February 02, 2005
Kinky is in
Kinky Friedman has officially announced his candidacy for Governor in 2006.
Some 13 months before the established political parties select their nominees in the state primary elections, Friedman and his trademark black cowboy hat and Cuban cigar were entering the political arena Thursday morning for what he's promised will be an unconventional campaign.
"I want the thing to be fun," he said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. "But you can do something fun and still have it be important."
The 60-year-old Friedman, whose nearly two dozen books include "Kill Two Birds and Get Stoned" and whose campaign bumper stickers proclaim "Why Not Kinky?", chose the grounds outside the Alamo, the symbol of Texas independence, to officially begin his independent campaign.
"It's just this choice is decaf or regular, paper or plastic, these two political parties," he said of Republicans and Democrats. "It's no choice at all.
"Now we'll have a choice, a voice, and see if it means anything."
Maybe I shouldn't bother with this, since even after all the insistence that he's going to run a Real Serious Trying To Win Campaign I still can't say with certainty that the Kinkster isn't just kidding. But it seems to me that if he really is serious about providing a "real choice" for those who are tired of "paper or plastic", then he needs to actually start articulating what his vision is and how it differs from his opponents'. One-liners are great, and are a sure way for him to get in the papers, but if that's all they're printing it's doing a disservice to the message of change that he says he wants to bring.
If you're detecting a note of sarcasm in all that, it's because all along his campaign has sounded awfully Naderesque in its rhetoric to me. I thought it was all BS then, and I think it's BS now. I rather doubt there's a campaign or a message he can run on that's both substantive and noticeably different than those of the eventual GOP and Democratic candidates, but hey, I could be wrong. Show me what you got, Kinky, and we'll see if I'm convinced.
Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 02, 2005 to Election 2006
If you didn't see it, Kinky has a great piece in the Jerusalem Post right now on the Max Soffar case -- Soffar is Jewish, and a likely innocent on Texas Death Row. The Fifth Circuit recently ordered him a new trial.
There was a big profile piece on Kinky with color photos on the front page of the living section of the Star-Telegram on Sunday. You might have missed it being in Houston. Let's see if I can find it....yep here it is:
Looks to me like the media is salivating about this. Hey, if it gives them license to go after Perry, more power to him. Far as I'm concerned, I'd take Kinky over Dubya or Perry any day.
I just wanted to make sure you knew that you got linked in one of the blogs I read daily: Bookslut.
One-liners are great, and are a sure way for him to get in the papers, but if that's all they're printing it's doing a disservice to the message of change that he says he wants to bring. If you're detecting a note of sarcasm in all that, it's because all along his campaign has sounded awfully Naderesque in its rhetoric to me. I thought it was all BS then, and I think it's BS now. I rather doubt there's a campaign or a message he can run on that's both substantive and noticeably different than those of the eventual GOP and Democratic candidates, but hey, I could be wrong.
Sigh. What are we going to do with you, Charles? It's been over four years since Bush v. Gore, there's been another Presidential election (which our candidate managed to lose even without third-party help), and you still can't resist taking a cheap shot at Nader!
Friedman's campaign may be "all BS" and no "substantive and noticeably different" message, but Nader's (and Cobb's and Badnarik's) were not. I'm guessing that because you opposed those candidates, you simply paid no attention to their messages. Given the way third parties are marginalized in the U.S. press, that's understandable, but it doesn't mean these campaigns had no message!
I never thought last year was the right time for third-party challenges from the left, given the closeness of the election and the unfolding disaster that is the Bush administration. But I think too many partisans let their hostility to such challenges blind them to quite valid messages behind them.
I can understand honest disagreement with Nader's or Cobb's anti-corporate message (or Badnarik's anti-government one), or positing that 2000 and/or 2004 were the wrong times for those particular messages. But to assert they had none is itself BS.
Check out this song for Kinky's campaign: