CalPERS boss: Losses on ‘cleantech’ bets are ‘noble’

March 23, 2013

By Chris Reed

green-kool-aidIt’s not just President Barack Obama and Gov. Jerry Brown who have drank the green Kool-Aid and bought into the idea that “green” jobs and energy can be America’s economic salvation.

It’s also that lumbering, bumbling, scandal-ridden monument to all that is bad about California known as CalPERS. Why do I have the feeling readers are utterly unsurprised?

This is from Friday’s Upstart Business Journal:

“One of the biggest players investing in cleantech has lost money on its gambles.

“The California Public Employees Retirement System has put $900 million to work in cleantech, $460 million of that with venture capitalists who invest in cleantech startups, and has had a negative return of 9.8 percent on that money.

“The revelation came from CalPERS chief investment officer Joseph Dear during the Wall Street Journal’s Eco:comics conference Wednesday night. ‘Just because it’s a good idea doesn’t make it a good investment,’ he said. ‘This has been a noble way to lose money.'”

If you’re a California taxpayer, you should be screaming and pulling out your hair. No, big deal, all you suckers who are going to have to bail out CalPERS: The pension giant has figured out “a noble way to lose money.” Aaaaauuuggghhh! Aaaauuuggghh! Aaauugggghhhh!

Here’s another account of CalPERS’ green folly.

Here’s CalPERS’ official page on its noble fiasco.

Thanks to Jack Dean of the awesome PensionTsunami.com site for drawing this to my attention.

6 comments

Write a comment
  1. Richard Rider
    Richard Rider 25 March, 2013, 10:53

    CalPERS takes OUR tax dollars and invest in “noble” money-losing, high risk “green” start-ups.
    And why not? Losing money doesn’t change the public employee pension payouts — all such losses are 100% covered by eternally generous CA taxpayers.

    Reply this comment
  2. eatingdogfood
    eatingdogfood 25 March, 2013, 10:55

    If The Democrats Didn’t Give ” Sweetheart Deals ” To Your Public Service Union.
    Goon Employees To Get Reelected; You Would Have Plenty Of Money and The.
    Taxpayer would have Some Spare Change in His Pockets! Democratic Hustler
    Politicians + Corrupt Union Goons = BANKRUPTCY BABY! Time To Bring.
    RICO Conspiracy Charges Against The Hustler Corrupt Democrats and the.
    Criminal Unions!

    Reply this comment
  3. Reality Check
    Reality Check 25 March, 2013, 15:49

    Let’s see here:

    As a self-employed private sector worker, I have to fork over 12.5% of my gross earnings to the social security administration, in order to get a “pension” equivalent to maybe one-third of my final salary, starting at age 68. This equates to about a 2% annual return with zero matching.

    As a drone who shows up for his government job, I will fork over no more than 9% of my gross earnings, if that, to my public employee pension fund, in order to get a pension equivalent to at least two-thirds of my final salary, starting by age 60, if not sooner. This equates to a 7.5% guaranteed annual return with 200% matching (or more).

    CalPERS is part of an occupying army. This is despicable oppression.

    Reply this comment
  4. Hondo
    Hondo 26 March, 2013, 10:31

    CalPERS pension plan is to drop kick taxpayers and California’s kids in the nuts. If they put money into gun companies and into fracking, Kali could nearly fund all of their socialist dreams. But don’t underestimate their greed. They will find a way to steal every dollar from our kids.
    Look at Cyprus. Europe is Amerika’s biggest customer and they are in collapse. Pay attention drones. We don’t have near the economy to finance this massive theft. Not in the long run, nor the short.
    There is no more money left to steal.
    Hondo….

    Reply this comment
  5. Cathy
    Cathy 28 March, 2013, 00:51

    Just yet another confirmation that CalPers executives are completely incompetent.

    We purchased CalPers Long Term Care 15 years ago. We paid a higher premium which we were ASSURED would provide inflation protection (5% coverage increase each year) and informed that our premiums would NOT be increased (specifically stated in the brochure).

    In 2010, they not only increased our premiums 20% plus, but added ANNUAL 5% premium increase (defeating the inflation protection). When we called to complain then, we were told they misjudged payouts but had paid for professional actuaries so the current increase should definitely cover the difference.

    Last month we received a notice of an 85% INCREASE in our policy… with no guarantees that they would not increase even more if they found out that wasn’t enough. How could there be such a huge increase only 2 years from their “updated” projections? This shows complete incompetency in the management of this trust – and apparently it is only the beneficiaries who have to pay the damages.

    During this time several Board Members have been indicted for illegal activities in the fund. Their portfolio contained bad investments which suffered even more during the crash.

    Having to pay almost 300% more with this ADDITIONAL 85% increase than when we started when we (and many others) are retired and on fixed income is appalling. CalPers is hoping people will cancel either cancel their policies and lose all their prior premiums (in ours and others cases over $50,000), or drastically reduce our coverage to a fixed maximum term. And IF their projected percentage of beneficiaries do not cancel or reduce their term, there will be ANOTHER increase.

    This is clearly a bait-and-switch FRAUD. Where are the regulations that allow this to happen? If their initial promises are worthless and unlimited premium increases are not illegal, why should anyone buy long-term care insurance?

    Reply this comment

Write a Comment

Leave a Reply



Related Articles

Budget in a capsule: Teachers (surprise, surprise) get Prop. 30 $

Jan. 10, 2013 By Chris Reed The 2013-14 budget that Jerry Brown presents today is being billed by the Los

Longevity breakthroughs make gov pensions even more of a gold mine

On Sunday the Drudge Report sent Twitter abuzz with the report of a hugely significant breakthrough on aging and longevity:

Unions A Bad Word in CA?

Steven Greenhut: Here’s my latest piece in the New York Times online Room for Debate, in which I argue: “The