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Some folks will go to almost any length to stir up controversy. As the latest case in point, take the current flap over Nancy Reagan's borrowed clothes.

A few days ago, Time magazine disclosed that the First Lady has continued to borrow posh designer clothes despite her promise in 1982 to discontinue the practice.The disclosure has set tongues wagging. An editor at a monthly magazine called Spy went so far as to accuse Nancy Reagan of having a fashion obsession that leads rich older women toward anorexia and profligacy. Even the ordinarily staid New York Times editorially clucked about the purported appearance of impropriety.

Come now! What impropriety? The practice violates no law and no government code of ethics. No one is hurt, certainly not the designers involved. In fact, they're ecstastic about the First Lady's showing off their wares. As for the that 1982 vow, isn't it a woman's prerogative to change her mind?

In France, this episode wouldn't raise so much as an eyebrow, let alone a ruckus. As Scripps Howard News Service notes: "The wives of the president, premier,and foreign minister (of France) are expected to borrow from top designers and promote Paris as the world's fashion leader. If one of them bought haute couture instead of borrowing, her husband would be suspected of looting the treasury."

In any event, this trivial flap certainly makes one point clear: Having evidently tired of the Quayle hunt, the political sharpshooters are going after more brilliantly-plumed game.