The Spectacle Blog

In Praise of Jorge Ramos & Univision

By on 3.9.16 | 11:43PM

I know that Donald Trump supporters despise Jorge Ramos almost as much as Megyn Kelly. But they really shouldn't.

If Trump supporters had watched tonight's Democrat debate between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, they would have seen a Ramos that did not pull punches nor did the rest of the panel which consisted of Ramos' Univision colleague Maria Elena Salinas as well as Karen Tumulty of The Washington Post. 

While Bernie was challenged on his public support for both Fidel Castro and Daniel Ortega, Hillary was challenged on both the e-mail scandal and Benghazi in a way she hasn't on any other network. In fact, the moment Ramos mentioned Benghazi the partisan crowd showered jeers upon him.

Yes, it's true that Univision cannot be described as sympathetic to either Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio, they do generally ask tough questions of everyone. Ramos did not spare President Obama during the 2012 campaign.

Hillary Claims Internet Video Was Partially Responsible for Benghazi Attack During Univision Debate

By on 3.9.16 | 11:23PM

As a rule, Hillary Clinton is generally absurd and tonight was no different during the Democrat debate which was broadcast on Univision (as well as CNN). 

At various points, Hillary claimed that Bernie Sanders supported The Minutemen and The Koch Brothers. Bernie is many things. A supporter of The Minutemen or The Koch Brothers are not among those things.

But Hillary sank to a new low when in response to a question from Jorge Ramos on Benghazi for which the audience booed him lustily. Ramos played a video of Patricia Smith (the mother of Navy SEAL Sean Smith who was killed in the attack) in which she said Hillary had told her an internet video was to blame for the attack when she had e-mailed to tell Chelsea it was a terrorist attack. Hillary claimed Smith was wrong and that information was changing on an hourly basis. Balderdash. From the time of the attack through the presidential election, the Obama Administration kept hammering that was an internet video. 

Sanders May Have Won Michigan, But Clinton Won The Delegates

By on 3.9.16 | 1:45PM

Bernie Sanders pulled off what can only be considered an "epic" win last night in Michigan, defying all predictions and polling. Michigan, my home state, was, against all reason and logic, feeling the Bern

But while Bernie was cracking the champagne to celebrate his victory, Hillary Clinton was the one riding off into the sunset with the majority of delegates. Because, yet again, Michigan's Democratic party has a wealth of superdelegates, and Hillary Clinton managed to snag quite a few for herself

Clinton cleaned up in Mississippi, winning 83 percent of the vote, according to The Associated Press. Sanders on the other hand, finished with just 16 percent, 1 point above the threshold to win delegates. That gave Clinton an estimated 28 delegates, compared to just one for Sanders by the AP's count, with seven more unaccounted for at midnight. 

Carly Fiorina Backs Cruz in Florida

By on 3.9.16 | 12:19PM

Let's face it: Trump's branded water bottles got more exposure last night than Marco Rubio. Ted Cruz spent, like, a thousand dollars in Michigan, and still came in second, as Marco Rubio struggled to pull ahead of Dr. Ben Carson, who dropped out of the race last week, in Mississippi.

Not that I would tell anyone not to pursue their dreams. I mean, catch it, young Marco! Catch it! But if the Republicans are serious about keeping Donald Trump from gold-plating the White House, it's time to pull on some big girl panties, put the animosity of 2012 behind us, admit that while we Ted Cruz has an imminently punchable face, he's might just be the only chance we have. 

Carly Fiorina, this morning, led the charge, endorsing Ted Cruz in Marco Rubio's home state, a clear message to Rubio that maybe he'll actually come in third in a state he has to win, and to Republicans that sometimes, you just have to put the past away and focus on the future.

Sir George Martin, R.I.P.

By on 3.9.16 | 12:37AM

Sir George Martin, best known as the producer of The Beatles, has passed away at the age of 90.

The cause of death is unknown, but news of his passing came by way of a tweet from Ringo Starr which read, "Thank you for all your love and kindness George peace and love xx."

After Decca Records foolishly turned down The Beatles, the group had an opportunity to rehearse for Martin at EMI/Capitol Records. Martin liked what he saw although he would recommend the group replace their drummer, Pete Best. Along came Ringo and the rest, as they say, was music history.

Martin was there from "Love Me Do" to "The End".

He would also produce for the likes of Gerry & The Pacemakers, Cilla Black and America. But he was synonymous with The Fab Four.

Of all The Beatles songs, I could choose to pay tribute I shall go with "In My Life". Aside from its theme, Martin also played piano on the song's bridge.

Bernie Upsets Hillary in Michigan

By on 3.9.16 | 12:15AM

Just when you thought Hillary had the Democratic Party nomination all sewn up, Bernie Sanders pulls off a huge upset in Michigan.

WIth 93% of the polls reporting, Bernie wins 50.1% of the vote compared to 48% for Hillary Clinton. He will leave Michigan with 63 of the state's 116 delegates.

His triumph is fascinating considering all the heat he took following the debate on Sunday where he was taken to task for shushing Hillary and for suggesting that white people don't live in ghettos. Maybe Bernie is wearing a thin coat of teflon.

Don't get me wrong. Nothing short of an indictment will stop Hillary from getting the Democratic Party nomination. Yet while lead in the delegate count is greater than 2:1 (1,215 to 566 as of this writing) those superdelegates are an indictment of the Democratic Party's voting process. As messed up as the Republican Party is, at least GOP elected officials are not afforded special status and if they were Donald Trump probably wouldn't be where he is right now. But I digress.

No, Donald Trump Does Not Have The Largest Winery on The East Coast

By on 3.8.16 | 10:28PM

During his press conference, Donald Trump claimed that he owns the largest winery on the East Coast.

No, he doesn't.

If you check Trump Winery's website, it claims only to be "Virginia's largest vineyard" (and is run by his son Eric).

There's a hell of a difference between having Virginia's largest vineyard and the largest vineyard on the East Coast.

Now you might not think this is such a big deal in the grand scheme of things. But Trump has a long pattern of exaggerating what he owns and/or the extent of his ownership. Consider British TV reporter Selina Scott's observations when she profiled him on ITV two decades ago:

This ability to blag people into believing he was a commercial genius was most vividly illustrated in a helicopter ride we took over New York. Pointing to the Empire State Building, he told me he owned it.


Trump Triumphs in Michigan & Mississippi; Gets Paul O’Neill’s Endorsement UPDATE

By on 3.8.16 | 9:45PM

Donald Trump is in his absolute element. And why shouldn't he be?

He was won decisively in both Michigan and Mississippi. Trump bested John Kasich by double digits in Michigan and has more than 50% of the vote in Mississippi. 

And to boot, he got the endorsement of ex-Cincinnati Red and New York Yankees outfielder Paul O'Neill. 

It's under conditions like these that he can brag he is a great Christian (said with characteristic modesty), as presidential than Abe Lincoln (but nowhere near as honest) and has the largest winery on The East Coast (Virginia, maybe). 

Trump's night could get even better with polls pending from Hawaii and Idaho.

Well, there will be other days. Of course, it could be more days like this one.

UPDATE: Trump is also boasting he is the most conservative Republican in the country and a free trader. Soon he will boast about a fish he caught. And why shouldn't he? There are a lot of people taking the bait.


Chuck Norris, Caitlyn Jenner Back Ted Cruz

By on 3.8.16 | 4:22PM

Ted Cruz is laying low until after Florida, when he'll find out whether Marco Rubio survives, but he'll get some help from some famous names over the next few weeks that could expand his horizons considerably - for better or worse.

 According to reports, Chuck Norris has endorsed Ted Cruz, making both Ted Cruz's Secret Service protection irrelevant, and making a big leap from his previous endorsement, Mike Huckabee.

Chuck Norris will hit the campaign trail with Ted Cruz in North Carolina Saturday.

The 75-year-old actor is set to appear at a rally in Concord for the Republican front-runner, along with Glenn Beck and retired Army Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin.

On the other end of the spectrum (at least, I think so - she's always been a Republican, though not nearly as outspoken as she is now), Caitlyn Jenner has also endorsed Ted Cruz, much to the chagrin of liberal social justice warriors, who have been trying to co-opt Caitlyn Jenner into their movement, as she's one of the most high-profile transgender woman in the public eye. 

Bad Usage and Postpartum Depression

By on 3.8.16 | 2:54PM

A friend shared an email she received from the Reagan Library announcing that Nancy Reagan will “lay in repose” Wednesday and Thursday. As the kids would say, while briefly raising their untutored heads from their smart phones, “Whatever.”

A good time was had by all at the Sunday night Downton party and girls-night-out my wife attended (the second time this season I’ve been a Downton widower). Some cookies and strawberries made it home for me, but none of the shrimp or bubbly survived. As most of you have seen the final episode now, I feel comfortable saying that it was entertaining, but all the moving from character to character and the remorseless tying up of loose ends made it dramatically less satisfying than previous episodes. It had to be this way, as I’m sure many of Fellowes’ devoted fans would have had him strung up if he had left anything to speculation.