Caught My Eye…

You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else. – Albert Einstein

Disclaimer: Don’t try this at home; I am a professional blogger…

Welcome to the big show to end the week! This is the first “Caught My Eye” of 2016, and the 280th “Caught My Eye” of all time.

If you are a first-time visitor, “Caught My Eye” is posted right here every Friday morning! This is when I take a look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. I often throw in a touch of sarcasm to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little – maybe both.

Today’s topics include:

  • Real ID
  • Cascade County Attorney
  • GF Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Obamacare Vote
  • CNN’s Town Hall Meeting
  • Natural Born Citizens
  • Plus Steve Daines, Ryan Zinke, Jon Tester, and Tim Fox are all mentioned in today’s column.

Real ID = Real Paranoia:

Back in 2014, I wrote about Real ID and the fight states (like Montana) are having with the Feds over complying with it. At that time I said:

I imagine in the not too distant future we’ll probably have a national identification card with a chip embedded in it. That way drones can more easily find us…

I was joking, but if you hear some of our elected officials speak it appears their goal is to make sure you are scared to death of the big bad federal government and vote for them because they will protect us. Here’s the latest:

U.S. Senator Steve Daines plans to introduce a bill to repeal the Real ID Act. Wow – of all the stuff he could be doing for Montana, he picks this. Montana Attorney General Tim Fox, according to the Associated Press, wants us all to know that the enhanced security measures included in Montana’s new driver’s licenses are not meant to comply with federal standards that threaten to create an “Orwellian national ID system.”

Good grief. Daines and Fox, as well as others who are freaking out over these security requirements, are paranoid. Next we’ll hear Daines and Fox talking about the Federal government and chemtrails. The recent press conference held by Daines and Fox had one main objective and that was to get Tim Fox, who is up for reelection, some publicity.

If push comes to shove over Real ID, the Feds can win. Politicians publicly say they are against the Federal government, but you won’t see them reject the tons of money that come from the Feds each year.

Freedom is not free – that’s something that Daines and Fox do not understand.

Cascade County Attorney:

The Cascade County Attorney’s office run by John Parker is a mess, and that may be an understatement.

First, under Parker’s leadership, the county mishandled a case against Adam Sanchez Jr. Back in August 2014, I wrote that Parker should resign over that mess.

Recently the Great Falls Tribune reported that the Montana Supreme Court Commission on Practice has filed a disciplinary complaint against Parker in response to issues with unlicensed attorneys practicing for the office under the “student practice rule.” It is alleged that Parker basically allowed unlicensed attorneys who failed the bar exam multiple times to represented themselves as deputy county attorneys.

Parker has denied the allegations, according to the Tribune.

It’s really past the time for Parker to go. He’s gone stale in the job and is making too many errors. He has lost the public’s confidence.

GF Area Chamber of Commerce:

Three cheers to the Great Falls Area Chamber of Commerce for hiring Brad Livingston as their new president and CEO. (Source) Livingston was a former Brigadier General in the Montana National Guard. I have worked with Brad on several occasions, and I always found him to be very professional and knowledgeable.

I hope Livingston will take a long hard look at the Chamber’s Montana Defense Alliance committee. It needs a lot of improvement.

Obamacare Vote:

It did not take long for Republican U.S. Senator Steve Daines and Republican U.S. Representative Ryan Zinke to send out press statements applauding the U.S. House for the vote (the 62nd time) to repeal Obamacare. It was red meat for their base of supporters.

I think it was a waste of time and money to have 62 votes on the issue.

As suspected, Democrat U.S. Senator Jon Tester saw it differently. He said in a statement, “It’s a new year, but folks in Congress are continuing their same old attack on Montanans’ access to health care. Instead of focusing on improving access to care for hard working families it seems the U.S. House has chosen another round of election year politics.”

I have to agree with Tester on this one.

What was really interesting is that the boys and girls at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) were not going to let this vote go by without trying to weasel a few bucks from people. They sent out a “Breaking” email with the subject: “Obamacare REPEALED.” I’m sure the GOP did (or will) do the same. It’s what they do.

The DCCC asked me to donate from $5 to $250 so they can raise $200,000 in their Protect Obamacare Campaign.

Obamacare was not repealed. For it to be repealed Obama would have to sign the bill. Or if he vetoes it, Congress could vote to override the veto. That won’t happen.

I’m kind of hoping that Obama uses this opportunity like Brian Schweitzer did when he vetoed some bills with a branding iron. I doubt we see Obama use a branding iron, but I hope he comes up with a really neat stunt when he vetoes the bill.

Maybe flushing the bill down the toilet would be a good start…

CNN’s Town Hall Meeting:

Whew…last night during the CNN Town Hall meeting with President Obama about guns, my doorbell rang. I was sure it was Obama’s people coming to take my guns.

These are serious times people – that would have been the perfect time to do it.

It was UPS delivering a package. No, it was not more guns or ammo for my bunker!

The NRA was invited to the CNN Town Hall meeting, and their headquarters was only a few miles away from the event last night, but they declined. Chickens.

Maybe the NRA representative would not have passed the background check to be that close to the President. Background checks do work! I’ve been in charge of Presidential events and during one event I was briefed by the Secret Service that some people who were invited to be on the stage with the President had failed the background check. #Awkward

Applause to CNN for the Town Hall meeting. It won’t do any good, but many of us are talking about making our country safer and that is a good thing.

Natural Born Citizen:

U.S. Senator and Presidential candidate Ted Cruz was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His mother is an American citizen and his father was born in Cuba.

There’s some talk about him not being eligible to be President because of this. The constitution (Art II, Sec. 5) states, “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President…”

There are a few arguments on both sides about the issue. It’s a little like Montana politicians shouting from the mountaintop that they are fourth or fifth generation Montanans – in the big scheme of things, it won’t matter. Yippee ki-yay!

One of Cruz’s competitors in the Presidential race, U.S. Senator Rand Paul, was asked about it and stated, “You know, I think without question he is qualified and would make the cut to be prime minister of Canada.”

Many people cannot stand Ted Cruz. If he moved back to his native country, I think we would all be better off.

One More Thing:

Don’t forget to stretch…

## END ##


One Comment

  1. If it makes you feel any better, the Park County Attorney’s office is a mess too.

    First, under Nels Swandal’s leadership, Daniel Colvin got off the hook for attempted deliberate homicide because local officials mistakenly released a key piece of evidence. The case was dismissed by the district court. Second, when Swandal’s office appealed the dismissal, the appeal was returned by the Montana Supreme Court because the documents were not properly bound. Ouch! AG Fox intervened and is trying to get the dismissal reversed.

    To add insult to injury, Colvin is back in jail on a felony assault charge after allegedly threatening a man with a knife.

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