Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Gambling Ambivalence

Justin Katz has weighed in on the Rhode Island casino debate, but doesn't seem to be able to muster up the same sort of passion he usually exhibits on other issues, such as, say Andrew Sullivan. I think he essentially has the attitude of the majority in this case as I sense that most Rhode Islanders want to have the right to not only vote on the issue, but vote for the issue.
Gambling, of itself, isn't sinful as far as I'm concerned. Yes, having a somewhat addictive personality, I've noticed the aftertaste of the temptation that it represents. Yes, the first notable scene that I came across upon entering Foxwoods Casino's parking lot in Connecticut when I was in college was an older couple — cusp of retirement, I'd say — crying in each other's arms.

Still, a night of roulette, blackjack, and slot machines, with a reasonable expense cap, isn't wrong or corrosive in the way that a night costing the same amount at a brothel would be. For some patrons, the all-you-can-eat buffet is the more seductive opportunity for excess.

So, I've been more or less ambivalent about the matter of allowing a Rhode Island tribe to build a casino on its land.
As marijuana use, I think many view gambling as, if not a victimless "crime," at least a controllable vice. Justin seems a bit ambivalent on moral costs as well.
For one thing, I know families that have suffered the consequences of a gambling addiction facilitated by just the Jai Alai enterprise in Newport, so any state policy toward a full-blown casino can't stand on anti-gambling principle. If the objection is to the greater draw that a casino would have, then it seems to me that regulating size is the logical answer.

For another thing, as much as I don't believe gambling to be an undeniable sin, I'm not comfortable with governments' seeing it as a source of revenue. Whether or not a casino yields a public profit seems to me irrelevant to the yes/no question of whether one ought to be allowed in the state.

In a previous post I detailed the social and economic costs incurred by communities (in this case those home to the two casinos in neighboring Connecticut) that harbor gaming casinos. But Justin's reluctance to embrace gambling as a legitimate source of state revenue echoes my own feelings and has brought me to the realization that perhaps the best way to wage a battle against a casino is not from a moral, but from a political angle.

I still believe that the social costs are real. Yet, I also strongly believe that a central argument for or against a casino centers around the degree to which state revenue will rise or fall. This fosters a "quick-fix" attitude towards the "casino solution" in both the general population and the state government and is disheartening for a proponent of smaller, less involved government. So, perhaps the best argument I could muster would be from the ideological stance of handicapping Rhode Island's spendthrift government by voting for that side of the casino gambling issue that would leave it with the least amount of money at its disposal. If nothing else, we can be confident that the more money the General Assembly has at its disposal, the more money it will waste, including much that will be used towards patronage and, thus, the further entrenchment of the same old political actors.


Rich Molumby said...

I have an E-Cash Machine site/blog. It pretty much covers Making money on the web.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

Tom Naka said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you! I have a canada health insurance visitor
site/blog. It pretty much covers canada health insurance visitor
related stuff.

Anonymous said...


I've got a slot machine strategies site with some original articles related to machine secret slot strategy winning that your visitors may find interesting - here's a sample article:

Hitting the Jackpot with Progressive Slot Machines
Progressive slot machines offer jackpots that are larger than flat top machines. In some cases, these jackpots are huge and the payback can change a player's ...

machine secret slot strategy winning


Stephen Todd

gambler555 said...

Excellent blog! Usefull info there. I have a gambling poker strategy strategy site. Perhaps when you get a minute to spare you may want to check it out and see all the gambling poker strategy strategy ralated info there :-)

Anonymous said...

I like to gamble. I like to gamble a lot. I've also made quite a comfortable living in the casinos.
gambling game has been a casino online where I have been a consistent winner. gambling game is an Egold casino with instant payouts.
They run a fair shop and aren't out to cheat anyone.
As a professional gambler, I highly recomend them for online gambling.

By the way, I like your blog quite a bit.

Have a great day.

Water & Fire said...

I love, will you marry me? If the answer is NO, then visit this site: 700 Series Spas Bahia Idaho
. If I can't have you, at least enjoy my favorite past time.

Tonythebest said...

casino vegas To play free of charge casino vegas Free software. casino vegas

Anonymous said...

"I just came across your blog about play russian roulette and wanted to drop you a note telling you how impressed I was with the information you have posted here. I also have a web site & blog about play russian roulette so I know I'm talking about when I say your site is top-notch! Keep up the great work, you are providing a great resource on the Internet here!"

Anonymous said...

Louis, remember I told you I found link online roulette, well here is the place to go link online roulette and the best part, it's free !!! Bye. Ben

Anonymous said...

Hey guys, great blog ! Here is my latest finding about play roulette wheel casino, you will find play roulette wheel casino to enjoy ! Cheers, Martin

Anonymous said...

Hi Patrick, guess what, I just saw a Live Roulette to test our systems and about download free roulette.
It has been a long time waiting for download free roulette.
Test your systems with a real roulette wheel and it's FREE ! Bye, Larry

Anonymous said...

Great blog, I also have a casino related site, If you want or need more exposure get casino traffic by the thousands at **casino traffic** Works for me!