UFOs & Olympic Rings 

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The controversy surrounding a proposal to temporarily install giant, lighted Olympic rings on the foothills east of downtown Salt Lake City continues to rage, with both sides offering proposals and counter-proposals in one of the most meaningless debates yet.

According to unreliable sources that cannot be confirmed, a new plan would put the giant, glowing rings on wheels so they could move up or down the mountainside. Proponents say that in the heavy smog common along the Wasatch in February, the giant, lighted rings could be invisible. The plan then, would be to roll them down the hillside so they could be seen from the Medals Plaza as a backdrop to the LDS Temple.

But some residents oppose the moveable rings because it could place the giant, glowing orbs right in the backyards of some of Salt Lake City’s most prominent citizens above Federal Heights. One resident complained that the rings would attract noisy beer drinkers. But a more serious threat, apparently, is that the glowing interlocking circles could serve to attract UFOs. And frankly, who wants a bunch of space aliens in their backyard during the Olympics?

These are trying times for Americans, what with terrorist attacks, war and underwear ads. In a page one story in its local section recently, The Salt Lake Tribune featured a story under the headline: “Women Uniting For War on Porn.” The story was replete with a splendid photo of state Porn Czarina Paula Houston in her new hairdo with a recent issue of Playboy magazine boasting “College Girls Nude” (on news stands now, by the way).

Reporter Mark Eddington quoted Janalyn Holt, director of Women for Decency, as saying things like lingerie ads in newspapers and magazines are as bad as the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, undermining the American family. “The parallels between smut and terror are uncanny,” says Holt.

Don’t you wonder how a statement like that would go down in New York City about now?

The energy crisis of 2001 is now behind us, say the experts, with plenty of natural gas and electricity. In fact, the price of natural gas is falling because of the surplus. So it’s probably not a surprise that Gov. Mike Leavitt has finally set “priorities” for the energy crisis. Better luck next time, Mike.

Since we’re on the topic of Gov. Mike, it’s refreshing to note that he doesn’t have any opinion on Utah’s liquor laws. He may well be the only person in Utah who doesn’t. Isn’t that amazing?

In a recent Deseret News article, various political leaders were asked about Utah’s liquor debate. Salt Lake Mayor Rocky Anderson certainly did have a point of view. But when Leavitt was asked about the LDS church’s urging to change the liquor law, he was overheard to have said something like: Don’t ask me questions like that.

Officially, however, he was quoted as saying that liquor laws simply are not his business, but rather the responsibility of the state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

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