The Spectacle Blog

Two NYPD Officers Killed in Ambush - UPDATED

By on 12.20.14 | 10:25PM

Here is part of what I wrote earlier this month following the decision of the grand jury in Staten Island not to indict Officer Steven Pantaleo in the choking death of Eric Garner:

 

However, what concerns me is the increasing public perception, right or wrong, that the police are above the law. I fear that it is only a matter of time that someone will try to remedy this point of view by taking the law into their own hands. I'm not talking about the kind of violence we've seen in Ferguson. Rather, I believe that someone might make a point of randomly killing police officers as an act of retribution. Such acts are, of course, heinous and will only make matters worse. Chances are the very police officers that would be targeted are likely the ones who are the most exemplary in their conduct. Yet if enough people come to believe that law enforcement can behave with impunity then, sooner or later, someone (and possibly a group of people) will mete out a justice of the most perverse kind.

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Padres & Marlins Make Some Interesting Moves

By on 12.20.14 | 8:57PM

For a moment there, it looked like the Matt Kemp wouldn't go through when a physical revealed he had arthritic hips. 

But arthritic hips or not, Kemp is now a Padre and so is Will Myers and Justin Upton who were acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays and the Atlanta Braves, respectively. 

Now that's quite an outfield. 

If that wasn't enough, the Padres acquired catcher Derek Norris from the Oakland A's. Throw in former Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks and free agent shortstop Clint Barmes in the mix and you have a far more compelling offensive attack. The Padres are now a viable challenger in the NL West.

Getting back to Myers, he was acquired in an 11 player deal that also involved the Washington Nationals. Larry Thornberry, our resident Rays fan, is besides himself over the Myers deal. I do think Steve Souza will be a nice addition in the Rays outfield, but the Rays probably won't contend in 2015. This will do nothing to boost the Rays' anemic attendance.

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Rand Paul Endorses Obama on Normalizing Relations with Cuba

By on 12.18.14 | 3:41PM

OK, I agree with Emily Zanotti that Alison Lundergan Grimes is making a nuisance of herself concerning whether Rand Paul can ran for President while keeping his seat in the Senate.

I also concur with Jeff Lord's misgivings about Jeb Bush.

But at least Jeb Bush isn't stupid enough to endorse President Obama's plans to normalize relations with Cuba.

Now who would be stupid enough to do a thing like that?

You guessed it - Rand Paul.

Then again what can you expect from a guy who seeks advice on race relations from Al Sharpton?

This is yet another reason why Republicans should never, under any circumstances, nominate Rand Paul as presidential candidate.

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Vermont Jettisons Single Payer Healthcare

By on 12.18.14 | 3:19PM

Vermont's Democratic Governor Peter Shumlin announced yesterday that he is jettisoning plans to implement a single payer health care system in the Green Mountain state.

There were several factors that went into this decision. It would have required Vermont to substantially hike both income and payroll taxes. Moreover, there was a $150 million shortfall in federal funding from Medicaid as well as $152 million shortfall in federal funding that was to be received via an Obamacare waiver.

The bottom line is that the money just wasn't there and raising income and payroll taxes would do the state more harm than good.

If only President Obama had reached a similar conclusion on Obamacare.

Then again now Shumlin, like every other Governor in America, is stuck with Obamacare.

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Studio Scraps Steve Carell’s North Korea Movie UPDATED

By on 12.18.14 | 2:35PM

This just keeps getting worse.

First, movie theatres refused to screen the Seth Rogen-James Franco movie The Interview after hackers purportedly from North Korea threatened "9/11 style" attacks against theatres showing the movie. Then yesterday Sony cancelled the release of the movie outright.

Today, New Regency studios has cancelled a movie called Pyongyang. The movie was to be based on Canadian author Guy Delisle's graphic novel of the same title about an animator accused of spying against the North Korean regime. It was to star Steve Carell and production was to begin in March.

Upon its cancellation, Carell tweeted, "Sad day for creative expression."

A sad day for freedom and liberty is more like it.

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Is Alison Lundergan Grimes Gunning for Rand Paul?

By on 12.18.14 | 1:05PM

We haven't heard much from Alison Lundergan Grimes since she lost to Mitch McConnell by a landslide last month, but apparently she's still Secretary of State in Kentucky. Which is inconvenient only in that her recent experience seem to make her a bit touchy about the next election cycle.

Rand Paul, who has not announced that he is actually running for anything, casually announced a bit ago that he would try to keep his Senate seat even if he were to run for President. Given that the nomination process for Presidential candidates started six weeks ago, and the election actually isn't for another two years, he has plenty of time to consider that decision ahead of declaring for anything, let alone making any effort at actually submitting paperwork. BUT FEAR NOT, people of Kentucky. Alison Lundergan Grimes is already on the case, and she will sue Rand Paul's cargo shorts off if he even so much as thinks about running for two offices at the same time.

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Bill Clinton Creeps On NY Dem’s Daughter

By on 12.18.14 | 12:49PM

This is yesterday's viral photo, but we were all so obsessed with covering unimportant things like the Administration lifting the Cuba embargo and North Korea strong-arming Hollywood into pulling a movie that was probably going to tank anyway that we had to pass on covering a creepy photo of Bill Clinton hugging the daughter of a New York Democratic mega-donor. 

Fear not, though. 

The woman being only minimally restrained by both former President Clinton and what appears to be a Herve Leger bodycon dress, is Andrea Catsimatidis, daughter of John Catsimatidis, a "billionaire grocer" who donated $750,000 to Hillary's 2008 Presidential bid, and who may be best known for his part in a scheme to allegedly purchase the New York Senate for the Democratic Party, along with current NYC mayor Bill de Blasio.

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Alberta Tories Gain Nearly Entire Wildrose Party Caucus Including Leader Danielle Smith

By on 12.18.14 | 12:24PM

What a difference nine months make. Back in March, the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party was at its lowest ebb in its 43 years in office. Alison Redford was forced to resign as Premier in disgrace after spending lavish amounts of government money for personal expenses, the most notable of which was the $45,000 spent to attend the funeral of the late South African President Nelson Mandela.

This should have been a boon to the official opposition Wildrose Party led by Danielle Smith.

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Kim Jong Un “Interview” Death Scene Leaks Online

By on 12.18.14 | 11:25AM

Yesterday was a great day to be a tinpot dictator. 

We've already discussed the US softening of relations with Cuba, and last night, Sony Pictures, terrified of North Korea's psychotic overlord and his Atari missile launcher, pulled The Interview from theaters, after it became apparent that North Korea was behind the massive Sony email leak. Now, granted, had something actually happened, we'd have been all over Sony for failing to take decisive action, and blaming them for whatever life, limb and property was lost in the ensuing revenge. But at least right now, it's pretty clear that when it comes to a strong foreign policy towards men in fancy pajamas with rockets pointed at their Malibu beach hosues, Hollywood is more in favor than we thought they'd be.

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Why Did Harper Help Obama with Cuba?

By on 12.18.14 | 8:46AM

Yesterday, I wrote about Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's role in facilitating talks between the Obama Administration and the Castro regime which led to the normalization of U.S.-Cuba relations as well as Canada's long standing diplomatic ties with Cuba.

Despite Canada's history with Cuba, I am still puzzled as to why Harper helped Obama in this matter. The reason for my puzzlement is due to Obama's efforts to block the expansion of the Keystone Pipeline which emanates from the oil rich province of Alberta. Given Obama's inflexibility and intransigence where it concerns Keystone, why would Harper have any inclination to help Obama? 

I suppose Harper thinks his was the act of a statesman. It would have been perhaps been statesman-like if resulted in more concessions from Castro. But Obama gave away the store. It pains me to say it, but Harper ran a fool's errand. Besides does Harper honestly think Obama is going to help him out if he's in a fix? Obama would throw Harper under the bus faster than you can say Justin Trudeau.

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