Gambling Is Bad (Unless It's A State Sponsored Lotto Or Involves Horses)

from the then-it's-fine? dept

As expected, our elected Congress folks have moved forward with their plans to "clarify" gambling laws, which will effectively outlaw playing online poker, even allowing the government to push ISPs to block access to gambling sites. Of course, if the similar law in Washington State is anything to go by, expect all sorts of perfectly legitimate sites to be forced offline. Once again, it seems unfair to put the burden here on ISPs to block these sites. If the gambling sites share servers with other perfectly legitimate sites, those will be taken offline as well. It's worth noting, of course, that the law carves out exceptions for state lotteries (gambling is good when the money goes the government, apparently) and horse racing... because... well, there's really no good reason for it, but apparently some Congress folks like to bet on the ponies. It's unlikely the bill will go anywhere as the Senate apparently doesn't care much about this issue, but it's yet another example of Congress gearing up for election season by tackling the "really important problems" facing our nation.

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  1. identicon
    Marty, 1 Aug 2006 @ 9:03am

    Competitiveness

    The problem of gov't wanting to ban on-line gambling as opposed to other forms of betting (horsetrack, lottery, etc.) lies elsewhere. On-line operators can set get the servers up in tax havens which will enable them to lower tax burden and incerase payout to levels where any state-registered gaming organization can't reach them. That's before sunk as well as operating costs, which are incomparably lower. This causes transfer from regulated (i.e. registered and taxed) gaming revenues forums to less or un- regulated and/or less- or untaxed. Nuances are unimportant. It's morally neutral fact, i.e. not good or bad that this on-line gaming causes lower income into state budgets and unnatural competition. For which citizens will have to pay up should there be a budget shortfall. Hence the state intervention.

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