Friday, August 08, 2008

Making Money the Old Fashioned Way

As we've seen, T. Boone Pickens' plan for running windmills down the middle of the U.S. has a (no-longer) secret agenda involving a water right-of-way. Now we're learning more about how he's trying to get Californians to finance the switch to natural gas powered vehicles. The LA Times says:

Along with being the country's biggest wind power developer, Pickens owns Clean Energy Fuels Corp., a natural gas fueling station company that is the sole backerof the stealthy Proposition 10 on California's November ballot. This measure would authorize the sale of $5 billion in general fund bonds to provide alternative energy rebates and incentives -- but by the time the principal and the interest is paid off, it would squander at least $9.8 billion in taxpayer money on Pickens' self-serving natural gas agenda.

The initiative deceptively reads like it's supporting all alternative-fuel vehicles and renewable energy sources. But a closer read finds a laundry list of cash grabs -- from $200 million for a liquefied natural gas terminal to $2.5 billion for rebates of up to $50,000 for each natural gas vehicle.

Much of the measure's billions could benefit Pickens' company to the exclusion of almost all other clean-vehicle fuels and technology.

Wow, this guy is really a piece of work.

A later thought:

You know, it's not the self-serving secret agendas that offend me. That's what people like Pickens are all about. It's the way he wraps it all up in false patriotism and altruism. recounts:

Some are skeptical, too, of his motives, saying Pickens is looking to benefit his BP Capital Management company, which invests heavily in renewable energy.

But, munching on Famous Amos chocolate-chip cookies in his Hay-Adams hotel suite, the 80-year-old Pickens said he’s in a new phase of his life.

“I didn’t want to come and go in this life and feel like I had something that would’ve helped the country,” he said. “So I thought, ‘What the hell, it’s time to stand up and be counted.’”

What a thoughtful guy.

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