Do I love or hate Jim Hogan?

Much ink has been spilled by this publication (Ok, so not really, since it’s all online) and many others on Jim Hogan,the enigmatic Democratic nominee for Agriculture Commissioner. As the astute will recall, Hogan rebuffed all campaigning ahead of the primary, lacking a website, a platform and –most importantly– the will to campaign. When asked about specifics, he would only offer broad platitudes that would mock the question-poser. Somehow, Hogan finished with a commanding plurality lead in the March primary, and advanced into a runoff with Kinky Friedman. The third candidate, Hugh Fitzsimons (inexplicably listed on the ballot as Hugh Asa Fitzsimons III) came in last place despite being the unanimous choice of the Democratic establishment. Goes to show how much their endorsement is worth. Hogan then creamed Friedman in the runoff.

Personally, I voted for Friedman twice, and Texpatriate endorsed him the second go-round. At that time, the editorial board lambasted Hogan as a wackadoodle not deserving of any support. “Because of an increasingly illogical hatred for Friedman, many in the aforementioned [Democratic] stablishment have taken to supporting Hogan as a type of sick joke,” we said. “They like to promulgate the oft-repeated cliche that, despite his history as a comedian, Friedman’s campaign is not funny. On the contrary, we think nominating an incompetent buffoon such as Hogan would be the worst joke of all.”

Yet, this sick joke has continued in serious fashion following Hogan’s victory in the runoff election. I saw it in full display at the State Democratic Convention last month, when many of my (regrettably younger) contemporaries talked up Hogan and lamented his absence therefrom. A couple of attempts at a cult following have been launched –a Tumblr and a Facebook page– but not have catered to anyone far enough out of the inside-baseball crowd to make a difference. The new stokes recently added to the ember are a Texas Observer piece that could generously be described as “ALL ABOUT HOGAN!”

The article itself is a fine piece of journalism; its author, Christopher Hooks, is undoubtedly a talented writer. But the piece of chock full of Hogan’s obnoxious one-liners and will surely cause “Hogan’s Heroes” to jump for joy at the prospect of their fabulous savior.

I suppose that the longwinded answer to the question posed in the headline is that I still dislike Hogan. Let’s be clear, he is a smug and sanctimonious man who gets off on receiving media attention for not wanting to receive media attention. Hogan is sort of like the girl from Junior High who is mean to you because she has a crush on you, to borrow a ridiculous metaphor.

My disgust with Hogan’s candidacy, then, presents me with a difficult quandary regarding the Agriculture Commissioner race. The Republican nominee is former State Representative Sid Miller (R-Erath County), a fiercely conservative politician whose biggest claim to fame was introducing the so-called “Sonograms-before-Abortions” bill in the Legislature. Supporting him is more-or-less out of question for me.

There is, to go down the line, a Libertarian candidate though, as well as a Green one. The Libertarian, Rocky Palmquist, has in Kinky-esque fashion endorsed the repeal of all laws against marijuana and hemp farming. Harkening back to Friedman, he even states on his Facebook page that “Hemp can and will be the new cotton for Texas!!” This appears to be his key distinguishing feature.

Kenneth Kendrick, meanwhile, is the Green nominee. Best known as the chief whistle-blower a few years ago when the Peanut Corporation of America was embroiled in a salmonella scandal, Kendrick appears to simply be cruising on that limited fame on the campaign trail instead of actually talking up real issues.

Ultimately, I think Hogan would be a decent Agriculture Commissioner if by some divine miracle he were elected. Hooks, who wrote the previously linked Observer article, quoted an old Louisianan adage that Miller will only lose this election if caught with “a dead girl or a live boy.” It might have to be worse than that. I could become a begrudging Hogan supporter, but for his smug attitude. If he were to acknowledge a need to play seriously, actually build a rudimentary website and accept other people’s help, much like Friedman did, I would gladly support him. But I cannot bring myself to support him otherwise. He makes a mockery out of the system, and further cheapens its value by proving –once again– that ANYONE can win an election and their uses are basically meaningless with an uneducated electorate.

9 thoughts on “Do I love or hate Jim Hogan?

  1. Food processing safety is not a “real issue”?

  2. I’ll buy that. The bigger issue is, don’t Green candidates in general, especially those with some “openings,” realize the campaign season starts before Labor Day?

  3. I have laid out my position on my FB page, in things actually relevant to the office, and Food Safety is high on that list. Green Party Candidates do not get the big donations, and I am by no means a “Rich” politician or farmer, but at least you can see my positions on the Web Pages, (that actually have something to do with the office) Beyond Food Safety and Whistle Blowing I have outlines some issues. I am not seeing that from anyone else. As I have stated gun issues, pro life pro choice, this has what to do with the Ag Commish. How about realignment from Austin heavy based employees computers programmers with an inept computer scheduling system to boots on the ground people. Working with TDH and other agencies. You are right, my limited budget makes it hard, but it is an honest budget and I will on radio or newspaper debate anyone in this race (on any of the 10 divisions of the TDA)

  4. More than welcome Mr. Horwtize, and I appreciate you giving me some chance to respond. The Green party, buy nature, does not have the corp backing to come out swinging early, and I admit I do not have the personal funds. On water issues, well I have a long one for that. Where I live my small town has to send a notice that children should not drink the water and we have to buy bottled water. I know that water conservation has made a lot of land owners mad, and i Understand their frustration. Fracking, pesticide (and I was a pest control Tech, and that falls under TDA) What some do not get , like in West Texas, the aquifer come from Colorado, So can the land owners from the northwest of state drain it dry and leave those in the south without? I do not think so. There has to be some measure of protection for all, and even those who disagree it protects their right to grow crops. (all I see on other pages, “I have a plan.” I would even love and have asked Fitzsimons, and Hightower for input (with there being so many divisions on Depf of AG I am not afraid to reach out to others for real input) I want food, water, school lunch lunch safe. I want the weights and measures accurate so consumers are not ripped of (no matter how large the oil company) Lots more on my web pages. I know I am harsh, but at least everyone educate yourself on the office and VOTE! The world should want their Ag products coming from Texas because they are the safest, organic Certification means something, and a person, who gave up everything to be a truth teller will not give up his principals.

  5. Pingback: Texpatriate | Staples to resign, lead TXOGA

  6. Pingback: Texpatriate | Don’t vote straight ticket, don’t be stupid

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