CEI Daily - Solar Panels, TARP, and Free Trade

Solar Panels


The Department of Energy is installing rooftop solar panels on the White House.


Senior Fellow Marlo Lewis points out that the move is entirely symbolic.


"I've got nothing against solar technology, which has come a long way since the Carter days. Nonetheless, outside of certain niche markets and applications, solar is not competitive with fossil energy or even with other so-called non-hydroelectric renewable energies. [...] Yes, solar power has enjoyed a rapid growth spurt in Germany, but that is due market-rigging subsidies known as feeder tariffs. If an industry cannot sustain itself without special policy privileges, does it really deserve to be called 'sustainable'?"




Timothy Geithner has recently taken care to remind the public that TARP was a GOP invention.


Fellow of Regulatory Studies Ryan Young says that Geithner has a point.


"[W]hat the country needs are spending cuts. And Republicans have serially proven they can’t be trusted with the public purse. When Republicans last held power they passed the largest new entitlement program since the Great Society, nearly doubled federal spending in eight years, gave billions of dollars in subsidies to businesses and farmers, and generally made a mess of things. The TARP bailouts and the largest spending stimulus in U.S. history were their closing flourishes."


Free Trade


American manufacturers are pushing the U.S. to pass the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement.


Adjunct Scholar Fran Smith argues that since the E.U. has signed an agreement with Korea, the U.S. needs to pass through its own agreement in order to compete with European markets.


"U.S. goods producers note that already the EU is ahead of the U.S. in exports to Korea, and the EU trade agreement will heighten that disparity unless the U.S. ratifies its own trade pact."