $518 million in a taxpayer-guaranteed loan approved by the Obama Energy Department, is disposing of its assets the old-fashioned way: by throwing them in the garbage. 

As I have noted in the past, one of the many things that made Solyndra a bad bet was that its signature product was a rack of glass tubing you were supposed to put on your roof in all weather. I have secretly worried that I might be overstating that case, but as you can see in this report from CBS News in San Francisco, Solyndra tubes shatter like champagne glasses when dropped into a dumpster. I hate to think what these babies will do when subjected to sleet, icy rain and other weather conditions that apply, I'm told, outside of sunny California. 

Solyndra lawyers and the bankruptcy conservator claim that throwing out these fragile parts makes sense because they are not worth storing. But in an excellent piece of investigative work, CBS reporter Elizabeth Cook catches up with a parts reseller and a Santa Clara University researcher, both of whom tried to purchase or just receive the dumped products and got turned down. 

Meanwhile, Politico's Darren Samuelsohn and Glenn Thrush figure out that the real villain in the Solyndra scandal is the Koch brothers

Typically, the kickoff ad in a presidential reelection campaign has a gauzy, upbeat, "Morning in America" vibe. Not this one — it was a pointed response to a $6 million ad campaign, paid for by the Koch brothers-linked nonprofit group Americans for Prosperity, which hits Obama on the semi-scandal surrounding the now-defunct, government-subsidized maker of solar power components.

It's clear Obama's campaign staff in Chicago sees the Solyndra attacks as a real threat in 2012, and wants to define the narrative before the Koch brothers harden public opinion against Obama. Fairly or not, the issue is likely to be a centerpiece of anti-Obama attacks — it offers both the whiff of scandal and an object lesson on the perceived evils of big-government overreach under an activist Democratic president.

Interestingly, Samuelsohn was not too long ago targeted himself by Solyndra dead enders for paying too much attention to the demi-semi-hemi-scandal. Maybe they brought in this Thrush guy for "balance." In any event, the Kochs will have to spend 86.3 times as much as they have so far to get justice for the half-billion-dollar Solyndra swindle.