San Juan Mountains

San Juan Mountains
San Juan Mountains: Grenadier Range

Friday, August 17, 2012

Sustainability Is A Meaningless Concept

'Sustainability' used to mean to maintain, support or endure.  I remember using the word in such sentences as "Do you intend on sustaining that break-neck pace?" or "Judge, are you going to sustain my prison sentence?"  I have no idea what the word means today.  One thing I do know is that the word has been hijacked by the environmentalists.  Like most things said by the environmentalists, the word seems to be full of emotional content and devoid of factual material.  Here are some examples:
1.  Miliken is a town in northern Colorado.  It was selected as one of fifty small towns in the US to compete in a "sustainability" contest.  The Denver Post reported that "taking advantage of an invitation to participate in a national contest, the town of Miliken is looking to rally more of its residents to recycle....Town Administrator Jim Burack said that 'promoting recycling for this contest is the first major environmentally sustainable project the town will take on.  What we have focused on recently is making our downtown socially sustainable, to where you can walk more around town.  I think sometimes we forget there's more to sustainability than environmental, but also social sustainability encourages environmental sustainability.'"  Huh?  Social sustainability encourages environmental sustainability because it makes it easier for people to walk around downtown?  Can I have a translation please?
2.  Meanwhile, up in Fort Collins, we have another example of sustainability.  A fellow by the name of Jacob Castillo has created a company named Panda Cycles.  The unique thing about Panda Cycles is the fact that the bicycle frames are made out of bamboo.  The Denver Post sent Jason Blevins to Fort Collins to interview Mr. Castillo.  Here is what Castillo had to say, "the fundamental idea behind Panda Cycle's motto 'Go Far, Do Good', involves community and sustainability built into a dream bike.  Its a conversation starter, for sure.  I think it speaks to the sustainable ethos of this town.  Its great to play a role in that as a bike rider."  What?  A dream bike constructed of something called "sustainability"?  What is an "ethos" and how can one be sustainable?  I don't know about you but I want my bike frame constructed of good, old steel.  I would be terrified to be screaming down a mountain road at 40 mph on a bike frame constructed of "community and sustainability".  Wouldn't you?
3.  The Colorado Fourteener Initiative has been around for a few years.  The volunteer organization was created to build and maintain trails on the most popular fourteener routes.  For those of you who do not know, the "fourteeners" are the 58 fourteen thousand foot peaks found in Colorado.  Thousands of people climb the fourteeners every year and the CFI came into existence to attempt to mitigate the impact of those people upon the trails to the top of the mountains.  Most of their work focuses upon rebuilding trails with switchbacks in order to avoid the erosion so common on "straight-up" climbers trails.  This year the CFI created a new program entitled the "Sustainable Trails" project.  Jason Blevins (who appears to be the "sustainability" reporter for the Denver Post) reported that "The CFI's new Sustainable Trails project is an ambitious program to document and inventory every step of the 24 heavily trafficked routes the group has rebuilt on 22 of the state's highest peaks."  According to Blevins, one project volunteer discovered more than 300 non-sustainable features on the first mile of the trail up Mt. Bierstadt that were in need of sustainability repair.  Wow!  Over 300 nasty non-sustainable features within the first mile!  How does anybody every get through that zone safely?  I am surprised there haven't been hundreds of deaths on that stretch of trail.  I also find it curious, how did these non-sustainable features come into existence and how is it that they have managed to sustain themselves up until this point?  It seems to me that these non-sustainable features are pretty sustainable.  Now the whole thing is really getting confusing.
I remember hearing a commercial on the television in which the announcer stated that this particular company specialized in "creating sustainable solutions to your business problems".  I still have no idea what that means.  Does anybody have any idea what the word 'sustainable' is supposed to mean?  The downtown area in Miliken is socially sustainable, a bamboo bike has an sustainable ethos in it somewhere, and the Colorado Fourteener Initiative is rebuilding trails to eliminate the un-sustainable features on them that seem to have been sustaining themselves quite well.  What does any of this mean?
Of course, I jest.  We all know what 'sustainable' means.  It means we are in the presence of wild-eyed greenies who want to shut down corporate America.  It means we are in the presence of feel-good socialists who believe that all industrial production is evil.  In 1987 the United Nations issued a statement in which it defined 'sustainability' as "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."  What an absurd and ridiculous definition that is.  How much arrogance is required to hold the position that we can actually determine the needs of future generations?  Imagine what it would have been like in the past when we gathered together to try and make our whale oil sustainable for future generations.  Little did we realize that whale oil would soon be replaced by petroleum.  Imagine what it would have been like in the past when we gathered to try and make our horse population sustainable for the travel needs of future generations.  Little did we realize what the automobile industry would do to the horse drawn carriage.  Imagine what it would have been like when we gathered to make sure our wood supply could be sustained to provide light for future generations.  Little did we know that the electric light bulb would soon be created.  Like all socialists, the sustainability cult of environmentalists believe they are omniscient.  They believe they have the ability to see the future and determine how much of some thing future populations are going to want.  Then, they turn to the present and order us to use less of that particular good so as to make it sustainable.  What arrogance.
Most important, and most dangerous, in all of this is the presupposition that there is some group of super-intelligent elitists who have the ability to know and plan for all future contingencies.  These folks, who will inevitably work in some government bureaucracy and draw huge government salaries, have the ability to not only see into the future but they also have the ability to plan economic development today.  If we are going to be sustainable we must stop exploiting the resources of the world via capitalism and adopt the programs of the sustainability police.  They are our superiors because they are not motivated by profit, like those evil, free market industrialists among us.  They are motivated by the pure thoughts of altruistic sustainability, where everyone prospers under their beneficent direction.   Trust them, they will not lead us astray.  After all, they are also highly interested in sustaining their careers and government paychecks.  I have no doubts they will succeed.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Where Do Our Rights Come From?

Paul Ryan is quoted as saying that, "Our rights come from nature and God, not government."  John Shippey, of Denver, believes that Ryan is an ignorant "ayatollah" for believing that our rights come from God, not government.  Shippey characterized Ryan's assertion as "an utterly ridiculous statement."  Shippey disparages Ryan when he says, "It's OK to carry a copy of the Constitution, but the idea is to read it as well."  In a letter to the editor of the Denver Post yesterday, Mr. Shippey describes his theory on the origination of civil rights.  Mr. Shippey says, "We have rights because we have laws made by legislators we elect, signed by a president we elect and possibly reviewed by a Supreme Court, according to the Constitution of the United States."  Mr. Shippey's position is, I believe, the majority view in our country today and it stands in stark contrast to the position of the founding fathers of this country. 
Shippey is quick to call Ryan a moron but slow to see his own significant moronic tendencies.  His belief that the US Constitution is designed to instruct US citizens that our civil rights are derived from government is an utterly ridiculous statement.  We need go no further than the Declaration of Independence for a specific answer to the question about the origination of our civil rights.  Remember these words? 
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government...
There is absolutely no question that the founding fathers of this country believed that our rights come from God, although their views of who God is were highly variable. There is absolutely no question that the founding fathers of this country believed that our civil rights were limited to our right to life, liberty and our own property.  There is absolutely no question that the founding fathers of this country believed that government was established to defend our God-given rights to life, freedom and our own property.  There is absolutely no question that the founding fathers of this country believed that government that seeks to grant men rights in addition to the three God-given rights has gone beyond its moral bounds and should be altered or abolished.  All of these things are abundantly obvious to anyone who takes a moment to read and consider the words of the Declaration of Independence.  There is no question that the founding fathers of this country were in full and complete agreement with the words of Paul Ryan.  Why, then, does Mr. Shippey feel the need to deprecate Ryan?
I suspect the primary motivation of Mr. Shippey is his hatred for the God of the Bible.  He makes it very clear that any person who believes that the God of the Bible is the source of human civil rights is an "ayatollah".  I do not believe he is using that term in a complementary fashion.  His primary argument for why civil rights are not derived from the God of the Bible is that "the Ten Commandments are rules, not rights!"  He follows up that brilliant argument with another when he says, "God handed down the Ten Commandments, not the Bill of Rights." 
Mr. Shippey is correct when he says that God wrote the Ten Commandments and not the Bill of Rights.  He is also correct that the Ten Commandments are rules and not rights.  Where he widely diverges from logical analysis, however, is when he concludes that our rights are not related to God because God did not write a specific list of rights in the Bible.  Any theologian knows that the Ten Commandments were never intended to serve as a bill of rights.  Additionally, every theologian worth his salt also knows that the rights to life, freedom and my own property are easily proven from hundreds of biblical texts.  Mr. Shippey misses a very important point because he is clearly highly ignorant of biblical teaching on this issue.
Still, Shippey's position is of interest because it provides a very good example of the majority view in this country on the origination of civil rights.  According to him, and most others in our land, our civil rights are contained in the laws passed by Congress and signed by the President.  So when the Congress makes a law saying that it is moral for the government to forcibly take money from my neighbor in order to pay for my doctor bills, my son's grade school teacher, my retirement income and my daughter's abortion, the government has just created a slew of new rights for me.  If I attempted to personally take money from my neighbor, at gun point if necessary, in order to pay for the previous list of items, I would be arrested and jailed for attempted theft.  When I am able to take the same money from the same neighbor to pay for the same bills according to a law made by Congress, I am exercising my civil rights.  What a country!  I can do anything I want to my neighbor, provided I do it as a member of a mob and not as an individual.
What Shippey fails to realize is that no alleged "right" can ever contravene the previous God-given rights to my life, freedom and property.  When your "right" to an education in the government schools means that you have a legal right to take my income and use it to pay the salary of your son's teacher, we no longer have an example of a real right.  All we have is an example of theft by majority vote.  And that, of course, is precisely what Mr. Shippey desperately wants.  He is smart enough to know that the rich are always in the minority.  There is no way the rich minority can protect themselves from the depredations of the less rich majority when the purse strings are controlled by whomever has the majority vote.  So, to assuage his guilty conscience, Shippey reframes the argument.  According to him the US Constitution gives him the legal right to steal from his neighbor, provided the majority of voters say it is OK to do so.  Once again, welcome to the Socialist Democracy of American, where no man's property is safe when the majority deem it as their own.
Although Shippey has some obvious hostility issues with God, he also betrays that he is a theist of sorts.  For you see, everybody must have some sort of deity.  The source of our civil rights is always a deity of some fashion or another.  Most of the founding fathers saw a deistic god as the source of our civil rights.  Christians see the God of the Bible as the source of our civil rights.  Statists, like Mr. Shippey, see the government as god and the source of our civil rights.  It is not a question as to whether or not God grants us our civil rights.  The question is who is your God?  For Mr. Shippey, and tens of millions like him, the State is god and always to be praised.  Amen.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bill Gross Confuses A Bull Market In Bonds For Brains

Bill Gross is a famous man in the investment world.  He is the Managing Director at PIMCO, a huge mutual fund family specializing in bond funds.  I have no idea whether Bill is a good bond fund manager or not.  It is difficult to tell because he has presided over the bond funds at PIMCO during a time in which it would have been practically impossible to not realize great returns in them.  What I do know is that, thanks to his prior performance in the bond fund world, he is a regular speaker at investment conferences and a regular guest on the financial television shows. He has become a very famous man.  Unfortunately his notoriety seems to have gone to his head.  Bill has gone out on a limb and made some pretty wild statements about the stock market.  I think he would have been better off sticking to bonds.  Take a look at what he has said and you can decide for yourself.
First, a little historical background.  The ten year Treasury bond peaked at a record rate of almost 15% in 1981.  Since that time the yield on the ten year has steadily (with minor ups and down) fallen to the present rate, which is well under 2%.  As most of you know, the rate of interest and the value of a bond are inversely related.  When the interest rate goes down, the value of the bond goes up.  As a result, the past thirty years has witnessed the greatest bull market in bonds in the history of the country.  The more recent history tells an even more dramatic story.  In 2000 the rate on the ten year was 7%.  The S & P 500 sat at 1469 on 1-1-00.  Almost twelve years later the rate on the ten year treasury is 1.7% and the S & P 500 sits at 1405.  In other words, the past twelve years have been a great time to be in bonds whereas stock index investors have seen essentially no growth.
In an article written by Jeff Cox of CNBC, Gross is reported as telling investors that stocks will no longer generate the kinds of returns they've had over the past century, ending what Gross calls the "cult of equity" that has been Wall Street's mantra for generations.  Cox writes that "he also predicts the stock market's previous consistent annual return will be reduced to a 'historical freak' that will never be repeated."  Why does Gross come to the conclusion that he does?  Here is his argument, in his own words,  "The 6.6 percent real return belied a commonsensical flaw much like that of a chain letter or yes — a Ponzi scheme. If wealth or real GDP was only being created at an annual rate of 3.5 percent over the same period of time, then somehow stockholders must be skimming 3 percent off the top each and every year."  That is an amazingly stupid statement coming from a man that is supposed to be an investment guru.  
Gross believes that stocks are doomed to a long term rate of return equal to the rate of increase in GDP.  He also believes that the rates of return realized on stocks in the past have been a Ponzi scheme because they were higher than the rate of increase in GDP.  Why must the return on a stock be limited to the rate of change in GDP?  Gross does not say.  He simply asserts that it must be so because it is common sense.  In truth it makes no sense at all.  The stock market is made up of thousands of stocks, all of which have their own unique financial statement.  The rate of growth (earnings growth, cash flow, return on equity) in those thousands of companies is highly variable and, for profitable companies, almost always greatly exceeds the rate of increase in GDP.  There is no reason why the growth rate for a company should be bound by a government statistic like GDP.  It therefore necessarily follows that there is no reason why the price for that stock should be bound by GDP.  In fact, the belief that GDP either determines or represents the profitability of US corporations is ridiculous at best.  GDP is a flawed government statistic that tells us very little about the real economic world. It has value primarily as a relative measure of economic activity. Provided the folks who set the number do not play too many statistical games with it, it can be of great value in comparing various time periods.  However it is of no value when it comes to valuing a company or a stock.
Bill Gross is making statements about the stock and bond markets that are very similar to the types of statements made by stock fund managers on 1-1-00.  Stock fund managers on 1-1-00 were convinced that the future returns on stock mutual funds would average at least 20% per year.  After all, that was the rate of return that had been realized the previous ten years.  Why should it not continue?  The fact that the PE ratio of the S & P 500 had risen to an astronomical 37 was brushed off and ignored because we were living in a "new era" for stocks.  We all know how that turned out.  Bill is guilty of the same irrational exuberance about bonds that his predecessors had about stocks.  The fact that the rate on the ten year has dropped from  14% to 2% does not bother him.  Yet, how much more can it drop?  How can he possibly realize the same rate of return in bonds going forward when the rate of interest has only one direction to go, and that is up?  Furthermore, he is only one on a long list of people who have declared the stock market to be dead.  Could it be that Bill sees the handwriting on the wall?  Could it be that he knows that bonds are in for a rough future?  Could it be that he knows a rough future for bonds is going to hurt him and PIMCO?  Could this all be bravado to try and prop up a bond market he knows is doomed to fall and fall hard?  Or is Bill Gross simply economically disoriented because he has confused a bull market in bonds for his brains?
Here is one common sense economic truth that is worth remembering.  Stocks must always outperform bonds over the long term.  That is an economic rule that cannot be broken.  Why?  Because the entire world is dependent upon the profitability of stocks, and the businesses they represent.  Corporate profitability makes the engine of economic growth run.  If corporations are not profitable, they do not borrow money and corporate bonds are not issued.  If corporations are not profitable they do not hire people and pay them wages that are taxed.  If corporations are not profitable they do not pay corporate taxes.  Furthermore, no corporation ever issues a bond that pays a rate of interest that is higher than their own profitability.  Interest payments on bonds, whether they be corporate or government (funded by previously collected taxes generated by corporate activity), are entirely dependent upon profits in corporations that allow those payments to be made.  Therefore, by definition, stocks must be more profitable than bonds or the entire economy would collapse.  
A combination of a thirty year bull market in bonds and the second worst ten year period in stock market history has combined to give otherwise intelligent people a very bad perspective on the future.  Thirty years from now we will see that anyone who was foolish enough to be in bonds rather than stocks will have lost a lot of money.  Bank on it.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Wall Street Journal Is Economically Schizophrenic

I was reading the Wall Street Journal Sunday edition which I found in the August 5th Denver Post a week or so ago.  What I read in it was indicative of a startling ignorance of basic free market economics.  Since the WSJ is reputed to be the newspaper of the free market, I was particularly shocked by what I read.  It seems that the tentacles of Keynesianism have penetrated into what used to be the free market bastion called the WSJ.  Allow me to illustrate.
The headline article was entitled "Markets Brace for Washington's Fiscal Cliff".  The second paragraph of the article says, "In January, $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts are set to begin, while a series of tax cuts enacted under President Bush are scheduled to expire.  They both could cause deep damage to the economy and the markets."  What?  It is true that taxes impede economic growth.  It is true that raising taxes is harmful to the economy.  But since when is a reduction in government spending considered to be harmful to the economy?  Moreover, how can any free market economist (the article was written by Gregory Zuckerman) believe for even one second that a reduction in government spending will result in "deep damage to the economy"?
The belief that government spending is responsible for economic growth is classic Keynesianism.  It is shocking to find that belief expounded in the WSJ.  If government spending is responsible for economic growth, then turn the government loose.   The Congress should double or triple the rate of federal spending so we can all realize massive rates of increase in economic growth.  We can spend our way to prosperity.  Or so the Keynesians and WSJ editors say.  Anyone of us who has ever had to manage a household budget is fully aware that the household does not become richer by going out and spending more.  Wealth is always the result of savings and investment.  Government spending is neither savings nor investment and it will never result in an increase in national wealth.  The article went on to say that "If spending cuts take place and taxes rise, some worry the US will be thrown into recession, pulling down growth around the world."  Wow!  Now US government spending is responsible for world wide economic growth.  Clearly the WSJ is calling for increased government spending as a means of sustaining the economic growth of the world.  This is ludicrous.  But it gets worse.
Two paragraphs later the author says, "To be sure, there is a possibility that the spending cuts and tax increases actually could prove beneficial for the markets and the economy.  The moves would be a step toward reducing the heavy debts politicians have had a tough time trimming."  What?  Did I read that right?  One the one hand an increase in government spending is necessary to save the economy from ruin.  On the other hand spending cuts and tax increases could prove beneficial for the national income.  One time tax increases are bad, the next time the exact same tax increases are good.  Which is it?  Both cannot be true.  How can a journal with the reputation of the WSJ come out with such economic drivel?  Either government spending is good for the economy or it is not (it is not).  Either tax increases are good for the economy or they are not (they are not).  There is no confusion here.  Or, at least there shouldn't be.  This is economic schizophrenia.  But it gets worse.
On page 3 of the section I found an article by Al Lewis (columnist for Dow Jones Newswires) in which he argues for an increase in government spending on bridges.  Lewis retells the horrific story of the bridge that fell into the Mississippi river (8-1-07) and predicts that many more such accidents will fill our future.  He says, "These perilous bridges haven't been repaired for the same reason that many other things aren't getting fixed, from the economy on down:  Politicians are slaves to corporate masters."  That sentence came as quite a shock to me.  The WSJ is allegedly the voice of Wall Street, home of the "corporate masters".  The WSJ is supposed to be the voice of business.  And now, I come to find out, that the corporate masters who reside on Wall Street  have Congress in their back pockets.  Congress exists only to do the bidding of Wall Street's corporate masters.  Congress isn't corrupt, business is!  Once again those greedy, evil corporations will be responsible for the demise of America.  How silly of me to think or to expect that the WSJ would actually present business news from the perspective of those who actually own and operate businesses.  No, business news is filtered through the lens of government, just like everything else in the universe these days.
Al wants the Congress to take $30-$60 billion of the taxpayers money to rebuild bridges.  He justifies this theft by saying, "The jobs (generated by the program, MW) would take construction workers off the unemployment dole and turn them into taxpayers.  Their incomes would ripple through the economy like rain in a desert."  What?  Please tell me that the WSJ does not really buy into the broken window fallacy (  Government spending will increase our wealth?  If this is true, let's hire everyone who is unemployed and have them build bridges.  I can envision a land in which the mighty Mississippi is crossed by a majestic government made bridge every five miles of its length.  Can you?  Imagine how this project will cause money to ripple across the land.  We will all be wealthy beyond our wildest dreams.  Al Lewis, like many others at the WSJ, has bought into the Keynesian fallacy that government spending creates wealth.....maybe.  All I can conclude is that the WSJ is economically schizophrenic.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Doublespeak In Political Ads

Wikipedia defines "doublespeak" in the following way:
"Doublespeak is language that deliberately disguises, distorts, or reverses the meaning of words. Doublespeak may take the form of euphemisms  (e.g., "downsizing" for layoffs, "servicing the target" for bombing), making the truth less unpleasant, without denying its nature. It may also be deployed as intentional ambiguity, or reversal of meaning (for example, naming a state of war "peace"). In such cases, doublespeak disguise the nature of the truth.  Doublespeak's origins are fuzzy because there is no explicit mention on where its primary concepts came from. However, doublespeak might possibly have certain concepts taken from George Orwell's book, Nineteen Eighty-Four.  Although there is no mention of Doublespeak in Nineteen Eighty-Four, it has been argued that the term is a combination of two concepts - Doublethink and Newspeak which are original to his work."
Doublespeak is the language of politics.  It is also the language of political campaigns.  Why do we need a panel of political experts to spend one hour dissecting a fifteen minute speech by a political candidate?  Because the candidate fills fifteen minutes of airtime with endless doublespeak.  It then becomes the job of the political analyst to tell us what we have just been told.  Nothing is ever done in a straightforward fashion.  No politician, either on the left or the right, would dare say that the economy is doing well and needs to be let alone in order to prosper (truthful statement).  Both sides of the political spectrum issue statements declaring the economy to be in dire straits, although neither party tells us precisely what is wrong or precisely how it can be fixed.  One does not buy votes from voters who are not under some sort of perceived distress, whether it is real or imaginary.  Politicians know this and they use doublespeak expertly as they fashion tales of woe that can only be fixed if they are elected. 
The objective being sought by those who use doublespeak is an emotional reaction in the minds of the listeners.  The last thing any politician really wants is for the electorate to engage in a rational discussion of the various issues.  Although still unlikely, it is at least possible that issues of truth and righteousness might be discussed if we are rational.  It is far safer for the politician to use doublespeak and appeal to the base animal spirits of the voters.  He who does so the best, wins.  I thought about this idea of speaking in code two weeks ago when I was once again subjected to two consecutive political ads.  The first ad was  produced by the Obama camp. I do not know who is responsible for the production of the second ad, although I have a pretty good guess.  You will too when you read about it.
The first ad was filled with weepy-eyed women warning other women that if the evil Romney is elected women will lose their "right to choose".  Now I suspect that all of us have become so accustomed to code talk that we know how to decode the secret message contained in the above statement.  Just like in the case of doublespeak, code talk is used to make something unpleasant sound more pleasant.  We all know that the "right to choose" is the right to kill/destroy/terminate/make dead the baby/fetus/zygote/tissue that is living in the womb of a pregnant woman.  I believe every woman who uses the "right to choose" language would be upset with the sentence I just wrote.  Why?  My sentence is technically and scientifically accurate.  My sentence communicates precisely what it is women believe they have a right to do.  It does not use doublespeak.
What is a right to "choose"?  Are women forced to eat from McDonalds without the right to also select Burger King?  Are women forced to buy their shoes exclusively from D.S. Shoes?  Are women condemned to forced marriages in this country?  Exactly what choice are women being deprived of when they assert they must defend their right to choose?  If an alien was suddenly to land on the shores of the SDA (Socialist Democracy of America) and some women came up to him and informed him of the absolute necessity to protect their right to choose, what do you think he would think?   The statement communicates absolutely nothing and it is used to disguise the nature of the truth.  Where I come from when somebody attempts to disguise the nature of the truth they do so because they are not very proud of it.  That is something I have never understood about abortion.  If women are so proud about their legal right to have one, and if abortion is nothing more than a medical procedure akin to a tooth extraction, why do we need doublespeak to describe it?
The second ad informed me that it was absolutely crucial for "us to invest in American energy."  It seems that Congress is presently debating (maybe it is done, I don't read the Federal register every day) whether to extend the federal wind tax credit.  For those of you who do not know, the federal government subsidizes wind energy corporations because they would go bankrupt if they were required to exist on the free market.  Since many politicians purchased votes from folks with a vested interest in seeing wind energy developed, those same politicians made a law that forces the taxpayers to pay for the losses realized by the wind energy companies.  That law is up for review and those who want to continue to legally extort money from taxpayers to pay for the losses in the wind energy businesses of this country produced an ad telling us how important wind energy is to us. 
Supporters of the wind tax credit told me that they "see it as an investment".  That is classic doublespeak.  I know a little bit about investments as I have made a couple over the years.  When I make an investment I consider my opportunity for profit in the venture and, if I consider it to be a good risk and as having a high potential for profitability, I take my money and put it into the company. If my prognosis was correct, I am rewarded with profits.  Twenty percent of those profits are stolen by the IRS and, after also being extorted by my state government, I am allowed to keep the rest.  If I suffer a loss, it is only my money that is lost.  My investment activities have no impact upon my neighbor in any way, shape or fashion.
Government "investments" (tax credits in this case) are a completely different bird.  The government takes money that it does not have and gives it to companies that only lose money.  Armed representatives with the force of law and the power of death raid the bank accounts of SDA citizens and take their money to "invest" it into companies that, by definition, will never make a profit.  If they made a profit the government would not "invest" in them.  It is all political payola, of course.   Government "investment" is simply code talk for what is really taking place.  In reality, the politicians and their henchmen extract money from the taxpayers in order to buy votes from special interest groups.  Any relationship between real investment and that immoral activity is purely coincidental.