Sadly, that argument is now looking all the more valid.
With the much publicised 87% cut in the solar 'feed-in tariff' (the subsidy - not without its flaws - nonethless responsible for launching the UK renewables industry proper in the last 5 years), the highly successful 'solar co-op' model pioneered by groups like Brixton Energy was already looking highly endangered.
Then, without warning (in fact, contrary to assurances) the Treasury removed tax-relief incentives for community energy schemes - reducing their ability to gain investment from the public. These incentives were left in place for other small businesses - only community energy groups took the hit.
This second twist of the knife was the final straw for the most ambitious community energy project, Repower Balcombe, born of the 2013 anti-fracking protests near the village.
Their 5MW installation - given planning permission less than two months ago, to much rejoicing - will still be built. But as a commercial project with no community ownership. A huge missed social and political opportunity.
Retaliation for fracking protests? Osborne's Obsession with nuclear? Bloody-mindedness? Pure stupidity? Who knows. But the attack on these inspiting initiatives is completely unacceptable, and deeply unfair.
So - what next?
Clearly, there's a fight on to restore the mechanisms that were incubating this social movement for a clean energy future. Solar has overwhelming public support. But it will be a tough one to win with Osborne calling the shots.
Is there another way? Can this car crash of a situation be used as a jump-off point for even more ambitious thinking? We think it should.
Each European, on average, relies on between 150 and 500 'energy slaves' (a unit of power equivalent to the output of an adult human body) every day to power their modern lifestyles.
Without demand for energy falling, and by a fair old whack, our efforts to replace dirty fossil fuels with renewables in the UK (and electrify our vehicles and heating), is going to be a very tough gig indeed. The kind of gig where you're booed off before you've even begun.
Trouble is - there's no sweet little techno-fix for energy demand. Yes, we can make things like kettles more efficient, but that only goes so far - especially when you consider the well documented rebound effect.
Underneath it all, there's something unavoidably necessary for meaningul demand reduction: behaviour change.
And that's hard.
But what makes it easier - ask all those social scientists - is peer learning, peer cooperation and peer competition. Basically, we change our behaviours when we see others doing the same - either out of inspiration, or simply fear of being left out.
And where better to implement peer-led solutions than communities?
So - here's the challenge: what models can we develop to morph communty energy groups into lethal energy demand destoryers?
How can we create the right tools to make crowd-funded insulation programmes viable? Perhaps we could start by trying to hack a bottom-up version of the Carbon Trust's Low Carbon Workspace programme.
What about working with a range of community partners to switch over to LED light bulbs - like Community Renewable Energy Wandsworth (CREW)?
Or - explore more ambitious ideas for whole-house retrofits, inspired by the work of groups like Carbon Co-op?
And that's before we've got onto thinking about the 'networked' possiblities that might emerge from upcoming nationwide smart-meter implementation and open-sourced projects like Open Energy Monitor. You could be energy-saving champion of your street, town, city; your community could be paid for every negawatt-hour it doesn't use: all run through an app that enables resource, know-how and finance sharing. And community building.
It's not sexy enough for the media. Osborne isn't going to do it.
It's time this problem got 'owned'. By communities.