Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Mayoral Preview: Gene Locke

Former City Attorney Gene Locke has tossed his hat into the mayoral ring, and not surprisingly, he sounds a lot like Annise Parker and Peter Brown. His web site tells us that:
Gene will ... protect neighborhoods from unwanted development and work to ensure that any new development is in harmony with current residents’ desires.

While Locke offers no details as to how he will accomplish this, the means by which city government accomplishes virtually anything is through force. Locke will use coercion to prohibit and prevent "unwanted development". He, like Parker and Brown, will throw property rights out the window in order to appease current residents of a neighborhood.

Echoing Brown, Locke wants to continue Bill White's green agenda:
Gene will work to maintain and expand city parks and green spaces; protect the environment by reducing pollution, making our buildings more energy efficient through green building programs and encouraging neighborhoods to become involved in an enhanced and expanded recycling effort.

As is typical, there is no mention of the cost of these initiatives. Expanding city parks costs money. Making our buildings more energy efficient costs money--and will be achieved by expanding building codes and similar coercive methods. Who will pay for these things? Locke doesn't tell us, but I suggest you look in the mirror for the answer. And while Locke is dictating the types of homes we can live in, he will also expand our economy.
As part of Gene’s plan to expand job growth and economic development he will work with local school districts and colleges to provide job training opportunities to prepare students for positions in the business community and other private sector jobs as well as important roles as teachers, nurses, fire fighters and police officers.

Why should the mayor be involved in education? His job is to protect our rights, not play school administrator. If he really wants to expand job growth, he should cut taxes and repeal regulations. He should increase individual freedom.

Gene is confident that Houston will continue its role as the energy capital of the nation and become a leader in alternative energy as well. He will work with federal, state and local enterprises to establish incentives to broaden this important new sector of our economy.
This too sounds just like Parker and Brown--vague promises with no concrete details. He is going to establish "incentives" to broaden alternative energy, which really means he is to going to use a carrot and stick approach. First he dangles a carrot to manipulate you to act as he desires. If that doesn't work, he will then beat you with the stick.

While Locke's web site is lacking in details, what is offered makes it clear that he is not offering anything essentially different from Parker or Brown.

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