The Spectacle Blog

Remembrance Day Draws Record Crowds in Ottawa

By on 11.11.14 | 10:53AM

Yesterday, in anticipation of Veterans' Day, I paid homage to the U.S. military being the most important organization on Earth.

In Canada (as throughout the British Commonwealth), November 11th is referred to as Remembrance Day and poppies are worn in observance. The poppies are a reference to the poem "In Flanders Fields" written by a Canadian war physician named Dr. John McRae. In Flanders fields the poppies blow/Between the crosses, row on row.

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Could Rush Win a Defamation Lawsuit Against The DCCC?

By on 11.11.14 | 9:56AM

As our old friend Patrick Howley reported at The Daily Caller yesterday, Rush Limbaugh has threatened to bring a defamation suit against the Democratic Congresssional Campaign Committee (DCCC) for writing a fundraising letter which said that the conservative talk radio icon condoned rape. Back in September, Rush had been commenting on Ohio State University's mandatory sexual consent rules.

Should Rush bring this suit forward, can he win it?

Erik Wemple at The Washington Post doesn't think so:

First there’s the issue of Limbaugh’s status as the most public of public figures for the purposes of media law. Any libel action brought by public-figure Limbaugh must prove that the defendant acted with knowledge of the falsity of its statement or with reckless disregard of its truth. Virtually impossible, considering the number of folks who reached similar conclusions.

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Abreu, deGrom Named AL, NL Rookies of the Year

By on 11.10.14 | 8:51PM

Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu easily beat out Los Angeles Angels pitcher Matt Shoemaker and New York Yankees reliever Dellin Betances.

The Cuban slugger was a bright spot in an otherwise dismal year for the Chisox. Abreu hit .317 with 36 HR and 107 RBI and led the AL in slugging percentage with .581. He is the first White Sox player to win the honor since Ozzie Guillen in 1985.

Meanwhile, New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom won NL Rookie of the Year honors. This is the first time a Mets player to win the honor in 30 years when Dwight Gooden graced the mound at Shea Stadium. The Mets did not call up deGrom until mid-May, but in 22 starts he went 9-6 with a 2.69 ERA. In 140 1/3 innings pitched, deGrom fanned 144 batters while walking only 43. The 23-year old deGrom beat out St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Kolten Wong and Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton (who I picked to win the award prior to the start of the season). 

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Joe Biden is Calling Children in Iowa Now

By on 11.10.14 | 4:55PM

The 2016 campaign has officially begun, and let it be known that Joe Biden is the first to start officially contacting voters ahead of the Iowa caucus. 

Apparently, Joe Biden has a rabid 3-year-old fan in Iowa who likes to talk to her imaginary friend, also Joe Biden, on her fake plastic cell phone. Considering that her parents might be potential participants in the caucus system, Joe Biden decided to give his number one fan in middle America a real, live, phone call last Wednesday.

Avery's grandmother, Becky Burke, posted a message on Joe Biden's White House website eight months ago telling him about his young fan. She never gave it a second thought until her phone rang Wednesday night.

"He said 'This is Joe Biden' and I said, 'Who the hell is this?’ And he said, 'This is Joe Biden,' and I said, 'I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry I said that to you," Burke said.

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Two Israelis Stabbed to Death by Palestinians in Two Separate Incidents

By on 11.10.14 | 4:52PM

In two separate incidents, two Israelis were stabbed to death by Palestinians.

The first attack took place at the train station in Tel Aviv when a Palestinian repeatedly stabbed an IDF soldier who later died of his wounds in the hospital. This attack has been praised by Hamas.

In typical Obama Administration fashion, they have condemned the attack, but have asked Israel for a clarification concerning the shooting of an Israeli Arab man by Israeli authorities in Kafr Kanna on Friday. The shooting occurred when the man tried to stab the Israeli officers when they attempted to arrest him. Does the Israeli government ask the Obama Administration for "clarification" after Capitol police shoot an unarmed woman driving too close to the White House?

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All of Your Internets Belong to Barack Obama Now

By on 11.10.14 | 3:11PM

The President has decided to heed the message voters gave to the Democratic Party last week and will now work with Republicans to implement a common-sense policy agenda that includes a reasonable approach to Internet bandwidth questions currently in front of the FCC.

Ha! No. After his outburst on immigration this morning - that he'll pass it by executive order if Congress doesn't pass it's own version before years end (which he'll probably veto anyway) - Barack Obama decided to announce, while in China of all places, that he intends to control your Internet, which is great news, if you're a fan of how the government typically runs, well, anything. Of course, the FCC, which is handling the policy, is an independent organization that the President cannot control unless he's hired his own Comcast lobbyist, but that seems to make absolutely no difference as far as he's concerned. 

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Boko Haram Kills 48 Children in School Suicide Bombing in Nigeria

By on 11.10.14 | 12:46PM

Although they have not claimed responsibility, it is very likely that Boko Haram is responsible for a suicide bombing at a school in Nigeria which has claimed the lives of 48 children and injured at least 80 more.

Boko Haram came to international notoriety last spring when it kidnapped 276 girls from a Nigerian school and have married most of them off to jihadists.

Their violence has escalated since the Nigerian government announced it had reached a ceasefire with the group last month. But a week ago, a suicide bomber killed 29 Shiite Muslims observing Ashura and also broke nearly 150 of its members out of a state prison.

My guess is that Boko Haram is just getting warmed up and will do much destabilize Nigeria and bring misfortune to the government of President Goodluck Jonathan.

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Clay Aiken’s Donors Feel Duped by Reality Show Campaign

By on 11.10.14 | 12:39PM

There are two things to take from this FrontiersLA article. One, that Clay Aiken was still collecting money for his failing campaign at the end of September, at homes of the Hollywood less-than-elite (apparently, he couldn't excite Gwyneth Paltrow, so he had to settle for the support of a correspondent for Extra). And two, no one who attended any of his LA fundraisers knew that they were being taped for a reality show, because they were under the impression that Clay Aiken was a serious candidate for Congress. 

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Obamacare Architect Says Law Passed Because You’re All Stupid

By on 11.10.14 | 12:02PM

We learned on Friday that the Supreme Court will take up an appeal from the Fourth Circuit in the case of King v. Burwell, even though there's no split between the circuits on how to handle Obamacare's subsidies, when they're handed out to people in a state that doesn't set up their own Obamacare insurance exchange. The crux of that problem? Apparently, Democrats were in such a hurry to pass the legislation before anyone read it, that they failed to read it themselves, resulting in some unclear language that might not pass Constitutional muster: they limited the subsidies, allowing them to only apply to participants in state exchanges. According to Obamacare's architect Jonathan Gruber, that was totally just a typo.

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