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Kinky Friedman’s Ten Commandments

Posted on Oct 30, 2007
Kinky Friedman
AP photo / Rick Vasquez

James Harris and Josh Scheer

(Page 3)

Friedman: That’s what the media’s interested in.  The fact that nobody can find any of the education money having gone to education in Texas in any way—to a student, to a teacher, anyone associated with education or any ... if it had bought some computers for a poor school system or something, but it hasn’t.  So this is a huge amount of money that’s unaccounted for, and I don’t see anybody—.  I’m not blaming the politicians as much as ... the people; we are as much at fault.  If 28 or 29 percent of us vote, this is exactly what you’re going to get: You get a ribbon cutter for your governor.

Scheer: It’s actually interesting, because when I was reading the book, from the media, from what we’ve seen—we’re based in California, I’m sure other people saw the same thing: the one-liners ...

Friedman: Right.

Scheer: ... or those kinds of things.  When I was reading the book, a lot of your solutions are great solutions, they’re common-sense solutions, and they seem like, if people would put them into practice, they would work.  Like the Texas Peace Corps ...


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Friedman: That’s a great idea.

Scheer: ... or No Teacher Left Behind, and, obviously, the mandatory voting.  All these issues never got covered.  I think you and Sam Houston are the only two independents—right?—to ever run for governor.

Friedman: That’s been a long time between dreams: 154 years.


Scheer: Is any independent, anybody who’s not of the status quo?  Is the media already going to shoot them down?  Do they have a shot?  Is there a way of overcoming that, like Jesse Ventura did or a few other people in society in this country?

Harris: Mike Gravel is a good example.  He stands far, far, far apart from what other guys are saying.  So he’s a realistic example.  Does he have a chance, Kinky?

Friedman: Who are you just talking about, after Jesse?

Scheer: Oh, James is talking about Mike Gravel, the former senator from Alaska. ... I’m thinking of Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and those kind of guys.

Friedman: I think in places—well, we’re not in Minnesota, Toto.  That’s the important thing to remember.


Friedman: That’s a very progressive, homogenous state, and Jesse had everything working for him.  They had matching funds from the state, they had same-day voter registration.  Jesse told me that morning of the election when he saw the lines of kids waiting to register and then vote, he knew they had something going, he knew that they had a real chance.  Here in Texas the campaign caught fire when it should, right in the last few months, but half the kids turned around and realized, “Hell, I didn’t register two months ago; I can’t even vote.”  What is the purpose of that except to suppress the vote?  Why would we want to have that kind of poll-tax mentality down here?

Scheer: Hmm.

Friedman: So I think in Vermont, Connecticut, Minnesota, I think an independent can win.  I think in Texas, I don’t think God would’ve won if he’d run against Rick Perry and the Republican machine.  God knows the Democrats haven’t won in 14 years.  So I may try again.  But if I do, it will definitely be as a Crip or a Blood.


Friedman: I believe it will be as a Blood, as a Democrat, because we’ve got to get the wooden horse inside the city.  We’ve got to get an honest broker elected before we can fix education, health care, and abolish the death penalty, which is hanging over Texas.  I’m telling you: The world would stand up and cheer if Texas would abolish the death penalty. 

Scheer: Early in the book you talk about how the president—that you’d known him and Ann Richards as governors and Rick Perry—you say you know two and a half Texas governors because you thought Rick Perry was a wine steward, but—.


Friedman: Watch out because he could well be vice president.

Scheer: Yeah.

Friedman: He endorsed Rudy this morning [Oct. 17], so the fix is in.  That could at least make George Bush’s legacy look a lot better if Perry is vice president.

Scheer: But in the book you say that George was willing to help you out.  Did that ever come to fruition?  Was he at all helpful to you?

Friedman: No, not at all.  Once, I think as soon as he realized that things were—as the campaign moved along, we started to do pretty well, better than people expected, and by three or four months before the election we were doing really well, and that’s when they started to really slam us. 

Scheer: Yeah.

Friedman: The Republicans and the Democrats.  So they did kind of what they did to Ralph Nader.  The Democrats spent millions to destroy him.  I don’t know why they care about Pat Buchanan or Ross Perot or Ralph Nader.  These guys are not going to be elected president, and they do have some new ideas.

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By Ruby McKenzie, April 16, 2008 at 11:23 am Link to this comment
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I love Kinky Friedman!  A brilliant, witty, clever and entertaining man.

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By Dr Wu--the last of the big-time thinkers, November 17, 2007 at 3:50 pm Link to this comment
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Kinky slept in the Clinton White House;he slept in the Bush White House. Sadly, he sleeps around.

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By pro choice lib, November 15, 2007 at 5:09 am Link to this comment
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Kinky ran because he got loads of money from the Bass family.  Do you really think the Bass family want Kinky as governor?

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By Kim Loughran, November 14, 2007 at 3:05 am Link to this comment
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Kinky advocates mandatory voting as practised in Australia. Sure, it spreads the responsibility. But his claim that this has ‘really decimated political corruption’ indicates that Kinky a) has never been in Australia, b) has never read anything about Australian politics, and c) is just another politician betting that nobody can check his statements. Politics in Australia is rife with corruption, back-stabbing, factionalism, media-pandering, vilification and fear-mongering. Don’t give up your daytime song-writing job, Kinky.

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By Not Tellin You, November 7, 2007 at 12:10 pm Link to this comment
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By mike beuershausen, November 5, 2007 at 5:36 pm Link to this comment
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No, the Republican Party can’t be defeated in Texas as long as jerks like Friedman run as independents to break up the anti-GOP vote. The only way Perry could have won last November is if the vote was split several ways. My only question is: How much did Friedman take from corporate interests to get in and stay in the race? Five million (or more) is a drop in the bucket to the corporate interests that own Perry. Friedman—an overrated asshole if there ever was one—sold out the public, no doubt about it. Period.

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By nils cognizant, November 4, 2007 at 10:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Australia as example of highminded government? Man, you just lost your library privileges, Kinky.  John Howard, running Australia for maybe 10 years now as his personal feifdom, is a prime example of what is wrong in many Western governments. One of his early actions as monarch was to strip Australians of their right to own firearms. This hardy race, and their protectors, the police, all bent over like bisexual sheep and allowed their weapons to be rounded up by Howard’s henchmen. This same worthy (Howard) subscribes to the goofy notion propounded for two centuries by Britain and the USA that pounding small, helpless countries into submission is a practice to be honed and encouraged. The fact that this amounts to crass moral cowardice seems to have escaped the consciousness of Aussie(etc) citizens and their military leadership. Finally, this bag of assholes, the Australian government, pushed New Zealand to retract its longtime firm policy of not allowing nuclear weapons to be carried by ships or aircraft within its territorial boundaries. In effect, trashing principles it had held dear and which had been destined to encourage civil thought.

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By Bill Blackolive, November 4, 2007 at 11:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Kinky, half the people in the US do not vote and I bet it is more than half in Austin among educated types.  Your large error was saying W is sincere because he is good to his dog.  And 9/11 is inside so what do you think you want to do, anyway.

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By Bill Blackolive, November 4, 2007 at 10:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Kinky, I know people who know you, and I can tell you your mistake was saying W. is a sincere person because he is good to his dog.  Hey, take some acid and get clear.  Half the people over here - this land of barbarians - do not vote because of the dumb shit.  Goddamnit, besides 9/ll is plainly (W. plainly a liar and person you would avoid on the street) inside.

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By Bill Blackolive, November 4, 2007 at 10:15 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Kinky, I read a book among your fiction, enjoyed it briefly ok, knowing people who know you.  Generally you are real enough but I will now tell you the one large mistake you have made was saying W. is a sincere person because he is kind to his dog.

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By HonestAbe, November 2, 2007 at 8:10 pm Link to this comment
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Now I know why Kinky wears a cowboy hat!

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By PaulMagillSmith, October 31, 2007 at 2:08 pm Link to this comment

Despite appearing to be an insider it’s obvious Kinky has learned to think outside the box.

I especially aprove of his approval of making voting mandatory (with a paper trail of course).

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