The Spectacle Blog

MLB All-Star Break Notes: Angels Oust Astros to Lead AL West

By on 7.13.15 | 12:04PM

We have reached the halfway point of the 2015 MLB season as the All-Stars convene tomorrow night in Cincinnati. Here is a summary of what has occurred so far.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

AL East
At the beginning of July, one game separated the Baltimore Orioles, Tampa Bay Rays, New York Yankees and the Toronto Blue Jays for first place. Less than a fortnight later, the Yankees have grabbed the reins of the AL East by winning 7 out of 10 games this month while the O’s, Rays & Jays have struggled in July, with Baltimore going 3-8 and Tampa Bay & Toronto going 4-8. The Yankees now have a 3 ½ game lead over the Rays. Still, the Rays, O’s & Jays aren’t out of the running by a long shot. Nor are the Boston Red Sox who have gone 6-4 in July and have a 15-9 record since June 16th and are only 6 ½ games out of first place.

Do You or Someone You Love Suffer from PLDD?

By on 7.13.15 | 11:06AM

I cannot tell you how many loved ones I have lost to this totally preventable illness

I would like to tell you about a serious condition afflicting thousands of policy analysts.  It’s called Petty Little Dictator Disorder, or PLDD, and you or someone you love could be suffering from this epidemic sweeping through our think tanks, advocacy groups, and government offices.  According to the description pending for inclusion in the DSM V, here are the warning signs of PLDD:

Local Lexus Liberals Call For More Taxes

By on 7.12.15 | 5:37PM

TAMPA — The local chapter of the upscale Sierra Club is taking the national Sierra’s crusade to get the peasants to take the bus very seriously. (My observation has been that the decades-long push for mass transportation has been a campaign on the part of one group of people to force another group of people to take the bus, while members of the privileged first group continue to drive their cars.) 

In a policy paper released last week, the Tampa Bay Sierra Club called on the Hillsborough County (Tampa) Board of County Commissioners to levy a five cents per gallon gasoline tax on county residents. This to go on top of already heavy taxes on gasoline.

Iran Nuclear Talks Extended for Third Time

By on 7.10.15 | 10:35PM

The Iran nuclear talks have been extended for the third time since the June 30th "deadline".

After being extended to July 7th and then to today, the talks have been extended yet another 72 hours until July 13th.

The Obama Administration has said that it will walk away from a bad deal, but the longer they keep extending negotiations the less likely they will walk away.

If there's no deal on Monday, I expect another 72 hour extension.

Scott Walker’s Fiscal Record

By on 7.10.15 | 3:05PM

Monday is Scott Walker’s turn to join the crowded presidential field. Walker has served as Wisconsin’s Governor since 2011. He rose to prominence quickly after the State Capitol in Madison was overtaken by protesters opposing his labor reforms. Walker has passed a number of government-limiting measures, earning a “B” on Cato’s Governor Report Card in both 2012 and 2014, but he continues to support higher spending.

OPM Hack Affects 24 Million Americans, But OPM Chief Isn’t Resigning; UPDATE: Archuleta Resigns

By on 7.10.15 | 1:12PM

Update: Approximately 20 minutes ago, OPM director Kathleen Archuleta finally submitted her resignation. Lower-level employees in charge of tech still remain. Her deputy will take over. 

*****

If you weren't certain, before, whether your personal information had been compromised in the series of Chinese hacks that hit the Office of Personnel Management earlier this year, well, let me set your mind at ease. You probably were.

Omar Sharif, R.I.P.

By on 7.10.15 | 11:41AM

Actor Omar Sharif has died of a heart attack in his native Egypt. He was 83.

After a successful career in his homeland, Sharif would become an international star in 1962 for his portrayal of Sherif Ali in Lawrence of Arabia with Peter O'Toole and directed by the incomparable David Lean. This would earn him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.

Later in the decade, Sharif would also appear in Dr. Zhivago and in Funny Girl with Barbra Streisand. During the filming of Funny Girl, the Muslim Sharif would become romantically involved with the Jewish Streisand. At the same, the Six-Day War had occurred and Sharif would nearly lose his Egyptian citizenship when a still photo of the two kissing went public.

Sharif remained active in movies and television until he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's a couple of years ago.

Ken Stabler, R.I.P.

By on 7.10.15 | 11:06AM

Legendary NFL quarterback Ken Stabler passed away on Wednesday of colon cancer. He was 69.

Stabler is best remembered for his days with the Oakland Raiders and was one of the best QBs in the game during the 1970s and was up there with the likes of Roger Staubach, Fran Tarkenton, and Terry Bradshaw. Speaking of the Steelers, if not for Franco Harris catching “The Immaculate Reception” (a.k.a. “The Immaculate Deception”), Stabler would have led the Raiders to one of the greatest comebacks in NFL history in 1972 after filling in for a struggling Daryle Lamonica.

Remove Lew, Not Hamilton

By on 7.10.15 | 12:23AM

On June 17th, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew shocked many, including former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke, when he proclaimed that Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804) — the first and foremost Treasury Secretary — would be demoted and share the ten-dollar bill with a yet unnamed woman. Undaunted by wide-spread criticism, Secretary Lew continued to press his case at an event at the Brookings Institution on July 8th. Asked about the ten-dollar bill’s selection, Secretary Lew insipidly claimed that the ten-dollar bill was the “next up” for redesign to help combat forgery. The diminution of Hamilton, for whatever reason, is simply indefensible.

Just how great was Hamilton? A recent scholarly book by Robert E. Wright and David J. Cowen, Financial Founding Fathers: The Men Who Made America Rich, begins its pantheon of greats with a chapter on Alexander Hamilton. It is aptly titled “The Creator.”

Ann Coulter to Discuss ‘Adios America,’ Sign Books in Anaheim on Monday, July 13

By on 7.9.15 | 5:59PM

In the way of the world, Ann Coulter, who has been out there beating the drums endlessly on illegal immigration, suddenly is at the center of the storm with her bestselling Adios America: The Left’s Plan to Turn Our Country Into a Third World Hellhole.  The disgraceful tragedy with Kate Steinle  and Donald Trump’s attention — Coulter had sent him her book — is now lifting a Coulter appearance out of the normal, if there is such a thing.

You can count that her upcoming appearance that was originally scheduled for the Nixon Library will be huge, with the left doubtless just waiting to show up and disrupt. The event has been moved from the Library to a nearby and larger hotel because of popular demand, and you can imagine what lies ahead.

So if you are in the Anaheim, California area and want to show up to hear Ann’s passionate voice on the hottest topic going and get a book signed — and keep a wary eye on the libs we all know will show up to disrupt — here’s the info: 

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