Caught My Eye…

Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something. – Plato

Get your coffee! Welcome to the big show to end the week “Caught My Eye” (CME). We’re coming to you from The Western Word world headquarters which is just a few (thousand) miles west of Aleppo, Syria! (Map for Gary Johnson)

If you are a first-time visitor, CME 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.

Topics this week include Zinke’s First Campaign Ad, Municipal Court & contempt, TWW picks the winning candidates (so far), Commander-in-Chief Forum, Colin Powell’s Advice, Charter Spectrum cable TV, and much more!

Zinke’s First Campaign Ad:

Congressman Ryan Zinke released his first campaign ad on Thursday. It’s called “Secure” and it’s a 30-second ad.

It never mentions that he was a Navy SEAL in the military. Just kiddin…

Zinke, a Republican, is running for his second term. His opponents are Democrat Denise Juneau and Libertarian Mike Fellows. You can watch the Zinke ad HERE.

The ad starts with the words “Montana’s Navy Seal” on the screen which is showing a military uniform with military ribbons. Then the words “Two Bronze Stars” is shown on the screen. After that “Commander at SEAL Team Six” is shown. Zinke’s campaign website is shown and then the words “Re-elect Ryan Zinke, Montana’s U.S. Congressman.”

Here is the transcript:

VOICEOVER: “There is one Navy Seal in Congress. Montana sent him there.
“Two Bronze Stars. Commander at SEAL Team Six.”
“Ryan Zinke, a deep understanding of the threat of ISIS and al-Qaeda, and a life dedicated to keeping them away from our families.
“We were smart enough to send Zinke to Congress, it’s now vital that we keep him there.”
ZINKE: “I’m Ryan Zinke and I approve this message.”

Overall I like the ad. It’s a strong ad and Zinke is going with his strength (veteran, SEAL, etc.) right out of the gate in this campaign. I do have to wonder if Montanans might be growing tired of Zinke the SEAL. Although it’s honorable, Montanans may be wanting to learn more about Zinke.

Zinke should be a strong favorite to win re-election, so he may be able to use his military service for the foreseeable future.

I give Zinke’s “Secure” campaign ad a seven out of 10 (7/10).

If the Election were held today:

Almost every week until Election Day (mostly on Friday), I will pick who I think is winning eight key races from President on down to state-wide races in Montana. This does not mean they will be the winners in November or that I am personally supporting them, I just think they are winning their contests at this particular time. These picks are made from what I am hearing, seeing, and from my vast experience in the political world!

If the election were held today, I think the winners would be:

  • President: Clinton
  • MT House At-Large: Zinke
  • MT Governor: Bullock
  • MT Secretary of State: Lindeen
  • MT Attorney General: Fox
  • MT State Auditor: Laslovich
  • MT OPI: Arntzen
  • MT Supreme Court Justice #3: Juras

If you see any of the races differently, let me know in the comment section. Unlike the Billings Gazette, here at The Western Word we allow comments.


I happened to notice in the Great Falls Tribune’s record of the Municipal Court in Great Falls there have been several people charged with contempt lately. So I did a little research.

Over a recent one week period, the records show that approximately 14 people were charged with contempt. Most received a small sentence of a day or two in jail. Some received harsher sentences.

According to THIS WEBSITE, contempt of court refers to actions which either defy a court’s authority, cast disrespect on a court, or impede the ability of the court to perform its function.

Of course, maybe the judge was just in a bad mood…

Commander-in-Chief Forum:

I watched the Commander-in-Chief forum Wednesday night on NBC. In the forum, presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were (separately) asked defense, military and veterans questions for about 30 minutes.

I served in the military for almost 12 years, and then I advised a U.S. Senator about military, defense, and veterans issues for another 12 years.

I was not impressed with either candidate.

Sure Clinton has more experience about the inner workings of our government and world events, and Trump would bring a fresh perspective to the table from a businessman’s angle, but I have trust issues with both candidates. I think both lack good judgment in some areas. Both seemed out of place.

During the forum, Trump would try to answer veterans or military questions and basically say, “Blah, blah, blah, blah, everyone will get a pony, and it will be great.”

As for Clinton, she seemed a little stiff, but so did Margaret Thatcher…

Nonetheless, the cold hard fact is that Clinton or Trump will be the next President of the United States.

Colin Powell’s Advice:

It kind of made me giggle when the House Democrats released an email exchange between Hillary Clinton and former Secretary of State Colin Powell. It happened right after Clinton became Secretary of State (SOS). She asked Powell about using a Blackberry as SOS and Powell responded with:

I didn’t have a BlackBerry. What I did do was have a personal computer that was hooked up to a private phone line (sounds ancient.) So I could communicate with a wide range of friends directly without it going through the State Department servers. I even used it to do business with some foreign leaders and some of the senior folks in the Department on their personal email accounts.

Powell went on to say this:

However, there is a real danger. If it is public that you have a BlackBerry and it it [sic] government and you are using it, government or not, to do business, it may become an official record and subject to the law. Reading about the President’s BB rules this morning, it sounds like it won’t be as useful as it used to be. Be very careful. I got around it all by not saying much and not using systems that captured the data.

Just because Powell used a private computer to do official work does not make what Clinton did correct. It does show that others did some of the same things that Clinton did. The fact is that most government employees have and use private email and sometimes discuss government issues in private emails. Yes, that includes classified material.

Charter Spectrum Cable:

It was only $3.00. My cable company, Charter Spectrum, has (or had) a “Sports Pak” that I subscribed to that gave me, among other sports channels, the SEC Networks (where many great football teams’ games are shown). A couple years ago those channels were cut off, so I called them and told them I have the “Sports Pak” and they quickly reinstated the two SEC Network channels. No problem. A week or so ago, it happened again, so I called Charter and was told they no longer have the “Sports Pak” but they can give me the SEC Network channels for an extra $3 per month (plus other channels many I already have).

I told them that I already had the SEC Network with the “Sports Pak” for which I pay an extra $9 a month. They said it must have changed. I said I was not informed about the change. I asked if they could just give it back to me since I expected to have it with the “Sports Pak.”

The answer was a cold-hearted “No” unless I paid more.

Usually at the end of calls to Charter, they have a survey to get feedback from customers. The woman told me to stay on the line for the survey and I said, “I can’t wait to take it!” After that the line went dead.

So Charter Spectrum – you’ve pissed me off. By the way, your commercials suck, too.

DirecTV with NFL Sunday Ticket is looking better. NFL Sunday Ticket is free the first year…

One More Thing:

Go Chiefs – beat the Chargers!

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4 thoughts on “Caught My Eye…

  1. I think that you are under estimating the Trump effect in Montana. The Trump effect is powered by groups who are very concerned about supreme court appointments. Pro life voters and gun owners are very concerned about the supreme court and should be. I am a proud member of those groups and would crawl to the polls over broken glass to vote Republican. I expect that I am not alone.

    • Dave – I do think Trump will win Montana, maybe I was not clear on the Presidential race. For the race between Clinton/Trump I was writing about the whole United States. At this time I think Trump will lose the election. He has made a little progress recently, but I still believe he is losing. Thanks, -JmB

      • I only think about Montana. Nationally we are at mercy of urban states and who knows how that goes.

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