“To families trying to scrape by in this turkey-burger economy, 50 dollars for a light bulb is no way to save the planet.”
The Washington Times editorializes:
The 50-dollar light bulb is a good metaphor for the Obama administration – way too expensive for most Americans to put up with.
A new LED fixture from the Philips Corp. is the latest public-relations disaster for the Energy Department. The 60-watt equivalent bulb won the Energy Department’s $10 million “L Prize” for an environmentally sensitive bulb that is “affordable for American families.” The retail price is $50 each.
The new LED is more energy-efficient than standard incandescent bulbs and may last up to 10 years. Yet given that it costs 50 times the price of the typical old-style bulb, this eats up any long-term savings. The Energy Department defends the bulb’s exorbitant price, claiming costs are expected to fall over time. However, the original contest guidelines projected a retail price less than half of what the bulb wound up costing, and there are already much less expensive LED bulbs available that didn’t benefit from the Obama administration’s seal of approval.
It’s unseemly to give $10 million of the public’s money to a corporation in times of austerity when presumably Philips should have been trying to develop efficient, reliable, cost-effective light bulbs anyway. It’s called capitalism…