Marshall in the Middle

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Is It ISIS or ISIL ?


By Chuck Marshall

Is it ISIS or ISIL?  For several weeks now, I've been confounded by the fact that the President and a few other people are referring to our new war as being against ISIL., which I just found out stands for Islamic State of Iraq and Levant.  Levant is the area of the eastern Mediterranean stretching from Egypt to Turkey.  Now, don't we all  know that and refer to the Levant on a daily basis ?  No ! I have never heard of this term 'nor have I heard of that part of the world referred to as Levant.  But there it is on Wikipedia .  The other acronym, ISIS stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.   As it turns out, the Democrats are typically referring to them as ISIL and the Republicans are referring to them as ISIS.  Our leaders cannot even come to an agreement as to what our enemy is to be called.  Now THAT is an "Epic Fail".

I'm going to have to side with the Republicans on this one though, folks.  ISIS is easier to say, and it refers to the names of countries with which we're all familiar.  Levant is obscure and pretentious. The President needs to come down off his high horse and stop using a reference with which few people are familiar.   Every time he says it, the name sounds wrong as if he misread the teleprompter.  Even the media seems content to call them ISIS.

In conclusion, I would have to say if I was Muslim I would be extremely upset that anyone is referring to this group as Islamic.  Why not just refer to them as what they really are ?  Seepage of Humanity., or the SOH.   This effectively refers to their true nature; an oozing slow moving foul smelling drip,  IE "sourced"  from the worst that humanity has to offer.  It also effectively refers to their bodies after our bombs fall and what remains of them puddles into a ball of  goo on the desert sand.  SOH long dogs !

SOH it is... In My Humble Opinion.....


Monday, September 15, 2014

Congressmen on Break to Get Back to Their Real Career



By Chuck Marshall

In case you didn't know it, Congress is on break right now.   The natural response from most Americans is of course, "I didn't know they ever came OFF break".  There's so much truth to that. They "have to take a break so they can go back home to get ready for mid-term elections"  is my understanding.  I do sympathize that they have a lot of schmoozing to do in order to get re-elected since the vast majority of them have no real leadership talent. They cannot run on accomplishment, that's for sure.  They are very good at politics but very bad at leading. What it boils down to is they're going back home to work on their true passion and talent;  kissing up to the people who give them  money.   Money to produce their horrible TV ads, newspaper ads, Internet pop ups,  obnoxious road signs,  etc.....  It is not an exercise in democracy so much as  a three ring circus culminating two years from now with the biggest clown act of them all;  The political Party Convention.

How repulsed must our ancestors be at what it's all become?   There is no dignity anymore.  There is no work for the good of the people and the country but only for the political parties so that they might "win" this time around and show how their respective philosophies are the best for everybody else.  It's us vs them., right vs. left, Republican vs Democrat.  Blah, blah, blah.  Small, little, baseless, hypocritical, mealy mouthed, selfish minded trolls that have wrested power from the American citizens by driving a wedge between all of us using  problems and challenges as weapons of division rather than opportunities to unite.

So now our Congressmen will slither back to their home districts.  They will make some deals and earn lots of dough so they can bore us with their inane advertisements.   I hope and pray to see the day when the process of election no longer involves money at all.   When that happens we will lose the politicians and gain real leaders.

In my humble opinion......

Monday, September 8, 2014

Obama Presidency Example of Flawed Political Process




By Chuck Marshall


I don't write about the President too much.   The right is so hard on him I've always felt they were going too far  in their hysterical vitriol.  I also think their incessant criticism and nitpicking habits are disrespectful of the office.  I'm not saying don't criticize, but I am saying there should be some self control.  As far as the Fox News talk shows are concerned he can do nothing right.  It's excessive.  He has two important qualities in my mind;  His is a truly great orator and I believe his heart is usually in the right place.  He's doing what he thinks is the right thing to do.   A trait often missing in a lot of our leaders.   So, I've tried to reserve criticism lest I feel myself beating on a wounded dog.  All that being said, I must admit that I don't think he's a very good President.

The reasons are the reasons I think most thinking Americans have seen over the last 6 years.  He has not worked well with Congress.  I know nobody likes them, but it's his job to work with them and establish some sort of dialogue acting as the leader who bridges the gap.  He has failed at that.  He has allowed the Federal deficit to balloon by $10 Trillion since his election in 2008 when  part of his original platform was to stop the government from spending so much.  He has offered no ideas whatsoever to stop this fiscal bleeding.  He has demonstrated a lack of leadership on the world stage, allowing foreign dictators to spread their wings with no fear of consequence.  Mostly he has been "learning on the fly"  which is a big part of the problem.  The President should be ready to rule the first week he moves into the White House, not 6-7 years after.  Now he's nearing his "lame duck" stage of a failed Presidency and so we're back again to waiting for the next election for the next round of odd-ball candidates that each of the parties draws up for us hoping against hope that one of them is "the one"......a Presidential candidate we like !  

So, in my humble opinion, it's not all his fault.    It's also the fault of our political system.   I believe he's simply unqualified to be President and should have never made it to the primaries.  If we had a system in place to draw up the most talented leadership in our country this would have never happened.  Barack Obama made a great speech at the Democratic national convention in 2004, and suddenly he's the darling of the Democratic Party.  The man can make a speech., but he did not have the experience, 'nor does he have the talent to run our country.   Being a great speaker is only a part of the whole equation.  It was the flip side for George "W" Bush.  He made it through the primaries because he was the son of a President, definitely NOT from his speaking abilities.  I think most people figured that at least he could call his father if he runs into trouble.   That's what I was thinking when I voted for him holding my nose in 2000.  (The Bush presidency is a great example of the catastrophic consequences of the "good ole boy" network).    

How do we fix this ill advised system of electing the President and all of our leaders ?  See my blog titled  "Restoring American Democracy Part VI- The Elections" for my elaborate,  if somewhat wordy explanation of one idea.  To all you naysayers, "I know, I know" it would be a futile to change "the way we've always done things"  but just to discuss the fact that what we have now is not working would be a step in the right direction, right?!

In my humble opinion......

http://chuckmarshall.blogspot.com/2013/01/restoring-american-democracy-part-vi.html



Monday, September 1, 2014

Closed Primaries are Not Democracy



By Chuck Marshall


I write this blog as an addendum to my Oct. 11, 2013 blog on closed primaries.
 ( http://chuckmarshall.blogspot.com/2013/10/a-case-for-independents-no-more-closed.html )
 I was reading an article in today's Orlando Sentinel regarding the situation in Hong Kong as it relates to the Chinese mainland and their (the Communists) efforts to contain any real choices to the citizens of Hong Kong.   It struck me how similar this was to our situation here in the USA when a state mandates closed primaries (such as my state, Florida) ... so of course I had to write the paper about it.  I don't know if they'll print it, but I figured I'd go ahead and post it.  I'll let you know, loyal readers if it is printed.  If it is, I believe this makes letter number 30 printed in the Orlando Sentinel since 2006.

It Reads;

I found the article on Democracy in Hong Kong vaguely familiar.  It states that these pro-democracy citizens of Hong Kong are outraged because the Chinese government is allowing  "free voting" such that the people are "free"  to choose among the candidates that they (the Chinese government) pre-selected for them.   The article goes on to explain the position of the activists, stating  "One person one vote will be meaningless if candidates all have to be approved by a nominating committee they see as beholden to Beijing's interests".    This sounds a lot like the closed primary system we have right here in Florida where our candidates are first "pre-selected" for us by the government subsidized political parties.  The comparison is not so outrageous when you consider the Chinese government is mainly motivated to hold on to power and so are  Democrats and Republicans.   An open primary system would allow one election in which all citizens including those with no party affiliation can nominate candidates.  This process would allow all of us to fully participate in selecting our leaders not just those motivated to keep their party in power. 

In  my humble opinion.......