Every day media coverage of the Obama administration's stimulus package(s) and efforts to revive the economy is primarily negative in regards to bonuses, bailouts to irresponsible financial institutions as well as the Secretary of Treasury, Timothy Geithner. The feeding frenzy continues over and over again and unfortunately misses some of the plan's positive outcomes.
For example, Solyndra, a California-based manufacturer of solar photovoltaic systems, was awarded the first green loan guarantee by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under President Obama's stimulus package. The loan guarantee falls under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.
This loan of $535 million is for construction of a second manufacturing plant of Solyndra's products. This project is expected to employ 3,000 people, and once the plant is completed, Solyndra says it expects to hire 1,000 full-time employees.
Considering the stimulus packages and bailouts have sailed well past the $1 trillion mark, this is hardly a huge amount. However, the impact might be considered huge if it were given its fair share of coverage. This story made into the news on wire services and some nominal mentions across the spectrum of media outlets, however, ask anyone you meet whether the president's plan will have any impact on jobs creation, chances are that you'll get an earful about waste, pork, earmarks, and congressional and executive branch failure to act properly. Not once will this story about one company in the green energy sector be in the discussion, nor will the fact that 3,000 jobs are immediately being created.
And while millions of jobs have been lost over the past 12-18 months and more will surely be lost, the fact that there is some marginal sunlight breaking through due to the stimulus package is encouraging. It's important to not lose sight of the fact these jobs are being created.
It's also very important to get the word out in order to balance the reporting we are being fed by the major news organizations. The economy is in extremely fragile shape, but there are nuggets of good news as well. If we don't bring these facts out into the mainstream there is a terrific chance of continuing the non-stop cycle of depressing news which can only lead to more despair.
Jonathan A. Schein is the publisher of MetroGreenBusiness.com and GreenBusinessCareers.com
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