I really enjoyed today’s blog posting from Steve Friess, the perpetrator of one of my favorite podcasts, The Strip Podcast.

Steve is an incredible freelance journalist, writing for many major publications (New York Times, USA Today, Newsweek, etc.) from his home base in Las Vegas. His husband Miles is also in the news biz, as a producer for the news hour at the NBC affiliate in Las Vegas.

In today’s blog posting, however, Steve tackles an issue that is a huge peeve of mine: the irrational loathing of Las Vegas. Case in point: some twerp who edited a major travel industry publication, who bad-mouths Vegas but hasn’t been there in ages.

I am so sick of people whose first reaction to a mention of Las Vegas is, “Ugh, I hate Vegas!” When you probe further into their dislike, you almost always find that they’ve, a) never actually been there; b) went there once about 15 years ago; or, c) are total cheapskates and think the steak house at Circus Circus is an indefensible splurge.

It takes particular chutzpah to criticize a place that you have never been, or haven’t been to in nearly a generation. With its incredible pace of change and vibrant growth (even in these difficult economic times), five years in Las Vegas is like 20 in many other major cities.

Vegas today is an entirely different animal. It has more Michelin Guide-rated 2 and 3 star restaurants than Los Angeles, and some of the most luxurious hotels and spas anywhere in the world. It remains one of the world’s top travel destinations for people from all over the globe.

And there’s tons of fun to be had even if you never set foot on a casino floor.

I commend to your reading Steve’s dismemberment of the dufus former editor of Budget Travel magazine, and the general trend of irrational Vegas-hating.