UnNews:SkyMall goes broke

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SkyMall goes broke

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23 January 2015

Gun Backfire

SkyMall was the only place one could buy the selfie-capable handgun.

NEW YORK -- The adage that "no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American consumer" — popularized by Harvard public-policy professor J. Gruber — is now overtaken by events, as SkyMall has gone broke.

The publisher of the magazine, found for decades in seat-backs on airliners, filed for Chapter 11 this week. Executives told CNN that the move is based on liberalized rules on using electronic devices in flight. This means that, once reading SkyMall (cover-to-cover several times) was not the only thing to do for six hours, nobody did, even though perusing its thoroughly useless merchandise gave the same perverse amusement as slowing down to look at a wreck on the highway and check for blood squirting onto the asphalt.

The pamphlet was the nation's signature collection of products nobody wanted to own, but which sometimes sufficed as a gift that the recipient wouldn't want to own either except as a reminder that the giver had taken an expensive trans-Atlantic flight. No one can forget the joy of receiving an NFL-licensed-logo snow shovel with an AM radio in the handle from one's jet-setting spouse. The WiFi-capable Hello Kitty steak knife was also a big seller.

The move has caused tremors throughout the schlock industry, and in other industries producing products no one wants, including landline telephones, Sbarro Restaurants with monopolies at turnpike rest areas, and two-year degrees from community colleges. Apparently with advance knowledge of the filing, all Radio Shack stores closed for four hours on Christmas Day to mourn the loss, before reopening for the rest of the afternoon.

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