News Briefly 

Fairly scary

Fairly scary

Ah, the smell of pig manure and funnel cakes—it must be time for the Tennessee State Fair. Yes, the annual tradition, which turns 99 this year, brings together Middle Tennesseans from all walks of life in one big orgy of gluttony, animal cruelty and novel entertainment activities, including monster truck rides and a "Presidents and Patriots" exhibit. While the hefty veggies and family farm celebrations are nice, we're sticking with lottery tickets for our overpriced disappointments.

Cooley speeds off into sunset?

TBI has finished its investigation into Deputy Gov. Dave Cooley's oddly disappearing speeding ticket and sent its report to the state attorney general's office. Now it's up to the AG, who prompted the investigation in the first place, to decide whether to bring charges against Gov. Phil Bredesen's top aide. The whole mess started when an anonymous tipster revealed that a judge friendly with Cooley dismissed his I-24 speeding ticket in a grand display of cronyism. But did Cooley ask for the favor? Video of the guv's right-hand man handing the officer a business card—"as a professional courtesy"—sure hasn't made things any better.

Governors gone wild

A "red-faced," "very angry" and, we should note, rapidly balding governor Phil Bredesen stormed out of a meeting with TennCare advocates last week after reportedly chewing them out for the better part of 40 minutes. After he left the meeting for another appointment, according to newspaper accounts, the parties made progress. While the covertly Republican governor's compassionate conservative credentials may be lacking, it sounds like his Howard Dean impression was spot-on. Next for Phil: a right-wing talk radio deal?

News sheepishly

Had we any shame, we'd be feeling it now. After all, we gave the poor, old, stale, corporate, editorless, focus-grouped—you get the picture—Tennessean grief last week for repeatedly misspelling Metro Council member Mike Jameson's name in new and different ways. Too bad we said the commie-sympathizing East Nashville legislator hailed from District 7 when we meant 6. We, ahem, regret the error. (But the daily still bites.)

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