The Spectacle Blog

After Chattanooga Shooting, Obama Hits Links, NYC

By on 7.20.15 | 1:17PM

Last Thursday, four Marines and a US Navy Petty Officer were murdered in a shocking attack of domestic terrorism, when a gunman opened fire first on a military recruitment center and then at a military base, where he was shot dead in a firefight with police. Authorities have released the name of the shooter, Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez, but have yet to formally determine a motive. They are focusing on Abdulazeez's diary, a text message he sent to a friend before he began his shooting spree, and a trip that Abdulazeez took to Jordan last year, as well as Abdulazeez's history with depression and alleged physical abuse

Thoughts on ‘Trainwreck’

By on 7.20.15 | 12:29PM

Over the weekend, my roomie Christopher Kain and I went to see Trainwreck starring Amy Schumer. We had seen the trailer when we went to see Ted 2 a couple of weeks earlier and were intrigued.

In recent months, Schumer has emerged as comedy’s it-girl, especially after she pranked Kanye West and Kim Kardashian by deliberating falling in front of them at the TIME 100 Gala in New York City last April and was particularly witty in her appearance with Jimmy Kimmel shortly thereafter. So why not?

After seeing the movie, I read Armond White’s review of it at NRO. It’s pretty safe to say that he didn’t like it much:

Are You Ready for Chillary Clinton?

By on 7.20.15 | 12:03PM

While the left was eating its own at Netroots Nation in a three-way war for attention, Hillary Clinton was sitting out the annual gathering of progressive agitators in favor of a relaxing weekend, recording videos about beer koozies. 

America, are you Ready for Chillary? Because she's ready for you.

The "Chillary" beer koozie is for sale on the Clinton campaign website, for a mere $10 for a set of two. 

You can apparently be the "coolest" (har!) person at the party with your Chillary canteen. Because nothing says "I'm really with it!" like your overt support for a septugenarian retread candidate from the mid-1990s. 


Donald Trump Hits at John McCain’s Service Record, Presumptively Implodes

By on 7.20.15 | 11:23AM

Even though his sudden uptick in the polls had me a little queasy, there was something inherently valuable about a Donald Trump candidacy: he made all of the other fourteen (fifteen?) candidates look sane and normal by comparison. I can't say with any honesty, like Jeffery Lord, that Trump was "speaking truth to power" with his bizarre, rambling speeches, but I can say that, for a campaign that has now started almost two years out, he's a brief, if challenging bit of entertainment.

This weekend, though, he went off the proverbial "deep end," wasting any legitimacy his campaign had on a quip about, of all people, John McCain. 

Donald J. Trump has made his name in politics with provocative statements, but it was not until Saturday, after the flamboyant businessman turned presidential candidate belittled Senator John McCain’s war record, that many Republicans concluded that silence or equivocation about Mr. Trump’s incendiary rhetoric was inadequate.

U.N. Security Council Okays Iran Nuclear Deal

By on 7.20.15 | 10:53AM

Less than a week after the Iran nuclear deal was reached, it has been approved unaminously at the UN Security Council.

This, of course, is hardly a surprise. After all, the Iran nuclear deal was negotiated with the P5 + 1. The P5 refers to the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany.

But what it also means is that even if Congress somehow blocks the deal, sanctions relief will proceed with China, Russia, and Europe eager to resume doing business with Iran. Not that they haven’t been doing business with the Mullahs already, particularly the Russians.

Aubrey Morris, R.I.P.

By on 7.17.15 | 1:04PM

British character actor Aubrey Morris passed away yesterday at the age of 89.

Morris’s career spanned nearly seven decades. He appeared in British TV shows such as The Prisoner, Lovejoy,and The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and also made guest appearances on American TV shows such as Murder, She Wrote, Columbo and, most recently, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. He also appeared in movies such as The Wicker Man and Bordello of Blood with Dennis Miller.

The Motive of Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez is Abundantly Clear

By on 7.17.15 | 11:24AM

Four Marines are killed by a Muslim terrorist and the mainstream media cannot fathom why. Here is the Associated Press

The man who authorities say killed four Marines in an attack on a military recruiting centre and another U.S. military site was a 24-year-old, Kuwait-born engineer who had not been on the radar of federal authorities until the bloodshed.

Beyond that, little is known about Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez of Hixson, Tenn., or what motivated his rampage. Federal authorities were looking into the possibility it was an act of terrorism, but say there is no evidence yet that anyone else was involved — or that the public is in any danger.

Officials have said they do not know why the shooter targeted the facilities and have not said what weapons he used.

Planned Parenthood is Sorry About Their ‘Tone’ In Creepy Video

By on 7.17.15 | 11:21AM

I covered this on Twitter already, but it felt necessary to bring it back here: Planned Parenthood is now on its third or fourth day of damage control, following the release of a video depicting their top doc talking casually about crushing up aborted fetuses to preserve their organs for "donation" over what looks like a nice Chianti. Yesterday the chain of women's clinics trotted out their president, Cecile Richards, for an actual apology (sort of) and some damage control.

(Spoiler alert: if you typically expect Richards to peel away her mask and reveal a reptilian visage, as I do, it doesn't happen in this video, sorry.) 

Federal Judge Block’s Obama’s New Fracking Rules

By on 7.16.15 | 5:08PM

In a legal setback for the Obama administration's environmental agenda, a federal judge in Wyoming sided with the Attorney Generals of Colorado, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming,  temporarily blocking implementation of the administration’s regulations for hydraulic fracturing on federal land, hours before they were set to take effect. 

On June 23, the U.S. District Court of Wyoming issued a preliminary stay to Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) planned June 24th launch of the administration’s first major rewrite of fracking regulations on energy companies that lease federal land. 

Oil-and-natural-gas-heavy Colorado, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming, sued to stop the rule, along with did two industry associations. 

In remarks, presiding Judge Scott Skavdahl said the stay was necessary to give the federal government more time to explain how it developed the rule and how it considered public comments. 

“It is too important an issue” for a quick ruling, Skavdahl said. 

Associations, States, Applaud Decision

TPP Opponents Force Obama to Ignore Human Trafficking

By on 7.16.15 | 5:03PM

According to news reports, the Obama administration is planning to upgrade Malaysia’s ranking in the State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons Report.  Advocacy groups are complaining that the move is motivated not by an improvement in Malaysia’s practices but by the administration’s desire to include Malaysia in the Trans-Pacific Partnership.  These critics are probably right, and it’s all the fault of anti-TPP legislators who tried to scuttle the TPP by linking it to human trafficking.