The Spectacle Blog

Huntley Schaller, R.I.P.

By on 4.23.15 | 11:03PM

This afternoon I learned that my friend Huntley Schaller lost his battle with cancer in late January. He was only 58.

Huntley was a professor of economics at Carleton University in Ottawa. We met through the NDP back in 1997 when we were both selected as delegates to the party's federal convention in Regina, Saskatchewan (where Huntley grew up) and got to know each other during the convention. 

Clinton Foundation Donors Also Got Big State Department Awards

By on 4.23.15 | 4:17PM

This isn't as damning as the Clinton story from this morning. Or that other story from this morning. Or that one from last week. Or that one from the week before. Or any of those Clinton stories in that book that's coming out. But it does substantiate the argument that Hillary Clinton wasn't completely removed from the Clinton Foundation's accounts receivable department.

It turn out that, if you, as a corporation, wanted to get a swanky award from the State Department while Hillary Clinton was in charge, just to commemorate your commitment to global humanitarianism, what you really had to do, aside from the occasional global humanitarian project, was to write a nice, fat check to Hillary Clinton's foundation. From Cisco to Coca-Cola, nearly every company nominated for or currently polishing a State Department award, gave big bucks to the Clinton non-profit enterprise. 

Suspected Iranian Arms Ships to Yemen Turning Around

By on 4.23.15 | 4:10PM

Fox News is reporting that "a convoy of Iranian ships" which are suspected to be carrying weapons for Houthi rebels in Yemen have turned around after US warships moved to the area to intercept them. The US and Iranian ships never made contact.

While some might suggest this represents Iran "blinking" in the face of American strength, the real reason is something else entirely:

The nuclear deal which President Obama is about to hand to the ayatollahs is so beneficial for the murderous Islamofascists' regional hegemonic ambitions by, as Bibi Netanyahu correctly put it, paving their way to having nuclear weapons, that they dare not risk throwing a wrench into the ongoing negotiations through confrontation over a much lower short-term priority. After all, supporting international radical Shi'ite terrorism will be just as available to them tomorrow but how often can you completely bamboozle the world's sole superpower?

Carly Fiorina Likely to be Next Presidential Campaign Launch

By on 4.23.15 | 1:29PM

It looks like Carly Fiorina will beat Dr. Ben Carson and Mike Huckabee out of the gate: she'll declare her intention to run for the Republican Presidential nomination on May 4th.

The former CEO of Hewlett Packard will, apparently, follow in the footsteps of Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio by announcing with an online video and following up with a call for national press, according to the Wall Street Journal. If the reports are true, she will be the first Republican woman candidate in the field.

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina will launch her presidential campaign on May 4, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

Fiorina, a Republican, will announce her campaign online, according to the WSJ.

Hillary Clinton Might Have Helped Russia Get Uranium in Return for Donations

By on 4.23.15 | 1:12PM

This story is a tad bit complicated, but I can boil it down for you a little. Maybe. Bottom line? Hillary Clinton's foundation took a heck of a lot of money from a company that basically gave Russia our Uranium. Which is a problem. 

When Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, Russia, which was, at the time, looking to buy a lot of Uranium for some unspecified reason, made a deal with a Canadian Uranium company that controlled about 20% of America's Uranium deposits. Russia used a state-owned company to buy the Canadian corporation. At the same time, the Clinton Foundation coffers conveniently - or inconveniently - swelled with cash with the Canadian corporation. Oddly enough, Hillary Clinton's office, which had to approve the merger, happiliy signed on the dotted line.

And none of this is weird, right?

White House Says Hostages, Al Qaeda Killed in Drone Strike

By on 4.23.15 | 12:40PM

I can't be funny about this, because there's nothing funny about it.

Today, the White House released details of a drone mission that went horribly wrong. In an attempt to strike at an Al Qaeda base on the Afghanistan/Pakistan border, to take out Ahmed Farouq, a notorious American-born Al Qaeda leader and Adam Gadhan, another US-born Al Qaeda member and radical Islamic preacher, the US also killed an American and an Italian hostage.

Two hostages held by Al Qaeda were killed during separate US drone strikes on terrorist compounds, the White House has revealed.

American aid worker Warren Weinstein, 73, and Italian humanitarian worker Giovanni Lo Porto were killed during counter-terrorism operations in a border region of Afghanistan and Pakistan in January.

President Obama has taken 'full responsibility' for the operations, admitting that US forces can sometimes make 'deadly mistakes'. 

Trump to Open New Hampshire Office

By on 4.23.15 | 12:03PM

The New Hampshire Union-Leader headlines the following:

Trump signs lease for a NH office, returns Monday

Donald Trump returns to New Hampshire with a presidential campaign-like schedule Monday, and the Union Leader has learned he has signed a lease for an office in Manchester that will open May 1.

The paper reports that Trump has a full schedule of in-state appearances scheduled next week, including four events: a business lunch in Salem, a veterans town hall meeting, a New England College speech, and a dinner speech in Concord.

Even as this latest Trump move in New Hampshire was making news in the state, word comes that the New Yorker will be conducting his second TeleTown Hall tonight in Iowa. The first, in South Carolina, drew almost 60,000 participants. The Trump “media advisory” advises Iowans they can call in between 6:15 pm-7:15pm CST (needing to call 877-229-8493 and use a PIN # of 114230).

Chris Rock Isn’t Really a Baseball Fan

By on 4.23.15 | 10:17AM

I listened to Chris Rock’s rant against baseball from HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel and I must say that he doesn’t have a clue to what he’s talking about. (WARNING: Video embedded probably NSFW).

Rock discusses the decline of African-American participation in Major League Baseball which has dropped by about two-thirds over the past four decades. He argues that baseball is losing black people because it isn’t hip or cool enough.

So what does Rock consider to be unhip and uncool? Its emphasis on history (“old fashioned, stuck in the past”), “white haired announcers”, the construction of new old fashioned ballparks (what he calls “fake, antique stadiums”). Rock argues that “black people don’t like being reminded of the past” and going back to the days of “Ruth, DiMaggio and Emmett Till.”

Rubio Top Republican — Competitive With Mz Hillary

By on 4.22.15 | 11:02PM

CBS News and the Tampa Bay Times are reporting that a new national Quinnipiac Poll shows Marco Rubio leading the Republican pack and just two points behind Hillary Clinton in the general election matchup, the best showing of any Republican. The Quinnipiac website says the poll will not be released until 6 a.m. Thursday.

The poll show Rubio the choice of 15 percent of GOP voters, Jeb Bush second at 13 percent, and Scott Walker with 11. No other candidate draws more than nine percent support, and 14 percent say they are undecided.

New York Mets Have Won 10 in a Row

By on 4.22.15 | 10:52PM

The New York Mets beat the Atlanta Braves tonight 3-2 to win their 10th consecutive game.

I knew the Mets would be good this year. I picked them to win a NL Wild Card berth. But I didn't think they'd be this good, this fast.

Their 12-3 mark is the best in MLB and have a 3 1/2 game lead over the Braves and a 5 game lead over the Washington Nationals in the NL East. The Nats were heavily favored to win the division (myself included). 

And they've done it without David Wright, Travis d'Arnaud and Jerry Blevins not to mention Zack Wheeler who underwent Tommy John surgery during spring training and closer Jenrry Mejia who was recently suspended for 80 games for PED use. 

But Matt Harvey and Bartolo Colon are both 3-0, Lucas Duda is hitting over .300 and Jeurys Familia already has 6 saves.

OK, there are still 147 games left and they've got a date with the Yankees this weekend. But so far the Mets are the biggest story in this young season.

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