If we accept President Obama's economic arguments, his State of the Union address was most remarkable in the aftermath, when nothing happened.
For the sake of argument, let's agree with the President that the winning ticket of the global economic lottery will be investment in renewable energy, high-speed rail and other green industries. Bet on green and you win the future. Let's also stipulate, as the left believes, that private capital in America is in the hands of greedy bastards -- capitalists who will do anything for a buck.
The question then becomes why all those greedy bastards are not pouring money into the epochal investment opportunity that President Obama unveiled. Why is Wall Street not running up the stocks of companies positioned to flourish in the coming green economy? Where are the private equity firms that should be knocking down the doors of the solar shingle company that the President touted? Why aren't hedge fund sharpies jumping into high-speed rail? After all, if Warren Buffet or John Paulson delivered a speech that laid out the way to win the future, every other greedy bastard would be shoveling money into their ideas before the applause was over.
This is the greedy bastard paradox inherent in all government "investments." The state is left to fund the industrial policies of old or today's green schemes precisely because they are uneconomic. Economically viable investments need no government support because the greedy bastards of the private economy are already funding them...
Some on the left would counter that Big Oil is somehow preventing or undermining investment into promising clean energy technologies. Here again they run into the greedy bastard paradox. If an epic financial bonanza is right around the corner, how can the oil majors possibly keep all the other money-grubbers out of the game? And if green energy is really poised to supplant petroleum, why wouldn't Big Oil go for the gold, if only to survive? Even the most orthodox leftist should recognize that a conspiracy theory based on capitalists leaving money on the table is bankrupt.
But if the left can't call them "greedy bastards", at whom will they direct their daily 2-minute hate?