A Stacked Deck

The gambling industry isn’t a charity. Rather it refers to itself as “gaming,” “entertainment,” “recreation,” and “leisure.”

Whatever term or terms they use, their main business is taking your money. They do this by taking money from gamblers, then giving small portions back to some gamblers in “winnings” some of the time, but keeping most of the money for themselves. How much money? Over $100 billion in 2005, while state lotteries raked in another $53 billion. With billions of dollars in profits, some gamblers may be winning – but most are losing!

Compulsive gamblers are losing incredible amounts of money. The statistics may come with sanitized terms like “percent,” but the numbers represent people who are trapped in their gambling addictions. The more they gamble, the more they lose, draining their own resources and becoming the “gambling poor.”

According to published reports on problem gambling, after the thrill of the big win inevitably comes the big loss. It’s during the losing phase that problem gamblers begin to pile up losses, straining their finances and self-esteem. They are no longer in control of gambling – gambling controls them.

Normal relationships with family members and friends change as the compulsive gambler sees them as another source for additional funds. Even casual acquaintances are approached for money.

Why would anyone so financially strapped by gambling losses continue to gamble? Can’t they see that gambling is the source of their financial ruin? The answer is found in two words: “false hope.” In the desperation to win and recoup their losses, gamblers are blinded by the false hope of the next big win.

So sure are gamblers of winning that they continue to pump more and more dollars into gambling. Winning is, of course, inevitable. Gambling is a game of chance, and chances are the gambler will win again. However, the number of times and amounts of money lost far outweigh the number of times and amounts of money won. Constantly playing catch up, compulsive gamblers accept losing in order to win! It’s a vicious downward spiral – the very fact of losing convinces the gambler of the inevitability of winning. He has to keep gambling for his luck to change.

Gambling is a serious problem, a national epidemic, and it’s getting worse. What’s even more tragic is that our government institutions have been compromised by the gambling industry’s lure of easy money. There was a time when government was thought to serve and protect the people. Government stood for the common good. It stood for justice and as a shield for its citizens against the seedy elements of society, the cheats and crooks, the swindlers and thugs. But not anymore. The new rationale for government seems to be “since the people are going to do it anyway, we might as well legalize it, join them, and take our cut.”

Government at all levels has become so inefficient it apparently cannot provide adequate economic administration. It just seems to bounce around from one crisis to another, forever in search of the magical quick fix. Mammon is god, morals are gone, and government officials, elected to serve in the best interest of the people, have caved in to the easy money crowd by joining up with the creeps whose real intention is to fleece the people. But, hey, we’re told casinos are fun, they create jobs, and are good for the overall economy. Ya wanna bet?!

– Bill