Feds Admit They Have No Clue How To Enforce Anti-Online Gambling Legislation

from the please-clarify dept

In the fall of 2006, Congress (for reasons that have never been explained) put a clause banning online gambling into a bill supposedly about protecting our ports (so no one would vote against it). Since then there's been an ongoing legal effort to get that part of the law overturned. It's particularly upset financial institutions who are told they need to stop gambling operations from accepting money -- though, they're not quite sure how to do that. To top it all off, even the federal officials who are charged with enforcing this law are now admitting that they have absolutely no clue how to enforce it, noting that the legislation itself is incredibly broad and unclear. In other words, we have a law that almost no one wants and which those in charge of enforcing have no idea how to enforce (or even why they should enforce it). So why did it get passed in the first place? Well, at least our ports are safe.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Ron (profile), Apr 4th, 2008 @ 8:32am

    Well ..

    ... I think this quote attributed to Mark Twain covers it:
    "Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself"

     

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    KD, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 10:40am

    Unfortunately, they aren't idiots ...

    I'm pretty sure that if they were all idiots, we'd see much, much worse.

    What they are is bought. We need to find a way to break the control money has over our governments. I don't know how to do it; it would be great if Lessig has some workable plans, but I'm not hopeful about that.

    And Mike, about that quote at the end: "Well, at least our ports are safe." Is there any indication at all that they are any safer than they would have been without the bill?

     

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    sarky, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 10:51am

    twain was right

    they are idiots, and the quote at the end is sarcasm. Like he does NOT really think the ports are safer. Are you a member of congress? Mr. David??

     

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  4.  
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    Ragaboo, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 10:56am

    Re: Unfortunately, they aren't idiots ...

    He meant for that last comment to be dripping with sarcasm.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 11:00am

    Everyone is an idiot.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 11:45am

    Is this really all that uncommon? There all sorts of laws on the books that are unenforceable. They aren't designed to stop a crime but are used to trump up charges against a defendant to coerce them into a plea bargain.

     

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  7.  
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    wickster, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 11:55am

    Online Gambling

    As soon as they figure out how to tax it they will legalize it.

     

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  8.  
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    Tim, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Online Gambling

    "As soon as they figure out how to tax it they will legalize it."

    DING DING DING

    Mr Bush didn't have his hand in the cookie jar so he got upset and tried to do what he could to ban online gambling.

     

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    mike allen, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 12:25pm

    if

    if they cant enforce this how can they enforce anything to do with the net!!!!!!!!

     

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  10.  
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    Wyatt Ditzler, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 12:44pm

    Easy

    That is really easy Mike, they spy on us by intercepting all the Internet packets. Then analyze them under the guise of fighting terrorism and terrorists. :)

     

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  11.  
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    Rex, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 4:37pm

    follow the money

    The Techdirt post did not say WHO got the provision inserted into the bill. Should that not be in the public record?

    Once that part is known, then the answer is always: "Follow the money". Some powerful flunky in the legislative branch has a vested interest, either by way of a campaign contribution or by out and out bribery.

    Follow the money.

     

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    courtney benson, Apr 4th, 2008 @ 6:15pm

    dah!!!

    Now let me see if I get this straight - does this also include the Financial Community's derivative products?

     

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    alitheia, Apr 5th, 2008 @ 9:00pm

    The provision was inserted by the Republican Bill Frist. A good overview of his machinations are here: http://www.casinogamblingweb.com/gambling-news/gambling-law/frist_finally_answers_questions_about_in ternet_gambling_bill_26398.html And Mr Frist's justification of the act is here: http://www.casinogamblingweb.com/gambling-news/gambling-law/frist_writes_to_southern_baptists_about_ internet_gambling_11084.html For an overview of how this has all ended up with not only them failing to enforce the legislation but also the price they have to pay in allowing music piracy in Antigua is detailed here: http://www.music2dot0.com/archives/97

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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