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Inland Port to Include Amusement Park Rides 

Smart Bomb: The completely unnecessary news analysis

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Does anyone know what's going on with the Inland Port Authority Board—that small group of secretive and powerful people who will transform Salt Lake Valley from a crowded, polluted metropolis into a wonderful play-land for trucks and trains and all kinds of stuff that will make a few people very wealthy?

But wait, there's more—the board reportedly has put together preliminary plans that will make everyone giddy, like Uncle Jack's Fleecing Ride and Mr. Hugh's No-Bid Giant Slide. But first, the board will create a Public Infrastructure District (PID) to borrow lots of money against property taxes the port will generate after it is built and people see that it won't cause air pollution or additional truck traffic and foul the Great Salt Lake wetlands.

The ingenious sleight-of-hand is that the PID is separate from the Port Authority, so if the PID can't repay the borrowed money, the Inland Port can skate—it's a special King's-X-up-yours kind of thing. Isn't it great how the Utah Legislature in all its wisdom knew the best way to become a mega-center was to create a planning and taxing entity not accountable to voters or taxpayers or even lenders? Maybe they aren't as dumb as they look—or maybe they have out-smarted themselves again. Duh.

Utah Optimists: Tourists Won't Mind Wearing Gas Masks
The world may be going to hell in a hand-basket, but here in Utah we have a thriving economy and more of everything than we'll ever need. At least that's the view of our leaders and others who truly are optimistic about the future. The staff here at Smart Bomb has added a few attributes to the Beehive State Optimists Club:

A Utah optimist is someone who thinks:
1—Drought? Great, let's market and sell water.
2—The Real Housewives of SLC make Burgess Owens look honest and ethical.
3—The Delta variant? Cool, let's sell the state a truckload of the de-wormer Ivermectin.
4—The Texas anti-abortion law is awesome, it makes our Legislature look thoughtful.
5—Don't worry, the Great Salt Lake will come back and we'll need the Bangerter pumps again.
6—Dirty air? Well, they can't blame that on the Inland Port ... yet.
7—Don't worry, ski tourists won't mind wearing gas masks.
8—Too many cars in Little Cottonwood Canyon? See, we do have The Greatest Snow on Earth.
9—Skyrocketing real estate prices are fine—they keep out the riff-raff.
10—And unrefrigerated beer at the State Liquor Store discourages drinking.

Snake Oil Sales Up in Red State America
Right-wingers and conservative media love diet supplements. It's true. There is a link between snake oil and right-wing politics, says New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. Folks who believe Barack Obama was born in Kenya and Italian satellites switched votes to Joe Biden are the kind of people who treat health problems with remedies pitched on Fox News, right-wing radio and secret websites. In 2014, Alex Jones's InfoWars brought in more than $20 million, mainly from supplement sales.

It's difficult to tell where the money game ends and the ideological one begins, says Rick Perlstein. "They are two facets of the same coin, where the con selling 23-cent miracle cures for heart disease inches inexorably into the one selling marginal tax rates as the miracle cure for the nation itself."

Donald Trump hyped hydroxychloroquine as a cure-all for COVID-19 as his administration was roiled by the pandemic. As a U.S. senator, Orrin Hatch helped the supplement business immeasurably and got repaid in kind. In 1994, Hatch championed the Dietary Supplement and Health Education Act, allowing manufacturers to make health claims without going through the FDA to prove safety or efficacy. So step right up, this will cure what ails you, including Democrat hoaxes.

Postscript—Well, that's about it for another beautiful week here in paradise, a.k.a Zion, where we have the freedom to be as dumb as we want. Here's a fun fact: In 1777, Gen. George Washington ordered his troops to be inoculated against smallpox. So the anti-vaxers might what to re-think this freedom business.

Get this, freedom lovers: In the USA, children must be vaccinated against various infectious diseases before they can attend public schools—yes, even in Texas and Florida. They include vaccines against Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis (whooping cough), Polio, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Hepatitis A and B, Varicella and Meningitis. But now Republicans are going apeshit over Biden's mandate that all federal government workers and contractors get vaccinated against Covid. He's also ordered all employers with 100 or more workers to ensure they all get the shot.

Fun fact: In 1901, a smallpox epidemic ravaged the Northeast, leading the city of Boston to mandate all residents be vaccinated. It was challenged all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where in a landmark 1905 ruling, the high court held that the government has the authority to infringe on personal freedoms during a public health crisis. Convenient memories or just Republican reality—you decide.

OK Wilson, everyone knows that the warm beer at the State Liquor Store has not discouraged the guys in the band from drinking. Let's just do what the band does for once. Let's ignore all the pandemics, terrorists, anti-vaxers, wars and all the nut-jobs out there for just a while. Alright, hit it, Wilson:

Into this life we're born
Baby sometimes we don't know why
And time seems to go by so fast
In the twinkling of an eye

Let's enjoy it while we can
Won't you help me sing my song
From the dark end of the street
To the bright side of the road

From the dark end of the street
To the bright side of the road
We'll be lovers once again
On the bright side of the road
We'll be lovers once again on the bright side of the road
"Bright Side Of The Road"—Van Morrison

PPS—During this difficult time for newspapers, please make a donation to our very important local alternative news source, Salt Lake City Weekly, at PressBackers.com, a nonprofit dedicated to help fund local journalism. Thank you.

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