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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 4)

Harris: They do, but we let them go.  Here’s a thought: Can you help me understand what is on the mind of the president these days?  He’s kind of in a lame-duck place, but he’s not.  He’s fully capable of changing policy, of moving bodies, but he’s doing nothing and he’s kind of getting cowboy.  And that’s why I’m asking you, Kinky, because you’re a cowboy.

Friedman: I’ve shared ashtrays with two presidents, Bill and George, and I think George is a good man trapped in a Republican’s body, and he’s like a pedigree dog.  He can’t help it, it’s not his fault.  He had Colin Powell with him, who probably gave him some pretty damned good advice on Iraq, and he didn’t take it.  And any political guy like Gen. Patton, if he looked at what we’re doing over there, would I’m sure say it’s absolute insanity, and it is.  So I think that’s why Bush wanted the immigration bill so bad.  He’d like to have some kind of legacy besides Iraq.  And just like it’s a shame what happened to LBJ.  LBJ and Martin Luther King were the twin architects of the modern civil rights era.  And people never credit LBJ for that; they always think of him as Vietnam.

Harris: But he signed the act.  It wasn’t Kennedy.  Fascinating.

Friedman: Yeah.


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Harris: Cowboy to cowboy, you say he’s an all right man, talking about W, but he’s got his ass in a sling.  But didn’t he help out a little bit?  It’s not like he was walking down the street and somebody shot him; he helped do some shooting!

Friedman: Well, you know there are two kinds of people who wear cowboy hats: cowboys and assholes.


Friedman: I think George is—I don’t think he’s stupid.  I think he’s a bright guy, and I think things have gotten—.  Why in the hell have we been elevating the Shia over there and now finding out that Iran is going to take over the whole thing because the Shia are their boys.  We seem to have set this thing up exactly backwards.  It’s certainly sucking all of the State Department people.  All of our best people are in Iraq or going there, and people are dying and money of course is going there endlessly.  And meanwhile you have something really bad, like Burma, going on.

Harris: Yeah.

Friedman: That’s what we ought to be doing, is kicking all those Burmese generals’ asses.  I think Laura Bush, at least, is trying to do that.  But our official government policy, we should be getting rid of those people if we can, if we believe in freedom.

Harris: I was going to ask you about Don Imus, but I won’t even go there, because he’s coming back on the radio.

Friedman: He’s coming back.  He’s like Jesus.  He’s coming back, and, boy, is he pissed. 


Friedman: I think Imus got screwed pretty badly on that deal, and I would just say about Al Sharpton—.  Sharpton is a ... like I told Bill O’Reilly the other night, I said, “Your pal Al Sharpton. ...”  O’Reilly was saying musicians shouldn’t be talking about politics because they don’t know what they’re talking about.

Harris: But what about Sharpton? 

Friedman: Well, I was saying, Sharpton’s a pro.  He’s one of Bill’s friends and he’s the guy Bill thinks is a professional.  He is, he’s a professional activist.  Whatever he is, I don’t think he’s a civil rights activist.  I think that’s like Gov. Perry calling himself a public servant.


Friedman: Sharpton has one pattern that’s undeniable, and that is, his whole life he attacks white people.  They happen to be white and they also—unfortunately for him—happen to be innocent.  That’s his only problem.  Otherwise, he’s doing a great job.

Harris: If he wears a perm, he might be a pimp.  Something to think about. 

Kinky, it’s been fun talking to you today.

Friedman: Yeah, guys, and may the God of your choice bless you.

Harris: Indeed.

Scheer: Yeah, you too.

Harris: Well, for Kinky Friedman, author of this new book ... let me find that title.  “You Can Lead a Politician to Water, but You Can’t Make Him Think: Ten Commandments for Texas Politics.”  For Josh Scheer, this is James Harris, and this is Truthdig.

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By Ruby McKenzie, April 16, 2008 at 11:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

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
(Unregistered commenter)

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
(Unregistered commenter)

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
(Unregistered commenter)

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
(Unregistered commenter)

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
(Unregistered commenter)

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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