Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The Real Reasons For Boehner's Resignation

A Murky Political Water

In the Book of Leviticus a priest would confess all the sins of the Israelites over the head of a goat, and then drive it into the wilderness. Symbolically this bore their sins away on the day of Atonement. That symbolism seems to be rearing its head in the latest political fall-guy in our nation's capitol.
A Republican freind of mine, active in the party on a deep level, recently came running up to me. He was absolutely giddy about the recent resignation of Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, John Boehner.
This euphoria is widespread. A recent video shows a room full of Republican voters interrupting a speech by Republican Senator and presidential candidate Marco Rubio. Why? They gave a standing ovation at the news that the GOP House Speaker had been forced to resign. As the caption for the video says: "2016 candidate Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, told conservatives gather at the Value Voters Summit that House Speaker John Boehner would step down from his post in Congress -- and the audience went wild." 

VIDEO LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InCSlNlylHQ

They simply didn't have the numbers 

 Unfortunately, there is no clear answer to why removing Boehner is some kind of victory. In a stark example, conservative writer Erick Erickson penned a column titled "Why John Boehner Had To Go." But the writer fails to actually name or describe anything the speaker did wrong. His only argument is nebulous and nonsensical. The accusation is that Boehner held his own party "in contempt."

The facts are basic and clear. Republicans failed to block Obama’s transformation of this country. But a major statistic is consistently being missed. There are not enough conservative votes to derail filibusters from Democrats or to counter vetoes from the White House. "The idea that this can be overcome through sheer force of will (the argument conservatives are making in favor of another shutdown fight) is just another version of [the "Big Lie"]," writes popular blogger RETIII.

A recent Fox News poll unwittingly captures this problem. 60 percent of Republicans feel betrayed by their party, according to the news outlet. But that 66 percent does not believe the GOP did all it could to block Obama’s agenda. The poll asks why respondents think their party leaders did not rise to the ocassion: Choices included: they didn’t really want to stop Obama; they weren’t smart enough; they would rather fight each other. But the poll doesn’t even offer respondents the option of choosing the actual problem. reason. Structurally, Republicans are too short of necessary votes.

 Flawed Reasoning

In a WSJ/NBC poll "72% of Republican primary voters said they were dissatisfied with the ability of Boehner and GOP Senate leader Mitch McConnell to achieve Republican goals." But that phrase - failure "to achieve Republican goals" - is loaded with flaws. Why So Much Anger? A large number of Republicans, including presidential candidates, say Boehner failed to stop Obamacare (something he alone does not have the power to do). He has also been accused of helping The Affordable Care Act.

Mike Huckabee said, "When people sent [Republicans] here, they didn't send them to give the president more power on Obamacare[.]"


 Let's ponder that further for a bit. The right has enacted complete legislative obstruction. They oversaw a government shut-down. They voted to repeal the massive healthcare law more than 50 times. In addition to the two lawsuits before the Supreme Court, others are pending. And scores of candidates have used the podium of the next presidential election for the fight. Nonetheless, Boehner haters are incensed, fueled by the notion that he has worked with the President to strengthen Obamacare.

Reality and Fantasy

 A scapegoat is a person or animal which takes on the sins of others, or is unfairly blamed for problems. John Boehner and the Republicans overall never had the votes to impose Republican policies. As Phillip Bump notes, the only "compromises" Boehner made "have been between reality and fantasy." Is there some kind of "Boehner Rule" or "Hastert Rule" that makes Democratic House votes null and void?

Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Look at the Enduring, Positive Reputation of Troy McClain

by Michael Strickland

There is so much great material about Troy McClain that can be found around the net. This community, national and world leader has created a buzz around the fact that he touches the lives of countless people.

An article from Mascioli Entertainment corporation sums him up his background and unique story of triumph:

 Troy McClain was born in Anchorage, Alaska in 1971. As the son of a construction worker, Troy's family moved from job to job, and in small towns and fishing villages like Kwethluk, Bethel, and Yakutat. Like other kids who moved from school to school, Troy was often in trouble, and he settled disputes with his fists. 

 In 1984, the McClain's adopted an Eskimo girl who after contracting spinal meningitis as an infant was left developmentally delayed and profoundly deaf. Troy's baby-sister, DoraLynn, became his best friend and would provide constant motivation for the rest of Troy's life. 

Follow Michael's board Troy McClain Fans on Pinterest.

 In 1989, Troy's mother bought him a book that changed his life. The Art of the Deal by Donald Trump became Troy's inspiration to work hard and to be able to provide for his family so they would never have to worry about money. He promised his mother he would meet Mr. Trump someday. That year, Troy graduated from Mead High School in Spokane, and he put his promise in print. "Trump, I'm coming!" He circled it and mailed it to Mr. Trump after graduation.

In 2013, The Nonprofit Center has lined up some star power to call attention to Idaho Gives. A newly released public service announcement (PSA) features various notable Idaho personalities urging Idahoans to give generously: Gov. Butch Otter and First Lady Lori Otter, NFL All-Pro and former Idaho State Bengal Jared Allen, Olympic gold medalist Kristin Armstrong, Academy Award winning actress Patty Duke, critically acclaimed author Alan Heathcock, and “The Apprentice” star/entrepreneur Troy McClain. It is no wonder that so many people connect with his powerful journey.

"One of Donald Trump's favorite contestants from NBC's original series of The Apprentice, Troy McClain has gone on to...
Posted by Troy McClain on Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Meet "The Scotsman" Facilitator, Trainer and Business Coach Martin Pow

What do you get when you mix a kilt, the world's most prestigious accounting firm, and Mongolia?

Your answer: Martin Pow.

I first met Martin in September when he visited The McClain Companies to do some training.

Martin has visited many countries with his career working for British, American, Japanese and Canadian Global organizations. Martin returned in the summer of 2014 after working in Mongolia establishing a new Member Firm for Deloitte in a challenging and exciting emerging marketplace.

In one exercise, Martin asked the group to identify the best communicator in the room.

I was picked. Uh oh, I thought to myself.

Martin has a passion for facilitation, training and coaching others and uses his unique Scottish accent and style to gain trust and build relationships that are trustful and meaningful.

The Deloitte, Mongolia page from March 2014, says:

Congratulations Martin Pow Deloitte Onch's Partner, Enterprise Risk Management Learning Leader. Who just become 12th member of the National Academy Of Governance Mongolia.

Congratulations Martin Pow Deloitte Onch's Partner, Enterprise Risk Management Learning Leader. Who just become 12th member of the National Academy Of Governance Mongolia.
Posted by Deloitte, Mongolia on Thursday, March 13, 2014
Martin is the Deputy Leader for the Enterprise Risk Canadian team for evolving and establishing Risk Management and Quality Improvement across the Canada Deloitte Practices and is known as a leading Executive “facilitator” for risk management and Internal Audit sessions across Canada.

Martin also heads up the Canadian Deloitte Learning and Leadership Academy which provides training and facilitation services to Clients. Martin brings significant risk management and Internal Audit experience from senior roles with global organizations such as Standard Life, where he spent 15 years in the UK including roles as a data center operations manager and IT auditor; Citibank, where he was responsible for their EMEA IT internal audit function; and as the Global IT Auditor for Fuji bank’s global operations.

Martin briefly held the position of Global Head of Internal Audit and advisory services for Placer Dome until they were acquired by Barrick Gold and then returned back to Deloitte in a more senior role. Martin has been a presenter at numerous conferences.
An example of some of the vast topics Martin covers can be found at a 2011 symposium in Vancouver called: Risk Assessment Workshops - Reaching Consensus.

Here is a sample of discussions covered: Risk Assessment & Treatment • Linking the steps in the risk assessment process • Conduct a risk interview before a workshop • Develop risk statements • Understand the steps in planning and delivering a risk workshop • Establish a Likelihood and Consequence matrix • Risk Identification • Mechanisms for Gathering Risks • Conducting Risk-based Interviews • Preparing Risk Statements • Risk Analysis • Likelihood & Consequence Matrices • Prioritizing risks • The Risk workshop • Objectives of a risk workshop • When to hold them • Who should be represented • How long should they be • What are the outcomes • Risk Evaluation • Risk Tolerance • Review of Controls • Risk Treatment • Mechanisms to Treat Risk • Controls and Countermeasures • Facilitator “Magic” • Adult learning • Role of the facilitator • Facilitator challenges & solutions • Evaluations • Preparations •  Tools and Tips

Sunday, September 20, 2015

A Complete Beatles Experience Rocks the Nampa Civic Center

by Michael Strickland

For our date night last night, my wife and I had a journey through the British Musical Invasion.

I am always skeptical when I hear that a tribute band is playing. I've seen so many that fall far short of any kind of holistic, worthwhile experience that does justice to the megaband they are recreating.   But Britain's Finest put on an classy, entertaining and very memorable show at the Nampa, Idaho Civic Center.

Their style was tasteful and energetic. Britain's Finest truly captured the spirit of the Beatles. The youthful camaraderie and enthusiasm of the Fab Four was presented with great attention to detail, a truly authentic and fun experience.

Britain’s Finest delivered a non-scripted show that captured the spontaneity, charm, wit, and youthful vibrance of The Beatles. Complete with fresh, energetic rawness and a video and slideshow backdrop of  historic footage from the 60s and 70s, I felt as if I was getting a glimpse of what one of their live performances must have been like.

Hailing from California, Britain's finest produced well done recreations of those familiar songs the world has come to love. Off-the-cuff humor and the cheeky banter between songs came across poised and well-timed. Their costumes, accents, nonverbal behaviors and general demeanor showed a ton of preparation. The musicians "live" their characters.

The songs and costumes spanned the range from the Mop Top, Sgt. Pepper's or the Abbey Road, to the Let It Be eras.The chemistry between the lads was apparent and and contagious. The  group left the audience both delighted and in awe of the evening that "brought back" four men from Liverpool.

It was nice meeting KJ Mac at the Britain's Finest concert. Here is my review: http://bit.ly/1iZJWMG
Posted by Michael Strickland on Monday, September 21, 2015

The group interacted with the audience, took and played requests and invited us all to stand up and dance to "Twist and Shout," Solos were offered for each of the four larger-than-life personas, John, Paul, George and Ringo. My favorite was the acoustic-only version of Lennon's "Hide Your Love Away." After the encore, of "Hey Jude," the crowd gave the band a standing ovation.

Their well-played roles, with great resemblance to the Lads themselves, kept people smiling throughout the show. It was a  wonderful night filled with sing-alongs and joy. The appeal of the music, words, and vivid visuals can transcend all audiences and can speak to any age.

If you're a Beatles fan who always wished you could have seen them, Britain's Finest is the gig. If you've seen the real Beatles and want to relive the magic, then this show can help to transport you back to that wonderful moment in time.

"So let me introduce to you: The Act You’ve Known for All These Years ... "

Saturday, September 19, 2015

The Cruisin Biker Wear 2016 Calendar Is Coming Soon!

Meridian, Idaho business promotes charity events and rides through FREE biker beauty calender 

Veronica Marie from the 2015 Calender
A picture of a motorcycle can bring to mind visions of being on the open road, wind screaming through your hair, tires eating up mile after mile of glorious asphalt. 

Imagine what you receive when you mix these experiences, feelings and visions with some of the most beautiful women in the west.

An all-star creative team including Amanda Woods of Woods on Fire Innovative Beauty, Photographer Lenny Wheeler and Crusin Biker Wear Owner Bree Walker is back with yet another legendary calendar.

Driven by sheer horsepower, their work reminds me of the art of Picasso, the poetry of Yeats and the music of Handel ... all in the backdrop of a classic James Dean-style attitude.

Last year'signing was legendary. You could feel the spirit throughout the room: the community, the beautiful women, the amazing motorcycles, the enthusiasm and fascinating stories from all the people who put this brilliant work of art together.     

In the Ballad of Easy Rider, the Byrds sang: The river flows / It flows to the sea / Wherever that river goes / That's where I want to be / Flow river flow / Let your waters wash down Take me from this road / To some other town. 

Let that town be Meridian Idaho as you visit Cruisin Biker Wear!

With Hair by Kristi Wherry, Wardrobe by Unique Irish, and Production Management by Tiffany Larocque Model/Actress And Production Management, Cruisin Biker Wear is the Treasure Valley's motorcyclist resource. Their annual calendar will come out again soon. The calendar is a celebration of the resilience of the human body and spirit. Each month features breathtaking, high-quality photographs of beautiful models on motorcycles. Each model and bike has a wonderful, inspiring story behind them.  

"The connection to place, to the land, the wind, the sun, stars, the moon... it sounds romantic, but it's true - the visceral experience of motion, of moving through time on some amazing machine - a few cars touch on it, but not too many compared to motorcycles. I always felt that any motorcycle journey was special."  - Antoine Predock
It's a beautiful weekend for a calendar production! Cruisin Biker Wear 2016 Calendar coming soon!
Posted by Tiffany LaRocque on Saturday, September 19, 2015
Bree said that her main goal is to bring the biker community together and to help those in need:

The rides that we put in the calendar are mostly rides for charity. We all raise a lot of money and are very passionate about helping our community whether it be for Vets, cancer etc. Getting the word out via the calendar and our website where we list all the upcoming rides and events, gets more bikers out to these events, which equals more money raised. And I can't say enough good things about Amanda Woods (mentioned above) Lenny of Lenny Wheeler Photography.  I couldn't have done this without their support! I feel very blessed to have the team I do!

Cruisin Biker Wear's calender also provides you with information about local events including bike rallies, toy runs, motorcycle events, poker runs, bike weeks and motorcycle rides.

Whether it's a ride to the mountains or a charity event, the Cruisin Biker Wear will give you the schedule on where and when to be for all the motorcycle action.

When the events are over, revisit the calender for fantastic photos of gorgeous biker women and beautiful bikes!

Following Plagiarist Disgusted Reader on the Idaho State Journal Politics Blog

Disgusted Reader is a character who frequently posts on the Idaho State Journal blog. He is also obsessed with casting the first stone.

But sometimes when we complain about others, to excess, we reveal our own flaws.

Below is the first instance of plagiarism that I caught from this rabid blogger back in 2008.

He hates Obama with a passion, and in a tirade, his post begins:
First President to refuse to show a valid Birth Certificate.  And then we get to see one that has no problems, so why did he refuse to show it?First President to apply for college aid as a foreign student, then deny he was a foreigner. First President to have a social security number from a state he’s never lived in. First President to Preside over a Cut to the Credit Rating of the United States Government. First President to Violate the War Powers Act ...

Read the full post here.

When I pointed this out, his explanation was:
You sure do love super hunky and newworldorderwar websites, don’t you? So, are they the first to post it or are they the plagiarists? Inquiring minds want to know? I’d also like to know how you know, just color me suspicious. Mine came from a friends personal email with no accompanying URL and I checked each line to see whether I agreed or disagreed with it and yes, I edited my version of it as I didn’t like the way it was written.
Nonetheless, the majority of words, phrases and sentences he reposted are found verbatim in other places. That would not get past an elementary basic writing course. 

Seven years later, I caught his plagarism again. Commenting on a Sept. 12, 2015  story called: It’s complicated: the relationship between religion and politics, by Neal Larson, Disgusted Reader writes (EXCERPT):
WHEN – he refused to disclose who donated money to his election campaign, as other candidates had done, people said it didn’t matter.
WHEN – he received endorsements from people like Louis Farrakhan, Muramar Kaddafi and Hugo Chavez, people said it didn’t matter.
 WHEN – it was pointed out that he was a total newcomer and had absolutely no experience at anything except community organizing, people said it didn’t matter.
 WHEN – he chose friends and acquaintances such as Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn who were revolutionary radicals, people said it didn’t matter.
 WHEN – his voting record in the Illinois Senate and in the U.S. Senate came into question, people said it didn’t matter. WHEN – he refused to wear a flag lapel pin and did so only after a public outcry, people said it didn’t matter.
Neal Larson of KID 590AM & 92.1FM
Unfortunately, these words are found several places on the net and his writing gives no attribution. Read his full post and my response here

LINK: http://bit.ly/1QW5DI9

Here is his explanation this time:
I and a bunch of bloggers wrote it over time on a bunch of blogs. That plagiarism? We told anyone who wanted to copy and paste away. No patent, no nada. ... Welcome to the Internet where rules don’t exist because, “what difference would it make?”
I wonder what policies the Idaho State Journal has for those who copy the work of other writers and place it on the ISJ site unattributed.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Proven Success With Troy McClain: Revisiting the First Season of Donald Trump's Apprentice

by Michael Strickland

There is nothing like going to work every day at a club filled with high energy, motivation, success and extra smiles and joy to go around.

first met Troy McClain a few weeks ago. I can safely say that I am amazed at this experience of working at his awesome company. With Donald Trump's popularity booming, it is fascinating to take a look at this Idaho legend who first rose to the big stage on one of Trump's reality TV shows.

"Who would have thought a country boy from Idaho could go on national television, be seen by 28 million Americans every week and still appreciate the simple things like fly fishing on a backcountry stream?" Troy's official website reads. "That is Troy McClain. Troy’s rise to prominence happened as he climbed Donald Trump’s ladder on NBC’s 'The Apprentice,' advancing all the way to the finals."

Troy is a ball of energy and enthusiasm who seeks to utilize his success to Give First to his community and to those who need help the most.

With two little words, a flick of the hand, and that famously coiffed comb-over, real estate tycoon Donald Trump parlayed his financial success into a hugely popular reality television series based on personal and corporate intrigue, according to the product description of the first DVD set. Billed as "the ultimate job interview," The Apprentice lives up to its acclaim as 16 candidates vie for top position at one of Trump's companies and an accompanying $250,000 salary.

Beating all odds, Troy rose to the top from the original 250,000 contestants, landing second only to 
Harvard MBA Kwame Jackson.

Divided into two teams based on gender, the contestants competed against each other in assignments designed to test their business acumen, from selling lemonade on the streets of Manhattan to managing an NYC pedicab company. The team that made the most money won both a prize and immunity, while the losing team faced Trump and his assistants George Ross and Carolyn Kepcher in the dreaded boardroom, where one member is was then ceremoniously dismissed. 

Even more impressive is the number of people who have told me that they love Troy not only because he is successful, but honest, moral and ethical. His belief in Giving First finds Troy doing a tremendous amount of charity work in Idaho and around the world.

In 1989 my mother bought me a book: "The Art of the Deal" by #DonaldTrump. I read it cover to cover and promised her...
Posted by Troy McClain on Wednesday, September 9, 2015


Reveiwer Kathleen C. Fennessy gave her take on this classic: "Who'd have predicted The Apprentice would become such a hit? (Donald Trump aside).  And not just any hit, but one of the top-rated programs of the 2004 television season. A number of reality shows had crashed and burned before The Apprentice made its debut. Just as it was starting to seem as if the heyday of the non-scripted program was coming to an end--not counting American Idol -- NBC's entrant into an overcrowded field was as an out-of-the-gate, must-see phenomenon." 

Who is Troy McClain?

Called a “Living Energy Drink” by the Idaho Press Tribune, Troy focuses on growing people and businesses to great heights in his role as CEO of The McClain Companies. He has spearheaded a number of startup, turnaround and growth companies. Troy's philosophy is: The best way to get ahead is to give back. An international speaker, he has collaborated with the top names in business, including Warren Buffet, and has toured with Tony Robbins, Jack Canfield (of Chicken Soup for the Soul) and many other influential leaders, athletes and entertainers.  
Troy has served and been honored by Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter, former U.S. Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne, the Kellogg Innovation Network, Special Olympics International and a long list of others.  
Troy lives in Boise, Idaho, with Crystal, his wife of 11 years. He serves as the guardian of his special needs, adopted sister he affectionately calls “Kid Sis.” When not on business travel, Troy also fishes, hunts, practices Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and spends quality time with loved ones. His enthusiasm, experience and determination have enabled Troy to live “the American dream,” pulling himself and his family out of poverty through hard work and street smarts. Troy McClain works tirelessly to make that dream the reality for everyone whose life he touches.
Troy is forging ahead with new ventures.  He invites you to join him on his journey. See below: 
Many of you have noticed an increased level of activity on my page. First, thank you for following and supporting my...
Posted by Troy McClain on Tuesday, September 15, 2015