Marshall in the Middle

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Convention of the States

The Fix for a Broken Government 

By Chuck Marshall 


     Happy Birthday to the US Constitution as of Sept. 17th 2017, it is 230 years old !    I am going to hold off  on elaborating on the positives and the genius of our forefathers in establishing this great document and the liberties it has served us to this very day for fear of boring the reader with my unusually strong enthusiasm for history.   I am however,  going to point out a very important part of the constitution that has grown fat and flabby for lack of use.  I am talking about Article 5 of the constitution that gives the states the right to call a convention (a Convention of the States) whereby the state leaders get together in DC and do some housekeeping.  

For reference, here is what Article 5 states;

 "The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate."

       What does it all mean ?  Since we know 2/3 of both houses aren't going to agree that up is up and down is down, then it is up to the states to call a convention proposing Amendments.  There are many proposals such as "Term Limits" amendment, "Balanced Budget" amendment,  and election reform ( in which case I would suggest removing $$ from our elections but that's another blog).    I believe the most important task would be to reign in a federal government that has gotten so large that it is in the habit of ignoring the will of the people.  They've spent us and  our children into $20 Trillion worth of debt with no end in sight.   In addition, whether it be corporate lobbyists or any special interest, there is no doubt it is too influenced by outsiders to fix itself.   We really have no choice !  It is an opportunity we should all relish to fix our broken government !   The constitution puts this power  in our hands.  In fact,  I've read several times that our founding fathers would probably be shocked that by 2017 we still had not acted on this power.  We all must encourage our state leaders to take action as afforded by Article 5.  As long as the two parties are running the federal government then we can all rest assured that nothing will get done.   There's a reason Congress has an approval rating of 10% or less.  They are stuck in the mud of a system that makes any improvement impossible, and a big part of that mud is the never ending battle between the R's and the D's.  

     This could be for both conservatives and liberals as it will allow for stronger rights at the local level such that the states would be able to operate according to their specific states' needs, demographics, and philosophies.   All this absurd talk of Texas (2008) and California (2016) seceding from the union !  Why ?  There is a way for us all to get what we want.  

Below is a link to the Convention of the States website.  Please check it out, donate and call your STATE congressmen !  This is a call to action from the founders of our country !

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Waiting for Hurricane Irma

By Chuck Marshall

 Dear loyal readers !

     Well, my fair state is under attack, as all of you are probably well aware.   It's hard for me to imagine what it's like to not be familiar with hurricanes since I've lived in Florida all my life, so as we wait on Irma to knock on our door (but hopefully not break it down!) I thought I'd share my thoughts. Hopefully I'll reveal some interesting tidbits to that tiny little sliver of America that actually reads my blog, but who also might not be familiar with the weirdness of hurricanes in states affected.

     Right now we still have power and there is no wind 'cause Irma just landed in the keys, quite a distance from my home in Clermont, Fla.   It's overcast and rainy, and eerily quiet as everybody is hunkered down and the birds have gone (they seem to sense what's coming--spooky !) Outside is dead quite.  Everyone is totally exhausted from the stress of watching the hysterical media.  I  respect the local news much more than the national reports as they are more professional and they don't act out and overly exaggerate.  They're trying to help us, not boost ratings.  The national media (not going to name names- you know who) just go bonkers over these things and say things that are so obviously  hopeful that the worst disaster possible occurs.  It's human tendency to look for the danger but a few encouraging words and a little consideration for those living through it would be nice.   I know they want their audience tuned in with popcorn to watch bending palm trees and the weather guy get blown around in a parking garage, but somewhere in there they seem to lose their humanity.  

     We've been watching Irma warily for 2 weeks now, everybody just wants it over with.  One of the most stressful aspects is not knowing where it's going.  Miami and most of South Florida evacuated due to the dire warnings and many millions throughout the state are under "mandatory" evacuation.    I'm sure you've all seen the traffic photos, but living through it is weird.  It's like an army is approaching.  My town has been spared  most of the traffic leaving South Fla. because that's happening over on the interstates and turnpike.  I'm actually very close to  the Fla Turnpike but I have avoided it like the plague for the last week.  All those people fled the Miami area, and now it's headed towards Tampa.  I feel so bad for the people in the Miami area that fled to Tampa !

     Anyway, you may be wondering;  Chuck, why are you still there ?  I live inland, about an hour either way to the ocean.  My area is considered "relatively" safe,  but they're still saying 80 to 90 mph  gusts and 70 mph sustained winds as it stands right now.  Irma's center (where the worst winds are) will be 60 miles to our west.  The catch is, if Irma decides she wants to go to Disney World (20 minutes from my house) then all bets are off and so what was going to be some trees down, could be losing my roof.   That's why the hurricane tracking report is so critical.  We all gather around the TV (at work, it was the internet) to see where they say Irma is heading.   All  normal life stops most of your thoughts are regarding your home;   Where is my house vulnerable ?  Am I prone to flooding ?  Should I leave ?  Should I insist my son come home from Gainesville ?  Will  the neighbors pool screen break loose and crash into my bedroom ?   Are my family and I and I prepared ?  Do we have enough perishable food if the stores are unapproachable for days ?  Enough batteries ? Is my insurance company going to cover what it should if that becomes necessary ?    In my case I have the added stress that most of my customers have greenhouses that could be destroyed in these winds.   How much will  my income drop for the next few months as my customers set back up ?

So, anyway... the whole thing sucks,  but the good news is we have the day off tomorrow. LOL.  Pray for Florida, my friends.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Advice to Thinking Democrats.....

Free of charge !!

    By Chuck Marshall

      I have been writing this blog for nearly 10 years.  In it I hope I have had some very small positive impact on how our country is governed.  I pride myself on working hard to write more moderate, centrist opinions but I know I don't always succeed at that.  The established parties are an enemy of the people and of liberty (at least right now)  and their political extremists are what truly enrage me.  That is why this blog is often vicious and venomous.   I frequently attack the parties for their inanity and corruption and blatant stupidity and part of me regrets how truly easy that is to do.   Currently I see the Democrats as being obstructionist beyond a reasonable level and their cozy relationship with the mainstream media (MSM) does far more damage to our country than any stupid meeting between Donald Trump's minions and the Russians- even if it DID happen.  So, my anger is more directed towards the left these days.  I know I sometimes come off as an "angry white guy" (there,a bone to chew on for liberal readers)  who is intolerant of  liberal ideas.  This is sincerely not true,  but in our times the predominant liberal thoughts have turned to labeling, categorizing, and above all else political correctness that separates us as a people.  They are unreasonable in their demands (remove statues of Columbus?  Ban "Gone with the Wind"? ) and behave like enraged children when they don't win an election.   They are self- righteous, patronizing, obsequious, condescending spoiled brats with no new ideas other than to support removing symbols of American history without public debate,  to preen their moral superiority (supposed) for us all to see,  and to present to the world their very, very low opinion of Donald Trump.

       It has been mentioned many, many times that the Democrats have never had such low representation at the national and the state levels.  Why are the Democrats in such trouble ?   Perhaps all those years of riding Obama's coat tails have made them soft and mushy.  All those press conferences where their friends in the MSM were nodding their heads in agreement with all that Obama  proclaimed have made them weak and incapable of challenging questions.  Their tactic today is to stomp their feet and hang on the fact that dimwitted Hollywood loves them and that the MSM still rallies to their every point of view,  no matter how ridiculous.  Their historically low fund raising is evidence of their declining influence.  A full 90% of the public does not trust the MSM, so the Dems would be wise to distance themselves from their pets at CNN, etc...and establish some "meat and potatoes" to serve the American people for the next round of elections.  The American people are fuming at the government and the establishment and seeing millionaire celebrities cuss and crucify any ideas contrary to the leftist thought could be the poison that ends the Democratic party.  The recent MTV American music awards featured a "Fu** Donald Trump" rap song.   Yes, if you weren't aware, it's that bad.  

     I leave all Democrats with this final sobering thought.  The shocking success of Donald Trump may not be over any time soon.  In fact, this could be just the beginning as he seems to be swinging many candidates for Congress to his "way of thinking".  It could get much worse for you.   Get your act together and start acting like adults with real ideas for real Americans.   America needs the two political parties to discuss differing ideas like adults.  We want wisdom, compromise, and levity.  We want the success of the everyday American middle class citizen to be at the forefront of your mind.  We need leadership  not a bunch of followers chasing after mobs with a vendetta against the nearest statue.  Like a very cheap wine, it might taste good and get you liquored up with your moral preening,  but in the morning you will suffer a hangover to last for the ages.  

In My Humble Opinion

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Confederate Heroes Should Have Never Had Statues To Begin With

     I am a student of WWII, maybe a bit of a WWII nerd, and I know something of the Nazis. The Nazis affected my outlook on life so much that I doubted the existence of God for several years because their deeds in history were so barbaric. So I say, with hesitation but bolstered with an urgency to stand up for what's right. it is my understanding that most of the protesters in Charlottesville were protesting the removal of a confederate memorial.  This is not a Nazi monument and in most pictures  I see confederate flags not swastikas.  These people did have a permit to protest and although many of them no doubt have offensive and disturbing ideas about race,  they had a permit to protest as they did and even had the ACLU defending them in court to get the permit.  Can you get any more liberal than the ACLU?   The violence was started by counter protesters that DID NOT have a permit and they provoked the right wingers with violence.   Hopefully I don't have  to say this didn't justify running over those poor people and killing the one young lady.  The President is blaming BOTH sides for the unfortunate events of this past week. He's only stating a fact of the matter, and as blunt and bombastic as he is with the media, I think he's right.

     As for the monuments themselves ?  i have always been a little puzzled by Confederate statues.  Didn't they lose the war ?  Why did the US allow confederate statues after such a horribly bloody war ?  I think the north was anxious to get past the war and move on, so they decided not to step in to stop any aggrandizement of the Confederate  heroes  lest they provoke the south.  I can understand it, but in a way they dragged the whole thing out and it might have been wiser to not allow anything other than memorials to the war dead.  This would have allowed for a place of honor for all those families that surely were grieving.  I think looking back it would have been better to have never allowed them to be erected  at all under the auspice they were leaders of a traitorous rebellion against the country.  Of course the south would have gotten huffy over the restriction  but they would have gotten over it.  General Lee himself is known to have been opposed to any statue or tribute to him and expressed a preference that the nation move past the painful Civil War.  Today we have to deal with the issue and understand there are a lot of people who still feel strongly about their southern heritage and see the Confederacy as a stand against an oppressive federal government.  The process needs to be sensitive so that we can, in consensus, finally get the Civil War behind us and move forward together as a united country.    

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Democracy Thrives in Brightness

         Global Hunger Down Substantially Since 2000 

    Am I the only person that reads the newspaper or watches the news and hears encouraging statistics only to have the reporter add a "but" at the end of the good news ?  Why can't they give us good news and then shut up ?    Since the MSM is so determined to direct our attention to "the Sky is Falling" mentality., the marketer in me has decided perhaps it would be worth it to start pointing out some of the good going on in the world and allowing the reader to enjoy the fact.  These little articles I  headline "Democracy Thrives in Brightness" as an homage to the Washington Post's fatalistic tag line "Democracy Dies in Darkness".  I realize their "sky is falling" mentality brings in ratings, but maybe there's a market for mare positive news that at least pauses to offer a taste of the good news being offered.    

     Did you know that the worlds' rate of hunger has dropped 27% since the year 2000 according to the Global Hunger Index (a statistical tool used to describe the state of countries’ hunger situation). The  world's population is getting larger and larger which is cause for concern, but the reality is there are well over a billion and a half more people added to the planet since 2000 and they are much less miserable than just 17 years ago !  The rate  of hunger has gone down by more than 50% in China, Brazil, Peru and Bolivia.  

     Why is the world hunger rate going down ?  There are multiple factors.  Better farming practises throughout the world.  More open and Democratic societies which encourage business and commerce.  A larger rate of capitalism throughout the world fosters entrepreneurship and a higher flow of cash in society that leads to more food produced.  .  
   This is good news,   Let's stop to celebrate and enjoy the comforting thought that far fewer of our fellow humans are going without food today.   

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Washington Post Reading the Minds of High Level Russians !

     I read the article from the Washington Post with this headline "Russian Contradicts Session's answers" wondering to myself why we the people should trust a leak from  "conversations intercepted by U.S. Spy Agencies that monitor communications between high level Russian officials".   If it was intercepted it's certainly possible that it was leaked on purpose and was one more example of the Russians meddling in our politics- the very source of all  the hysteria over Trump's supposed collusion.  How do you know the truth ?  They (the Russians) don't care if it's Democrats or Republicans they're hurting, they're just enjoying the show and I would imagine have no problem purposely leading our very "leaky" spy agencies and the Washington Post down a rabbit hole.  The most concerning part of this story is that it was published at all.    

In My Humble Opinion......

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Health-Care Reform Failure - Again !


     Health care  reform fails again.  I've been writing this blog since 2008, and I tried to find an old blog I wrote regarding health care from way back when the Republicans were trying to hinder Obamacare.  Back then, when Obama was still in the middle of his presidency,  I tended to give him the benefit of the doubt., I felt he won and deserved a chance to show what he could do (IMAGINE THAT !)  Leaning right of center, I still always try to have a fair mind and under Obama I often found myself defending Obama because the R's were such obstructionists !  Sound familiar ?

     Anyway,  I found the blog !  Here it is in all it's glory.  Some things never change folks, and way back then I was wondering out loud what ideas the Republicans had.    It turns out my suspicions were correct, they had NONE !   So, this from  2013 and today  I  figured I'd share it as a relic of the past in honor of another failure of our government to work for the people.   They are of,  for and by the lobbyists and the partisan nonsense- from BOTH parties enrages me.   Don't forget our darling media cheerleaders stirring the pot from the sidelines !  

Can the Republicans Offer Solutions for Healthcare ?

July 29, 2013  

     Recently in the Orlando Sentinel there was an article on how Senator Marco Rubio has warned that our quality of health care is in serious danger if the “Affordable Health Care Act” moves forward.  I think he has a good point in that there are few federally controlled agencies that we can look at with admiration for their success.   I wonder though, what ideas might he and the Republicans have?   All I hear on so many major issues is what the Republicans don't want. But, what is it they DO want?   What ideas do they have to make health care affordable ?  Surely there are intelligent options that could come from the right other than what they don’t want.      

     On a monthly basis the average premiums for a family of four are approximately $1000 per month.   If you’re fortunate, you work for a company that pays for half of that. In comparison, when I first graduated from college in 1987 I paid around $30 per month to cover the full premium for myself.  Consider that this money put back in people’s pockets could go towards improvements to homes, vacations, entertainment and education.  Positive economic catalysts.   The high cost of health insurance as a percentage of income has become a drain on the economy.  It needs to be fixed.  

     Our leaders don’t understand our struggles.  I’ve always liked the idea of having our Senators and congressman pay the same health care premiums most Americans pay so they can relate to what we’re going through.  I wonder what Senator Rubio pays?  I'm very sure it's not 10% of his net income as it is for most middle class Americans.  

     The pharmaceutical and medical professions have spent over three billion dollars on lobbying in Washington DC since 1990.  That's a lot of convincing.   What exactly did they convince our government to do for all these years ?   Could it be this lobbying has created a warped medical economy where normal laws of supply and demand no longer apply?  Can that be fixed?   Also, could there be limits on litigation so that the mistakes of Doctors don’t automatically make someone and their lawyer a millionaire while simultaneously causing everyone's premiums to surge as a consequence ? 

     As a voice from the middle, I would like to hear some good ideas from the right that could improve our health care system as it stands today.  The Republicans are against Obamacare. That is obvious,  But if their mindset is that the status quo is fine,  then they have already failed the American people.  

In My Humble Opinion. 

Some things never change.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Trump Junior Guilty..... of Being Naive

By Chuck Marshall

     So, Donald Trump Jr. met with a Russian lawyer who had promised damning information on Hillary Clinton.  He met with the lady and allegedly abandoned the meeting because he came to  realize the lady had nothing to say or offer.   In the emails which he released to the press it is obvious he looked forward to the meeting and hoped to gain the upper edge for his "then candidate" father, Donald J. Trump.  I'm not going to bore the reader with the dreary details of a completely insubstantial  meeting.  I do, however,  want to try to extract good information and perhaps some logic out of the latest hysterical media rampage.

1)  Trump Jr. met with a Russian but the Trump campaign had previously denied any sort of clandestine meetings with any Russians.  He lied.

2)   It is not a crime to meet with Russians.

3)  It is not a crime to listen to gossip from a foreign government about your political enemy.

4)  If there was "collusion" then let the investigation committee find it and I'll be all ears.  So far, I still  smell "nothing burger".

5)  I'm more interested in what the DNC was doing in Kiev, Ukraine with foreign operatives in a distinct effort to undermine a political opponent of theirs;  Donald J. Trump.   I believe that IS illegal.  I'm  also curious about some of the mysterious deaths associated with the Clintons that I used to brush off as partisan bunk., but there's certainly enough there to be intrigued.  The MSM is curiously uninterested.  Why?    Now that, would be an interesting story.

6)  The Republican party is a bunch of insider DC weenies who watch with barely a whimper as Trump is accused over and over of things that we all know Obama, Clinton and the DNC did.  They are a very flaccid group and only the Democratic party sports a more shrunken organ.

7)  I'm not real crazy about Donald Trump but I absolutely loathe hypocrisy much more.  I'm willing to give the old bastard a chance to achieve my fantasy- drain the swap of greed and avarice that is Washington, DC.  I've  never seen a person truly capable of doing it until now.  The obnoxious., belligerent,  politically incorrect, plain talking, straight shooting, clever, scheming, tweeting and conniving Donald J. Trump.  Sick 'em Don !

8)  Donald Trump won and the left would be wise if they let this whole thing blow over and just try to work with the man.  I don't think it will end well for them if they keep this up.

In My Humble Opinion......

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Independence Day !


     Happy Independence Day,  Everybody ! I always like to consider the fact that every man in this picture was committing treason against the Crown and risked hanging for signing that document. It was not a casual, "glad to be here" thing--- We owe it to our children to teach them well the sacrifice and courage as well as a thorough understanding of what was done. They risked it all to pull power from the King and deliver it to the people.  We owe it to these men that we speak up and fight when we feel what's going on in the public domain is wrong.  We owe it to them that we protect basic freedom and liberty from the "flavor of the day" as is common in our world.  We owe it to them that we're proud of our country-- not for its wealth or its military might but for this great precedence that our founders established for us;   Power to the people and our posterity that no person shall infringe on another person's right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness whatever that might entail.  We must be vigilant, passionate, and  compassionate in our endeavor to protect what these brave men gifted to us  241 years ago today.  In My Humble Opinion.

Oh, and... enjoy the fireworks, your hot dogs and beer !   

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Sedition of Malevolent Partners


                                                                  The Middle Path

 Dear loyal readers,

     I regret the time since I wrote here, it has been an extremely busy spring, friends !  As I've mentioned before I am in the plant business so all my baby plants cannot hold on for me to pop off on the news of the day.  In addition, my Arborist Certification is up at the end of June and I have to catch up on my CEU's.  Finally, my oldest, my son, graduated from high school and that has taken much attention and work !  He graduated Summa cum laude,  by the skin of his teeth.  (He's a procrastinator like his father).  It has been a lot of work and a lot of emotion as we prepare to see him off to the world, or least the "bubble world" that is Gainesville, Fl.

     I am feeling that compulsion, the itch, to write again since I have time to breathe.  As you all know, Donald Trump is in the news for 90% of all stories, 90% of all time, and it's 90% unfavorable.  I've written mostly negative blogs on Trump since he has been in the limelight, but after being elected I backed off and decided to see what he could do.  To me it's important to give a person a chance.  The media had other ideas and so does the Democratic party.  True to their nature, the parties are generally more concerned with themselves than the good of the country and the Democrats are revealing that their partisan nature can be as severe as the Republicans, if not worse !  The difference is the Democrats have nearly all the media on their side since the media tends to lean left as we all know.  (If you disagree with me then you need to turn up the volume on your televisions.)

     Who's a threat to our Democracy ?  Donald Trump?  The man can't sneeze right, and with hardly 40% approval rating he's not exactly in the position to ram through any sort of legislation much less seize control of the government overall.   No, the threat to our Democracy is not in the White House it's in newsrooms of New York,  Washington, DC and Atlanta where the big media lurks around, apparently very alarmed that its power has limits.  They are so frustrated their candidate (Hillary Clinton) did not win that they've sold their soul to the Devil and are openly jockeying to remove a freely elected President from power  They've removed their mask, and they are  as partisan as the Democratic party itself.  They "don't like" the President.  These facts, in their  mind, enable them to throw out journalism and announce everything in relation to, and through the prism of,   how bad Donald Trump is.  Prez Obama was allowed much more leeway, in fact, I think it wold be fair to say the media gave Obama "carte blanche" to do as he pleased.  (no pun intended).  Essentially, since he is black they left him alone.  That kind of patronizing behavior is a form of racism, isn't it.

     So, now I don't watch the news because it gives me a stomach ache.  I don't read the paper because I go through the rest of the day angry.  I get my news from the radio and I watch Fox News for the lead stories because they still seem to understand journalism unlike their peers to the left.  Watching the MSM requires so much work to wade through the mud of partisan bunk to get to what's really going on.  I'm tired of it all.  On social media, the right is quiet (because they won) and the left is hysterical.  I promised in a previous blog, that I would not comment on Trump's performance for 100 days.  Well, it's been around 150 days, and all I have to say to those in the social media and the talking heads is this :  Leave the President Alone.  Let the investigation continue and if he colluded with the Russians, then let him be impeached,  but if there is no there- there (as is probably the case)  then all of you must truly contend with your hysterics of the last few months.  With no disrespect to little girls, you'll need to look in the mirror and understand what you see in your vision is a hysterical, whiny, wimpy, catty little weak girl that has no talent for anything other than pitching a fit and spreading gossip.  That is what the Democratic party AND most of the MSM has become;    A group of simpering, weak, malevolent little brats in need of a severe whipping.

In My Humble Opinion

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Real Fake News

By Chuck Marshall

I Call them JINA !

I've always loved the screaming headlines you see in the tabloids and since most  media outlets are now not any different from the tabloids (I call them  JINA-Journalists in Name Only) then I think they need help from Chuck Marshall, also not a real journalist !  We are brothers and sisters in our amateurism !   Since these so called journalists are for entertainment  I thought I'd  draw up some screaming headlines !  A  gesture of good will  from Marshall in the Middle to "save them the trouble" so to speak !  Notice I'm using exclamation points in many of my sentences !  That's the most important part !  It's always the end of the world !

As I suggest headlines, often there are many alternatives for the "subheading" I think they call it... the short sentence after the headline explaining a little more to get the reader's interest.  Since there are many ideas, I have several choices.  To make it fun, you can make comments on this blog as to your favorite !  Then I'll know there are real people actually reading this blog !

Regarding the latest theory that Putin and Trump are still colluding and have gone so far as to set up the chemical attack on children in Syria;

"Putin Moves Into White House, Living in Basement!"

1)  Master puppeteer orders immediate missile attack through  Donald Trump- On Russia !
2)  Out-negotiating Trump, he buys back  Alaska for same price paid in 1890 !
3)  Seen eating with Hillary in Georgetown restaurant !

"Trump Colludes with Putin to Wipe Out Baby Seal Population!"

1)  Nothing is more important right now, leaders agree in clandestine conversation !
2)  "Their cuteness irritates me" Putin insists while Trump goes along since they're "besties" !
3)   Putin hopes to feed them to his pet tigers !

So today we have headline A and B.  Choose the headline and the sub-heading in the comments section, ie;  A1 would be you like the headline "Putin Moves Into White House, Living in Basement!" the most and you prefer the subheading "Master puppeteer orders immediate missile attack through Donald Trump- On Russia!".

In fact, feel  free to suggest other headlines and maybe I'll include them in my next blog !   In fact I thought of another for Putin in the basement "Is mastermind behind Trump Tweets!"

Your journalist in earnest, Chuck Marshall

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Letter to the Orlando Sentinel - Susan Rice

Dear loyal readers,  I apologize for no posts for a couple of weeks.   Busy spring, and my day job is in the horticulture industry.  Gotta pay the bills !    Anyway,  I had to jot out this letter to the Orlando Sentinel when they actually grew a conscience and published an editorial commenting on the entire Susan Rice issue.  Hope you enjoy, and yes I know I'm leaning to the right these days- but I'm still an adamant independent.   More on that later.

Re:  John Kass column from the Chicago Tribune

      The published column of John Kass of the Chicago Tribune regarding Susan Rice and her skills at "unmasking" members of Trump's transition team was a welcome ray of sunshine from your newspaper, which I noticed ignored the story on Tuesday when it broke.  The absence of any attention to the suspicious details coming out of the Obama administration's opportunistic "observations" of the Trump campaign should be alarming to all Americans.  At the end of the day the Russians are suspected of influencing our election by revealing embarrassing information about Hillary Clinton.  There could not have possibly been any certainty of their tactic because American citizens do have a mind of their own, and that any American businessman would put all his eggs into a PR stunt with the Russians is far-fetched.   What I witnessed this past fall was Donald Trump outworking Hillary Clinton.  Ironically,  we do know the Democrats colluded with the American media to embarrass Donald Trump's campaign- that was what the Russians revealed !  We also know the details of the early days of the Trump administration were leaked to the media because they were headlines in the New York Times !   Susan Rice admittedly "unmasked" some of Donald Trump's team and their conversations "in the name of  national security".   How many times ?  What were they concerned about ?  If that's true, then certainly they heard him conspiring with his Russian friends ?  There are way too many unanswered questions here, but the stench of conspiracy and perhaps felonies seems to be wafting over from those orbiting the previous administration not the existing one.  

In My Humble Opinion......

P.S.  I'll probably edit out some of this, including pointing out they ignored the story-  they tend not to print my letters when I directly criticize their editorial board.   The odds are kind of against me, as they also are less likely to print my letters that lean to the right- I wonder why ?

Monday, March 6, 2017

Who's doing the Tapping ?

     Okay, I think I've finally gotten my anger at the media out of my system.  I threw it up all over this blog for three weeks.  Sorry about that !  But, I DO feel better.  I'm a proud and fiercely "independent" American,  I tend to get "unglued" over partisan media.   They stop focusing on the story and focus on the bias,  so I learn almost nothing and become agitated and frustrated.   I am always thinking of a question that they should ask, but they're too busy trying to make the "other" side look bad to ask pertinent questions.  The progressive media is especially irritating since they are the losers this year and they just cannot let it go.   Give me information not rumors ! It's very hard to find good journalism and it's something we really need in our country.  One big exception, off the top of my head, is Chris  Wallace of Fox News.   He is one of the few "real" journalists on cable news and I have enormous respect for him.

     Anyway, the topic this week has been wire-tapping.  I'm very confused.  The New York Times and CNN reported of wire tapping during the election at Trump Tower and between Flynn and the Russian ambassador and there have been gobs of leaks coming out of the White House from SOMEONE who is apparently listening in on conversations and then feeding that information to the media.   So, now Prez Trump says "I believe that Obama tapped my phone during the election" and everybody and their little brother is acrimonious !?   Isn't it true that President Obama would have at least known about Trump's candidacy being monitored electronically ?   Is all this "hoopla" because he came out and "said it" ?   Trump often "says the un-sayable" so  I think we all need to get use to that.  It's so weird, like an elephant in the room that only certain people are allowed to point out.  To quote the Prez "Very Strange !".  There is wire tapping going on all over DC and it sounds rampant.  I'd like it stopped, so Mr. & Mrs. Journalist do your job and figure out what's happening.  To narrow down to one sentence;  "Who is doing the wiretapping in our government and are laws being broken when it happens?".  That's what most reasonable,  Chuck Marshall type of people are wanting to know.  THANK YOU.

**Regarding my previous few blogs, I feel the need to clarify one more thing, because I'm not sure I was very clear.  I'm not saying all media is treasonous 'nor am I suggesting they should be restricted in any way.   I'm just saying that taking information from a leaked source and anonymous sources seems treasonous to me.  They're working to bring down a duly elected President and no matter how obnoxious he is, he still won and he has not broken any law as far as I can tell.  Ergo,  please don't  go getting all" Democrat" on me over this with your fake shock at criticism of the media.  As if they're such little helpless sheep ?   Meryl Streep professed a few months ago that "we need to protect our journalists".  Who's going to protect us from them ?

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Comfort the Afflicted & Afflict the Comfortable

By Chuck Marshall


                    CNN Executive Ted Turner's Island Estate - He Understands Your Struggles 

     I recently heard a recording on a radio station (yes, a conservative  radio station and yes, I know they are often "unglued") but I like their spunk and I especially like their disdain for the "politically correct" talking heads of our nation who say all the right things but lack sincerity in their coverage.  They're more "real".   Anyway, they played a recording of a  CNN Executive speaking to a group of journalists;   He asks "what is your job?".  They all answer to "tell a story", and he answered  "yes, yes to tell a story" but also "to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable".   First of all, I thought the  job of journalists was to seek the truth, but if "telling a story" is what they teach at the Universities then who am I to argue ?  Second,  I cannot conceive of a more "comfortable"  group of people in need of "afflicting" than the mass media talking heads and their executive masters.  They (CNN, MSNBC, and all the major networks) along with the career politicians, and lobbyists of DC and all the pretty people out in Hollywood, CA cooped up in their mansions (cue the garish Academy Awards from Sunday night, I could gag from their pretentious political correctness- they are the definition of hypocrisy).  ALL of these groups with a total lack of awareness towards how real people live.  These "talking heads" and "stars" and "bureaucrats" would be advised to take out a mirror or go to the nearest restroom to take a good long look.   YOU are the privileged ones   YOU are the comfortable ones needing affliction.  Which brings to mind the old saying;  "You can't see the Forest for the Trees".   Could it be that Donald Trump is the "affliction" THEY all need ?   Could he be the one to "show them to the forest" so to speak ?  We will see.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Free Press is Not the Enemy But Biased Media Is

by Chuck Marshall 

       Well, after my tirade this past week regarding the media I still  wasn't satisfied, so I felt compelled to send a letter to the paper (the illustrious Orlando Sentinel) but I don't think they'll print it.  It's a little too "bombastic" and "provocative" which they tend to shy away from.  I don't take it personally, they have to be careful to a certain extent. and they've been very generous with me printing around 7 out 10 of the letters I do send them.  Very flattering,  I must admit !   I actually consider our local paper to be only moderately "left leaning".  It is  reasonably balanced and its most liberal articles tend to be fed from the Washington Post and the LA Times and lately the Associated Press (which I've lost respect for as they've recently jumped on the "We hate Trump" bandwagon).   The Orlando Sentinel even endorsed Mitt Romney in 2012 !    

     Interestingly, President Trump tweeted this week that the media is not his enemy but that they are the enemy of the people.  This did, of course, send the mainstream media into a "tizzy" as many of you have probably already seen.  The actual tweet specifies CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, Failing New York Times, and Washington Post.  Was that a good idea ?  I've learned not to doubt anything Donald Trump does,  and I would say it was certainly typical of him.   The CNN's of the world took his simple tweet and turned it into him being an "enemy" of the free press which he DID NOT imply and they know that.  They proved his point in their reaction.   They proceed to distort the truth and blatantly combat the decision of the American people.  As my blog yesterday outlined, and the letter below states;  I agree with him.  

        There is no self examination.  There is no introspection.  They are sharks in the water and they seem to have lost themselves in all this frenzy.   Their ugly gnarled teeth are out and open for all to see.  I understand Trump is a great disappointment to them but I sincerely believe they are committing slow suicide as they are relentless in their berating of a freely elected President.   They would be wise to step back to the middle and focus on facts and truth and avoid "creating the story".   A truly good  journalist or news organization should pursue the truth and inform and they should work hard to be politically moderate.  The political prism tends to  distort the facts and consequently the story.  People aren't stupid, and they can sense partisan journalism as is evidenced by the horrible statistics regarding the news media today.  I think it's around 60 to 70% simply don't trust them.  How can you build an audience with that fact staring you in the face ?  

So, anyway... here is my letter this week and since  I doubt they'll print it, I hate to let a good letter to to waste !!    If they print it, I'll make a note below in the next few days.  

      "There is an evil more dangerous and frightening than any terrorist I can think of because a bomb that sneaks in will do harm to one unfortunate city or community,  but this rampage from the far left, led by the media, tears and insults at the heart of all Americans.   It is the height of arrogance to reveal such a low opinion of 63 million Americans that they voted wrong and that the media, Hollywood, and Academia  know better what's good for our country.  I have no problem with criticism of the President, even when he hasn't really been given a chance.  That's what he signed up for.  What I do have a problem with is the power play I see coming from the media.  They feel they are entitled to insult this revered American institution of a free election with open bias and hostility towards the President and consequently the citizens who voted for him.  They show more compassion for foreign refugees than struggling Americans.  They insult America by doubting its decision.  I believe a free press exists to seek and find the truth and to record history not  rule the people and create history.  The other branches of government will keep the President in check.  The press has assumed power that is not rightfully theirs. "  

In Chuck Marshall's Humble Opinion......

Have a great week, loyal readers and don't forget to click an ad  ! 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Progressive Media Treasonous to Americans

By Chuck Marshall

                  The Progressive News Media and their Entertainment Minions 

      I feel so frustrated because I can't just sit down and watch the news like I use to or be entertained.    All I hear is biased nonsense.   I hear fear.   I hear "half truths".  I hear total lies.  What has happened to our journalists ?  Have they all completely lost sense of what's right, what's fair and what's honorable ?  I don't hear the truth anymore.  The election of Donald Trump has revealed a side of the mainstream media that genuinely alarms me.  Their misleading stories and biased commentary are so obvious a High School student would recognize it.  Their dignity is gone and they've reduced themselves to yellow journalists resembling The National Enquirer or The Star.  On a good day they might be more appropriately compared to "People" magazine with their groveling towards Hollywood and anyone with a lot of money.  Except Donald Trump of course.  He promises to stand up for the common man which is a threat to the cozy situation all the highest powers have between each other.    The media is a serious part of the problem we have today in our country.  I wrote a scathing blog criticizing the Democratic party, but in a lot of ways it's the left leaning media that is truly at the heart of the problem we have today.   The Democratic party is essentially their lapdog.  

     The Mainstream media is still in a frenzy because their choice for POTUS was not chosen.     They do not see themselves as covering history, they see themselves as  producing history but conservative victories keep preventing that !   They wanted their first woman POTUS !  So, they do not seek the truth but they produce their own version of the truth that makes them feel important and as having higher morals because they're so politically correct and superior as compared to middle America.   Their best friends in Hollywood and at the helm of talk shows the world over and all manner of entertainment are startled and shudder that perhaps  they are not the center of the universe and it's revealing an attitude and a mindset that is walled off around their mansions with no openness to any opinion other than their own .  In short, the mainstream media and it's "over the top" opposition to a free election and all their minions in the entertainment world are treasonous towards our country.  

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

What Does the Democratic Party Stand For ?

By Chuck Marshall

     What does the Democratic party stand for ?  I hear speeches and passion regarding immigrants and overseas refugees, but I don't hear passion regarding the American poor and despondent.   I don't hear passion regarding the average middle class American citizen.   I do hear condemnation of "white privilege" which is such an  insulting label to the millions of white citizens who struggle to stay on their feet every day.   I don't hear a belief in the common man and his abilities, but I hear quite a bit about his or her race and gender and religion and sexual preference -devices for division.   I don't hear concern for people who have lost their manufacturing jobs this past 20 years due to globalization, but I do hear defense of  foreign nationals who are willing to sneak into our country and undercut wages due to their familiarity with near poverty income.  I don't hear about giving the people power, enabling them with liberty,  I only see half truths about how all minority groups are helpless victims.  

     I don't see a sympathy or outcry against the outrageous bias we see in many of the networks and mainstream media and  I don't see regret for colluding with the media  to help Clinton win the election.  The cheating and lack of fair play this past election was clearly defined, but there was no apology or regret from the left.  There was no ownership for these transgressions against the American people.

     Before the election H.Clinton was adamant that Trump and his followers must accept the results of the election.   But witness this past few months !  We've seen the fits, tantrums, riots, and fires and near sedition from the losing side like our country has never seen.  Yet, we hear nothing from Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama condemning these actions.    We hear Chuck Schumer, the "de facto" head of the Democratic party express outrage for an action taken by President Trump which was the exact same action taken by Obama in 2015.  We hear Nancy Pelosi praise the supreme court   justice nominee Neal Gorsuch and in the next breath condemn him for intending to take away women's rights.  Neal Gorsuch was voted UNANIMOUSLY  by both parties only a few years ago to the federal appellate court.  Nothing has changed on his resume but that the country is paying attention and so the Demcrats are posing.  It's always party first.

   I  see no solutions from the Democratic party other than an even larger and more bloated government and a never- ending debt that our children will not see the end of.   They claim to be for the poor, the immigrant, the Muslim, the gay man, the lesbian woman,  the Hispanic, the black man, the weak and the refugee.  I don't see it.   I see that they use them all but I don't see that they stand for them.  They use them by convincing them that the other side hates them, that the other side is against them.  They are the devil whispering in their ear, preying on their fears and lack of confidence.    I know the Republicans are not innocent by any stretch of the imagination., but the Democratic party has become a double talking, deceitful, selfish, spoiled mob of malcontents with much more sympathy for the suffering of foreign nationals and illegal immigrants than for the needs and angst of the American people.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Folding Table Diners

By Chuck Marshall

 Folding Table Diners- A Metaphor 

     There once was a restaurant with excellent food, service, atmosphere,  fair pricing and these unusually solid and beautiful tables.    All who dined there were happy, and all who dined there were satisfied.  It's popularity grew so much that a perpetual line  formed outside of it.  The wait was often very long,  but all who got in agreed "it was worth the wait".  One day a group of diners got tired of waiting and decided they would sneak through the back door of the restaurant and grab a seat to dine and be happy.  The group, got in through the back,  past the kitchen,  and stole to the front and set up a folding table for themselves that they had brought with them.  They sat and waited.  The staff fed them, and served them and treated them graciously.  Then, one of the other diners pointed out to the waitress.  "Waitress, they brought in their own table and didn't wait their turn.  There is a line of people waiting outside to come in.  This is not fair."   The waitress replied that the "folding table diners"  had been there a long time and had gotten use to the excellence of the restaurant and that it would be wrong to send them out the door.  Word spread outside the restaurant that this dramatic event had happened and the kitchen became a major path into the restaurant for those inclined to not wait their turn.  The restaurant management replaced its fine, solid and beautiful tables with the smaller, folding tables to accommodate all the "folding table diners".    What was once a beautiful restaurant with strong, stable tables was now a room full of rickety legged, folding tables that diners could barely eat off of  for fear and doubt in their sturdiness.   It had become like any other restaurant.  Nothing special. 

 Management and the waitresses declared themselves "very fair" and moved the sturdy and beautiful tables to their own dining rooms for themselves and their families to enjoy.  

The End.   

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Mary Tyler Moore: An American Treasure

By Chuck Marshall

                                              Mary Tyler Moore in Ordinary People 1980

*Today I break away from politics.  Readers should keep in mind that "Marshall in the Middle" also reflects my middle class background and experiences so I'd like to indulge that aspect of this blog today and will  probably do so more often in the future.

     Sad news yesterday that Mary Tyler Moore passed away.  I was a huge fan of hers, and watched, "The Mary Tyler Moore"  show with my family as a kid.  She was a beautiful, modern, intelligent, funny and independent woman all while maintaining her femininity.   Her show demonstrated smart stories with an edge that never took themselves too seriously or bashed  you over the head with their politics.   Funny and smart.  An accomplished actress, Mary Tyler Moore was also widely regarded as an astute business woman running MTM productions with her second husband, Grant Tinker that produced a huge list of very popular programs in the 1970's and 80's.   I greatly admired her.  

     Nominated for an Oscar for Ordinary People., she played the icy mother of the lead character, Conrad Jared (played by Timothy Hutton who won the Oscar for  "best supporting actor", a ludicrous title since he was the LEAD actor, not the supporting actor), and after watching that movie I knew her talent had more dimensions than anyone thought.  Always the funny, open protagonist, her character in Ordinary People was nothing like that.  This is one of my favorite movies for what I consider the best acting demonstrated from every single main character; Donald Sutherland, Judd Hirsch, Timothy Hutton and of course Mary Tyler Moore along with superb directing from Robert Redford.   I still don't think its been topped in my mind for acting talent.

     This movie has a lot of personal connections also.  It came out my senior year in high school (1980) when the lead character is also around that age.  I identified with him and his awkward nature, his cynicism, resistance to sports,  frequent masturbation (LOL- a somewhat taboo subject at the time) and a tendency to read too deeply into other people's motives.  My English teacher that year  was EXTREMELY popular and she had a son who was acting out in LA.  He  had auditioned for the part of Conrad's deceased brother (shown in flashbacks).  My English teacher's son was killed that same year that Ordinary People came out, 1980,  in a tragic, senseless shooting.  I remember a friend of mine  read the letter from our teacher to the class regarding the entire tragedy- it was one of the most moving things I have ever heard.  The conclusion went something like this;  "the last thing David said to me was "I love you Mom" so don't wait,  take the time, go to your parents and tell them you love them."   Our class was dead quiet except for girls crying for 10 minutes straight.  I wanted to cry too.   Understandably, our teacher was never the same after that.  Her inspired teaching and efforts diminished by a crazy woman in California.  I witnessed a broken heart.  This was the beginning of an anger in me towards people who find excuses or sympathize with murderers.   The wounds to the heart and soul of the family will never diminish.  It will never really be over for them.      

    So, you see this movie  has enormous connections to me and I think consequently caused me to scrutinize the movie and  Mary Tyler Moore's performance more than I think I might have otherwise.  Everyone always says how "icy" her character was,  and it was, but there's also a window of vulnerability and intelligence and pain and authenticity that Mary Tyler Moore revealed that I don't think any other actress could have  done.   As many of you know, "black and white" don't settle well  with me and her nuanced performance of a complicated woman who lost a son in an accident and nearly lost another to suicide was remarkable.   Mary Tyler Moore offered up the character as more than just "the bad mother" that she could have easily done.  It was done with facial expression and body language by a brilliant woman.   It was an intelligent and moving demonstration of superior acting.  She was nominated for the Oscar as best actress but didn't win.

Goodbye Mary Tyler Moore and rest in peace.  You were a national treasure.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Diversity of Thought

By Chuck Marshall

     The  reaction of the Democratic party, the media, and Hollywood this past two months is revealing and somewhat frightening to me.   How can any American citizen see the results of an election that we all knew was based on the Electoral College majority, then claim their rightful victory because they won the majority popular vote ?   This is like children  playing a game  and when one of the kids starts to see that he or she is certainly going to lose, that the rules no longer apply because they're "not fair".    In addition, the Russian "hacking" did nothing but report on the trickery of the Hillary Clinton campaign, something American journalists should have been doing themselves but chose not to.    The childish tantrum from the Democrats, I hope and pray, is simply the far left members who tend to be just as ignorant and ridiculous as the "mouth breathers" of the far right wing of the Republican party.

     Those with extremist ideas concern me, not just because their hypocrisy is nauseating, but also because -given the right circumstances- they are ripe for oppressive tactics to seize power and control of the government and society in general.  The Media and Hollywood elites especially concern me because it reveals such hostility to any ideas that don't fit in with their world- view.  The media and entertainment industry are a significant influence to us all regarding ideas and philosophies of  life, so this is no minor point.   These people were not elected for any sort of leadership, and I'm feeling more and more that they are a threat to individualism and liberty through their slanted expressions that allow for no contrary opinions.  To disagree with them is to invite "black balling" and a wall of silence and hostility.  "You are less because you don't think like I do".   Case in point, the ridiculous "commercials" produced by Hollywood stars begging for all manner of people to somehow block or resist the new president-elect Donald Trump.  How are average citizens who voted for Donald Trump supposed to take that ?    These Democrats are all about "diversity" with the glaring exception of "diversity of thought",

     In short, as an American citizen of moderate political beliefs I see the Democrats, the media and the Hollywood elite as openly hostile to me and my country as a sovereign nation with secure borders and independent thought.  It's essential we all fight and resist any and all groups that intend repression of thoughts and express hostile judgment towards those that disagree with them.   I encourage Democrats to muzzle the mouths of your more extreme members and settle down to reorganize your overall strategy as a major political party and remember your historic responsibilities as Americans to respect opposing speech,  ideas and ways of life.  Finally, I encourage the Hollywood activists to "once and for all" shut up.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

President Obama and Biden Time

By Chuck Marshall

     This will be my last blog focusing on President Barack Obama.  Looking back at my blog history, I really didn't blog about Obama too much, often in reference but never the focus., so this is oddly unusual for me.   When he started his presidency (for the record, I voted for McCain and Romney in both his elections) I felt resigned to the fact and was hopeful he would make good on some of his promises.  I would say he accomplished very little that will last., and most of his Presidency was essentially "biding time".   The Dems would say that's because the Republicans didn't allow him to do anything.  I would say it's the job of the President to work with Congress to get  something done.  The real power to act and move the country forward past rhetoric comes from Congress and the truth of the matter is an effective President needs to also be a good salesman to Congress and the American people.  Obama was not.   

     Last night was the last speech from Obama to the American people.  President Obama is a beautiful speaker.  His ringing oratory is very nearly a work of art,  in my humble opinion.  The problem is they're just words.  Ringing oratory does not move the country forward.  His speeches are like a slice of a favorite page in a history book to be looked at and admired for their sweetness to the ears and heart but -like candy or a summer fling- they cannot be relied on for significant or lasting effect.     

     So now we come to the end of the Obama presidency and what do we have ?  With the exception of the "execution" of Osama Bin Laden and the securing of our country from any "significant" terrorist attack, there is nothing but a long list of executive orders and federal judge appointments and a horrendous health insurance program,  doomed from the very beginning for its lack of ingenuity or bipartisan support.   This very long list of  executive orders can be removed from the law of the land with the stroke of Donald Trump's pen.  In the end, his Presidency didn't accomplish much and really Obama was just "biding time" as the first African-American President.  While that fact is significant,  I'm afraid that will be the extent of what he is remembered for as well.  

*But you very well may read some of his speeches in history books.  


Thursday, January 5, 2017

It Takes a Thief to Know a Thief

By Chuck Marshall

     I read an article today in the Orlando Sentinel from the Associated Press regarding Trump's appointment for the SEC chairman (aka- the lead cop for Wall Street) and I was somewhat befuddled to read a comment from Senator Sharrod Brown (D) of Ohio who made this comment regarding the Wall Street Attorney;  “It’s hard to see how an attorney who’s spent his career helping Wall Street beat the rap will keep President-elect Trump’s promise to stop big banks and hedge funds from ‘getting away with murder".  Huh ?   In my humble opinion it makes MORE sense to have an attorney to police Wall Street of this nature because he is most familiar with the "tricks" that Wall Street is liable to try. 

     A lot of Trump's picks for his cabinet are of a similar vein.  They're people from the "world" of the category that needs the oversight.  For example, Tillerson (former CEO for Exxon-Mobil) as Secretary of State who is only about 10 times more qualified for the position than Senator John Kerry.  Tillerson  has the experience dealing with and negotiating with world leaders.  John Kerry is a US Senator familiar with the swamp that is DC and- just as we all would suspect-  that familiarity does not translate to anything productive on the world stage.    His negotiating and diplomatic skills have proved less than impressive., in my humble opinion.  In the end, he's been very successful at wasting a lot of time and negotiating NOTHING in our favor.  *Prez Obama, et al should relax though because he was critically successful at not offending anyone.  

     Only in government do you get these idiotic appointments for positions because of their "opinion" on these things.  Another perfect example is the head of the Dept. of Energy., Steven Chu.  Mr. Chu has abundant experience in physics, even winning the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1997.  The man is truly brilliant... in physics !   Exactly how does that qualify him to run the department of energy ?  I suppose the fact that he's Asian especially caused excitement in the Obama administration as they chose him.   The left is aghast that Trump picked "lilly white" Rick Perry.  Rick ran the state of Texas for nearly a decade - seemingly successfully- and is consequently  familiar with moving things forward over a large organization.  Who is better qualified ?  Mr Chu or Mr. Perry ?  I choose Perry.  

     I am not necessarily enthusiastic about all of Trump's cabinet picks, but I'll give him the benefit of the doubt regarding all this.  The historic choices of Presidents to please certain groups and to appoint "window dressing" to vital  positions is absurd and needs to stop.  Maybe he will succeed in draining the swamp, after all ?