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Viewpoint of Las Vegas
Only in America. . .
Gambling or Playing Games!
By: Frank Rosenthal
|Only in America, three words that guide the
destiny of mankind. Throughout history, societies have suffered
nature-driven and manmade Armageddons. No society throughout the centuries
has been as resourceful, resilient and as free as the United States. The
maladies of society haunt and will haunt our infrastructure; however, we
manage to balance good and evil unlike any nation in history.
Our place in today’s world dominates as no other empire, nation, nation
state and/or any form of society ever known in history. The United States
self-regulates itself, allowing no individual to dominate where
self-interest becomes a peril to the precepts of our society.
The human phenomenon known as Bill Gates is testing this basic logic,
but he too will face boundaries. He, unlike our subject, has transformed the
world into a new era.
Our beloved Las Vegas has also found itself in the grips of ego-driven
talented individuals. One personality has emerged over the past two decades
to dominate the green felt desert. He has been both innovative and daring.
The landscape in Clark County has been transferred from rectangular
objects (ordinary hotel lodgings), a normal grid pattern to a Mecca of
fountains, a volcano, ships battling to the duplication of cities, landmarks
and events through uniquely structured facades. One extraordinary individual
should be given the golden globe of producing and directing the new Las
Undoubtedly, George Lucas could be the ideal presenter. Today the event
would be entitled "Only in America." After the accolades for his
accomplishments, the question (again) must be answered… "NO." Las Vegas has
allowed one individual to create, build and direct a runaway locomotive
under the guise of progress.
He has bullied, intimidated and cajoled his will on the city. The herd
theory was quickly adopted by the other corporate-types in control of the
Once you strip away the outer skin of "today’s" Las Vegas, you find a
very interesting anatomy. At the epic center is found one person’s
egocentric self, covered with a self-indulging epidermis. If you extricate
this layer – behold you find a boldacious self-promoter who is also
intelligent. Unfortunately, his self-imposed 11th Commandment "What is good
for him is good for Las Vegas," is set to implode the real interior fabric
of the city.
He has built over the class and style of Las Vegas for a quarter of a
century. The ashes of the volcano are beginning to cover the real city. The
corporations that own the gaming establishments are finding that ‘big is
better’ was not one of the precepts of the principles taught at Wharton. One
man’s vision seen through his own reflection, spells trouble. The balance
sheets of these public companies are wet with the perspiration of nervous
hands. Red is the color not of choice but of fact. Uncontrolled ego
manifested through unlimited expansion leads to cannibalization of your
competition. The billion dollar monuments are just those – monuments.
Yes, Las Vegas is the most unique Entertainment City in the world. It is
the brightest star in the desert, but its spirit is dim. Only in America, do
we or can we find such an unicity. The man responsible for this unparalleled
metamorphous has begun his descent. His burden is heavy, for what one man
created, many men must try to salvage, Only in America, can the overwhelming
odds against saving one of the great institutions of enjoyment can be
To paraphrase one of the more no-table quotes emanating out one of our
more spirited past vice presidential debates – "You, Mr. Las Vegas are no