The Spectacle Blog

Re: Sweet Sixty

By on 7.6.06 | 10:26AM

Speaking of the President's milestone day, the Washington Post yesterday was clearly disappointed that Mr. Bush wasn't making a bigger deal of turning 60 or observing his big day ahead of time:

...Bush appeared annoyed when a reporter asked if he planned to treat himself for his birthday, which is Thursday.

"Generally, I celebrate my birthday on the birthday itself," he scolded.

This "[i]n contrast to President Bill Clinton, whose 50th birthday in office was celebrated with an extravagant, star-filled, televised gala ..." A nice reminder. Would Bush numbers be higher if he were an obsessive megalomaniac?

Burying the Hatchet

By on 7.6.06 | 10:10AM

Ralph Hallow reports that Phil Gramm can look past John McCain's attacks on the First and Second Amendments.

Along with many of our readers, I have my McCain hangups. But Hallow's article shows the Senator from Television to be well positioned for the Republican nomination.

Mormon Presidential Candidates Lose Ground

By on 7.6.06 | 9:24AM

In 1999, when Gallup asked Americans whether they would vote for a Mormon, 17 percent said no.

A new Los Angeles Times/Blooomberg poll found that 37 percent would not vote for a Mormon presidential candidate. The red herring of this report is that 21 percent said they would not vote for an evangelical Protestant candidate. My guess is that the anti-evangelical group is most outside the Republican Party, but the anti-Mormon group is well represented within the Republican Party. If anything, the Republican evangelicals would be Mitt Romney's most reluctant voters if he were to run for president.

Hillary Heart Joe … But …

By on 7.5.06 | 4:04PM

As we reported a week ago, Sen. Joe Lieberman has now publicly stated his intention to pull in signatures for a petition that would place him on the November ballot as an "independent" should he lose the Democrat primary vote.

Right now, this is simply doing the smart, conservative thing, given the weird political environment we are living through. Lieberman is still expected to win his primary, but that hasn't stopped people like Hillary Rodham Clinton from betraying just how nutty the Democrat Party is. She announced her support for Lieberman, but linked it to his winning the primary. If not, then he was out of luck.

Conservatives and Sex

By on 7.5.06 | 3:53PM

Contrary to some libertarians and a good portion of the pro-abortion crowd, pro-life conservatives don't hate sex, Dave Freddoso writes. They just understand its significance better and place it in its proper context.

Capitol 4th Writers Taking the 5th

By on 7.5.06 | 1:57PM

We've been nosing around over at WETA, the Washington area public broadcasting channel that helps produce the "Capitol Fourth" show each year. The script and "continuity" documents for the show had been in the works for months, and according to folks we talk to on the "corporate" side of things, were scrubbed for "sensitivity" issues.

At some point, the issue of the scrubbing came up and according to one source we spoke with, "When it was pointed out that changing President Lincoln's words might outrage some people, the response was essentially, 'It's the people who would be outraged that we didn't change it that we need to think about. They are the ones who are paying our salaries.'"

Power Play

By on 7.4.06 | 11:50PM

Thanks to a second fierce storm in three days that knocked power out in 61,000 homes in my county (Fairfax) late this afternoon, I missed not only the end of the Germany-Italy showdown but the annual pre-fireworks July 4 concert from the Mall. I did catch a bit of it on the car radio, while scrounging the area for hot food for my traumatized family (most shopping centers were as darkened as my neighborhood).

Two highlights: host Jason Alexander claiming Lincoln described America as "the last best hope of earth"; and honored singer Stevie Wonder failing to say a word about America as America; U.S. history to him consists of Native Americans and Crispus Attucks, but apparently not July 4 and the Revolutionary War itself. He praised those who fought for "oneness" and who are fighting for "peace." He invoked "God" and "Allah." Fortunately, the evening wasn't entirely lost. The likable Cuba Gooding, Jr. somehow found a way to mention the word Jason Alexander avoided, as he put in a good word for "mankind" itself.


By on 7.4.06 | 7:07PM

Kim has popped his top and air-mailed a number of rockets to the Sea of Japan. Attitudes have been leery and brittle regarding the launch; and why not? What could be worse than the man pilloried in "Team America" finally putting paid to the crackpot notion that the world's worst pariah state can dig itself out of oblivion by indulging in the blackmail gambit of the nuclear gunsel?

Our friends at the Washington Realist, for one, suspect to the contrary that the real indulgence is ours to be had. Why not, it's been suggested, let the Fools Themselves shoot off whatever third-rate missile (like last season's Scuds) is at their disposal -- and the use the occasion to both sum up the capabilities of the enemy and take advantage of the stunt to mobilize world distaste? And sure enough here comes Japan, while we scramble to assemble the data.