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News » Private Eye

They're Against It



Most readers know I basically grew up inside a mine, with railroad tracks on either side of my little community of Lead Mine in Bingham Canyon. I later worked in the mine itself for several summers engaged as a trackman on the college gangs. Back then, Kennecott Copper would hire 100 or so additional college students as summer employees. We all had family in the mine and that was the predicate for most of us getting hired—basically nepotism of nearly the worst kind, since sending a college kid into a mine to be crushed by heavy machinery is hardly the kind of upward mobility nepotism bestows. You want nepotism?—better to be one of the Trump kids.

I was sent to the clinic a couple times after getting bashed with various track repair tools or for getting acid water blown into my eyes. It was a dangerous place. I nearly lost one of my best friends, Jeff Tibolla, to a mining accident. He spent days in a hospital after a track-shifting machine tried to cut him in half. But he knew he was lucky since mining accidents killed someone in the mine with common regularity back then, and before back then, when our parents and grandparents worked there, it was even worse.

So, it is with some irony that the one thing that finally kept me from work the past couple of weeks was not a giant boulder falling on my head, taking an electrical shock from a fallen trolley cable or from having my feet smashed under a piece of menacing machinery. It was from typing too much. Who knew? I guess the character count allowed for my hands reached max level and the only solution was to have carpal tunnel and trigger release surgery to relieve the numbness and pain in both my wrists and hands. It kept me up all night, making me an even less desirable person to hang around with.

I just shake my head thinking of all the seriously dangerous stuff I've done in my life to be knocked off my perch by fingers that were no longer even any good for sticking into peanut butter jars. Worse, though, for a guy who never had any good ideas anyway, being out of circulation for just a couple weeks has drained me of finding something worthy to write about, not to mention that during the past two weeks, I discovered a piece of clarity: No matter how much I poke and prod, the people I poke and prod the most—QAnon's Burgess Owens, CowardAnon's Chris Stewart and PhonyAnon's Mike Lee—remain as vibrantly dumb, cynical and self-aggrandizing as ever. They just are.

This week I watched the Marx Brothers' movie Horse Feathers for the 100th time (fingers on remote control are fine), and remembered that Ecclesiastes 1:9 is as relevant as ever, that is, there is nothing new under the sun. So it is, that when Groucho sang this little ditty to the students at Huxley College, he was just reminding us that even when Owens, Stewart and Lee are finished, someone just like them will come along, because there's fruit in the GOP tree of always opposing open minds and progress. Herewith, the GOP theme song:

I don't know what they have to sayIt makes no difference anywayWhatever it is, I'm against itNo matter what it is or who commenced itI'm against it

Your proposition may be goodBut let's have one thing understood:Whatever it is, I'm against itAnd even when you've changed it or condensed itI'm against it

For months before my son was bornI used to yell from night till morn"Whatever it is, I'm against it."

And I've been yelling since I first commenced itI'm against it

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