Monday, March 27, 2006

Kinky in San Antonio:This Isn't Just About Texas

I went to hear Kinky Friedman speak on Saturday morning here in San Antonio. Nice crowd, including Brian Williams and his crew from NBC Nightly News.
Kinky's pretty damn amazing, and I love his platform.
Sitting right in front of us in the audience was a big guy wearing a black cowboy hat and a Kinky T-shirt. Turned out to be Jerry Jeff Walker.
Willie Nelson is on board as Kinky's energy secretary.
As you may know, Willie is actively touting biodiesel fuel as an alternative to petroleum based fuels. Basically, the fuel is made of vegetable oil or animal fats--meaning an average McDonald's or Burger King could be the source of fuel in your tank without much effort.
Go to http://www.wnbiodiesel.com/products.html to learn more.
Get a load of some of Kinky's plans (from his website):

Education:
Texas has the second-largest population of any state in the country and two of the ten largest cities. That's an awfully big cart to pull with the horsepower we're currently giving our kids in Texas schools. An educated workforce and top-notch schools are essential to keeping our state attractive to new business, but we're failing the test.
Texas has the 8th largest economy in the world, but we're 1st in dropout rates and 49th in education spending in the country.

Teachers' salaries in Texas are over $6,000 below the national average. This lack of respect for the people who do our state's most important job must stop. As governor, Kinky will work to make sure that teachers are paid what they're worth. Period.
The TAKS test and its predecessor, TAAS, were invented essentially to make legislators look good on education. But studies show that rigid enforcement of standardized test scores doesn't help kids learn or make teachers more effective. Teach to the test and kids will learn the test—but not much else.

Healthcare
Texas ranks rock-bottom in providing for the basic needs of its youngest and poorest residents. More than one-fifth of Texas children have no health insurance at all.
In 2003, Texas legislators slashed the Children's Health Insurance Program, pulling the rug out from under 170,000 kids. Not only did this put more of our children at risk, it ended up costing the state tens of thousands of health care jobs and $16 billion in lost productivity. Kinky believes this is reckless and short-sighted—no way to invest in the future of Texas.

We're a state that prides itself on friendliness and responsibility, but the message we're sending our kids is that if you're going to be born poor, you'd better not be born in Texas.

Renewable Energy
It's time for Texas to reclaim bragging rights as an energy icon. As governor, Kinky will accomplish that by encouraging investment and innovation in new methods of electricity generation and new fuels like biodiesel.

Think these are fringe technologies? Think again. Wind power plants, solar power arrays and landfill gas capture systems are already in operation across Texas in cities from Fort Stockton to Fort Worth.

Texas has been called "the Saudi Arabia of renewable energy," and firms from TXU to Kyocera are already clamoring for a piece of the action.

Despite our staggering potential, only 0.7% of Texas' energy needs come from renewable sources. That puts us 51st in the nation, behind even Washington D.C.
Biodiesel—it's good enough for Willie Nelson's tour bus, and the city of Denton is using it to fuel their entire fleet of diesel trucks. Biodiesel is fuel you can grow. That's good for farmers, good for the air, good for the Texas energy industry and good for Texans. With biodiesel, everybody wins but OPEC..."


Best of all, he plans to pay for it by stopping the insanity of making Texans go to neighboring states to legally gamble. He's for casinos in Texas, with a large slice of the proceeds going back into the state's coffers so we can reduce property taxes by 15% and pay for the programs mentioned above.

All states need to shake things up, get politicians away from the grasping talons of lobbyists and start electing representatives who represent us- the people.

If the Democrats don't have the balls to do it, we need to support independents who do...like Kinky.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Kinky is a *HOOT* and I wish he could run for Governor in ALL 50 states at once!

champagnecheryl said...

What the hell.......KINKY FOR PRESIDENT!

Trish said...

Does Texas even HAVE an energy secretary?

Karen Zipdrive said...

Trish, I don't know if we do or not, but we sure as hell need one.
Paying $2.35 a gallon for the cheapest unleaded gas in oil-rich Texas is a real slap in the face.
Our current GOP Governor Rick Perry has managed to ruin our education system, ransacked our medical infrastructure and given us nothing.
Even if Kinky was elected and did nothing, he couldn't fuck up things any worse than they already are.
Things in Texas were okay before Bush became governor. Ann Richards did a great job before the idiot took over.

Trish said...

Oh I totally agree with you, I was just reading your comments about Willie Nelson and I didn't think that position existed. I was an Ann Richards supporter as well. I think she did a hell of a job.

Karen Zipdrive said...

Trish, your lipstick is a little smeared in your photo.
:)