Las Vegas: Or, the Reason They Want to Blow Us Up


By the time you read this, it is already way too late for it to do you any good...

Vegas, baby!

Hell yeah, man- fucking Vegas!

Dude, I didn't go to bed 'till like two in the afternoon yesterday!

We went out to this club and there were, like, so many fine-ass chicks there!

I have always been a little confused as to why it was the city of New York that was attacked close to half a decade ago. Its position as the leading financial city in the Western world, the preponderance of media outlets, the density and the target were all perfectly chosen, if one wanted to attack the second most offensive and decadent Gomorrah inside the boundaries of the Great Satan. The best choice, one would think, the city for which the most amount of psychic justice would be rendered by its obliteration, is Las Vegas, right? 24 hours of raucous crowds, serious intoxication, non-stop entertainment and beautiful people- how can this not be the best symbolic target against the forces of smut and decadence in the war of ideologies?


Because you'd just kill this guy like eleventy million times.

I was never privy to the predecessor of the modern Vegas- I can only hope that it was truly the den of sin and iniquity it has been portrayed as. What I have seen is the cutting edge in the giant industry of shopping/gambling/hotel/theater/restaurant conglomerates: looming indoor cities containing labyrinths of paths along which one can do almost nothing else but lose money while one travels from rip-off to rip-off. There are small children all over the gaming floor, running around while Mommy grabs a cocktail. Stripping and prostitution is alluded to but not seen beyond the cards handed out on Las Vegas Boulevard and the wives of men in the High Stakes poker rooms. The tone is decidedly mall-ish, a familiar form of egalitarian commerce, no one person's money greener than another's, no one expected to dress up beyond their comfort. The proles mill about in even the nicer casinos, pulling handles on penny slots for hours at a time in order to hang out somewhere other than the Motel 8 with a shuttle to the strip- plus, they serve free booze on the casino floor, and they won't even get mad if you don't tip. In all, the experience is closer to that of a calf being fatted for slaughter than a rapacious animal on the loose for money and snatch. One of the overwhelming points of similitude between the polyglot group of visitors to Vegas is, indeed, large, slack, protruding stomachs, testaments to years of the sloth of convenience.


The average Vegas visitor looks more like this

than they do like George Clooney. In the three

days that I was there, I saw t-shirts that said "Eat

My Taco", "I [Heart] Vagina", "Just Add Wine" and

"A Gold Digger; Like A Prostitute, But Smarter"

That being said, this particular gentleman is, of

course, amazing to behold.

This selfsame sloth seems to be prowling almost every region of America, culling a very special strata of society and sending it to Vegas. Give me your tired, your indebted, your chattering classes longing to be on TV, the sloth commands! Give me morbidly obese alcoholics with advanced adult onset diabetes and bring lots of motorized scooters for them to use. Add world-class buffet facilities and free drinks so long as they're gambling! Give me every numbnuts frat boy who ever liked a Vince Vaughn movie and, while you're at it, why not throw in the real Vince Vaughn- bloated, boozy schmuck son-of-a-bitchs are always welcome. Why not, sloth says, have a city so devoid of imagination and originality that anyone can have fun, dropping money into slot machines while they sipping gratis yard long-margaritas? Here can be the realization of the banality of evil, the obliterating force of pointless, useless commerce in the hands of marketing majors and retail chain executives. And, to rub a palm full of sea salt in the open would, let's try to make it look like Venice and Paris and New York City so that it melts your mind with its hopeless bric-a-brac junkiness, its disposable gloom and dulling redundancy.


This will probably not fool you. If it does, there is a Carrot Top concert over at the MGM.

There it is, as well- the truth. Vegas is hard to hate as it is awfully banal, an indoor megaplex full of devices and activities with which to pass time for a fee. Far from being aghast at the depravity of the place, one wonders how its reputation for bad behavior has survived; It is clean and well-staffed, with courteous service employees and good security. It is family-oriented and plays host to a staggering number of major conventions. It is rather boring. Far from its baccanalian reputation, Vegas is just a great place to be separated from your cash. Maybe the reason Vegas hasn't been attacked is simple: Osama's been there (for a War on Freedom Industry Annual) and after losing, like, a zillion games of craps on the floor, went up stairs and drank two Chivas Regal bottles out of the minibar and then fell asleep on top of the covers in his clothes and woke up in time to pack up and go, and he doesn't remember much except all the blinking lights and the noise of the casino floor, the ceaseless blip-bloop of electronic slot machines.



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