I read with interest Barbara Goodwin’s very succinct condemnation in the Nov. 28 Press Herald of the government’s program of ethanol use in gasoline.

One has to wonder why the government continues the program after we all can see the unintended consequences. Unfortunately, the answer is apparent. With the carrot and stick of financial rewards from subsidies and regulatory mandates, agribusiness has invested huge amounts of capital into the infrastructure of ethanol production which becomes useless if the subsidies are discontinued and mandates repealed.

Second, farm state economies are flourishing from this misallocation of capital and will use their political muscle to see that the program continues, just as they are able to force the continuance of Great Depression subsidies that began 80 years ago and have long ago lost the reason for being.

Our present administration does not seem to learn anything from the ethanol lesson as it continues to pour taxpayer money in the form of cash and subsidies into other “green” industries that cannot attract private capital on their own merits.

It seems to be oblivious to the natural gas revolution that is taking place in exploration and technology. This industry has no problem finding private capital and will inevitably make wind and solar energy more uncompetitive in spite of the billions of taxpayer dollars that are thrown away in the name of clean energy.

Roderick MacGregor is a resident of Sebago.