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 !   


https://www.conventionofstates.com/




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