by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor | John Locke Foundation
…here’s an animated summary.
The solar energy industry likes to impress the media and legislators with tales of how it’s like
which they are somehow proud to admit is only because of government policies, such as investment tax credits and the steadily rising REPS purchase mandate. Taken together, their state and federal investment tax credits and accelerated depreciation add up to, well … one hundred percent.
Plus they get a captive consumer base who by law have no choice over who sells them electricity from whom and for how much:
Which means this mighty industry is actually more like
In fact, if you think about it, it’s really closer to
They know this, and despite years of promises of being able to stand on their own someday, they know that without all this government support, they’d just
But the media, who like to view themselves as
when it comes to politicians being corrupted by cronyism and giving special treatment to prop up Big Business, are too busy being
for this particular big business. Why? Because they have bought into the industry’s empirically false propaganda that solar is so much better for the planet
that it is therefore above criticism. So the media instead fight to protect the corrupt cronies from the forces of evil, the ones they call “special interests,” who are of course ordinary people; i.e., the captive ratepayers/taxpayers
whose “special interest” is in not being taken advantage of as taxpayers and ratepayers to benefit the big business.
It’s gotten so topsy-turvy that when other big businesses and corporate cronies taking advantage of these giveaways come out in favor of the giveaways they’re getting — surprise, surprise, surprise! —
the now-tamed media are all
and make it so they aren’t disgusted or outraged by the clamorous cronies
constantly berating legislators with their petitions, laughably misleading reports, demands, threats, lobbyists, more laughably misleading reports, and other rent-seeking antics on the hope that the principled legislators there will eventually fold.
Meanwhile, captive ratepayers/taxpayers can only hope that the legislature will grow tired of this annual spectacle and tell them what any unsustainable industry with a high-powered lobby needs to be told: