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Joe Biden is in Michigan today, reportedly to announce the first round of $2B in battery grants.  (Source: The Weekly Standard)
Grants bring good news to state's troubled economy

Michigan is among the states that has been hit hardest by the recession.  The government went to extreme measures to keep the state's economy from collapsing, including assuming majority ownership of GM and propping up Chrysler through bankruptcy.  Now the federal government is preparing to reach deeper into its pockets to help the state out even more.

Vice President Joe Biden is in Michigan today at the NextEnergy Center in Detroit.  He is reportedly going to announce the first round of $2B USD in Department of Energy battery grants.  The grants should boost the state's economy and help develop better electric vehicles, currently favored as the future of the car industry by the domestic automakers.

The federal government is also separately loaning money to battery manufacturers under the $25 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Incentive Program (ATVM).  Among the battery manufacturers that applied for that loan are A123 Systems, EnerDel, and Compact Power.  Thus far Ford, Nissan, and Tesla Motors received ATVM loans.  It is unknown who the grants will go to, but A123 Systems, EnerDel, and Compact Power seem like leading candidates.

Ed DeSeve, the president's special advisor on the stimulus program, had stated about on July 21, "I think you'll see over the next week or so ... some industrialization focus, for example, on the battery grants that are coming.  It makes sense to put those in places where there is productive working capacity -- people who can do the jobs. There are plants where the jobs can exist, and I think you are going to start to see more and more of that over time."

The ATVM loans must be repaid eventually by automakers and battery makers.  However, the DoE grants do not have to be repaid.  Michigan has also offered battery makers some big tax cuts in hopes of luring business into the state.

A limited amount of tickets to Mr. Biden's appearance have been offered to the public on a first-come-first-serve basis.

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RE: Michigan
By Steve1981 on 8/5/2009 5:04:12 PM , Rating: 1
As far as Communism goes, what about police forces, fire departments and the armed forces? These are all services that we, as a SOCIETY or COMMUNITY (same roots as Socialism or Communism

That socialism and communism sound like the words community and society is neither here nor there. Both tend to be abysmal ideas in practice; and no, citizens paying taxes for law and order, national defense, and a modicum of protection against major disasters is not considered communism or socialism.

Here is the difference: socialism and communism both involve state ownership over the means of production and distribution of goods. OK, certainly as per your example, "the state", courtesy of taxing the populace, bankrolls and is in charge of our national defense for example. However, the difference between this and them being in charge of producing automobiles is that "national defense" is not a good or service that individuals can purchase. It is nothing less than an essential bit of framework that is required for a society to exist in any meaningful manner.

As far as nationalized healthcare: I'd say you'd be on your strongest ground claiming that much like fires, diseases don't tend to stay in one place for long nor are they particularly concerned whether they destroy a rich man or a poor man, a black man or a white man. As such, some measure of public health system isn't an awful idea.

At the same time though, I can't say I'm inclined to bankroll somebody's coronary bypass because they have an unhealthy obsession with eating at McDonalds and hatred of exercise.

“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs

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