Tuesday, January 30, 2007

BBC readio last night was discussing recent legislative changes (or proposed changes?) allowing for much larger casinos. The interesting bit was their guest interview with someone from a recent american national impact study group on gambling. I had no idea that such a study had been conducted, though I had heard about recent crackdowns on online gambling. Anyhow, this study group was recommending a moratorium on all new forms of legal gambling in the US. The BBC reporter asked whether allowing large casinos did not bring jobs and revenue into communities. The american rightly and eloquently pointed out that casinos do not create wealth, they merely transfer it to casino owners. They also have the effect of taking money which would have been spent on consumer goods of various kinds OUT of the local economy, which has a multiplier effect (you might want to take a macro-econ class if you aren't familiar with this). So, for every million dollars spent in a casino, that could be 3 or 4 or more million which is taken out of the local economy.

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