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Behold The Moon Resort and Casino proposed as the next big Wow for Las Vegas in global capital’s never-ending search for titillating alternatives to reality. The usual superlatives apply to this $5-billion project: 5,000 suites, 2,500-seat theater, an attached shopping mall, and, double-Wow, a planetarium. Developers Moon World Resorts Inc. say the 750-foot-tall moon building will contain an indoor “lunar surface.” They plan to charge $500 for 90 minute sessions cavorting around in it. Better bring a book. Or, better yet, rent a car and drive thirty miles outside Las Vegas into the desert where, at least, the tarantulas and gila monsters will keep you company in the desolate landscape.

Do you have any idea how badly Las Vegas has decrepitated in the past two years? I get regular reports from someone employed in retail right on the Strip. Since Covid came to visit, the fat cats and Asian “whale” gamblers of yesteryear have been largely replaced by west coast gang-bangers. The result: stupendous impromptu pageants of street violence: stabbings, shootings, beat-downs, stompings, often in broad daylight. With restaurant closings, visitors have had to get their meals from the CVS snack shelves. A new class of homeless addicts and psychotics appeared and formed LA-style campgrounds in the parking lots and nebulous zones between the massive casino properties. The grafitti cleaners can’t get ahead of the taggers. This is certainly not Bugsy Siegel’s town, nor even Steve Wynn’s. Las Vegas has entered the Blade Runner phase of its destined-to-be rather brief existence. If the capital markets tank as expected this fall, the Moon Resort and Casino won’t make it past the proposal stage. But I guess it’s the thought that counts.

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About James Howard Kunstler

View all posts by James Howard Kunstler
James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency and the four-book series of World Made By Hand novels, set in a post economic crash American future. His most recent book is Living in the Long Emergency; Global Crisis, the Failure of the Futurists, and the Early Adapters Who Are Showing Us the Way Forward. Jim lives on a homestead in Washington County, New. York, where he tends his garden and communes with his chickens.

16 Responses to “October 2021”

  1. tom clark October 4, 2021 at 8:48 pm #

    Cool! Glad I don’t live there.

  2. Zoltar October 4, 2021 at 9:12 pm #

    We flew into Vegas long enough to secure a rental car and head on to Zion National Park several years ago.

    On the eve of our return flight we stepped into a casino for about five minutes. Gilded surfaces, a million lightbulbs, mirrors everywhere: rube splendor.

    • tom clark October 4, 2021 at 9:17 pm #

      Good luck flying into Vegas today and getting a rental car!

  3. anmariwakaranai October 4, 2021 at 11:55 pm #

    Was Stephen Kings “The Stand” predictive programming?

    I wouldn’t be against putting a large Virgin Mary on top of that moon, with the snake I mean Gates under her feet writhing and sliming.

    Oh well. Coasts gone soon.

  4. dowd October 5, 2021 at 5:56 am #

    ‘Moon Casino’: a perfect metaphor for our end times:

  5. tucsonspur October 5, 2021 at 6:29 am #

    What’s all the rumpus, people go to Vegas and shoot for the moon all the time. Now they can’t miss! I’m really not sure that this is a good idea, showing all those craters and reminding people of what just happened or will happen, to their bank accounts. Mare Serenitatis and Mare Tranquillitatis probably won’t provide much comfort.

    Look, I’m definitely against this. I mean, if I’m staying at the Palazzo or the Venetian, it’ll most likely block my view of Trump’s grand, golden hotel. The nerve of some people.

    What if it rolls off its foundation like a bowling ball and spins down the lane of Las Vegas boulevard knocking buildings over like ten pins? Talk about a strike. It’s truly an obscenity, putting a lifeless moon amidst all the lively, earthy, ecstatic exuberance. Geez, what a buzz kill.

    Haven’t been there in going on two years now, and it’s sad to hear about its decline. I don’t believe that any of this new crowd would come near qualifying for the Mob Museum.

    Let me confess my sins, or at least one of them. I love Las Vegas in a complicated, paradoxical way. I’ve driven there many times, and have always enjoyed its omnifarious delights at the end of a long, beautiful drive through the desert. Las Vegas, the ‘Meadows’ with its spring water, named by Rafael Rivera back around 1830. How wonderful it must have been.

    Let me stop rambling on about ‘Sin” city, and allow Anthony Bourdain to entertain you and make you wonder.


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  6. liber8tor October 5, 2021 at 9:05 am #

    I know.. maybe some more outdoor concerts to help draw crowds? (As long as FBI is there as security guards)

  7. MaryQueen October 5, 2021 at 9:26 am #

    I like the chemtrail plane in the background. LOL!

  8. My Point of View October 5, 2021 at 11:24 am #

    When I was a kid my father said the moon was made of green cheese.

    Now it’s a case that Las Vegas has gone full cheese.

  9. SvrzoH October 6, 2021 at 8:52 am #

    Q: “How’s your luck in LV?”
    A (for the millionth time): “I am even.”

  10. bymitch October 7, 2021 at 6:56 pm #

    Not that I have had any direct experiences on the moon, I think that I am safe in saying that it’s a bit like standing on earth.
    The perception is that it is flat, and static, with spherical notions and travel at 67,000 mph, pretty much irrelevant.
    So what is this mooning all about?
    I guess the gravitational effects of the moon are more prevalent experiences here, such as tides, ideal crop planting, successful fishing days, and werewolf type behaviours.
    But, you don’t have to park a large sphere, over the top of a concourse, to get a load of that [for free I might add].
    Maybe it’s the shock and awe, with a touch of trepidation, they are going for.
    The same feeling you get when standing close to a microwave oven with a bent door, while you eagerly await for smores to take on heavenly characteristics.

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  11. DavidLFleck October 8, 2021 at 12:36 pm #

    This doesn’t offend me in Vegas the way it would in a normal city. Vegas is – by definition – not connected to reality.

    I actually think it would look pretty bitchen on the Strip.

  12. Cyrus992 October 14, 2021 at 1:11 am #

    Great viewpoint Kunstler! You are right! It has fallen so much! Ironically we did an interview together just weeks before the decline and discussed Las Vegas too!


  13. Ishabaka October 15, 2021 at 7:50 am #

    It’s corny, but I dunno – not the worst I’ve seen here. It’s hard not to like a realist portrait of something natural.

    Wonderful to hear how Las Vegas is becoming diverse.

    • BackRowHeckler October 22, 2021 at 3:22 pm #

      Sure, why should south central LA have all the fun?

  14. BackRowHeckler October 22, 2021 at 3:24 pm #

    Las Vegas’ destiny is to revert to what it once was, a dry, dusty desert crossroads.