Over the weekend, socialist Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez visited San Antonio and Austin to hold campaign events with ideological fellow travelers. While in Texas, the congresswoman engaged in an act of mask hypocrisy (for which she was called out by Ted Cruz), but it was her remarks at a separate event that should interest working Texans the most.
Following a campaign appearance with fellow socialist and congressional candidate Greg Casar, the congresswoman held a similar rally with the local chapter of Democratic Socialists of America in support of the so-called “Green New Deal.”
While speaking to the group, the congresswoman discussed “organizing” employees in the oil and gas industry. Specifically, she discussed “scare tactics” used to frighten workers in those industries.
“We need to make sure they [energy industry employers] don’t use scare tactics and turn fossil fuel workers against this transition [to Green New Deal policies] as well,” said the congresswoman. “So, in Texas, where the organizing here is going to be is in mastering the counteroffensive on that argument.”
Ocasio-Cortez then went on to cite solar energy cooperatives in Puerto Rico, post-hurricane Maria, as an alternative. While this arrangement might be worthwhile for small groups, it’s not been shown to be a feasible plan for widespread adoption. The fact that Puerto Rico still experiences frequent blackouts five years after the hurricane illustrates the shortcomings of this approach.
The congresswoman shouldn’t be surprised to find a skeptical reception outside the friendly East Austin audience.
The energy industry is a well-known source of economic mobility for working citizens, but “Green Energy” jobs, by contrast, consistently fall short of projections. Not coincidentally, energy policies like those supported by AOC have driven a GOP voting surge among South Texas Hispanics.
At another point in Ocasio-Cortez’s speech, the “Red Guards Austin,” a local Maoist cult, attempted to shout down the congresswoman, accusing her of insufficient hostility to Israel.
Energy issues are likely to continue playing a major role in Texas politics, especially after the 2021 winter storm and the upcoming statewide March primary election.