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Fisker Karma
This is the same program that funded Fisker Automotive

South Dakota's Republican senator wants to terminate the federal loan program that gave millions of dollars to Fisker Automotive -- an automaker that has failed to produce a car in over a year and is now missing loan payments to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). 

According to The Detroit News, Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) wants to get rid of the $25 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loan program due to failures like Fisker Automotive wasting taxpayer money. He has already proposed an amendment that would “permanently end the ATVM program and save taxpayers from paying for more of President Obama’s bad green-energy bets.”

Thune's amendment comes after the DOE said it would auction off Fisker Automotive's $168 million unpaid loan earlier this week. DOE plans to launch the auction in early October. 

Fisker Automotive is an auto startup that received $529 million in DOE loans back in April 2010. However, Fisker fell a little behind on its production schedule, and in May 2011, DOE froze the loans due to "unmet milestones." Fisker had only drawn $193 million of it at that point. It hasn't been able to build a car since July 2012, and started looking for a buyer so it doesn't have to claim bankruptcy.

But Fisker isn't the only auto company that failed after receiving money from the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loan program. Vehicle Production Group LLC -- which is a Michigan-based startup building wheelchair-accessible compressed natural gas vehicles -- was awarded $50 million in loans back in March 2011, but has since halted production.

Senator John Thune

DOE sold its unpaid $50 million loan for Vehicle Production Group LLC to AM General for $3 million earlier this month. According to The Detroit News, taxpayers lost about $42 million on that sale.

The Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program was created by Congress in 2007 in an effort to reach the goal of 1 million EVs on U.S. roads by 2015, but the program hasn't made a new loan since March 2011. This is mainly due to the fact that two of the five companies (Fisker and Vehicle Production Group) that received government loans stopped production. 

The Obama administration received a lot of flak for these failures, but the program wasn't all bad. The other three loans -- $5.9 billion to Ford, $1.4 billion to Nissan and $465 million to EV startup Tesla Motors -- proved to be successful. Tesla even managed to pay its full sum back nine years early, which was a great feat for a startup. 

U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said last month that the Obama administration is interested in reviving the $25 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program. He noted that it plans to draw a new round of loan requests (but is not actively considering any applications for retooling loans) and reexamine its lending criteria in order to avoid problems it encountered in the past. 

Source: The Detroit News

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RE: Bad Loans
By EricMartello on 9/26/2013 1:26:27 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, he did. He never made enough money in his career to handle the costs of early onset Alzheimer''s. Few people do, it is an extremely expensive disease.

It's not society's job to pay for his treatment - that's your family's job and responsibility. Short of that, turn to charity.

After nearly two decades in construction his pension was only $216/month, and while he made ends meet his whole life ... especially not one complicated by a debilitating disease that prevents him from working or even caring properly for himself.

See above. You birth it, you own it.

His situation is not unique. Millions end up in a situation like his, through no real fault of their own.

Every person is going to face some kind of challenge at some point in their life. Looking to the government for help is not the solution; but in your case and many others it's perceived as "the easy way out".

SS does not meat the literal or technical definition of a Ponzi scheme. I know that is a common claim, but it is factually inaccurate. And yes it pays out more, it is designed that way. Current workers pay for retired workers. Its a very smart design that will hit interesting limits should population level off or decline, but even then it is fairly easy to manage. It was a great idea.

SS was not a "smart design". Instead of giving people tax breaks and encouraging/educating them on how to invest money, they decided to start a national ponzi scheme...the definition of a ponzi scheme being that you are using money from new "investors" to pay existing investors. With SS your new investors are currently employed workers and our existing investors are retirees.

So don't sit there and say "it's not a ponzi scheme" and then stop short of telling us why it's not. It's a dumb idea supported by selfish/stupid/desperate people.

With the introduction of entitlements like SS, poverty shot up and productivity plummeted...and today you have nearly 20% of all Americans receiving some type of handout.

Not true, and you can read their debates for more. Not sure what to tell you, but Madison certainly did not believe in small government. Neither did Franklin, for that matter.

Franklin did support pragmatic functions to be provided by the government, i.e. a postal service...but to twist that around and claim he or any of the founding fathers were "liberal", as in 'any problem can be solved by expanding government power and authority', is more bullsh1t from the left. They want to "legitimize" themselves because most people realize that being a liberal is effectively being an enemy of the USA.

Strawmen do not make your point.

The facts, concealed in highly classified documents known as "history books", do.

I don''t support big government. I support government that is enough to meet the needs of its citizenry. What those needs are is open to debate.

The government is not there to "meet the needs of its citizens" and by saying that you are affirming your support for big government. The government is there to moderate - its role in our lives should be no different than referees at a football game. The referees enforce the rules of the game, but they do not change the rules or interfere with the game itself. They exist within a very limited and well-defined scope - we do not have this with our government today.

No, you chose to disregard the examples I gave. Thats your choice, but you haven''t proven anything yet. I''ll toss on a couple more: The FAA. The FDA.

Both socialist institutions that do not have a private sector counterpart.

The best example would be Fedex (or UPS or DHL) vs the USPS. Who wins? Well, any of the private sector shipping companies provide superior service, faster transit times, real-time tracking as well as a variety of expedited services. They do not get any tax dollars for operational costs.

The USPS limps along burdened by the weight of pensions it cannot afford and employees who are generally overcompensated for the work they perform. It wants to raise first class postage to 49 cents; meanwhile UPS, Fedex and DHL are in the black.

Neither the FAA nor the FDA have a private sector counterpart and neither of them are doing an exemplary job since they really have no accountability and nobody to answer to.

Most people are responsible for themselves. Lots of people encounter situations that they could not have prepared for however. Others have empathy for those who are not capable of caring fully for themselves.

Have all the empathy you want - but not at my expense. You want to help someone, GO DO IT YOURSELF WITH YOUR OWN TIME AND YOUR OWN MONEY, otherwise STFU.

I never went to college. Also never cared about fitting in. Sorry I do not fit your stereotype. Everything I say matters just as much as everything you say.

If you said you went to college you could at least blame being an ignorant douche on some nutty left-wing professor who claims to be open minded, yet only accepts views that mesh with his own.

Nothing you say matters because you are either making sh1t up entirely or taking wishy-washy stances while displaying a total ignorance on the topics you're talking about.

Was just there in March. Not sure what your talking about. DC is a mess once you leave the central part. Ignoring the center, its probably the second crappiest city I''ve visited after San Antonio.

I don't think anyone who actually visited DC will agree with you, but like every city it has its ghetto. The fact is that most of the people living in DC are raking in six-figure salaries, driving luxury cars, living in what most people would consider mansions and they are the "middle class".

The crappiest city in America is Detroit, because it was "saved" by liberals. lol

We just held elections. The majority voted in favor of the direction we are going. I am sorry you dislike that direction, but it is up to you to make your case to convince people otherwise. This is how democracy works, not everyone gets everything they want.

No, not really. If asked I'd say most people voted for Obama since Romney spent most of his time talking about what he was against and didn't really establish what he was for. He also left too many attacks from Obama unchecked and unanswered.

Obama has had two accomplishments in his lifetime - being elected once, and then being re-elected. Everything else he's been involved with could be summed up with the sentence, "The diversity of failure."


If you understood US history you'd also understand why many people gave their lives to establish the USA as a republic and not a democracy...but you barely understand how to operate a toothpick.

Why do you assume that people not agreeing with you means they don''t care? Seems a rather large leap.

Why do you assume I'm making assumptions? I'm making statements of fact. You being oblivious to these facts does not make anything I said assumptive.

I''m not making any demands. People are taking action. Just not the actions you want. Again, welcome to democracy.

Asking for or demanding more handouts is not "taking action". That's called expanding dependency.

There are people taking action because more than half of the country is quite fed up with what's going on here.

Welcome to the Republic.

"Vista runs on Atom ... It's just no one uses it". -- Intel CEO Paul Otellini

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