By now, I’m pretty sure everyone in the U.S. has seen one of T. Boone Pickens’ television commercials that have been running each night during prime time on every major network.
You know, the one with the old guy, T. Boone, talking about his idea for eliminating the dependency on foreign oil. There are even beautiful panoramic vistas of wind farms like the one I passed by on vacation. Some think they’re really ugly, but I think they look pretty cool.
If you haven’t seen the commercial (do you live in a box?), here it is on YouTube.
So, who is this guy?
He’s often referred to as a “legendary oilman” but if you’re under 35, chances are, you haven’t heard of him. I know that I hadn’t.
By the second time I saw the commercial, I couldn’t help but think this was another H. Ross Perot getting a late start in the race for President.
There are a lot of similarities…
They’re both old.
They both have a first name that they don’t use (Henry and Thomas).
And they’re both self-made gazillionaires from deep in the heart of Texas — and have the accent to prove it.
Pickens advertises that he’ll be detailing his proposed “energy plan” in the coming weeks.
Hmmm, could this be anything like when Ross Perot bought all of the programming time on the networks to show his half-hour long campaign commercials during prime time? Pickens, like Perot, has the money to do it. Amazing what a net worth of $3 billion can get you.
Secretly, I’m hoping Pickens uses a ton of easy-to-understand charts like Perot did, gosh, 16 years ago now. That was really cool.
But I don’t think a presidential run is in the cards for Pickens.
Apparently he already considered running (and then decided against it) back in 1988, as a Republican, I’d assume.
He’s also 80 years old, though he may not look or sound it. That’s even a few years older than Ross Perot.
So what’s his point? Why’s he doing this?
Reading up on him a bit, he’s been a very big supporter of the Republican Party but I can’t see how any of this could possibly benefit John McCain. Based on the Adsense ads that frequently appear on this very site, McCain is still all about a gas tax moratorium… Yeah, that’ll solve everything…
Sure, “energy” is an issue in politics right now and it is pretty refreshing that someone who wasn’t elected to office for anything is stepping up and offering a real plan, but why?
My best guess is that it’s a last ditch effort to leave a legacy outside of his native Oklahoma and current state of residence, Texas — while also ensuring that his companies will succeed in the years ahead, even when oil is no longer their cash cow.
He’s diversifying, basically, and spending loads of his own money to get public support, which will, in-turn, garner government support, and then the government (aka the taxpayers) will subsidize his endeavors.
If it works, as crooked as it is, he’s a genius… Not that he wasn’t a proven genius in the business world already…
But maybe I’m alone on this one…