Skip to Content

Mandalay Bay: Top O' The World, Ma! (PART ONE)

Aging Baby Boomer Runs Amok in Vegas

Next, there was Harvey, Irma and Maria. Global warming was hardly mentioned. Maria devastated a Caribbean island that’s essentially an American colony. Puerto Ricans are citizens of the United States -- but they can’t vote and aren’t quite full-fledged “Americans.” President Trump reminded the mayor of San Juan of this in Tweets. He alluded to Puerto Rico’s debt issues, suggesting maybe the island shouldn’t be so pushy asking for help. The implication was, they’re “losers,” and they should be grateful for what they get from the United States of America. As George W. Bush congratulated his FEMA director during Katrina, Trump assured his bigoted base that FEMA and the US was doing a magnificent job in Puerto Rico. Wink. Wink. The dog whistle was clear: Puerto Ricans are no better than Mexicans. They need to know their place in the renewed, great America. The money is tight these days and exceptional Americans (USA! USA!) can’t afford to bail out a bankrupt island.

Then the former oil executive, now Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson called his boss a “moron” and refused to retract the charge. In private, President Trump went ballistic. Rex immediately called a huddle with his simpatico teammates, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Defense Secretary James Mattis. If only we could have been a fly on the wall for that meeting. In public, Trump was all smiles. He loved Rex Tillerson. Then, in one of the more scary moments in the Trump administration, in a large group shot of military personnel and their wives at a dinner, Trump responded to a question by saying, “This is the calm before the storm.” “What storm?” reporters asked. “You’ll find out.” This is a commander-in-chief with access to nuclear codes who has publicly poked the volatile Kim Jung Un with a stick; you had to wonder what he was capable of doing to distract from all the bad press piling up. Was it an off-the-cuff bluff threat -- ie. bullshit? Or was he referring to something planned? Then you realized, this is how the man gets attention. You had to wonder, when does the insecure, empty bravado catch up with the man to the point he has to back up the bravado with real action?

Then came Las Vegas. As their accomplishments have only grown in horror, lone wolf gunmen have become a cliché in America circa 2017. Yet, this one was novel and particularly worrisome. Here was a narcissistic, lone wolf multi-millionaire with no paper trail who was able to clock up a record number of murders. In an age of i-phone addiction, the only way to sum up the event was with a cyber imogee derived from Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.” The horror! The horror!

story | by Dr. Radut