Friday, January 22, 2010

More Hypocrisy on Gambling

In the same way that I write a lot of posts about investing and power, Dan is our resident expert on gambling and sports. The thesis of his argument is clear - gambling is happening everywhere across the USA, yet we only legalize it in Nevada (and a couple of other places, to the sports' leagues chagrin each time it occurs), and have a completely hypocritical attitude towards where we allow gambling to occur, and we prohibit it (legally, at least).

While the states frown upon gambling, they make their lotteries (with odds worse than virtually any other form of gambling) the centerpieces of their budget. Illinois is famous for claiming that the lottery proceeds would be used for education, and then just inserting lottery revenue in for education and reducing their contribution accordingly (and then some).

While we can't gamble online and can't legally bet on sporting events, for some reason horse racing is OK for betting. There are off track betting parlors so you don't even have to go to the track. Why? Hmmm.... it couldn't be that horse racing is politically connected, I won't go there.

But now, the state is letting people bet ONLINE on horse racing events. Huh? I guess it makes sense when you use the line of reasoning that it is only an extension of OTB into an online space, but why is it OK to gamble on this relatively obscure sport (relative to the NFL, the NCAA, and everything else) when all else is prohibited? I can't follow the broader logic.

Someday when Dan gets a free minute or two he hopefully can go through the Twin Spires site and let us know how it all works relative to other online gambling outfits.

1 comment:

Dan from Madison said...

Every time I see a Wisconsin Lottery commercial up here I get pissed off. State sanctioned gambling, and it is still illegal for me to bet a measly $20 on a football game.

I will check out that site and review for sure.