The Spectacle Blog

Rangers Pick Banister Over Bogar as New Manager

By on 10.16.14 | 9:30PM

In something of a surprise move, the Texas Rangers have hired Jeff Banister to be their new manager. Until today, Banister had been a lifer with the Pittsburgh Pirates organization. Over the last 29 years, Banister has been a player, coach, minor league manager, scout and in player development. Banister had one big league at bat with the Bucs in 1992 in which he singled. He thus has a lifetime batting average of 1.000. Since 2011, Banister had been the Pirates bench coach.

The Rangers did finish 2014 with the worst record in the AL at 67-95, 31 games back of the Los Angeles Angels. But after Ron Washington resigned in early September, the club played much better under Tim Bogar. The Rangers went 14-8 under his stewardship and would win 13 of their 16 games. If not for Bogar, the Rangers would have lost 100 games. Bogar was a finalist along with Banister and Cleveland Indians bench coach Kevin Cash. Maybe Banister is just a better interview. It remains to be seen if that will translate on the field.

At this point, it isn't clear if Bogar will remain with the Rangers. If not, perhaps the Minnesota Twins would be willing to give him a look. 

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Professional Clowns Upset With American Horror Story’s Fake Murder Clown

By on 10.16.14 | 6:38PM

I haaaaaaaaate clowns. Haaaaaaaaaaaate. And apparently, I'm not alone. But Clowns of America International, apparently a trade association for clowns (here's hoping I never acidentally run into their convention in Vegas), wants you to know that there's nothing to fear. Except for that one time John Wayne Gacy dressed up like a clown to entertain at children's parties between murder sprees, clowns are a mostly agreeable bunch. And definitely nothing like the psychotic clown on American Horror Story: Freak Show, Twisty, who chops people up with scissors.

Take it from Glenn Kohlberger, their president (clown name: Clyde D. Scope): clowns are an unfairly maligned bunch.

“We do not support in any way, shape or form any medium that sensationalizes or adds to coulrophobia or ‘clown fear,’” says Glenn Kohlberger...

“Hollywood makes money sensationalizing the norm. They can take any situation no matter how good or pure and turn it into a nightmare,” Kohlberger says. 

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Andrew Cuomo Is the Saddest Author Ever

By on 10.16.14 | 6:17PM

Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York, long thought to be a contender for the White House in 2016 against Hillary Clinton, has released a book entitled, "All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life." And like his primary contender for the 2016 Democratic nomination, it has not been well received.

Wednesday night, Cuomo held a book signing at a Barnes & Noble in New York City and it was probably the saddest thing the New York Times has had to cover all week, and that includes the slow and tragic decline of AirBnB.

There were no lines snaking down the sidewalk, and no scramble to claim a copy of the 517-page tome. The most enthusiastic attendees seemed to be the protesters outside, who urged a ban on hydraulic fracturing...

Then he took a seat at a long table and began signing. He greeted guests with a handshake and asked how they were doing. Often, he inquired about the name written on a Post-it note for him to include in his inscription.

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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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