Department of Energy loan recipients: Obama-connected companies vs. unconnected companies

Peter Schweizer
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
2011

"Nevertheless, a large proportion of the winners were companies with Obama-campaign connections. Indeed, at least ten members of Obama's finance committee and more than a dozen of his campaign bundlers were big winners in getting your money. At the same time, several politicians who supported Obama managed to strike gold by launching alternative energy energy companies and obtaining grants. How much did they get? According to the Department of Energy's own numbers ... a lot. In the 1705 government-backed loan program, for example, $16.4 billion of the $20.5 billion in loans granted went to companies either run by or primarily owned by Obama financial bakers--individuals who were bundlers, members of Obama's National Finance Committee, or large donors to the Democratic Party. The grant and guarantee loan recipients were early backers of Obama, before he ran for President, people who continued to give to his campaigns and exclusively to the Democratic Party in the years leading up to 2008. Their political largesse is probably the best investment they ever made in alternative energy. It brought them returns many times over."

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"In 1978, to the laughter of many and the derision of a few, I wrote a book called, 'The Downfall of Capitalism and Communism,' which predicted that Soviet communism would vanish around the end of the century, whereas crony or monopoly capitalism would create the worst-ever concentration of wealth in its history, so much so that a social revolution would start its demise around 2010. My...

"If you get someone to answer the phone at Evergreen Solar, chances are they'll sound pretty down. The few employees left are waiting to see what unfolds as the company goes through the death throes of bankruptcy.

The Massachusetts-based solar company's demise has escaped much national notice as Congress delves into the political controversy surrounding the industry's other big failure...

Interest groups have not always been as American as apple pie.

"Throughout the painful and paradoxical existence of Occupy Wall Street (OWS) we have been told by those in the mainstream media, as well as by sympathetic politicos, that at its root, at its genesis, the OWS Movement was both organic and legitimate. We were told that the movement was exclusively about a rebellion against high unemployment and crony Capitalism, even as those championing the...

"THROUGHOUT much of the 1990's, Washington had a standard and somewhat preachy -- message to the rest of the world: In an era when markets rule and military might is of limited use, a nation's influence rises and fall largely on its financial credibility.

That was easy to say when the country's markets were rising, its biggest companies were trusted to report the facts each quarter and...

"This week, Sarah Palin gave a terrific speech in Indianola, Iowa. In it, she tore into the Washington political class. Men and women in government get wealthy by 'bail(ing) out their friends on Wall Street and their corporate cronies...reward(ing) campaign contributors...buy(ing) votes via earmarks...And there is a name for this: It's called corporate crony capitalism...It's the collusion of...

"Through this special series on green-energy crony-corruption, we've been highlighting specific examples of green-energy loan guarantees and grants. What connects each of these cases is that they received fast-tracked approval from the Department of Interior (DOI) for their projects. Of course, they also have many other dots that connect, such as key players with White House visits, raising...

"Who's got the most juice on Capitol Hill? Here's a list of the top industries contributing to members of the 111th Congress during the 2009-2010 election cycle. The first list shows the overall 50 biggest industries. The other two highlight the top 25 industries giving to members of each of the two major parties. In all cases, the Top Recipient listed is the individual member of the 111th...

"The latest data on economic well-being show the biggest slide in entrepreneurship and opportunity. Businesses' start-up costs are rising in the land of pioneers and patents."

"Let's pretend that we have the political guts to expand economic opportunities for people at the lower end of the economic spectrum. What vested interests should be attacked, and what economic regulations should be targeted for elimination?"

"My post in the NYT's Room for Debate blog elicited a good number of comments and questions. So today I thought I might elaborate on the most-important of these questions: What exactly is economic freedom and what do we know about the way it affects prosperity?"

"For over four decades, Richard Posner has made major contributions to the case for limited government, particularly in the regulatory realm. He is one of the most economically literate lawyers in the law-and-economics movement. However, the financial shocks since 2007 have produced in him a crisis of confidence — and, apparently, a decline in his economic acuity.

He therefore did his...

President Obama and the Banking Committee Chairman, Chris Dodd, introduced 27 new regulations for the banking industry. The new regulations are based on the notion that the financial meltdown of 2008 was due to de-regulation of the banking industry.

"Over the next 75 years, the Social Security program will face a cash shortfall of more than $20 trillion (in 1998 dollars). If no changes are made in the program's design, bringing Social Security into balance will require a 54-percent increase in payroll tax rates, a 33-percent reduction in benefits, a big hike in the retirement age, or a combination of the three. Yet tax increases and...

Chart or Graph

Nevertheless, a large proportion of the winners were companies with Obama-campaign connections. Indeed, at least ten members of Obama's finance committee and more than a dozen of his campaign bundlers were big winners in getting your money.

A chart comparing the Index of Economic Freedom from the Heritage Foundation for 2010 to the Corruption Perceptions Index of Transparency International.

"In four years, the solar manufacturing sector shifted from being led by a geographically-dispersed number of companies to one dominated by Chinese companies."

The most popular company in which members of Congress were invested in 2010 was General Electric, a company that spent more than $39 million on federal lobbying that year and ranked as the No. 3 top spender on lobbying.

"To correct that oversight, here is a breakdown of the $2.1 million in campaign donations provided by individuals associated with the business and labor interests now represented on the President’s Export Council, as reported at opensecrets.org and fec.gov."

Obama’s key advantage over the GOP field is the ability to collect bigger checks because he raises money for both his own campaign committee and for the Democratic National Committee, which will aid in his reelection effort.

Who's got the most juice on Capitol Hill? Here's a list of the top industries contributing to members of the 111th Congress during the 2011-2012 election cycle.

Venn Diagram showing the differences and commonalities of the views of government and corporations from the perspective of Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party.

These 400-plus groups represent a broad range of interests, but the No. 1 interest area among the clients with their sights on the supercommittee was the health sector. 

Analysis Report White Paper

"Since 2009, when the financial reform debate began in earnest, the industry has employed at least 73 former members of Congress, accounting for 47 percent of the 156 former members who have reported lobbying in the time period."

Defenders of the free market are often accused of being apologists for big business and shills for the corporate elite. Is this a fair charge?

We show that state corruption and political connections have strong effects on municipal bond sales and underwriting. Higher state corruption is associated with greater credit risk and higher bond yields. Corrupt states can eliminate the corruption yield penalty by purchasing credit enhancements.

" TIF takes money from schools, fire departments, libraries, and other urban services funded by property taxes. By eliminating TIF, state legislatures can help close current budget gaps and prevent cities from taking even more money from these urban services in the future."

"Since independence in 1948, Korea has seen a seemingly endless flow of corruption scandals bring down scores of elites."

"When their complaints are examined, however, what stands out is not anger at an actual free-market capitalist system, but frustration with the prospect of an almost insurmountable economic system of privilege based on cronyism."

"But at the heart of the meltdown were the financial industry's distorted incentives — created in large part by decades of misguided government policy — which caused bankers and investors to take enormous risks without due regard for their consequences."

"The national Congress is no longer a rubber stamp for the president's initiatives. And there is a growing sense among Mexican citizens that elected officials are there to serve the people rather than the other way around."

"I do not think there is a greater issue in all of our lives than the very message that we are going to talk about today - private property, free enterprise, free market principles, and employee ownership - popular capitalism, spreading the means of production to as many as possible, and the benefits therefrom."

Bandow concludes that "there is no reason for South Korea to continue being Washington's ward--much less to broaden and deepen that dependence.

In this report, the Center for Responsive Politics details the pervasiveness of former lobbyists working in some of the most powerful staff positions in the 111th and 112th Congresses.

"Time series evidence indicates that the 1969 Coal Mine Health and Safety Act, by imposing engineering controls, drove out smaller, less safe mines, thereby shifting production toward larger mines."

"The 2012 rankings of trade freedom around the world indicate that trade freedom in the world has remained constant or regressed slightly since 2011."

"Many attribute the differences in economic performance across countries to factors such as natural resources, climate, education, culture, colonialism, or just dumb luck. Although each of these factors is certainly important, many economists have come to believe that institutions are far more significant in explaining economic development."

Some argue that personal retirement accounts would be a mistake and that the government instead should set up its own investment fund to help finance future benefit payments.

"During the third quarter of 2011, more than 400 companies, unions, trade associations and other groups reported lobbying the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, popularly known as the debt supercommittee, according to a new analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics of reports filed last month with the U.S. Senate."

"Now, however, this claim is being replaced with a skepticism that is equally wrongheaded: a perception that the so-called Asian miracle had no substance, that it was a house of cards destined to collapse under the weight of cronyism and corruption."

"The Federal Estate Tax (aka, death tax) is currently repealed, due to a provision in the 2001 Economic Growth Tax Relief and Reconciliation Act (EGTRRA). However, on January 1, 2011, the tax comes back at the rate of 55 percent on all estates above $1 million."

"These days, being a millionaire typically qualifies you as part of the one percent. But in Congress, it only makes you average."

"I visited Moscow in mid-July, and although I saw some signs of the impending doom at that time, I was there before the devaluation of the ruble."

"With the goal of encouraging greater citizen involvement in government, the Freedom Foundation of Minnesota presents its first Government Transparency report. By analyzing data obtained through public records, we shed light on issues that receive a surprising lack of scrutiny. First up: municipal liquor operations."

Originally conceived as a means to prop up sagging crop prices to support American farmers, the Food Stamp Program, now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, has exploded into a welfare program that costs tax payers a record $75.67 billion in 2011.

"However, India continues to be hampered by poor business conditions and misgovernance. Almost a quarter of Indian districts have recorded some sort of Maoist violence, and corruption is a major issue. India ranks very low on ease-of–doing-business indicators."

"What did the founders of the United States see as the legitimate role of government? To answer that question we should turn to the rule book they gave us: the United States Constitution."

"However, in this paper I attempt to show that an adaptation of the standard AngloAmerican political and economic system can offer insights that help to explain numerous aspects of the Asian growth model."

"This study discusses how HUD officials operate within a highly politicized environment, which is heavily influenced by the groups that HUD subsidizes and regulates, including the housing industry, financial institutions, and community activists."

"Under the Obama administration, the influence and involvement of trade unions in government policy decisions has surged to unprecedented levels."

"Is government, through its banking and regulatory roles, the guiding hand that leads entrepreneurs toward socially and economically beneficial innovation? Or does government best support the growth of innovation by providing a non-intrusive institutional environment within which entrepreneurs create new things?"

"Economics is the scientific study of how humans adjust their behavior to seek happiness as they define it, in light of the fact that they can’t have everything they want. Unlike psychology, economics doesn’t attempt to explain the underlying preferences (tastes) that people have, but instead takes preferences as a given starting point."

Advocates of the free market including those considered 'right-wing' and 'conservative' believe it is wrong to violate property rights. Consequently, they oppose egalitarian measures to steal from the rich and give to the poor. Such 'income redistribution' represents naked theft and epitomizes the Founding Fathers' fears of unfettered democracy.

Video/Podcast/Media

In this lecture, Rand discusses the universally accepted negative views of businessmen in general, and "[t]he injustice of the antitrust laws and the manner in which they penalize success for being success" in particular.

"Federal contracts are worth billions and billions of dollars. Those contracts are supposed to be awarded impartially, generally to the lowest and best bidder."

The Prosperity Index combines factors such as GDP, personal freedom, and safety to determine the overall prosperity of a country. This map offers a breakdown of the rating for each nation.

"Peter Schweizer, fellow at the Hoover Institution & author of Do As I Say (Not As I Do): Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy, on whether Super Committee pols had any put options premised on their own failure, and a detailing of the corruption uncovered in his new book, Throw Them All Out: How Politicians and Their Friends Get Rich Off Insider Stock Tips, Land Deals, and Cronyism that Would Send...

"Peter Schweizer doesn't have many friends on Capitol Hill these days. So few, in fact, that he was told not to even show his face at a congressional hearing on insider trading — even though that hearing was the direct result of his new book, 'Throw Them All Out.'

Schweizer, a fellow at the Hoover Institution, spoke at The Heritage Foundation this week about his research on the '...

"Econstories.tv is a place to learn about the economic way of thinking through the eyes of creative director John Papola and creative economist Russ Roberts.

In Fear the Boom and Bust, John Maynard Keynes and F. A. Hayek, two of the great economists of the 20th century, come back to life to attend an economics conference on the...

George Mason University economics professor Russ Roberts testifies before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. The U.S. used to have a mostly free market, but recently it has devolved into a highly mixed economy.

"Susette Kelo's legal battle with New London, Conn. brought about one of the most controversial and troubling Supreme Court rulings in many many years. But her fight also spurred a backlash among property owners and state legislatures. Susette Kelo now lives in a town across the river from New London."

"Though many (especially on the left) blame capitalism for so much of today's problems. But I believe what they are incorrectly calling capitalism, is actually what I call 'corporatism'. Many of my fellow libertarians call it 'crony capitalism', but I think that muddy's the issue by using the word 'capitalism' in a different context.

I'm basically responding to a request from a very...

As Steve Kroft reports, members of Congress and their aides have regular access to powerful political intelligence, and many have made well-timed stock market trades in the very industries they regulate.

From the General Motors bailout to subsidies for Solyndra, crony capitalism is as serious a threat to liberty, free markets and civil society as ever. Cato Institute Senior Fellow Tom G. Palmer recently discussed The Morality of Capitalism (...

Professors Don Boudreaux (George Mason University), Susan Dudley (George Washington University) & Bradley Schiller (University of Nevada-Reno) discuss the causes & solutions to Cronyism in America.

"How is our tax code influenced by special interests?

Randall Holcombe, Professor of Economics explains how cronyism in the tax code can benefit special interest groups, and he discusses how we can address this cronyism by reducing the spending power of the government."

First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt appears in a commercial for Good Luck brand margarine.

"Thanks to CNBC, the Department of Energy has been caught removing references to 'SunPower,' a solar energy company that was given $1.2 billion in loan guarantees, from old press releases (H/T Hotair).

'The changes occurred in two press releases from the Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program — the same program that has been the center of controversy surrounding the failed solar...

The term monopoly comes from the 17th century era of mercantilism where kings and queens would accept bribes from businesses in order to grant them the exclusive rights to sell goods in a certain area.

"'Fight of the Century' is the new economics hip-hop music video by John Papola and Russ Roberts at http://EconStories.tv."

"Russian philosopher Leonid Nikonov explains the differences between socialism, cronyism, and free market capitalism. Nikonov is a contributor to The Morality of Capitalism, a new book that is being distributed worldwide by the Atlas Network and the Students for Liberty."

Milton Friedman discusses the free market and the role of government intervention in the first installment of the 1980 series "Free to Choose" which aired on PBS.

"President Obama's Department of Energy helped finance several green energy companies that later fell into bankruptcy -- but not before the firms doled out six-figure bonuses and payouts to top executives, a Center for Public Integrity and ABC News investigation found.

Take, for instance, Beacon Power Corp., the second recipient of an Energy Department loan guarantee in 2009. In March...

"It is clear big businesses wield great control over the federal government. How do we stop this so-called crony capitalism, or collusion? Professor Jason Brennan argues that while it may seem paradoxical the best solution is to limit government power. He provides two reasons for this. First, the power to 'regulate the economy' is really the same thing as the power to distribute favors, which...

"Former BB&T Chairman and CEO John A. Allison discusses how mandates like Sarbanes Oxley and the Patriot Act helped cause the housing meltdown and financial crisis. He spoke at the Cato Institute's 29th Annual Monetary Conference held November 16th, 2011."

"Crooked lobbyist Jack Abramoff explains how he asserted his influence in Congress for years, and how such corruption continues today despite ethics reform. Lesley Stahl reports."

This week I have to scream at the Capitol again. Despite our growing debt, politicians continue to expand government.

John Stossel discusses crony capitalism. Its definition, its symptoms, its effects, its causes and its solution.

Mark Calabria discusses the financial regulation reform bill and its effects on the markets.

Milton Friedman discusses the role of greed and political connections in capitalism.

"The Occupy Wall Street movement expresses valid frustrations, but do the protesters aim their accusations in the wrong direction?

Economics Professor Chris Coyne draws the distinction between crony capitalism and legitimate capitalism. Crony capitalism is government favoritism fueled by handouts and is responsible for the plight of the 99%. Legitimate capitalism, on the other hand,...

Paul Ryan discusses the causes and possible solutions of the financial meltdown, its relation to "too big to fail" and crony capitalism.

In response to the overwhelming demand for more Schiff at OWS, we're happy to release all the audible footage we've got - almost two hours worth.

In this lecture, Jeffrey Tucker discusses how government and private sector groups collude at the taxpayers' expense.

this video provides a good example of rent-seeking in action.

The American Idea belongs to all of us – inherited from our nation’s Founders, preserved by the countless sacrifices of our veterans, and advanced by visionary leaders, past and present.

How many more examples of green jobs failure do we need before we realize you can't centrally plan economic prosperity?

At FreedomFest 2011, Reason's Nick Gillespie sat down with Barron's columnist Epstein to talk about his book Econospinning and the failure of what Epstein seens as widespread crony capitialism or 'crapitalism.'

"The triumph of crony capitalism occurred on October 3rd, 2008. The event was the enactment of TARP — the single greatest economic-policy abomination since the 1930s, or perhaps ever.

Like most other quantum leaps in statist intervention, the Wall Street bailout was justified as a last-resort exercise in breaking the rules to save the system. In the immortal words of George W. Bush, our...

"Featuring Tim Carney, Senior Political Columnist, Washington Examiner; Tyson Slocum, Energy Program Director, Public Citizen; and Rosario Palmieri, Vice President of Infrastructure, Legal and Regulatory Policy, National Association of Manufacturers; moderated by Mark Calabria, Director of Financial Regulation Studies, Cato Institute.

Some politicians claim to be both 'pro-business' and...

"Washington is riddled with corruption, much of which actually is legal. The politicians and other insiders claim that more ethics laws and lobbying rules are the solution. Some even say the only answer is campaign finance laws that restrict 1st Amendment rights to fully participate in the political process. This Center for Freedom and Prosperity video explores a different hypothesis and...

"'Regulations actually benefited the regulated industry at the expense of consumers.' Watch as Susan Dudley explains who really benefits from regulations and how that effects the economic freedom of individuals."

Primary Document

A Petition, also now commonly known as the Petition of the Candlemakers or the Candlemakers' Petition, is a satirical publication addressed to the French Chamber of Deputies. It illustrates the rent seeking concept by purporting to petition the Chamber to enact restrictions on the sun and the use of "all openings, holes, chinks, and fissures through which the light of the sun is wont to enter...

The result of the deliberations of the National Convention is now laid before the public, and I congratulate each patriot heart on the important disclosure.

Making supplemental appropriations for job preservation and creation, infrastructure investment, energy efficiency and science, assistance to the unemployed, and State and local fiscal stabilization, for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2009....

This economic classic is noted for providing us with terms for and expositions of such key economic ideas as the division of labor, "invisible hand," self-interest as a beneficial force, and freedom of trade.

President Andrew Jackson to his cabinet on public deposits from the Bank of the United States.

Yet these public-private partnerships are generally counterproductive. Despite their high-minded titles under the rubric of 'Corporate Social Responsibility' they often end up nourishing a culture of cronyism.

"This is comprehensive legislation to overhaul regulations in the financial sector. It would establish a new Consumer Financial Protection Agency to regulate products like home mortgages, car loans and credit cards, give the Treasury Department new authority to place non-bank financial firms, like insurance companies into receivership, regulate the over-the-counter...

Thirty years later, this crony capitalism is back with a vengeance, accelerated by an aggressive program by President Obama and the Democratic congressional leadership.

Henry Hazlitt's classic primer outlines a straightforward and accessible portrayal of free-market economics. An unshackled market, Hazlitt says, is the only path to "full production".

The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 was not the first stimulus bill passed in 2008, but it certainly was the largest at over $700 billion.

The 'new economy' is based on rapid growth in high-tech industries and on new technologies reshaping manufacturing, finance, medicine, and other sectors.

Over the past two years we have faced the most severe financial crisis since the Great Depression. Americans across the nation are struggling with unemployment, failing businesses, falling home prices, and declining savings.

Nations, like men, are travelers. Each one of them moves, through history, toward what we call progress and a new life or toward decay and death.

An Act To provide greater transparency in the legislative process.

Mises explained economic phenomena as the outcomes of countless conscious, purposive actions, choices, and preferences of individuals, each of whom was trying as best as he or she could ... to attain ... wants and ... avoid ... consequences.

The little pamphlet herewith inclosed will give you a collective view of the alterations which have been proposed for the new Constitution.

On Thursday, November 15, 2011, ... the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations will hold a hearing entitled ―"The Solyndra Failure: Views from DOE Secretary Chu."

We initiated this audit to determine whether the Department had implemented effective safeguards to manage the Government's risk of loss and to identify opportunities to improve loan processing activities.

This spreadsheet lists institutions which have received funds as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act from various government agencies, but failed to comply with the Act's stipulated reporting procedures. The document lists the names, the award amounts and dates, as well as the awarding agency.

"Written by Elbridge Gerry, member of the Philadelphia Convention from Massachusetts, and one of the number who refused to sign the Constitution, for reasons given in his letter to the presiding officers of the Massachusetts legislature ...." Gerry uses this document to present some of his objections to the Constitution, many of which centered around the lack of a Bill of Rights. Item number...

John Stuart Mill was a British political philosopher and politician. In this classic essay, he argues that "the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilised community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others.... Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign."

If the United States mean to obtain or deserve the full praise due to wise and just governments, they will equally respect the rights of property, and the property in rights: they will rival the government that most sacredly guards the former; and by repelling its example in violating the latter, will make themselves a pattern to that and all other governments.

The Secretary of the Treasury in obedience to the order of the House of Representatives, of the 15th day of January 1790, has applied his attention, at as early a period as his other duties would permit, to the subject of Manufactures....

Consider Solyndra, the now-bankrupt California solar panel company, which was once the poster child of the administration’s 'green jobs' initiative. Solyndra is proving to be Exhibit A in the case for why the president’s economic policies have failed.

"To prohibit commodities and securities trading based on nonpublic information relating to Congress, to require additional reporting by Members and employees of Congress of securities transactions, and for other purposes."

In these 3 vols will be found copies of the official opinions given in writing by me to Genl. Washington, while I was Secretary of State, with sometimes the documents belonging to the case.

In the fall of 2008, then-candidate Barack Obama made a campaign promise to jumpstart the economy with an influx of green jobs.

The Occupied Wall-Street Journal was a publication compiled and printed by the protesters and their supporting organizations in October of 2011 during the protests against corporate/government collusion.

The potential uses of public resources and powers to improve the economic status of economic groups (such as industries and occupations) are analyzed to provide a scheme of the demand for regulation.

Americans are angry about executive compensation.

Professor Tullock's 1967 article entitled: 'The Welfare Costs of Tariffs, Monopolies and Theft' is a widely cited classic that has generated a major ongoing research program in the political economy of rent seeking.

Thomas Jefferson speaks about the foreign perception of the United States.

Jefferson discusses the concept of a republican form of government.

The same prudence which in private life would forbid our paying our own money for unexplained projects, forbids it in the dispensation of the public moneys.

In the investigation of the constitution, under your consideration, great care should be taken, that you do not form your opinions respecting it, from unimportant provisions, or fallacious appearances.

Congress is missing its opportunity to restore accountability, transparency, and market discipline now lacking in our financial system.

"The answer to the question in the subject line is crony capitalism. What is crony capitalism? It's
something that looks like markets, except that businesses or unions prosper because of friends
in government instead of going out and doing the hard work of competition"

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At Intellectual Takeout, we think it's about time freedom went viral. Before our generation is the opportunity to embrace freedom, to unleash each individual's potential, and to have a prosperous future. And yet it seems that almost everyone running our cities, states, and federal government is intent on destroying freedom and burying us in debt to pay for it. If you, like us, believe that...
In the genre of documentaries revealing the problems with public education, "Kids Aren't Cars" focuses on helping us understand how schools are modeled after a factory system and what we need to do to change them. Understandably, treating kids as if they are a product to be manufactured has had detrimental effects on children going through the system and the overall level of education in America...
"Many parents and taxpayers feel helpless because the problems can seem so monumental. 'Kids Aren't Cars' director Kyle Olson reviews what he learned in the filmmaking process and the small things individuals can do that will add up to make a big difference." Here's Kyle being interviewed on a few things you can do and share with friends, family, and educators: Part 1Part 2
We all know Facebook is awesome for keeping up with friends, sharing about your life, and even distributing ideas. One great new way to get people thinking is to take advantage of the new banner profile with the help of Intellectual Takeout. Here's what one of our banners looks like loaded up on a Facebook profile: If you haven't changed your banner profile, than Facebook is likely ...
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While many documentaries on the education system focus on various examples of failure, "Flunked" takes a bit different tack. While certainly acknowledging and exposing the failures of the system, "Flunked" also seeks out individuals and approaches that ARE working in education. The hope is that these points of hope may serve as examples for others working in education.  Here's the trailer:...
Okay, so your friends and family keep telling you to jump on the social media bandwagon, but you have no idea what the fuzz is about. Here’s the deal: The Internet gives liberty-loving folk like us an opportunity we have never had before: to make the case for individual liberty, limited government and free market economics instantly and globally. But with the vast amounts of information...

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Looking for an internship? If so, Intellectual Takeout has an opportunity for you. We have plenty of work to do as well as ideas to spread, and we need your help to get it done. If you're interested in an internship with Intellectual Takeout, you likely share our passion and you're excited about the possibility of working for a great cause. That said, you might have a few questions about what "...
The Association of American Educators (AAE) advances the teaching profession through personal growth, professional development, teacher advocacy and protection, as well as promoting excellence in education so that our members receive the respect, recognition and reward they deserve.
Are you concerned your child isn't getting the education necessary to compete in the global economy or even, perhaps, to carry on the lessons and learning of Western Civilization? If so, you have a number of choices. You could, of course, consider changing schools to a charter school, private school, or even homeschooling. If that's overwhelming for you right now, you can always supplement your...
Curiously, not a few individuals are realizing that their education (K-12 and even college) neglected to provide them with as much understanding of the world as they would like. At Intellectual Takeout, we believe that however you feel about your education, there is still much to be learned. To that end, we'd like to refer you to one book and a collection of "study guides" that serve as...
Sure, the idea of homeschooling is likely overwhelming. Indeed, homeschooling is a big commitment and a lot of work. That said, there's a reason why more and more parents are turning to homeschooling as the best option for their child(ren)'s education(s). Perhaps you are starting to realize that the public school system has changed a lot since you last attended it. Maybe you can't afford private...
Know your rights with Flex Your Rights guide to the "10 Rules for Dealing with Police."
In a highly regulated society such as ours, it's very easy to get yourself in trouble with the law. Learn more about how to protect yourself with the 5th Amendment and how to interact with the police.
Let's face it, most of us love to watch TV and movies. A wonderful way to spread ideas is to embrace our love of the cinema by hosting a movie night with friends and family.  There are numerous documentaries that do a fantastic job of sharing the ideas of liberty. You can pull a small group of friends together at your house or even consider asking a local restaurant or tavern to let you...
Watch "Waiting for Superman" to learn about the problems with the public education system.
Another movie that tells the story of the failing public school model in the United States is “The Lottery”. It takes its own unique look at the systems by focusing on the use of lotteries to choose which children will be plucked from failing public schools and put into more successful public charter schools. Here’s the trailer:  You can watch the whole movie right now with the help of Hulu...
While there are a variety of really good documentaries about the failing public school systems in America, "The Cartel" stands alone in its frontal assault on the teacher unions, particularly those in New Jersey. If you'd like to get an inside look into how some teacher unions operate and the effects they have on education, you'll want to watch "The Cartel."From the movie's website: "This movie...
How often do you hear conservatives being called a bunch of knuckle-dragging Neanderthals? Here's the reality: Conservatism, classical liberalism, and libertarianism have a rich, intellectual heritage reaching back many millennia. Our ideas are not just some historical relics from bygone eras; they are the very foundation of Western Civilization in general, amd the United States in particular....
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We've built Intellectual Takeout to provide you with quick, easy access to information. In time, we hope to become your one-stop-shop for the ideas of freedom. If your professor allows you to bring your laptop to class (if not, you can use an iPhone), we recommend keeping a tab open to Intellectual Takeout. As we continue to generate new content on the site, you will be able to fact check the...
When it comes to campus life injustices, student fees rank high on any list. On most campuses across the country a mandatory student fee is assessed to each student at the beginning of the year. A portion of this fee, which may be several hundred dollars, will go toward funding various political, religious, and interest groups.  A college requiring you to support groups espousing ideas which...
If you're not happy with the direction of the country and you want to take back your future, at some point you will have to do something. It's not enough to just know that we're going in the wrong direction. You actually have to step out and get involved. Most college campuses have conservative and libertarian student groups. Find one of them to join. Below is a list of some of the larger non-...
Now that you're at college and the initial excitement has worn off, maybe you're thinking that the course selection is a bit biased and you'd like some options. So how do you (the consumer) get the college (the business) to change up its offerings? It certainly won't be easy. Nevertheless it's something that should be done--particularly since you're footing the bill. A good, education in a free...
Whatever activism you choose to do on campus, you need to get your story out. A popular tactic used by the Left is to isolate and intimidate freedom-loving students. You're not alone and there are a lot of people in your city, state, and country that can probably support your efforts. They just need to know what is happening. Whenever you can, record in-class bias, discrimination against...
The reality is that most students (and people for that matter) won't speak out. It's called human nature and it was recognized in the Declaration of Independence: "...all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed." While you might feel alone when debating a teacher,...
In the land of the free and the home of the brave, speech codes are a particularly odious example of politically correct repression on many a college campus. In some ways, college campuses are the least free places for thinking and speech in America. Your best friend for fighting your school's repressive speech codes is the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). Here's a short clip...
Running for office isn't easy, even in college. Not everyone is cut out for it, either. For those of you who are, this completely non-partisan section is for you. If you are inclined to pursue student government, we're not going to spend time on telling you how to get elected. A good place to go for ideas and training is CampusReform.org. Rather, we want to help you in office, as a believer in...

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