The Spectacle Blog

Max Scherzer Joins The 20 Strikeout Club

By on 5.11.16 | 10:31PM

Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer became the first pitcher in 15 years to strikeout 20 batters in a game en route to a 3-2 victory over the struggling Detroit Tigers.

Scherzer, of course, pitched for Detroit from 2011 to 2014 winning the AL Cy Young Award in 2013 before signing a 7-year contract with the Nats prior to the 2015 season. In his inaugural season in DC, Scherzer struck out a career high 276 batters and threw two no-hitters becoming the first pitcher to throw two no-hitters during the regular season since Nolan Ryan in 1973. This was Scherzer's first appearance against the Tigers since joining Washington.

Why Won’t Trump Release His Tax Returns?

By on 5.11.16 | 3:28PM

In an interview with the AP, Donald Trump indicated he would not release his tax returns until after the election.

The presumptive GOP nominee cited his ongoing audit as his reasoning, but it is a crock. Being audited does not legally prevent one from releasing one's tax returns.

The long and the short of it is that Donald Trump just doesn't feel like releasing his tax returns. The question is why.

Given that he won the Republican race without releasing his tax returns, he figures he can do the same in the general election. Trump has gotten away with so much so far. Why not see if he can get away with more?

Trump insists there's nothing to learn from his tax returns. That tells me he has something to hide. Of course, it could be any number of things that Trump doesn't want us to know. Perhaps he's still making contributions to The Clinton Foundation, maybe he's doing business with Iran, or maybe he's simply not a billionaire. On the other hand, Trump could be a billionaire, but gives a paltry amount to charity.

So This is One of The “Great People” Supporting Trump

By on 5.11.16 | 12:49PM

Donald Trump likes to boast about the great people who support him.

One of these "great people" is William Johnson, an avowed white supremacist who is the Chairman of the American Freedom Party.

Well, it turns out Johnson will be part of Trump's California delegation to the GOP Convention in Cleveland this July.

Trump spokeswoman claimed the inclusion of Johnson's name was "a database error".

This "database error" recorded robocalls on behalf of the American National Super PAC including one in which he implored voters in Minnesota and Vermont, “Don’t vote for a Cuban. Vote for Donald Trump.”

For its part, the California Secretary of State indicates it is too late to remove Johnson's name from the Trump delegation.

What the American Experience Suggests for Brexit

By on 5.10.16 | 5:15PM

A few years ago President Barack Obama urged members of the European Union to admit Turkey. Now he wants the United Kingdom to stay in the EU. Even when the U.S. isn’t a member of the club the president has an opinion on who should be included

Should the British people vote for or against the EU? But Britons might learn from America’s experience.

What began as the Common Market was a clear positive for European peoples. It created what the name implied, a large free trade zone, promoting commerce among its members. Unfortunately, however, in recent years the EU has become more concerned about regulating than expanding commerce.

We see much the same process in America. The surge in the regulatory Leviathan has been particularly marked under the Obama administration. Moreover, the EU exacerbated the problem by creating the Euro, which unified monetary systems without a common continental budget. The UK stayed out, but most EU members joined the currency union.

Winners and Losers From the FDA’s Vaping and Cigar Crackdown

By on 5.10.16 | 5:13PM

In the Food and Drug Administration’s crackdown on what is now a thriving market for vaping products (nicotine and flavorings delivered without tobacco through a vaporizing device), Trevor Burrus has identified one group that is likely to emerge as winners from the regulations, namely large tobacco companies, which have lost many smoking customers to the vaping market without being notably successful at playing in it themselves. Another set of winners? Governments whose treasuries are enriched by conventional cigarette sales. Under the 1998 tobacco settlement, which I and others at Cato have criticized at length, a large chunk of revenue from these conventional sales goes to state governments.

Dennis Prager’s Cop Out on Trump

By on 5.10.16 | 11:49AM

Dennis Prager had me, but then he lost me.

In his latest column, Prager advances the argument that the majority of Republicans who voted for Trump aren't conservative:

So, then, what happened to the majority of Republicans? Why aren't they conservative?

The answer lies in America's biggest -- and scariest -- problem: Most Americans no longer know what America stands for. For them, America has become just another country, a place located between Canada and Mexico.

Prager attributes this to a combination of the influence of leftist ideas and America's economic success:

Sadiq Khan & The Arbitrariness of Trump’s Proposed Muslim Immigration & Travel Ban

By on 5.10.16 | 10:56AM

The other day I wrote about Sadiq Khan, the new Mayor of London. He fascinates me because at a time when his Labour Party is overtly hostile to both Jews and Israel, the Pakistani born Muslim is engaging Jews and is contemplating a trip to Israel.

Khan would also like to visit this country and plans to do so before November 8th in the event Donald Trump is elected President. "If Donald Trump becomes the President, I’ll be stopped from going there by virtue of my faith," Khan told Time.

When Trump was asked about this by The New York Times, he indicated he would welcome Khan stating, “There will always be exceptions.”

Hillary and Her Posse Comitatus

By on 5.10.16 | 10:01AM

It is unfortunate for Bill Cosby that he has not been supported in his years of deviance by a defiantly loyal wife, by a wife who stood ruthlessly by her man.Quite possibly his long string of accusers would not have gotten their day in court, if they had had to confront an angry Mrs. Cosby.  Perhaps that is the difference between Bill Cosby’s string of accusers and Bill Clinton’s. Clinton had at the ready Hillary.

The American Spectator has left the stories of many of our investigations of the Clintons unreported, but there is one I can publish now. One morning after Bill took liberties with an unwilling Arkansas woman the woman received a call. It was from Hillary, who inquired anxiously, “Is there anything I can do for you after last night?” That call was anxious but friendly.

German Authorities Already Downplaying Islamist Terror Attack at Train Station Near Munich

By on 5.10.16 | 9:57AM

Well, it sure didn't take long for German authorities to go into full spin mode. As per The Daily Beast:

Terrorism fears stalked Europe again Tuesday morning after a man was killed and three more were injured in a pre-dawn knife attack at a rural German train station—by a barefoot man who officials initially believed had “an apparent Islamist motive.”

However, although the man reportedly uttered “Allahu akbar” as he launched his bloody attack, it was later established that the 27-year old perpetrator had drug and psychiatric issues, and a spokesman for Bavaria state's interior ministry said that "so far we have no evidence for an Islamist motive".

In other words, if a man shouts "Allahu Akbar!!!" and proceeds to stab people he does not have an Islamist motive. Well, I guess German authorities figured that it worked for the Obama Administration at Fort Hood so why not try it themselves?

Rubio Doesn’t Want to Be the Donald’s Second Banana

By on 5.9.16 | 11:28PM

It’s hardly a select fraternity, is it? Speaking here of folks who don’t want to haul water for Donald Trump as his vice presidential candidate. One of the more bizarre aspects of the on-air speculation on who the Donald might choose as his running mate is that pundits discuss the various possibilities as though all of these folks would be interested in the honor, if such it is. 

Some of those suggested as possible parts of Trump’s tag team include people who would be as eager to share a ticket with Trump as Barack Obama would be to share a pub crawl with Benjamin Netanyahu. One of the favorites of the various mentioners is Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who took the time today to make it clear that he’s not interested.

As is so often the case these days, Rubio made his announcement via a Facebook post, to wit: