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Olympic disaster in Utah

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The barren state of Utah took another cruel beating in the public prints last week, and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games slipped another foul notch toward the Abyss. ...

First, it was felony bribery, then a rash of scandalous Sex crimes, and finally a plague of meat-eating crickets. ... It is an open secret now, that Salt Lake City's giddy ambition to host the first Winter Olympics on U.S. soil since 1980 is doomed to Shame & Failure.

Third-term GOP Governor, Michael O. Leavitt, who last week denied directing the shredding of an Olympics-related budget memo, has been fatally smeared. Even the mayor of Salt Lake City was staggered by the overweening Lewdness of the charges -- which ranged from Pimping and Gross Sexual Imposition to Perjury.

Two prominent members of the original Salt Lake Olympics Committee were indicted by the U.S. Justice Dept. and will go on trial next month on a grab-bag of State and Federal anti-bribery charges that could put them in prison for the rest of their lives.

Hosting the Winter Olympics is always a high-risk venture. The last winter festival in Nagano was a financial disaster for the Japanese Government, and a monumental failure for the U.S. winter sports establishment. ... And next year's train-wreck in Utah will be no different. Everybody who goes there will be walking in the queasy shadow of punishment.

Salt Lake City has developed such hideous worldwide Karma that success is out of the question. The SLOC has put Utah so deep in Debt for the next 30 years that No money will be available for anything except bribes and whiskey. Corruption is a Way of Life in Utah, and they seem to like it that way.

"So what?" my friend Cromwell snarled, when I showed him the latest list of bizarre crimes allegedly committed in the ongoing Utah Olympics nightmare. "Nobody cares what happens in Utah, anyway. It has always been a sink-hole of Vice and Corruption. The last time I went to Utah I got busted for Soliciting a Prostitute in the Salt Lake Airport. It cost me $2,000 just to leave the State."

"Yeah," I nodded. "It's their way of life -- 'A hand full of Gimmie and a mouth full of Much Obliged.' I know it well."

Which was true. I am all too familiar with Utah.

Dr. Hunter S. Thompson's books include Hell's Angels, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72, The Proud Highway, Better Than Sex and The Rum Diary. His new book, Fear and Loathing in America, has just been released. A regular contributor to various national and international publications, Thompson now lives in a fortified compound near Aspen, Colo. His column, "Hey, Rube," appears each Monday on Page 2.

hey, rube! 

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