The Spectacle Blog

Dodgers Sweep D’Backs Down Under

By on 3.23.14 | 7:39AM

On Saturday, I got up at 4 a.m. to watch the 2014 MLB Opening Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks at Sydney Cricket Grounds in Australia. 

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Poll Dampens Democratic Hopes for Georgia

By on 3.21.14 | 4:58PM

While the GOP, hopeful of capturing the Senate, focuses on vulnerable Democrats who voted for Obamacare, the left reminds Republicans of the significance of the word “net” in their goal of a net-six win this year. 

Democrats have Georgia in mind. Although Republicans may manage to take down incumbents, the argument goes, they will need to prevent Democrats from seizing the open seat in the typically red Peach State. While demographic shifts might suggest a purple (or less red) future for Georgia, the state’s role in the 2014 cycle may be overstated.

Democratic strategists have been counting on a Todd Akin-Claire McCaskill repeat this year in Georgia. For one, Republican Congressman Phil Gingrey, running for Senator Saxby Chambliss’s open seat, “partially” defended Senate candidate Todd Akin’s infamous “legitimate rape” comments from 2012. 

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Planned Parenthood Did It All for the Money, the What, the Money

By on 3.21.14 | 3:33PM

The Federalist has an incredible article today, dealing with Planned Parenthood’s complicity in ignoring and frankly covering up Kermit Gosnell's horrors at his abortion clinic. The entire piece is well worth the read.

There are a few choice bits I’d like to deal with here. First, it is all too fitting that Planned Parenthood is trying to electorally defeat the cousin of one of Gosnell’s victims, Margo Davidson, who's running for reelection as a state representative. Davidson spoke out after seeing what Gosnell did to her cousin, Semika Shaw:

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The Beer Spectator: Sierra Nevada’s Harvest Series Is A Celebration of California

By on 3.21.14 | 1:49PM

California has its issues. A high state income tax, massive budget deficits, unfunded pension liabilities—we could go on and on.  

But today we celebrate the Golden State, and specifically the Harvest Single Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Company in Chico, Calif. The Harvest series showcases five different beers of alternate hopping methods. This is the first. 

The beer reminded me of Christmas Eve, when my mother prepares a grand feast for our extended family. San Francisco, where I grew up, has only one true climate attribute: fog. It doesn’t snow, nor does it rain very often. 

During wintertime, the temperature drops to 40 degrees at the coldest. Obviously we’re spoiled. For this dinner, we purchase Dungeness crab. These large, orange shellfish are not as sweet as lobster, and they require a bit more work to grab the meat.

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How Nelson Mandela Forced the Resignation of Alberta’s Premier

By on 3.21.14 | 9:14AM

On Wednesday, Alberta Premier Alison Redford resigned suddenly after only two and a half years in office. Redford became Premier in October 2011 when she won the Progressive Conservative Party leadership and was elected in her own right in April 2012 when the Tories won 62 out of 87 seats in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta. 

The Tories have held office in Alberta since August 1971. This summer the Alberta Tories will become the longest serving government in Canadian history, surpassing the Nova Scotia Liberals who held power for 43 years between 1882-1925. In 2012, Redford and the Tories faced a strong conservative challenge by Danielle Smith and the Wildrose Party. However, a series of racist and homophobic comments by several Wildrose candidates and Smith’s failure to condemn those statements cast sufficient doubts to lead Alberta voters to re-elect the Tories.

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Breaking: Airplane Mystery Solved!

By on 3.21.14 | 1:57AM

You read it here first, folks. The airplane puzzle has been solved. No, not the fate of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, or the "zombie plane," as CNN has speculatively dubbed it. Not even the timeless stumper as to whether Joey has ever seen a grown man naked. I'm talking about a mysterious small aircraft that has been incessantly circling a neighborhood in Sacramento for the past few weeks. News 10, Sacramento's ABC affiliate, has the scoop. Through some intrepid sleuthing, a college student--who chose, perhaps wisely, to remain anonymous--found out that the planes use the FBI's callsign, "Jenna."

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Get Well Soon, Aroldis Chapman

By on 3.20.14 | 6:51PM

I just saw the video of Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman getting struck in the face by a line drive off the bat of Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Pena during a spring training game last night in Surprise, Arizona. 

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The Fate of the Westboro Baptist Church

By on 3.20.14 | 5:52PM

By now you have likely heard the loud sigh of relief from just about every American other than those of the Westboro Baptist congregation in Kansas. Their founder and pastor Fred Phelps passed away on Wednesday, according to his church and family.

Phelps founded the infamous church in 1955 and pastored there until he died at 84 of a mysterious illness, leaving a legacy of abominable hatred behind him.

His own son, Nathan Phelps, abandoned his father’s heretical congregation thirty years ago and wrote of him: “Destroyed by the monster he made.”

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Crushing Rocks

By on 3.20.14 | 3:23PM

Ryan Anderson is a dangerous man. 

So says the student body and administration of Stanford University, one of America’s “premiere” institutions of “higher education.” Anderson is one of a few intellectuals brave enough to make the case that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Though nationalized same-sex marriage by judicial fiat will likely come upon us in a very short time, nevertheless the best and brightest of the Millennial generation at Stanford cannot tolerate Anderson’s willingness to stand on the “wrong side of history.” After all, his clarity, logic, humility, poise, and courage might reveal the hollowness of what is arguably the most successful social movement in American history.

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Court Rules Feds Must Recognize Voter ID Laws

By on 3.20.14 | 1:30PM

“I’m sorry, can I see your ID?”

I shuffled through my purse and pulled it out, slipping the plastic card across the table. The woman read my birth date and turned me away.

“I’m sorry but you have to be 18 to get a library card without a parent’s signature,” the librarian informed me.

It was a month before my eighteenth birthday and I needed resources for my 40-page senior thesis, but I couldn’t check out books without Daddy’s signature.

Fast forward a year. I’m standing in line to cast my very first vote while I was home from college. When it came to my turn the gentleman asked me for my name. He scrolled down the list. He asked for my address. I rattled it off. Then, with a friendly smile, he handed me my ballot.

You know what’s wrong with this picture. You need to present your ID at the airport, the hospital, to buy Advil or Nyquil at CVS, to withdraw money at the bank, to buy alcohol, cigarettes, and lottery tickets, to rent a car, etc., etc., but you don’t need an ID to vote. At least, in many states, until now.

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