Senator Al Franken v. T. Boone Pickens: Remember the Wind Farm Ads—or the Swift Boat Ads?

Wind Farm ads v. Swift Boat ads?

Billionaire T. Boone Pickens has recently shifted gears in his political activism, promoting green energy sources (like wind) in ads and at congressional hearings. But Pickens was also a major funder of the Swift Boat ads that undermined John Kerry in 2004 against George Bush.

And Al Franken hasn’t forgotten.

At a luncheon, Politico reports that Franken refused to stand to be introduced to Pickens:

According to a source, the wealthy oil and gas magnate and author of “The First Billion Is the Hardest” stepped up to introduce himself to Franken in a room just off the Senate Floor after the lunch ended. Franken, who was seated talking to someone else, did not stand when Pickens said hello. Instead, Franken began to berate him about the billionaire’s financing of the Swift Boat ads in 2004. According to a source, the confrontation grew heated.

Good for Al. It’s nice to see he doesn’t take shit from people and then smile and say thank you afterward. His loyalty to John Kerry, and his honoring of Kerry’s Vietnam service by not standing to someone who indecently spit upon it, is admirable.

On the other hand, Boone’s green activism suggests he’s had a change of heart about what’s important, and perhaps Boone regrets his support for Bush, and that’s important to take into account also.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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2 Responses to Senator Al Franken v. T. Boone Pickens: Remember the Wind Farm Ads—or the Swift Boat Ads?

  1. Mary Edwards says:

    I suspect that this Texas hick’s change of heart toward Green Energy has more to do with making money than anything else.

  2. santitafarella says:

    Mary:

    Cynical, cynical. No billionaire bigotry here, now! It takes a village. Let T. Boone have his Christmas Carol moment-of-clarity and enjoy the big bird he brings (buzzed through a wind turbine).

    —Santi

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