The Spectacle Blog

Extra Credit

By on 2.14.06 | 5:48PM

The new President of Bolivia is a coca farmer. Now, his Administration is proposing to include coca leaves on the menu for Bolivia's school kids, because the leaves are so nutritious!

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Film Dud

By on 2.14.06 | 5:38PM

So Star Wars creator George Lucas was up on Capitol Hill today with Rep. Nancy Pelosi today talking about the Democrat Party's "Innovation Initiative."

There is nothing to it. It offers private businesses and innovators nothing in the way of financial incentives to invest in things like high-tech R & D, broadband, manufacturing, or educational programs targeting engineers or science.

What struck us was Lucas's statement that Pelosi had basically been begging him for money for years. But a database check at OpenSecrets.org doesn't indicate that Lucas has been a huge donor to Pelosi or anyone else in the Democrat Party.

Surely the Democrats could have found someone with a better pedigree for giving to their causes.

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Vets Needn’t Apply

By on 2.14.06 | 2:22PM

Iraq war vet Paul Hackett's surprise withdrawal from the race for the Dem Senate nomination to run against Ohio's Mike DeWine comes as a shock to the other vets being recruited by the Dems. According to several reports, Hackett's candidacy was propelled, in part, by Sen. Schumer's promise that he'd not have to worry about campaign funding. And then hitherto invisible Cong. Sherrod Brown pops up, and says he wants to run. So what's the reaction from the Dems? Little Miss Gun Control drops Hackett like a hot rock and works hard to cut off his funding. Why shouldn't vets believe this is just another symptom of the Democrat disease?

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The David Gregory Show

By on 2.14.06 | 11:41AM

The NBC correspondent's on his high horse about White House disclosure of the hunting accident. He's not playing inquisitive reporter anymore, but conducting himself like a prosecutor in cross examination. This is quickly descending into Gregory whining.

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Batman Goes To War

By on 2.14.06 | 10:52AM

Comic-book legend Frank Miller has announced that his next book, Holy Terror, Batman!, is "a piece of propoganda" where Batman goes after al Qaeda:

The reason for this work, Miller said, was "an explosion from my gut reaction of what's happening now." He can't stand entertainers who lack the moxie of their '40s counterparts who stood up to Hitler. Holy Terror is "a reminder to people who seem to have forgotten who we're up against."

It's been a long time since heroes were used in comics as pure propaganda. As Miller reminded, "Superman punched out Hitler. So did Captain America. That's one of the things they're there for."

That's a refreshing change from the anti-war Superman that appeared a few years ago.
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Re: WMD, Hamas and Western Will

By on 2.14.06 | 10:20AM

James: I agree. We need to be vastly more clear in our opposition to government participation by terrorists. One of the troubling things I heard in Iraq in December was several of our top commanders talking about a "Sinn Fein" solution to the insurgency. Letting them become part of the government can only be done after the terrorists have renounced violence and turned in their weapons, not before.

I do have one large bone to pick with you: "contextualize"??? ARRRRRRRRGH. I hereby propose that anyone who takes a perfectly innocent noun and turns it into a verb by adding "ize" should be lashed publicly or at least locked in the stocks to be pummelled with vegetables.

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Bethell on Government Objectivity

By on 2.14.06 | 10:11AM

TAS senior editor Tom Bethell had a piece in the Washington Times Sunday on the fallacy that government-funded science is pure. He specifically takes on NASA scientist and global warming booster James Hansen. Don't miss it.

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WMD, Hamas, and the Western Will

By on 2.14.06 | 10:02AM

How will the Saddam tapes contextualize the apparent U.S.-Israeli decision to sink Hamas? Having scored a stunning Victory for Democracy in Palestine, the administration now finds itself working to junk the outcome and declare, Harriet Miers-style, a do-over. Machiavellan phantoms whispered once that HM was the perfect sacrificial lamb, the fall girl who made for unmatchable cannon fodder and the trailblazer for Sam Alito. May we detect the same manufactured blunder here? On the warpath against tyranny in this world, is "freedom" itself a manipulable tool, and democracy-hypocrisy a deployable means to a realpolitikal end?

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A Wealth of Material

By on 2.14.06 | 10:00AM

The New York Times lists the beneficiaries of the Cheney story:

The incident provided a wealth of material for Democrats, gun control activists and critics of the Bush administration, not to mention late-night comedians.

The White House press corps fits into the first three categories.

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