“This tale of two cities has a moral, which is that no political or governmental leader can forecast the future. Barack Obama and his Nobel Prize-winning energy secretary thought solar panels were a huge growth industry. They bet billions of tax dollars and lost.
True, many private investors guessed no better. But they were risking their own money, not ours. And yes, government research provided some early help in developing fracking.
But Fremont and Williston are more evidence, if any is needed, that the collective decisions of participants in economic markets do a better job of allocating resources than the often contributor-driven decisions of a few politicians.
Williston’s jam-packed motels and trailers don’t look as glamorous as the Solyndra headquarters in Fremont. The weather in North Dakota is seldom as pleasant as the microclimate of the East Bay.
But the Bakken shale is doing much more for America’s economy than the shuttered solar panel plant.”