Culture

NBC Dumps Trump

By on 6.29.15 | 4:58PM

Donald Trump has a big reason for taking this Presidential bid seriously: he's got some space in his calendar to fill.

Although the real estate mogul isn't exactly hurting for business opportunity, NBC announcced today that they've cut all ties with Trump after he made what they considered to be disaparging comments about illegal immigrants (specifically Mexicans) in his initial announcement speech. That means that NBC has dropped Trump from the Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants, mostly, since Mark Burnett is the producer of The Apprentice and Trump had already parted ways as the host of the show (while his campaign is in full swing, anyway).  

NBC is ending its business relationship with Donald Trump over his recent comments about Mexican immigrants.

"At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values," NBC said in a statement. "Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump."

Another Perspective

Take Heart, Conservatives!

By 6.29.15

The world ended last week, in the eyes of a lot of American conservatives. But then again, life seems always to go on. When Adam Smith was told of General Burgoyne’s defeat at Saratoga, someone told him that Britain was ruined. “There’s a lot of ruin in a nation,” was Smith’s reply.

So let’s look for the silver lining. Andrew Sullivan, who combined the unlikely attributes of gayness, Tory principles and Catholicism, argued that a right to marriage would make gays more conservative. If that means no public displays of nipple rings on Gay Pride Day, I’m all for it. And perhaps gays can get back to being fabulous again. Chi-chi restos, antique stores, cutting-edge plays and cheese shops. Lately they’ve been none of that, instead triumphalist, intolerant. and above all boring.

Politics does that to one. Yeats thought it had done that to a woman he loved, Maud Gonne, and hated it.

Culture Vultures

One Nation, For Better or Worse

By 6.25.15

For days on end, we’ve been pelted with the sudden and inconsistent outrage over the Confederate battle flag, which, apparently, has moved thousands to commit heinous acts in the name of a long-since disbanded secessionary force that may or may not have been defending an agrarian way of life against an industrialized interloper that threatened to force them to abandon their hoopskirts and post-supper porch tobacco. The flag has, of course, existed in some form or another since the mid-1800s, and until two weeks ago, had lived a relatively unmolested life, flying over Southern statehouses and in the windows of four-door diesel trucks with fake testicles hanging from their rear license plates.

Will the Promise of Free College Sway Millennial Voters?

By on 6.23.15 | 5:22PM

Typical characteristics used to describe Millennials are as follow: short attention span, reluctance to leave the nest, and need for immediate gratification. Other descriptions include words such as disengaged, lazy, and narcissistic. What can I say, we’re a charming bunch.

But according to a survey produced by USB in 2014, the Millennials are cost-conscious as well. As reported by the Guardian, Emily Pachuta said the Millennials are very conservative when it comes to managing their money.

“They are becoming a generation of savers, having been frightened watching what has happened to their parents during the Great Recession,” Pachuta added. It hasn’t helped that their own generation has struggled with job security issues. If you’re under 30, you’re twice as likely to be unemployed as you were before the 2008 financial crisis.

Charleston Shooter Dylann Roof Tells Police He Almost Didn’t Go Through With It

By on 6.19.15 | 3:45PM

I learned, in the wake of the Newtown shooting, that responding to mass tragedies on the Internet is best left to the professional news organizations, at least for the first 48 hours. We have a tendency to have strong personal feelings that color our interpretation of events, and with opinion journalism, that can lead down some dark roads that will, eventually mean a lot of regret. Social media is the worst place in the world in the wake of a tragedy, and politics shows itself to be a cesspool of losers, trying to score cheap political points as families grieve and tears are shed.

Newt Gingrich Reviews the Apple Watch

By on 6.19.15 | 1:26PM

I was considering buying the Apple Watch until I found out that you have to have your phone in your pocket for it to operate most of the applications. Since I already pretty much have the phone in my hand all day, it seemed pointless to have something in my hand that was also on my wrist. Also, until I can video-call someone Dick Tracy style, there's no point in owning a watch that also takes phone calls.

Anyway, since it's Friday, I'll let Newt Gingrich explain the Apple Watch's drawbacks instead of boring you with more of my unnecessary observations - yes, that Newt Gingrich. Here's his first tech review for Mashable.com.

Verdict: not cooler than a moonbase.

 

Rachel Dolezal Sued Howard University For Discriminating Against Her for Being White

By on 6.15.15 | 7:08PM

The Smoking Gun has managed to dig up what might be the nail in Rachel Dolezal's "trans-racial" coffin: a 2002 decision from a federal Court of Appeals detailing the outcome of a racial discrimination case Rachel Dolezal filed against Howard University.

The case ended up going nowhere - in fact Dolezel paid Howard University about $3500 over the course of litigation for, it seems, legal and court fees associated with the appeals process - but the case is significant in one key aspect: Rachel Dolezal sued Howard University for discriminating against her because she was white

Rachel Dolezal Resigns As Head of NAACP Spokane Chapter

By on 6.15.15 | 12:25PM

After avoiding the media over the weekend, and dodging questions about her status as NAACP chairwoman this morning, Rachel Dolezal, the head of Spokane's NAACP who has, apparently, been masquerading as African-American for much of her life, has resigned.

Rachel Dolezal, the civil rights activist in Washington state who has come under fire for her disputed racial identity, said Monday she was stepping down as president of the NAACP’s Spokane chapter.

Obama Admin Asks FISA Court to Ignore Ruling Finding NSA Actions Illegal

By on 6.10.15 | 1:21PM

Just a few short weeks ago, our elected legislators were very, very concerned about the future of the NSA's bulk data collection programs.

Some were absolutely convinced that forcing the NSA to submit to the rubric set forth in the Constitution requiring probable cause and a warrant to search through Americans' phone records was going to lead to the downfall of the entire homeland security structure, rending America incapable of seeking out and destroying our domestic enemies, even though it was through a program that rarely, if ever, actually worked.

Others were convinced that, without a radical realignment of the PATRIOT Act, the government was merely going to work its way around any roadblocks to authorization, thus making any argument or measure designed to curb the NSA's power almost useless in the real world. Championing a complete overhaul of the Act, done with now great distance from the events of September 11, 2001, would allow us to discern the cost of our security with a fresh eye.

How Ben Stein Came to Deliver a Lecture in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

By on 6.5.15 | 1:20PM

Today is both #FlashbackFriday and, according to Chicago's WGN network, the 30th anniversary of Ferris Bueller's quintessential "day off." Apparently, they figured this out not by determining the date of the Von Steuben day parade (that's actually in September), but by the date of the Chicago Cubs game Ferris and company attend as part of their Chicago adventure. 

To celebrate at the Spectator, you can do a little #FlashbackFriday of your own. A few months ago, our very own Ben Stein, who delivers an iconic attendance roll (and lecture on the Laffer Curve to a classroom of sleepy kids), detailed in an essay how he came to be Bueller's least-favorite teacher.

In November of 1985, Michael Chinich said John Hughes wanted me to do a voice over for a new movie called “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” Hughes had written the whole movie in one weekend. He was an unbelievable genius.

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