Crony capitalism is a term that describes an economic system where people with good connections to the center of power – the “cronies” of the government – manage to place themselves in positions of undue influence over economic policy, thus deriving great personal gains.
I think that sometimes, when people think of capitalism, they think of the definition above. A shame, but I fear of late, it happens way too often, and we as a people should be so much more aware of it.
Apparently we have such a case with Nancy Pelosi, and her brother in law, Ronald Pelosi, a San Francisco political insider.
Despite the growing Solyndra scandal, yesterday the Department of Energy approved $1 billion in new loans to green energy companies — including a $737 million loan guarantee to a company known as SolarReserve:
SolarReserve LLC, a closely held renewable energy developer, received a $737 million U.S. Energy Department loan guarantee to build a solar-thermal project in Nevada.
The 110-megawatt Crescent Dunes project, near Tonopah, Nevada, will use the sun’s heat to create steam that drives a turbine, the agency said today in a e-mailed statement. SolarReserve is based in Santa Monica, California.
On SolarReserve’s website is a list of “investment partners,” including the “PCG Clean Energy & Technology Fund (East) LLC.” As blogger American Glob quickly discovered, PCG’s number two is none other than “Ronald Pelosi, a San Francisco political insider and financial industry polymath who happens to be the brother-in-law of Nancy Pelosi, the Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives.”
But wait… there’s more! One of SolarReserve’s other investment partners is Argonaut Private Equity:
Steve Mitchell and Argonaut Private Equity might have a chance to recoup some of their losses in the Solyndra debacle now that the Department of Energy has given a $737 million dollar loan guarantee to a company backed by Argonaut that also lists Mitchell among its board of directors.
Mitchell served on the Solyndra LLC Board of Directors. He also serves as Managing Director for Argonaut Private Equity, a company that invested in Solyndra through the LLCs parent company. After Solyndra declared bankruptcy, two Democratic members of the U.S. House asked that Mitchell testify about Solyndra. Though he has not appeared before Congress, he has “been asked to provide documents to Congress” pertaining to Solyndra.
And for good measure, it’s also noteworthy that Obama is about to hold a big money fundraiser at the home of Tom Carnahan in St. Louis:
Carnahan, a member of the prominent Missouri Democratic family, has been tapped by the Obama campaign as its chief Missouri fundraiser. He is chairman of the board of Wind Capital Group, a wind energy company that makes it corporate headquarters in St. Louis. He formerly was president and CEO of the company.
Last year, Wind Capital’s Lost Creek Farm facility in northwest Missouri received a $107 million tax credit from the Treasury Department, among many such wind operations receiving support from from stimulus funds.
Tom Carnahan is the son of former Missouri governor Mel Carnahan and former U.S. senator Jean Carnahan. He’s also the brother of current Missouri secretary of state, Robin Carnahan.
It’s increasingly hard to tell the government’s green jobs subsidies apart from the Democrats’ friends and family rewards program.
But Ron Pelosi is small-fry compared to the heavy-hiting, deep-pocketed Democrat Party donors working the system from the inside. Read more HERE