The Spectacle Blog

Richard Kiel, R.I.P.

By on 9.11.14 | 11:15PM

Actor Richard Kiel passed away yesterday. He was hospitalized last week after sustaining a broken leg. Kiel died three days shy of his 75th birthday.

Standing more than seven feet tall, Kiel has the distinction of being the only actor to play a Bond villain in more than one film playing Jaws in both The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker starring Roger Moore as 007. 

Younger audiences may remember Kiel from his role in Happy Gilmore starring Adam Sandler. Kiel's other movie credits include The Longest Yard with Burt Reynolds, Silver Streak with Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor and Pale Rider with Clint Eastwood. 

Kiel was also originally cast in The Incredible Hulk TV series. However, the show's producers thought Kiel's physique wasn't right for the role and Kiel didn't like all that green makeup. So the role was given to Lou Ferrigno and the rest is TV history. 

Speaking of TV, here is a clip of Kiel's guest shot on The Monkees.

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Obama’s Misdirection Play

By on 9.11.14 | 3:38PM

“ISIL isn’t Islamic,” our golfer-in-chief invited us to believe Wednesday night. Right. And La Cosa Nostra isn’t Italian. The Pope isn’t a Catholic. And a wild bear won’t…

This is just the most audacious of Obama’s many attempted misdirections. And it stands a good chance of being believed. By people who’ve spent the last 30 years on Mars, or by those who ingest large quantities of controlled substances on a daily basis.

As he spins his unique and entertaining view of the world, Dave Barry is forever telling us, “I’m not making this up.” Obama, on the other hand, clearly is.

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Obama: “ISIL Isn’t Islamic!”

By on 9.10.14 | 10:02PM

President Obama went through the motions in his 15 minute nationwide address tonight about American strategy concerning ISIS/ISIL. He seemed detached from what he was saying as if his mind were elsewhere, perhaps the 18th green at Pebble Beach.

Tomorrow I will have a piece up on the main site on the 13th anniversary of the attacks of September 11, 2001 which criticizes the manner in which Obama de-emphasizes the connection between acts of terrorism and Islam.

Needless to say, I wasn't surprised when he said, "ISIL isn't Islamic." ISIL might not represent the entire Muslim world, but it certainly represents a critical mass of it. To deny ISIL's ideological and religious motivations is absurd. It was equally absurd when Obama also declared that "ISIL isn't a state." Well, it controls a good portion of Iraq and seeks to establish a caliphate not only the Middle East, but here in the United States. How can Obama destroy and degrade ISIL if he cannot acknowledge their aims and objectives?

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Ray Rice and His Bride

By on 9.10.14 | 12:11PM

Not that I’m questioning the decision. It probably had to be made. But it’s hard to see how La Rice’s life is made any better by it. Before she was just married to a dangerous sumbitch. Now she’s married to a dangerous sumbitch who isn’t bringing home any money and who is around the house all day, frustrated and angry. These are perilous times for her. Sometimes there are just bad options and worse options.

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Telegraphing Our Punches

By on 9.10.14 | 11:48AM

The smart folks over at Investors Business Daily offered one of the most comprehensive "decodings" of President Obama's Syria/ISIS strategy -- after the president told our friends and foes alike that he doesn't have one.

Tonight at 9 PM EDT, we'll get the latest "reset" in strategy...days after a speech at a NATO meeting in which Obama basically laid out three different near-strategies within just a few minutes of each other.

At this point, the whole thing bores me, despite recognizing its seriousness.

Here are my predictions what he'll say:

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Thoughts on the Ray Rice Video

By on 9.10.14 | 12:06AM

Like millions of other people, I have seen the video of former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice punching out his fiance (who he has since married) and was disgusted by his actions.

Prior to the video's release, Rice had been suspended for the first two games of the NFL season. But with the public outrage that followed the release of the video, the Ravens released Rice and the NFL has suspended him indefinitely.

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S. Truett Cathy, R.I.P.

By on 9.8.14 | 11:34AM

S. Truett Cathy, founder of the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain, passed away this morning at the age of 93.

Cathy spent his life in the restaurant business and opened his first Chick-fil-A restaurant in 1967. Soon it would be a southern institution and eventually Chick-fil-A would open nationwide (but not here in Boston).

Liberals and left-wingers were offended by Cathy's unabashed Christianity. Chick-fil-A is famous for being closed on Sunday. But it was his opposition to gay marriage that got in their craw. By the time the Chick-fil-A controversy hit Boston and Chicago two years ago, his son Dan was running the day to day operations of the company, but a lot of the invective was directed at the elder Cathy. I didn't agree with Cathy's position on gay marriage, but it was a terribly unfair thing to do.

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Obama’s Strategy on ISIS: Make a Speech & Ask Congress for Money

By on 9.7.14 | 1:20PM

I watched Chuck Todd's debut as host of NBC's Meet the Press to watch his interview with President Obama which was conducted yesterday.

Obama looked like he just got out of bed. He did later note that he hasn't been getting much sleep. 

But he does finally have a strategy concerning ISIS - make a speech and ask Congress for more money.

As Todd noted, Obama will be making a speech concerning ISIS on Wednesday, the day before the 13th anniversary of the September 11th attacks. 

Despite being called out by Glenn Kessler of The Washington Post on it, Obama also doubled down on the White House spin that he never referred to ISIS as the "jayvee team". Obama made the comment in an interview with David Remnick of The New Yorker this past January. Here's the relevant excerpt from that interview:

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For a Constitutional Convention

By on 9.6.14 | 12:18PM

As I always suspected, Obama will announce by executive order a plan to “regularize” undocumented (i.e., illegal) aliens after the November election. That’s an admission that it’s an unpopular issue, at least where Democratic Senate seats are in play. It’s also an admission that Democratic voters in those states aren’t smart enough to figure out what’s coming around the bend. And of course, the Democratic candidates in question will swear that they personally, honest-to-God, don’t want an amnesty, so this is also an admission that the Democratic voters in those states aren’t smart enough to know that the candidates in question are lying.

But in the end, what does it matter? Obama will do it whomever takes control of the Senate. And if the Republicans do take the Senate, what then? The House and Senate will pass legislation and send it over to the White House. Where it will die.

Don’t get me wrong. I think Congress is really important. I mean, how else could we have a State of the Union Address? And we’re not yet at the point where President Hillary is going to be sworn in in the Rose Garden or Fedex Field.

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Ron Washington Resigns as Rangers Manager

By on 9.5.14 | 10:39PM

Ron Washington has stepped down as manager of the Texas Rangers. Washington is departing for undisclosed personal reasons. All that is known is that the circumstances do not concern substance abuse. Washington tested positive for cocaine in 2009. 

The Rangers hired Washington to manage the Rangers prior to the 2007 season. Washington would guide the Rangers to back to back AL pennants in 2010 and 2011. The Rangers were one strike away not once, but twice from winning their first World Series title in 2011. However, David Freese had other ideas. 

In 2014, the Rangers have the worst record in MLB. At 53-87, the Rangers are 31 1/2 games back of the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West. Nevertheless, with a record of 664-611, Washington is the winningest manager in Rangers' franchise history.

Rangers bench coach Tim Bogar has been named interim manager for the remainder of the season. Bogar spent four seasons on the Boston Red Sox coaching staff before joining the Rangers' organization this year. 

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