Online Gambling Deals Between US And Other Countries Are A Matter Of National Security?

from the seriously? dept

Remember back in December, the EU, Canada and Japan suddenly agreed not to side with Antigua in the longstanding dispute over the US's online gambling ban violating free trade agreements? It was pretty clear that the US had cut some sort of deal with these countries (who had previously indicated they would side with Antigua). In order to understand what happened, a freelance writer named Ed Brayton filed a Freedom of Information Act request to get the actual agreement between the countries. And, as The Agitator points out, the US Trade Representative has denied the request, claiming that the agreement is classified, as it's a matter of national security. Yes. The US gov't is actually claiming that an agreement over online gambling between two countries is a matter of national security. Perhaps this really shouldn't be such a huge surprise. Remember, the law that was passed to ban online gambling was hidden as part of a law to protect our ports. Clearly, the EU, Canada and Japan had to side with the US against Antigua to protect our ports.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    identicon
    Hellsvilla, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 4:01am

    Of course it is

    Of course its a matter of national security.. We MUST NOT let anyone see how corrupt our politicians are or they might lose their jobs.

    Wait, you mean "National Security" is not the same as "National's Job Security"????

    Really?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 4:58am

      Re: Of course it is

      I felt a need to drop you a line and ask you what this minicity thing you have is, and how do I join?

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 4:17am

    Now we're protecting our ports from Antigua? I never realized that Antigua was such a hotbed of international intrigue.

     

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    brwyatt, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 5:24am

    National TAX Security...

    The reason is simple. The government can tax REAL gambling in the REAL world (See: Las Vegas), but any gambling on the Internet, particularly that which is out of the country, is almost impossible to tax. So instead of letting the people spend their money and not get a fair share, they just ban it.

    "Free World" my ass.

     

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    anonymous coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 5:54am

    Um, since when is the EU a country????

    Have I missed something?

     

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    Overcast, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 6:09am

    Only if you consider lottery revenue 'national security'.

    It's more like National Bullshit to be honest.

    I've heard online gambling is used to launder money, etc.. I'm sure there's other ways to deal with it than to ban it. I suppose - if you want to launder money right now - you either need to own a casino or be a politician.

    Plus, if they are going to 'monitor' the internet, then we don't have to worry anyway, right????

    And as for the EU being a country.. Hasn't it become clear to people that nations are losing sovereignty and becoming 'global'? Go watch Alex Jone's Endgame.. laugh now, cry later - with the US, Canada, and Mexico will be known as 'The North American Union'.

     

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      Alimas, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 6:52am

      Re:

      Yeah, that might happen in like 200 or 300 years.
      The US is way to arrogant to merge up like that with Canada, never mind Mexico.
      The EU made sense since all the countries are tiny and tightly packed. It was common sense.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 7th, 2008 @ 11:23pm

      Re:

      Nationalism is cyclical. Different cultures form joint governments, over time one culture dominates that government antagonizing the other cultures, country splits back up into different cultures. There's more to it, mind you, since what goes on in your country affects what goes on in my country, but looking back at history, we can definitively see trends of nationalistic ideology sweeping parts of the world at various times and then passing out of vogue. We probably just ended a nationalistic phase recently, a post-Cold War development (see Yugoslavia, Cyprus, Northern Ireland, Columbia, etc, etc,), and have returned to a globalisation sentiment (see Venezuela, EU, etc, etc,).

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 6:38am

    I can understand how lost revenue could be considered a national security issue. If you don't have money, kind of hard to secure anything.

    Also, isn't that why there are restrictions on foreign owned banks, communications and media concerns?

    Another point is that just because something gets thrown in to a ports bill doesn't mean it has to do with ports. Any political first grader knows that.

     

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    dorpus, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 6:47am

    Not so simple

    Casinos are venues for money laundering by drug dealers, gangs, terrorists, etc. who lose on purpose to swap money. So yes, national security does have a legitimate stake in the issue.

     

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    Enoch Root, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 7:18am

    Nevada Casino Taxes

    Actually Casinos pay no federal tax. Aside from taxes on employees, Casinos in Nevada pay entirely state taxes. Nevada has no state income tax, only Federal.

    Nevada for instance (my home), all revenues collected from casino taxes go to the local government and the state general fund. There are licensing fees which take something like 3% to 6.25% of gross revenues monthly and annual fees. Entertainment taxes are about 10% of amounts paid for admission, food, refreshments and merchandise, etc.

    The gambling taxes in Nevada are split, some going to education, some to the state's general fund, some to local governments, and some to a program for problem gamblers. Hell, we even have a local health care for those who can't afford it.

     

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    Whirler, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 9:21am

    If the dynamics are not understood, or one doesn't get their way - the easiest thing to do is ban it.

     

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    dan, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 10:10am

    spelling error

    past -> passed
    Remember, the law that was past to...
    Remember, the law that was passed to...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 11:28am

    Whirler, I think the dynamics are understood. The US has laws that bans Internet Gambling. A company in the US can not do this, why should we let a foreign company do something we don't allow our own companies to do?

    I for one don't want other countries telling us what we can or can't do in terms of our laws, you may be willing to submit to one universal government, but I am not. Well, you can do what you want to us, but we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth the United States of America! Gentlemen!

     

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    Numbed Down, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 1:55pm

    Secrecy & National Insecurity

    Secrecy in the name of national security is a convenient cover for imcompetence and criminal activity, and just plain stupidity. There is no true democracy (republican or otherwise) where secrecy predominates as a matter of routine, as it does in our current Police State (but we call it Freedom).

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2008 @ 2:02pm

    of course its national security, anything that goes against our intrest is a matter of national security, infact, anything that goes against bush intrest are a matter of national security....soon, very soon, our bill of rights will be hidden because of 'national security'

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 7th, 2008 @ 7:11am

    soon, very soon, our bill of rights will be hidden because of 'national security'

    So soon, very soon, Obama or Hillary will hide our bill of rights?

     

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    David, Feb 19th, 2008 @ 4:37pm

    Online gambling

    Google Answers put together a pretty comprehensive directory-of-directories of online gaming sites in Europe, Asia and elsewhere in the world:


    Directories of online gambling sites


    From the looks of it, getting a handle on all the sites out there would be a major undertaking for law enforcement, or anyone, for that matter.

     

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    dadi, Dec 4th, 2008 @ 1:16pm

    online casinos

    he US gov't is actually claiming that an agreement over online gambling between two countries is a matter of national security, well, I think it is wrong !

     

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    identicon
    online casinos, Dec 4th, 2008 @ 1:17pm

    online casinos

    he US gov't is actually claiming that an agreement over online gambling between two countries is a matter of national security, well, I think it is wrong !

     

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    identicon
    online gambling, Dec 10th, 2008 @ 2:38am

    Legality

    If this is the case, why do I still get the impression that the US government is going to legalize online gambling anyway?

     

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