The Spectacle Blog

Man Lands Gyrocopter on Capitol Lawn, Wants Campaign Finance Reform

By on 4.15.15 | 5:04PM

What do you get when you cross Citizens United, an unlawful single-pilot airborne vehicle, the Postal Service and Florida? Apparently, the dude who decided to land his "gyrocopter" on the US Capitol lawn this morning in order to protest the negative influence of money in politics. 

As no one was hurt, and the Secret Service quickly scrambled to tackle the guy (though not too quickly, as I believe they knew he was in a gyrocopter, and that should have been public humiliation enough), feel free to be both completely concerned for the state of mental health treatment in this country, and amused that this is all coming courtesy of America's craziest state. 

The IRS Spent Lots of Cash on Office Furniture and Toys

By on 4.15.15 | 2:27PM

According to a press release from Sen. Orrin Hatch's office, the IRS has spent a boatload of taxpayer money on lots of things it really doesn't need

Now, normally, accusing a government agency of making terrible financial decisions is all in a day's work for Congress, the Inspector General, and political writers who, since Hillary Clinton has halted her ridiculous van tour of Iowa to beg for money from Des Moines donors, but today, being Tax Day, is special. After all, what could possibly make this day better than to see not only what the government is wasting your hard-earned money on, but what the agency charged from extracting it from the very marrow of your bones has been buying with their share. 

Turns out, the list begins with an overpriced stair climber (for use in a building with stairs), and ends with Thomas the Tank Engine.

TSA Agents Fired for Conspiring to Touch Junk

By on 4.15.15 | 2:10PM

Here's a fun fact that you might not have known about the X-ray backscatter machines, that I just learned from this scintillating report of two Denver International Airport TSA agents being canned because they had a conspiracy to pat down the crotches attractive men: the screener who operates the machine is required to enter "male" or "female" into the computer system. If you enter female and the person is actually male, it'll automatically indicate that the person coming through the machine is, well, packing.

Over the course of several months, the two Denver TSA agents in question used this loophole to take survey after survey of vulnerable airline passengers that one of the TSA agents found especially attractive. 

How Many Tsarnaevs Are Out There?

By on 4.15.15 | 12:01PM

It was two years ago today that the joy and merriment of the Boston Marathon was shattered by two explosions which resulted in the deaths of three people and injured hundreds many of whom lost limbs. Boylston Street would be cordoned off for more than a week.

The Tsarnaev brothers were not done there. With plans to travel to New York City and attack Times Square, they ambushed a MIT police officer, carjacked a Chinese national, threw IEDs at authorities, nearly killed an MBTA police officer before Tamerlan Tsarnaev lost his life. Dzokhar Tsarnaev would be taken into custody and last week was convicted in federal court on all 30 counts. The jury will begin determining whether he should spend the rest of his life in prison or be executed on April 21st, a day after this year's Marathon. 

Even if Tsarnaev no longer poses a threat we still face the danger of Islamic extremists planning attacks on American soil.

Admin Officially Removes Cuba from State Sponsors of Terror List

By on 4.14.15 | 5:04PM

The Obama Administration announced today that, as part of its ongoing "normalization" of America's relationship with Cuba, that we will officially drop Cuba off of the "SSOT" list, or the "State Sponsors of Terrorism" list. 

According to Wikipedia, Cuba was placed on the list in March of 1982 and remained there because if its support for FARC, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, and ETA, the Basque Fatherland and Liberty movement in Spain. Cuba has maintained, publicly, that its support for armed revolution in other parts of the world is a thing of the past, but until recently, the Castro regime has sheltered members of both FARC and ETA. Although it allowed the TSA to view its airports late last year, it also does not particupate in any anti-terrorism measures or anti-terrorism task forces, raising speculation that terrorists from other parts of the world have used or could use Cuba to enter the U.S.

The Enduring Resonance of Abraham Lincoln

By on 4.14.15 | 4:59PM

It was seven score and ten years ago today that President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in the Ford's Theatre.

In a time that our country doesn't know its history like it should, I am amazed how a 19th century political figure still resonates in the early part of the 21st century.

To put in perspective, President Kennedy was cut down nearly a century after Lincoln. Although there are still many around who remember where they were when JFK was shot in Dallas, I think Kennedy's resonance has diminshed over the past 25 years or so. Some of this is no doubt due to the revelations of his personal behavior and, to some degree, the personal behavior of various members of the Kennedy clan.

Obama to Visit 50th State as President — With Eight More to Go?

By on 4.14.15 | 12:14PM

Yesterday, during a radio interview, President Obama announced he would visit South Dakota on May 8th. When he does, Obama will have visited all 50 states during his presidency. He will not have to visit eight more.

During the 2008 campaign, at a campaign stop in Oregon, Obama said he had "visited 57 states with one to go."

Not surprisingly, the MSM was nearly silent about it and when it was mentioned the excuse was, "Oh, he was tired."

If any of the 2016 Republican presidential candidates get their U.S. geography wrong, they will never hear the end of it.

As for his South Dakota trip, Obama hasn't indicated if he will visit Mount Rushmore to comemorate its 75th anniversary.

I don't think he'll visit Mount Rushmore until they clear a part of it just for him. Lord knows it would take a mountain to contain his ego.

Hillary Clinton Tries to Get Noticed at Chipotle

By on 4.14.15 | 12:08PM

I'm adamant that this Hillary Clinton road trip is a huge missed opportunity, as far as social media communications are concerned. While a smart candidate in a decked out van would be stopping at every roadside attraction along the way in order to meet the Real People who make up the Real America, Hillary has confined her intereactions with the proletariat to those that take place only where she is absolutely forced to stop. There are no unplanned exits from the Hillary Vehicle. If you are not desperately in need of a bathroom or the van is about to run out of gas, there is clearly no reason the Champion of the Middle Class can see to stop. 

Unfortunately for the Caravan of Compassion, certain staff members are not vampires and as such, require regular sustenance in the form of overpriced "Mexican" food. As such, Hillary Clinton has been forced to make the occasional stop at Chipotle, where she has done her level best to make sure everyone knows someone famous is in their establishment.

Percy Sledge, R.I.P.

By on 4.14.15 | 11:49AM

Legendary soul singer Percy Sledge passed away this morning following a long battle with cancer. He was 73.

Sledge, a native of Louisiana, was working as a hospital orderly when the very first song he recorded "When a Man Loves a Woman" hit number one on the Billboard charts in May 1966.

Although Sledge did have several other Top 20 hits such as "Warm and Tender Love" and "It Tears Me Up" none of them had the impact of "When a Man Loves a Woman".

Sledge would experience a career renaissance more than two decades after "When a Man Loves a Woman" topped the charts when it nearly topped the charts again in Britain in 1987 following its use in a jeans commercial.  Four years later, Michael Bolton would hit number one with his version of "When a Man Loves a Woman".

Is Hillary About to Get Rahm’ed?

By on 4.13.15 | 4:16PM

She's been on the campaign trail for less than 24 hours, but already the media has been unable to find the actual "van" Hillary is traveling in, people on Facebook are beginning to notice that she might have dyed her eyebrows for the occasion, and Hillary is having a tough time rounding up support from fellow New York politicians for her bid for the Democratic Presidential nomination. 

I'm not sure about the eyebrows, honestly, and I tend to think this road trip is underwhelming (don't people typically stop at more than gas stations on a road trip? Wouldn't a Hillary Clinton tour of roadside attractions like the World's Largest Frying Pan and the Duct Tape Capitol of the World be social media gold?), but the last one is what really has me worried - or, at least, it would have me worried if I were suddenly knocked unconscious by a falling rock and woke up thinking I was Chelsea: prominent New York Democrats like NYC Mayor Bill De Blasio and governor Andrew Cuomo have yet to say whether they're on board the Hillary van

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