The Spectacle Blog

The Morning Spectacle: Happy Monday!

By on 8.24.15 | 5:30AM

Welcome to the inaugural edition of The Morning Spectacle, providing everything you need to face your week with a renewed cynicism.

In Our Sights:

Rand Paul has found a solution to his "Kentucky Problem," and can now run for Senate and for President at the same time — and he did it without even stepping foot in Kentucky. He's been in Haiti for the last few weeks doing free eye surgeries.

New York's Mayor Bill de Blasio has solved all of New York City's other problems, so he's now taking on Time Square's topless panhandlers. His solution: bulldozing Times Square, naturally.

Dirty Harry for Prez?

By on 8.23.15 | 12:07AM

If we’re going to nominate a celebrity, let’s nominate one more people like. I’d sure rather have Inspector Callahan than the Donald. The differences in their foreign policy is that the Donald would call Putin a loser. Squinty Clinty would call him a punk.

And it would make my day to hear Clint say to Donald in a presidential debate, “A man’s got to know his limitations.”

Mike Fiers Fires No-Hitter; Spoils Utley’s Dodger Debut

By on 8.21.15 | 11:14PM

Houston Astros pitcher Mike Fiers fired a no-hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers spoiling the debut of Chase Utley who was acquired from the Phillies yesterday. Utley was in the lineup as the DH. The Astros won the game 3-0.

I saw the last four innings of Fiers' no-no on the MLB Network. He got stronger as the game went on. His curveball was breaking really sharp At one point he struck out five consecutive batters and ended the game by fanning Justin Turner. Fiers had 10 strikeouts in all. It was Fiers first career complete game and first win as a member of the Astros. He was acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers in the Carlos Gomez deal at the trade deadline. 

The Astros got their runs on a two run HR by Jake Marisnick in the 2nd and a solo shot by Evan Gattis in the sixth.

Two U.S. Servicemen Thwart Terror Attack on Train Bound for Paris — UPDATE

By on 8.21.15 | 8:03PM

Two U.S. Marines have thwarted a terror attack on a train bound from Amsterdam to Paris.

The Marines, dressed in civilian clothes, heard the suspect load a weapon in the bathroom and surprised him upon his exit. One of the Marines was seriously injured in the attack as were two other people. French authorities detained a yet to be identified suspect of Morrocan origin who it is safe to say does not subscribe to Presbyterianism. This suspect was armed with a Kalashnikov, a knife, an automatic pistol as well as cartridges. He is known to French authorities and is believed to be an ISIS sympathizer. The Marines were praised by French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve who said they were “particularly courageous and showed great bravery in very difficult circumstances." Cazeneuve added: "Without their composure we could have been confronted with a terrible incident.” I shudder to think what could have happened if not for these Marines. They are heroes. Let's pray for a speedy recovery for the injured Marine.

Savers Oppose ‘Fiduciary Rule’ Obama Labor Department Claims Will ‘Protect’ Them

By on 8.21.15 | 4:50PM

“A fundamental shift in Wall Street culture” is what the Department of Labor is aiming for with the “fiduciary rule.” That’s what DOL Deputy Assistant Secretary Tim Hauser said in an interview with FinancialPlanning.com during recent hearings on the proposed regulation that has been called “Obamacare for Your IRA.”

But the vast majority of comments submitted on the rule—most of which came far away from Wall Street—called on the DOL to change its own culture of paternalism, an analysis by the Competitive Enterprise Institute shows. Many of these comments took aim at the DOL’s explicit contention in the rule, which I have written about here and elsewhere, that individuals can’t “prudently manage retirement assets on their own,” and that they “generally cannot distinguish … good investment results from bad.”  

Time for a New Army Motto?

By on 8.21.15 | 12:40PM

Continuing what appears to be an unrecoverable spin into cultural incoherence, I see that the U.S. Army Ranger School has graduated two women soldiers. How narrow-minded of every generation for all millennia of human history to assume that warriors were men.

There’s an opportunity here. Recent Army mottos — “Be all you can be,” “An Army of one” — have just not gotten much traction. (And why should they? They’re vague and insipid.) With this progressive break-through (how many does this make now on Obama’s watch?), perhaps it’s time for a new motto. I suggest we consider: “Army — where the men are men — and the women are too.”

Back to School Lunch Scares

By on 8.20.15 | 6:52PM

It’s back to school season, which for many parents means spending money on new clothes, shuttling young people from sports games to ballet, and increasingly, worrying about the kind of nutrition their kids are getting when they’re away from the home.

This is understandable since they are inundated with hyperbolic headlines like “sugary drinks kill,” “death by salt,” and “processed meat causes cancer”. It’s enough to add a few gray hairs to any parent’s head. While it’s important to teach kids about proper nutrition and make sure they’re eating a balanced diet in and outside of the home, this kind of inflammatory rhetoric doesn’t help parents make healthy and realistic choices for their children.

Trump, Ford, and Trade Policy

By on 8.20.15 | 3:45PM

I don’t think anyone likes the idea of responding to all of the various statements that Donald Trump makes, but when he says something vaguely – emphasis on vaguely – substantive on an issue, a short response might be of value. In a recent interview with Chris Cuomo, Trump talked about trade policy, and had this to say (starting around the 7:00 mark) about Ford doing some of its manufacturing in Mexico:

Trump: … Ford is building a $2.5 billion … manufacturing plant for cars, trucks, and parts in Mexico.

Cuomo: How do you keep them?

Trump: Uh you keep them by…

Cuomo: … ‘cause the labor’s cheap that’s why they go.

Trump: For one thing, you keep them by talking to them. But I would say you keep them … if they go there, you know… they’ll make cars, and they’ll sell them to the United States no tax, no nothing. Just come right across the border. …

Cuomo: …and they say the labor’s cheaper over there.

John Kasich Wants to Abolish Teachers Lounges Instead of the Dept. of Ed.

By on 8.20.15 | 1:55PM

John Kasich has had a difficult time differentiating himself from the Republican field. Not only are there other, more recognizable moderates, but John Kasich is basically the kind of entity that ghosts in and out of things like debates. He never says anything really right and he never says anything really wrong. In a sense, he's like the state of Ohio: it's there. You'll visit it if you have to drive through it, but you wouldn't go out of your way.

Yesterday, though, at a New Hampshire "Education Summit" for "The 74" education advocacy group, Kasich came up with a novel and unconventional idea to address problems with education in this country. While other candidates like Bush, Jindal, Christie and Fiorina explained their comprehensive plans to address the need for education reform, John Kasich wants to abolish the teachers lounge - because we can't have people fraternizing on work time.

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