The Spectacle Blog

Jeb Bush Says He’d Dump Executive Amnesty…Sort Of

By on 5.12.15 | 1:56PM

Thankfully for the Republican Presidential candidates, Ted Cruz's encounter with Mark Halperin, which demonstrated that Mark Halperin has little to no contact with the outside world, has dominated headlines this week. Otherwise, a few of them would be forced to explain some bizarre statements they've made.

Hollywood Celebrities Aren’t Abiding by CA Drought Rules

By on 5.12.15 | 1:33PM

The California drought, that exceptional byproduct of an exciting, unnatural approach to preserving the lives of millions of tiny, endangered fish for no discernable purpose except to prevent their own extinction, has taken its toll on the "little people" of California. Forced to give up all consumption of water, to the point where it has been routinely suggested that they refrain from regular bathing, California citizenry are suffering through one of their worst water restrictions in history.

Well, some California citizenry are suffering through one of their worst water restrictions in history. 

“Let them drink dust!”

Hillary Clinton Plagiarized Herself for Her Book

By on 5.12.15 | 1:14PM

I suppose it's not technically plagiarism if you're copying yourself, unless you decide to also implicate yourself for the theft of intellectual property from your own mind, but if you were wondering how Hillary Clinton had managed to eek out a book when she's so stingy with public statements, it seems she literally took a page from herself. 

As discovered by the Washington Free Beacon, Clinton cribbed entire passages for Hard Choices, her book about her years in government, from earlier speeches, testimony she gave in front of the House and Senate, from her husband and even from some of her earlier works.

Large portions of Hillary Clinton’s $14-million memoir Hard Choices are copied from more than a dozen public speeches, congressional testimony she made while serving as secretary of state, and her previous book Living History, a Washington Free Beacon analysis found.

Another Bangladeshi Blogger Hacked to Death by Muslim Extremists

By on 5.12.15 | 12:48PM

Muslim extremists do not confine their anger to cartoonists.

In Bangladesh, a blogger named Ananta Bijoy Das was hacked to death today in the northeastern city of Sylhet by Islamists wielding machetes.

This is the third such attack since February when Islamists murdered Avijit Roy, a Bangladeshi born U.S. citizen in Dhaka. Roy's wife was also seriously injured in the attack losing a thumb. Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) claimed responsibility for Roy's death. In March, another blogger named Washiqur Rahman was hacked to death also in the Bangladeshi capital.

Das had been recently invited to address a meeting of the Swedish chapter of PEN, but the Swedish government denied Das a visa on the grounds he would not return. It would seem the Swedish government is no more eager to "provoke" Muslim extremists than are American elites who fell all over themselves last week condemning Pamela Geller following the attempted terrorist attack in Garland, Texas at the Muhammad art exhibit she organized.

Chicago Wins Bid to Host Obama Presidential Library

By on 5.12.15 | 10:58AM

Oh, thank heavens. Our long, national nightmare has finally come to an end.

In a move that surprised literally no one - except those of us who live here and thought that our President, warrior of the downtrodden minority communities, would rather the money go to building a much-needed trauma center on the city's South Side rather than a vanity project of a tourist attraction - Chicago has won the right to build the Obama Presidential Library, a project of the Barack Obama Foundation, which launched yetsterday with the comforting tagline, "his Presidency was just the beginning."

President Barack Obama's presidential library will be located in Chicago, the Barack Obama Foundation officially announced Tuesday.

The University of Chicago beat out its competitors, the University of Illinois at Chicago, Columbia University and the University of Hawaii, which also touted their ties to Obama and vied for the opportunity to host his presidential center.

Three Reasons Michelle Obama’s Tuskegee University Commencement Speech Did More Harm Than Good

By on 5.12.15 | 10:19AM

I know there's been a fair amount of commentary concerning Michelle Obama's commencement address at Tuskegee University over the weekend, but I did want to make three observations of my own as to why her speech did more harm than good. But before I do let me provide this excerpt from her remarks:

Because here’s the thing -- the road ahead is not going to be easy. It never is, especially for folks like you and me. Because while we’ve come so far, the truth is that those age-old problems are stubborn and they haven’t fully gone away. So there will be times, just like for those Airmen, when you feel like folks look right past you, or they see just a fraction of who you really are.

NFL Suspends Brady for Four Games, Fines Patriots $1 Million

By on 5.11.15 | 9:57PM

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has thrown the proverbial book at Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. In the wake of the Wells Report, Goodell has suspended Brady for the first four games of the 2015 NFL season, fined the Patriots $1 million and indefinitely suspended two employees because its "more probable than not" that they deflated footballs or possessed knowledge of said deflation. As our own Daniel J. Flynn noted last week, "It’s “more probable than not” that lawyers using the phrase “more probable than not” want to attaint with guilt without taking on the tough work of proving it."  If Brady had seen fit to slug Gisele Bundchen in an elevator a year ago he would have received half the punishment. Although if Brady ever did such a foolish thing, methinks Gisele could more than hold her own. Yes, Goodell would eventually increase Ray Rice's suspension, but had to be shamed into doing so following a public backlash.

Bill Clinton Will Stay in the Shadows For Now

By on 5.11.15 | 5:07PM

Although it was clear from this flattering Washington Post bit from this weekend that Bill Clinton has been slowly shoring up his First Lady agenda, it seems that the Hillary Clinton campaign is not interested in giving the people what they're clamoring for.

While Bill Clinton will happily trot the globe, pulling up developing nations from certain economic disaster with his charm and compassion alone, Hillary will be leaving her happy hubby off the campaign trail for now in order to focus America's attention on the lesser Clinton, lest they start making unflattering comparisons. 

President Clinton will not hit the campaign trail for Hillary Clinton in 2015, aides told The Washington Post, keeping in line with his promise to be a “backstage adviser” to her White House run.

Thoughts on Seymour Hersh’s Claims About the Bin Laden Raid & The Media Reaction

By on 5.11.15 | 4:48PM

Over the weekend, Seymour Hersh caused a sensation when The London Review of Books published a piece by the Pulitzer Prize winning author in which he claimed that much of what the American public has been told about the raid which Osama bin Laden was killed four years ago is false. More precisely, Hersh argues that the mission was done with the knowledge and co-operation of the Pakistanis contrary to White House claims the raid was carried out without Pakistan's knowledge.

Naturally, the Obama Administration denies the story. It is also worth noting that the story has been greeted with a great deal of skepticism in the media as Max Fisher's piece in Vox and Bobby Ghosh's piece in Quartz demonstrate.  

Elizabeth Warren Takes Aim at the Clinton Foundation

By on 5.11.15 | 1:43PM

She's nice, but she's not so nice. 

Elizabeth Warren (D-$8.5 million, net worth), who I am quickly running out of Native American-themed jokes for, despite having literally decades yet to go in her tenure, wrote a blog post the other day on her own website,, bolstering Hillary Clinton's credentials with her populist following over the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement that Warren is at war with the White House over. But even though the article is titled "I Agree with Hillary Clinton," it seems Elizabeth is the dictionary definition of a frenemy. While Warren took vicious aim at supporters of the TPP, her targets were carefully selected for impact...on her new friend.

Warren’s post, “I agree with Hillary Clinton,” details her concerns with a provision in the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement that she says “would let foreign companies challenge American laws outside of American courts.”