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Posts Tagged ‘Vice President Joe Biden’

Biden Boasts Recovery Act Spurs Innovation

Four major science and technology breakthroughs promised.

by on Aug.25, 2010

The perfect campaign speech with promises that can't be checked for years.

Vice President Joe Biden has unveiled a new report that claims last year’s politically unpopular – and, gulp, $787 billion — Recovery Act contains $100 billion in investment in innovation that is not only “transforming the economy and creating new jobs,” but helping “accelerate advances” in science and technology.

More than the usual political folderol is involved here, in my opinion, as the Democrats turn up their rhetoric in defense of their management of a sputtering economy in the face of what appears to be an upcoming huge political backlash directed at tax and spend incumbents in the mid-term elections this fall. Biden’s assertions could also be the forerunner of a new move to propose another gigantic stimulus package if the Democrats remain in Congressional power after November.

The claims in the report, “The Recovery Act: Transforming the American Economy through Innovation,” are dubious in my view given the current state of the technologies involved, but ideal from a campaign perspective since they cannot be verified until years after the election – if anyone bothers or remembers.

And of course, there is no taxpayer “money back guarantee” offered from the Administration if the promises vanish into the ether and the companies and universities receiving the funding don’t deliver the innovations.

Following Your Money!

Remember the Partnership for a New Generation of Vehicles, which channeled millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars into national labs and the Detroit Three automakers in search of an 80 mpg car? Not one has been built to this day.

Worse, the real outcome was that Toyota, which was excluded from the pork festival for political reasons, went on its own innovation tear and with the help of the Japanese government developed its world leading hybrid technology while Detroit went back to investing in and building gas guzzlers and issuing press releases about a green future car that never arrived.


Biden: Saving Auto Industry Was Right Thing to Do

But anecdotes about Ford and GM show Chrysler has much to do to reenter the conversation about the domestic auto industry.

by on Aug.23, 2010

Vice President Joe Biden tells Chrysler employees at the Jeep assembly plant in Toledo that the Democratic administration saved the auto industry.

Vice President Joe Biden says he’s a Corvette guy. Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown tells a story about his daughters picking the color of the Ford Thunderbird he bought. Are we in a Chrysler plant?

Biden visited the Jeep plant in Toledo, giving the expected stump speech about how Democrats – particularly President Obama and himself – were the only ones who believed in Chrysler and GM 21 months ago when the companies went to Washington, hat in hand to ask for help in saving the companies.

Speaking before about a thousand Jeep employees, with the Jeep Wrangler assembly line as a backdrop, Biden said Democrats saved the American auto industry as naysayers suggested that the industry needed to die before it could be reborn.

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The lack of focus on Chrysler illustrates how desperately Chrysler needs to get new product into its dealers. With a dearth of new product, politicians are left to tell anecdotes that are too far away from the focus of the event.

The story of saving these two automakers is a good one.