The Spectacle Blog

Billy Pierce, R.I.P.

By on 7.31.15 | 4:11PM

Billy Pierce, arguably the best left-handed pitcher not enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame, has passed away at the age of 88.

Boston Beats Beijing in Olympics Contest

By on 7.31.15 | 1:49PM

News comes this morning that Beijing has been awarded the 2022 Winter Olympics, beating out Almaty, Kazakhstan. Which touches on a point I made in this morning’s Boston Herald

Columnist Anne Applebaum predicted a year ago that future Olympics would likely be held only in “authoritarian countries where the voters’ views will not be taken into account” — such as the two bidders for the 2022 Winter Olympics, Beijing and Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Fortunately, Boston is not such a place. The voters’ views can be ignored and dismissed for only so long.

Indeed, Boston should be celebrating more than Beijing this week. A small band of opponents of Boston’s bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics beat the city’s elite — business leaders, construction companies, university presidents, the mayor and other establishment figures — because they knew what Olympic Games really mean for host cities and nations:

Pinkwashing Is Just Plain Eyewash: Thoughts on the Stabbings at the Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade

By on 7.31.15 | 12:04PM

Yesterday, six people were stabbed at Jerusalem’s Gay Pride Parade by an ultra-Orthodox fanatic named Yishai Schlissel. One of the people is in critical condition. In 2005, Schlissel stabbed three people at the same event.

While a majority of religiously observant Jews in Israel oppose homosexuality, it is clear that this majority also abhors what Schlissel did, including the Chief Rabbis of both Ashkenazi and Sephardic Judaism. Religious objections aside, one cannot have someone wantonly stabbing people. Schlissel is clearly a public menace and must be jailed for a very long time.

Carlos Gomez Traded This Time For Sure Plus Other Deals

By on 7.30.15 | 10:36PM

Twenty-four hours ago, Carlos Gomez was supposed to be returning to the New York Mets. But after Wilmer Flores shed some tears and the Milwaukee Brewers evidently refused to shed some dollars the deal was off.

Tonight, Gomez is a member of the Houston Astros along with starting pitcher Mike Fiers. The Brewers get minor league outfielders Brett Phillips & Domingo Santana and minor league pitchers Josh Hader and Adrian Houser. 

Gomez will like going to Houston even better than New York. Last night, the Astros climbed back into first place in the AL West.

Washington Post Exposes Marco Rubio’s Scandalous Local Government Job. Or Something.

By on 7.30.15 | 4:33PM

Media Matters paid for their researcher to comb the depths of Miami's city council records looking for evidence that Marco Rubio was a terrible human being, and by golly they got their money's worth.

Now that their pitches are probably no longer welcome at the New York Times, whatever opposition researcher firm is currently devoting way too much time to destroying Marco Rubio took their latest "exposé" to the Washington Post, which on Thursday published a breathless article about all of the long and horrendously boring West Miami City Commission meetings Marco Rubio had to endure at his first level of government — a level that the Post finds to be suspiciously "low rung" of elective politics.

From April 1998 until his February 2000 debut in the Florida legislature, Rubio endured hours of monotonous debates about car wash regulations, inadequate bus stop benches, the relative merits of oak vs. black olive trees, and what snacks should be allowed in city park vending machines.

Of Rotten Eggs and Guilty Minds

By and on 7.30.15 | 4:09PM

It isn’t every day that a person can go to his or her job, work, not participate in any criminal activity, and still get a prison sentence. At least, that used to be the case: the overcriminalization of regulatory violations has unfortunately led to the circumstance that corporate managers now face criminal—not just civil—liability for their business operations’ administrative offenses.

Take Austin and Peter DeCoster, who own and run an Iowa egg-producing company called Quality Egg. The DeCosters plead guilty to violating certain provisions of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act because some of the eggs that left their facilities contained salmonella enteritidis, a bacterium harmful to humans. They were sentenced to 90 days in jail and fined $100,000 for the actions of subordinates, who apparently failed, also unknowingly, in their quality-control duties.

Clinton Emails Missing Two Months, But Have Plenty of Classified Information Otherwise

By on 7.30.15 | 3:53PM

The State Department has been busy releasing Hillary's emails, and while they contain a lot of notable insights into her personal development — including, but not limited to, her learning process for fax machines — they are missing some key details from the summer of 2012

Although they may yet come out, as the State Department turns up the faucet on releases, all emails for May and June of 2012 are missing from the cache. They also haven't been submitted to the Benghazi committee, although records show that Libya was facing a spate of sectarian violence throughout the summer that year, leading up to the eventual Benghazi attack. Even though there were at least three separate terrorist incidents over the course of that summer, any mention of those incidents has been scrubbed from the collection (along with basically everything else). Also missing? Emails having to do with Huma Abedin's side job, which she started in the spring of 2012, but which is still a mystery to investigators (along with basically everyone else).

Rolling Stones’ Editor to Step Down After UVA Scandal, But No One Else is Leaving

By on 7.30.15 | 3:36PM

Editor Will Dana is the first to leave his position at Rolling Stones magazine nearly eight months after running false claims about an alleged “rape culture” within a University of Virginia fraternity.

UVA dean, Nicole Eramo was noted in CNN Money’s article for already having filed a $7.5 million lawsuit for actual and punitive damages for Rolling Stone’s characterization of her in the article. As reported by CNN, Rolling Stones now faces multiple lawsuits:

Three members of a University of Virginia fraternity sued Rolling Stone magazine Wednesday for a discredited story accusing frat members of gang raping a woman.

The suit also names the magazine's publisher, Wenner Media, and the reporter, Sabrina Erdely.

Price Is Right for Toronto

By on 7.30.15 | 2:51PM

The Toronto Blue Jays have done it again.

After landing shortstop Troy Tulowitzki from the Colorado Rockies a couple of days ago, the Jays have now added 2012 AL Cy Young Award winner David Price, giving the team a bona fide ace. In exchange for Price, the Jays sent the Detroit Tigers three left-handed pitching prospects — Daniel Norris, Matt Boyd and Jairo Labourt.

In 2015, Price is 9-2 with a 2.53 ERA having fanned 138 batters in 146 innings pitched. Price, of course, began his career with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as the number one pick in the 2007 MLB Draft. He came to the majors the following year when the Rays shocked the world and won the AL pennant. Price finished runner up in the AL Cy Young balloting in 2010 to Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners before winning the Cy Young in 2012.

Indians Trade Brandon Moss to St. Louis for a Prospect Named Kaminsky

By on 7.30.15 | 11:44AM

The Cleveland Indians have traded outfielder Brandon Moss to the St. Louis Cardinals for minor league lefthander Rob Kaminsky.

Could there be any relation to our own Ross Kaminsky?

The Cardinals had an urgent need to add an outfielder after Matt Holliday reinjured his right quad while running down to first base in last night’s loss to the Cincinnati Reds. The injury had forced Holliday to miss the All-Star Game to which he was elected to start.

Although Moss was only hitting .217 with the Tribe this season, he does have 15 HR and 50 RBI. Moss, 31, was acquired in an off-season trade with the Oakland A’s last December. Moss bounced around with the Boston Red Sox, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Philadelphia Phillies before finally putting it together with the A’s in 2012. Moss has hit 20 or more home runs in each of the past three seasons and is very likely to reach that number again in 2015.

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