The Spectacle Blog

The Problem with Houston

By on 10.16.14 | 4:59PM

Following up on Emily's post about Houston Mayor Annise Parker arranging for subpoenas to various churches ordering them to produce their sermons regarding any reference to the city's transgendered bathroom ordinance, I wonder what holy hell would have been wrought had those subpoenas had been issued for any of the city's mosques.

If the FBI isn't allowed to monitor mosques where men are recruited to fight for al Qaeda and ISIS and plot attacks against American civilians then why should the Mayor of Houston be allowed to monitor sermons that might include an unkind word or two for her?

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Obama Admin Turns Blind Eye as Venezuela Elected to UN Security Council

By on 10.16.14 | 4:00PM

Venezuela was elected to the UN Security Council without a peep of opposition from the Obama Administration.

While the Bush Administration saw to it that Venezuela was persona non grata at the UN, it is clearly not a priority in this White House. Well, Obama did once call Hugo Chavez "mi amigo." Hugo Chavez may be dead, but his policies aren't. His daughter, Maria Gabriela, is the country's Deputy Ambassador to the UN. EvenThe New York Times took the Maduro regime to task only last month for jailing opposition leaders, utilizing the army against unarmed protesters and putting greater restrictions on the media warning that it should not get a seat on the Security Council.

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Nashville Police Refuse Secret Service Illegal Search of Obama Critic

By on 10.16.14 | 4:00PM

It’s rare to receive a 911 call from the Secret Service, but that’s exactly what happened in January 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee, according to a new letter to the House Oversight Committee.

The Secret Service agents had gone to a Nashville resident’s home to investigate Facebook comments the Tennessean had made against the President.

Unsurprisingly, the Obama critic — who hadn’t violated any laws — wasn’t willing to come out of his home and be investigated by the federal government.

“He shoved the door in our face and went around the corner,” the Secret Service agent told the 911 operator. “Possibly, he had a gun in his hands.”

Of course, slamming a door in someone’s face isn’t against the law, and neither is having a weapon. The man, who’s a law-abiding gun owner, made no threats. He only demanded to see their warrant.

They didn’t bother to get one, but that inconvenient fact didn’t stop them. One of the agents asked the Nashville police sergeant to “wave a piece of paper” in order to fool the resident into believing they actually had obtained a warrant.

So, let’s recount this, shall we?

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CDC Won’t Halt Flights Because It Might Harm Fledgling Economies

By on 10.16.14 | 3:17PM

The CDC doesn't seem especially willing to contend with the subject of Ebola virus transportation via air travel. Not to a nurse calling the CDC with potential symptoms of Ebola requesting to take a weekend getaway to Ohio, and most likely to Congress in today's emergency Congressional Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on the Ebola outbreak, featuring CDC director Dr. Tom Frieden, NIAID director Dr. Anthony Fauci, and other directors from the HHS, DHS and FDA. Although Rep. Tim Murphy is reportedly going to try.

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Houston Mayor Totally Didn’t Mean That Subpoena Thing, You Guys

By on 10.16.14 | 2:51PM

I'll admit, when I first heard about the Houston mayor's subpoenas for sermons given by religious leaders on basically any topic related, in any way, to transgendered bathroom, I thought it was a joke. There's no way an American bureaucrat could be so shortsighted as to order mulitple violations of the First Amendment pursuant to tenuous legal language. 

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Nunn Mum About Whether She Voted for Obama

By on 10.16.14 | 10:10AM

Well, Alison Lundergan Grimes has company.

Another Democrat running for the Senate won't say if she voted for Barack Obama. This time it was Georgia's Michelle Nunn who was mum when approached with the question yesterday.

This video is interesting in light of a new poll gives which her a 3% lead over Republican David Perdue.

Will the Obama albatross evaporate this lead?

 

 

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Neil Patrick Harris to Host Oscars

By on 10.16.14 | 9:43AM

Neil Patrick Harris has been named the host of the 87th Annual Academy Awards. Harris himself actually broke the news himself via Twitter.

I know a lot of conservatives say phooey to the Oscars, but this should be a fun show. Harris has hosted the Tony Awards four times and the Emmys twice. These forums have given Harris, who is best known for his roles on Doogie Howser, M.D. and How I Met Your Mother, an opportunity to showcase his talent as a singer and a dancer. He could become this generation's Billy Crystal.

The Oscars will air on February 22, 2015.

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Obama Should Put Romney in Charge of U.S. Response to Ebola

By on 10.15.14 | 9:24PM

I caught most of President Obama's remarks on the spread of the Ebola virus and must say that he said nothing to inspire my confidence. I suspect that I am not alone in feeling this way.

When Obama says that we are "monitoring, supervising and overseeing in a much more aggressive way" we have to remember this is the same man who said a month ago that Ebola reaching our shores was "an unlikely event" but that we were ready for it. Clearly, we weren't ready for it a month ago and I have little faith that we are ready today. But this Obama at his most annoying:

I am absolutely confident that we can prevent a serious outbreak of the disease in the United States, but it becomes more difficult to do so if this epidemic of Ebola rages out of control in West Africa. If it does, then it will spread globally in an age of frequent travel and the kind of constant interactions that people have across borders.

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Royals Win AL Pennant

By on 10.15.14 | 8:07PM

The Kansas City Royals have swept the Baltimore Orioles in the ALCS winning 2-1 in Game 4 in front of the hometown fans.

It marks the Royals' first World Series appearance since 1985. It is their third AL pennant overall. The Royals made their first World Series appearance in 1980.

Outfielder Lorenzo Cain was named ALCS MVP. Cain went 8 for 15 with two doubles, a stolen bases and critical sacrifice bunt in today's game. What probably won him the ALCS MVP was his defense. While I think a case could have been made for Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas who hit 3 HR and made an over the rail catch during Game 3, I don't quibble with Cain being honored.

Despite the sweep, the Royals didn't dominate the Orioles. The O's didn't lose any game by more than two runs and were only outscored 18-12. But the Royals set the agenda from the moment Moustakas and Alex Gordon hit back to back HR in extra innings in Game 1. The Orioles were competitive, but uninspired. 

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Bono Apologizes for That U2 Album He Stuck Everyone With

By on 10.15.14 | 3:22PM

I'm a fan of U2, even though I came of age in an era of music where everyone on the radio was whining about their sex lives and refusing to shave their armpits. I even ended up kind of liking their new album when it came up accidentally on my iPhone's shuffle feature because an entire album was downloaded onto my phone without my permission. 

Like millions of Americans, I was simultaneously creeped out - that Apple could just add random people to my playlists - and befuddled as to when a music industry that has been, for years, prosecuting pre-teens for illegally downloading Justin Bieber albums decided to start pushing free music. But mostly, we were all confused as to why anyone would think that, of all the albums available, we'd want a U2 album.

Thankfully, Bono himself has now apologized for the oversight.

Facebook user Harriet Madeline Jobson asked:

“Can you please never release an album on iTunes that automatically download to peoples’ playlists ever again? It’s really rude.”

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