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Flashes

I Spy a Stupid Mistake
Those hepcats at the formerly funny Spy magazine have outdone themselves with their list of the 50 Most Annoying States.

Arizona ranked 48th. That's right--every state in the union except Maine and New Jersey (?) is more annoying than Arizona.

Texas was most annoying, due, in part, Spy opined, to "phrases like 'big-ole' and 'little-bitty.'" Plus, "Rodeo is not only a socially acceptable cultural medium, it is also part of the curriculum at many Texas colleges and universities."

As if the Spy brain trust--probably a clutch of beret-wearin', clove-smokin', goatee-strokin', Vespa-ridin', fur-eschewin', wheatgrass-juice-chuggin', nipple-piercin', rain-forest-worshipin', performance-art-appreciatin', bulimia-advocatin', dolphin-channelin', Vaclav Havel-likin' New World Orderers--can say where else a girl with a high school diploma is supposed to learn goat-ropin'!

Anyway, Spy says people should avoid Arizona because "[t]he official state neckware is the bola tie." The last time the Flash heard that one, he laughed so hard he fell off his dinosaur and broke Barry Goldwater's hip. Also, the mag complains, "The state refuses to recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day."

Now, any Arizonan smart enough to fold a road map (roughly 38 percent of the population) knows that's a bald-faced error.

The Flash called up Spy magazine, long distance, got a fellow named Dan Bova and put it to him straight. Bova (which ought to be a synonym for cattle) had a predictably snappy Spy comeback: "Most of the facts were checked, unless something slipped by the fact-checker."

The Flash has to shake his head knowingly. He's said it before and will say it again here: All you liberaleasternmediaelites should stop trying to make fun of Arizona. That's our job.

McCain Gets Snow Job
And speaking of revered national periodicals:
The only thing worse than watching Arizona's senior senator John McCain slobber all over Bob Dole--now that his good friend Phil Gramm's out of the race--is watching the national media slobber all over vice presidential contender John McCain. The Snowy-Haired Senator is decidedly demure when asked about the possibility of an invitation to join Dole on the November ticket, but his name is popping up on every political pundit's short list.

In the most recent issue of the new conservative magazine the Weekly Standard, Fred Barnes devotes a lot of ink to McCain's status as a former Vietnam POW, and to his relationship with Dole operatives.

A syrupy piece in the New Republic has a cancer-stricken former Vietnam War protester gone patriotic describing McCain as "[o]ne of our true political heroes. He's a giant." (Spookily, it also describes his hair as "snow white.")

Neither piece mentions McCain's most infamous accomplishment: membership in that elite cabal, the Keating Five. Has everyone forgotten the flights to tropical isles on Charlie Keating's jet to stay in a Keating mansion, the wads of campaign cash accepted, the influence pedaled?

Expecting deeper coverage if McCain actually nabs the nomination? Well, don't hold your muckraking breath; just last week, The Flash received a phone call from ABC News in New York. Seems the national media don't want to be caught by surprise by an unknown veep nominee and are scrambling for dirt at the last minute. But, like the Standard and New Republic, ABC News doesn't seem interested in the obvious glut of substantive material--tales of the Keating Five, McCain's infamous temper, his alliance with disgraced Governor J. Fife Symington III or even wife Cindy's Percocet jones.

Instead, ABC News asked two all-encompassing questions: Do the McCains have a nanny? Does the senator go to church?

Who says broadcast news is shallow?


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