Lisa wins the local competition of an essay contest, earning the family a trip to Washington, D.C. for the finals. Lisa sees Bob Arnold (her own representative) taking a bribe. Disgusted, she changes her previous uplifting essay into a cynical one denouncing corruption in government in general and Bob Arnold in particular.
Did You Know?
The piano-playing satirist at the end of the episode is a reference to Mark Russell
and Tom Lehrer
. The song "The Deficit Rag" is very similar to Lehrer's "The Vatican Rag". See more
United States flags are incorrectly depicted in this episode, while many other landmarks and features seen in the Simpsons' visit to Washington D.C. are more accurate. In the room where Lisa gives her speech, the flag behind Homer's head is the original design, with stars in a circle - though there are only seven stars, whereas the very first "stars-and-stripes" flag had 13 stars, to symbolize the original 13 colonies. The scene in the House of Representatives features a flag behind the rostrum with 35 stars (seven rows of five stars each). The 35-star flag was first seen in 1863 when West Virginia became the 35th state, and was retired in 1865 when Nevada joined the union as the 36th state. At the time of this episode, the flag would have had 50 stars. See more
[the Simpsons enter an American Legion post to see Nelson delivering the end of his "Patriots of Tomorrow" essay
So burn the flag if you must, but before you do, you better burn a few other things! You better burn your shirt and your pants! Be sure to burn your TV and car! Oh yes, and don't forget to burn your house! Because none of those things could exist without six white stripes, seven red stripes, and a hell of a lot of stars!
Spoofs The Sting
The Battle Hymn of the Republic
Music by William Steffe
and lyrics by Julia Ward Howe See more