It’s Brains and Character that Count, My Boy

[Letter excerpt, 1955]

Since my health required something in the way of bumming around, I have in the past months undertaken a more or less systematic survey of this area; never dreamed there were such places in it. This is a useful consolation, since I am shying away from the uranium country. Incidentally, some local yokel, just out of the army and broke, has picked up twenty-one (21) million bucks around Moab:  an American success-story–it’s brains and character that count, my boy. As you might expect, there are now 6,000 people and 2,700 trailers in Moab. The gooney who had the big write-up in Life: fighting rattlesnakes and drinking poison water in Hanksville, is a good friend of Dad’s (needless to say, Poppa has U35 running out of his ears) – what really happened was that he sat in his stationwagon and noticed the AEC survey planes repeatedly hovering over a particular spot, diving, gesticulating, and whatnot, to show private enterprise, oops! Private Enterprise the way. So he went over to the spot so persistently and emphatically indicated and, as they say, “sat down on ten million dollars.” Don’t think I am being bitter, lover, only I am amused by the efforts of the Luce Publishing Company to prove to the world that their buddy earned every penny of it.

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About Hugh Nibley

Hugh Nibley, 1910-2005, was simultaneously the LDS Church's greatest intellectual defender from attack from the outside and Mormon culture's strongest critic from the inside. This blog is composed mainly from Nibley's unpublished writings, letters, interviews and conversations, with occasional posts from associates who had personal interactions with him.
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