Some people have asked me why I strongly oppose Internet gambling, and I can sum it up in one sentence: Gambling on the Internet is for chumps.

“Chumps” is an old-school reference to naïve and foolish people, the ones who think if they make just one more bet they will strike it rich but instead find themselves in a deep, deep financial hole.

Long before the Internet became part of our daily lives, the chump sought out the corner street game where you tried to pick out the “money” card out of three cards laying face down on a cardboard box. And you guessed it the chump never picked the right card.

More than 50 years ago, former U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy saw the dangers of illegal gambling and organized crime. He pushed for new laws to protect Americans and Congress enacted those laws, including the Wire Act.

When the Internet was in its infancy in the late 1990s, the Wire Act continued to serve its purpose by limiting online gambling. But in 2011 the Justice Department — without consulting Congress — said the Wire Act does not apply to many forms of Internet gambling thereby allowing states to make Internet gambling legal. Some states cheered the ruling as a way to raise revenue by taxing the Internet providers.

I acknowledge that legalized gambling in casinos, approved by voters in my state of Colorado, has helped the state raise needed revenue for our community colleges and historic preservation. The difference is the casinos are a controlled environment where limits are set and additionally the casinos provide jobs.

In contrast, there are no limits with Internet gambling except a person’s own self-control. Making lottery tickets and other casino games available on the Internet 24/7 on a cell phone, tablet or home computer is dangerous for any chump of any color. I am particularly concerned about the African-American community.

A 2009 study by the National Institute of Health found that Black Americans are nearly twice as likely to be what they called “disordered gamblers.” That means poor Americans are more likely to have addictions to gambling and often are targeted with grand stories of striking it rich.

Many stores in poor neighborhoods may not carry fresh fruit and vegetables but they sure are always stocked up with lottery tickets. And that brings me to another point about Internet gambling.

Internet gambling is a financial risk to our community and that could become as serious as health risks we face. National health reports show that Black men and women have the highest overall mortality rate for coronary disease than any ethnic group in the United States. We are twice as likely to be diagnosed with diabetes as non-Blacks and have the highest mortality rate of any racial and ethnic group for all cancers.

Now, reading that would make many of us put down the fried chicken and watch our sugar intake. But others continue to eat the junk food, and we’re faced taking medications for high blood pressure or diabetes and for many African Americans an early grave.

Allowing Internet gambling is like having a fast food restaurant in your living room. You can pig out on gambling any time of day or night. We all know a handful of potato chips won’t hurt you, but eating a whole bag in one sitting will.

The same is true for gambling. A few visits to a casino or buying lottery tickets won’t bankrupt most families but providing 24/7 Internet access could. And people who are already addicted to gambling will surely spiral out of control. It would be like having an alcoholic live in a bar 24/7. Sooner or later they will reach for that one drink, because it is right at their fingertips — just like Internet gambling is for the gambling addict.

It’s time for Congress to reassert its policy-making role by putting the teeth back in the Wire Act so we can better understand and regulate Internet gambling. Otherwise, we’re sure to see more wannabe millionaires turn into chumps.

Wellington Webb served as mayor of Denver from 1991-2003. He is a national co-chair of the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling.

(49) comments

Rich Muny

With all due respect to Mayor Webb, he must think we're all chumps. He's paid by billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson to lobby for a national ban on Adelson's Internet competition. It's that simple. That's why Webb has no issue with bricks-and-mortar casinos. I guess he thought no one would notice?

Webb is wrong on every count. The Wire Act of 1961 was passed to combat organized crime, not to bar states from authorizing Internet poker sites. He's also very wrong in saying "chumps" play online poker. To the contrary, online poker is a great game of skill with many winning players.

It's also disgusting that he'd play the race card in service of Sheldon Adelson. After all, Webb is not even suggesting that the poker sites licensed in Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware -- the three states with Internet poker sites -- target African Americans. It's just another in a string of bizarre attacks, seemingly hoping to get something to stick.

Americans have had access to online poker for over a decade. If it were anything like Webb's fear-mongering, he'd have some real data on its impact. The reality is that it was not a problem then and licensing and regulation will only serve to improve upon that now.

Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware have taken extraordinary measures to protect their citizens by implementing stringent consumer protection standards. For example, technologies exist and are used successfully in the U.S. and Europe to identify problem gamblers and refer them to treatment. In fact, comprehensive research on the issue concludes that online poker operators have more effective and sophisticated tools to prevent and combat problem gaming than brick-and-mortar casinos, including loss limits and other protections which simply do not exist at bricks-and-mortar casinos like Adelson's Venetian or Sands Bethlehem.

The American people are nobody's chumps. We will not have our liberties stripped from us just because a billionaire doesn't want the competition.

Ron Denson

I agree with Rich Muny, let's license online poker right away.

14klori

I am appalled that a former mayor would use such discriminatory statements AND call them facts! I am embarrassed for Denver. This is what Sheldon Anderson money buys however.
I would also like to say that thank goodness this is still America and personal opinions do not get to make laws... yet.
Also, as Mr. Muny points out, the Wire Act of 1961 was BEFORE the age of the Internet. Times change, technology advances and we must advance with it! Would you not rather REGULATE what is here and not going anywhere or pretend it does not exist?
On another note, I would also like to say that I am a professional poker player and I most certainly am not a "chump"! I am a taxpayer, a mother, a business owner and have made solid life decisions. I know Mr. Webb has a wife in politics, and if I were her, I would be afraid that these obvious bigoted statements from my husband would color elections... no pun intended.
I am ashamed that we have a former mayor in this great country that obviously was an elected official that hid his bigotry to win elections. I cannot imagine an election would be successful when you call more than half of our country names.
Playground tactics.." na Na na Na"..is what our opposition to regulated and licensed online poker has resorted to and I am confident that the American people will look for facts.

Bradpick66

This story is infuriating. First of all, the legislation that has been proposed to ban online gaming, including online poker, has been driven primarily by the support ($$$$) of private interest, billionaire casino owner, Sheldon Adelson. He has publicly stated that he will spend whatever it takes to make this happen. All the while saying that this is a moral position, and he is concerned for the well being of Americans. To this I say, Hogwash!!! (Tried to come up with a stronger, clean adjective, but sorry) If "Mr. Adelson were so concerned about the financial and moral well being of his fellow Americans, he'd close the doors on his casinos for good. I doubt that will happen!

For Mr. Webb to call all online gamblers "chumps" and compare online gambling to street corner three card monte run by the local degenerates is ridiculous!! Let me be clear, I am for online poker legalization and regulation. Those of you wishing to play online slots, bingo, or other casino style games in your homes, sorry, not interested. There is an undeniable element of skill when it comes to poker, and that certainly translates to online poker.

Even worse, Mr. Webb brings the race card into this ill-formed group of scare tactics. At a time when things are progressing to a global economy, in the digital age, where physical location, nationality, gender, and yes even race are becoming characteristics rather than a single defining factor; Mr. Webb seeks to divide this country further and focus on our differences rather than address common issues.

One last thing I'd like to point out to Mr. Webb, many alcoholics do have 24/7 bars in their homes, it's called their liquor cabinets. Clearly Mr. Webb does not understand any of the sophisticated technologies that can be employed by online poker providers. I have never been to a brick and mortar casino that advertised any limits of any sort. I'm pretty sure there are plenty of casinos that offer lines of credit, and a full compliment of ATMs to allow their customers full access to any and all of their funds regardless of whether they can afford to lose them.

Legalize and regulate online poker! I want to enjoy the freedom to play the game I enjoy with my money in my home!

gary

Please support online poker. Thank you,

Rich Muny

"Pick out the “money” card." Well, Mr. Webb, I think you and Sheldon Adelson chose the wrong card here. The race card really isn't going to be the way to sell Adelson's vision of banning Internet competition to his bricks-and-mortar casinos. For one, it makes no sense. We've had online poker in the US in one form or another for a decade and have never seen disproportionate marketing to minorities or disproportionality in the players. And, what difference would it make anyway? It's a matter of liberty.

Your statements on the Wire Act are equally baffling. Robert Kennedy sought to block organized crime relating to interstate sports betting via wire transmissions -- telephone or telegraph. His focus was 100% on organized crime, not on gambling. The idea that he was seeking to stop states from authorizing intrastate poker sites is ludicrous and is a slap in the face to the legacy of Bobby Kennedy. Similarly, the Wire Act was simply interpreted too broadly by past administrations. The DoJ investigated the Act further, at the request of affected states (as you noted), and made an easy call on legislation that spoke only to interstate sports betting via wire.

Judah

Yes,members of the community gamble; Mr. Webb sees us as helpless victims. we are not, we have choice! It sounds like Mr. Webb doesn't want us to have choice. He prefer the government act like our parent and protect us from ourselves and dangers that they suggest MAY happen in the future; that's a little dangerous in terms of how much power that gives the government, if you ask me.
Also, online gaming is the logical, inevitable, next step in today's world. It safely operates elsewhere already, and our government is losing revenue and the ability to harness control over in the U.S. the longer it is forced underground or overseas.
Finally, poker is a skill game, not a shell game, so to compare them is unfair and misguided. If the other peoples' comments are accurate, it does seem that the author has ulterior motives.

pokerwife67

"Chumps"? Really? You have just insulted my smart, wonderful hard-working hubby. When America was allowed to play online poker, my hubby consistently made extra money for our family. My hubby is a good poker player and was able to play online poker from our home, in his free time, to help our family financially. It was a part-time job he could have in his free time from home.
I am embarrassed by YOUR label applied to all poker players as "chumps". It shows your lack of knowledge of online poker and of the people who play it. It also shows lack of class from Mr. Webb.
The only constant in this life is that THINGS ARE GOING TO CHANGE. To ignore or fight this shows lack of wisdom and foresight.
The most ridiculous statement someone can make is: "This is the way we've always done it."
Poker is changing, and for Mr. Webb and his pal Sheldon Adelson to fight changing with the times means they will be left in the dust.
Shame on Mr. Webb for his one-sided writing. Shame on The Philadelpha Tribune for allowing misinformation to be printed as facts.

Mike Q

Nice job Mr. Webb, you've successfully insulted tens of millions Americans who enjoy playing poker online, by calling them "chumps." Exactly how old are you sir, name calling for you should have ended back in junior high school. However, you choose to continue to act like a 13 year old because of Sheldon Adelson's checks. Elder statesmen are not supposed to act like this, Grow up!

Furthermore in this article of yours you have once again used the race card to try and scare the black and minority communities. Do you honestly think that the RAWA bills that were penned by your boss' (Sheldon Adelson) attorney are going to stop people of any color or financial level from playing poker or gambling online on any of the illegal black market sites, not a chance. About the only thing those bills will do is raise peoples taxes to pay for the costs of prohibition.

Regarding the Wire Act of 1961, it was passed to stop betting on sports over telephone and telegraph lines. The Internet was not even thought of back then.

As for playing poker or gambling in casinos vs online, you are not even close to being correct in your idea that casinos are a 100% controlled environment, they aren't. They have no idea how intoxicated or medicated a customer is or how much money they have brought to gamble. Casinos also do not use loss or deposit limits as you tried to imply in this article. Whereas, on an online poker site every move that you make from your sign up to how much you deposit and how often, to how you play and what you say is all recorded. Loss limits are set by each player and there are also deposit limits. Mr. Webb, you really need to do some research instead of relying on Sheldon Adelson's talking points, they're wrong.

This article is just another in a long line of scare attempts by the Adelson camp to mislead the American people about online poker and/or gambling. The bottom line is that throughout the world and in Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware where online poker and/or gambling are licensed and regulated, the consumers, families and players are safe. The technology used for age verification, geolocation, and to stop criminal activity including money laundering as well as to help people with gambling addiction issues are working. In the 1.5 years of operation in Nevada (poker only) and about 1 year in New Jersey and Delaware (poker and gambling) law enforcement and gaming regulators have not found one underage player, nor have they found any criminal activity. Gambling addiction has also not risen.

Licensing and regulation of online poker and/or gambling is the correct route to take to protect the U.S. consumers, families and players.

Gail S

Poker is a great game of skill and strategy, and ill-informed op-ed's such as this keep popping up around the country as billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson continues to fund his push for legislation of a federal ban. His campaign for a federal ban has to resort to these fear-mongering tactics trying to scare the American people with a litany of cataclysmic events that will occur if regulation were to occur. He needs to utilize these types of attack as actual facts just do not bear out his assertions regarding regulation. Regulation can provide the necessary consumer protections.


With online poker, there is more accountability than in a brick and mortar casino. Regulation requires strict player identification and sites monitor every action a player makes from the time they log on until they log off. NV, NJ, and DE have also come online this year and doing quite well working within a strictly regulated environment.

Prohibition never works, and the sensible path is to regulate it, tax it, and allow Americans to play online poker, if they choose to do so, in the comfort of their homes. Adults should be able to decide how to spend their hard-earned income, especially here in the Land of the Free.

pokerwife67

Dear Philadelphia Tribune, because of all the misinformation and yellow-journalism in Mr. Webb's online poker article, have you asked someone from Poker Players Alliance who actually knows how it works to write an article to give your readers the correct information? If not, you should do this right away. Don't be a tabloid. Be a paper for the real information that we can respect, please.

zulran

Mr. Webb, I'm surprised you had time to write a article seeing your hand is always in the pockets of Sheldon Adelson (casino mogul and proponent of online poker). Where is your outcry for fantasy football? Does that not effect the attendance at the brick and mortar casino's? Where is your outcry on the stock market? Every bet you make in poker has exact probability of occurring not the same in the stock market or fantasy football. Give people the freedom to choose, so they can play safely from their home.

joeinformed

People who have no idea how to play poker should never comment on it.. Also, why is fantasy football and horse race betting any different? If nobody won at internet poker, it would not exist. Acting like everyone who plays are suckers is probably based on YOUR experience playing poker. You need at least a half a brain to learn how to play poker properly and win, so that leaves you and your billionaire buddy out. Of course Adleson is just worried it may cut into the billions he makes taking money from fools in his casino. Casino gambling is for suckers, you can't win. Internet poker is for knowledgeable people who can figure out complicated math and probability. Greedy people like yourself need to stay out of my business and stop trying to prevent me from doing something I love.

Poker Champion

Wow!! What an insulting and racist article! I can't believe how ignorant and racist Welington Web's rant against blacks and online poker appears!

s1nnr

Lets take a look at how much easier it would be for me to go bankrupt at a casino as opposed to online...

If I want to play a live no limit cash game... smallest stakes is $1/$2 blinds with a buy in of $200-$300
If I want to play an online cash game... they would have blinds as low as 1cent/2cent with a buy in of $1

If I want to play a live tournament, with a decent structure, i will have to pay at least $200 with a rake going to the casino of $30-$50
To play a decent tournament online, I can play a $5 tournament with $0.50 rake

For new players, there is no intimidation, and can make mistakes, and learn the game for $50 online with the same experience that they would have to pay thousands live....

This article is such a joke, and the tribune is a joke of a paper, proven by the fact that have to publish this trash

SvenJuice

This Op-Ed was bought and paid for by Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson. Go check how much he and his organizations have given to this corrupt politicians campaign coffers.

Bottom line: The casinos don't want the competition. S1nnr's comments below are spot on. The casinos want to milk you dry. Additionally, they prevent skilled players from participating at games of skill (see how many card counters are barred from playing the game correctly).

Hypocrisy everywhere.

Tabbycat

The real "chumps" are readers expecting a sincere opinion instead getting a bought-and-paid-for full-page ad for sands Corporation casinos. Online poker players are desperate gambling fools, but slot-playing stool-sitters at The Venetian are healthy, well-adjusted standup citizens. Right. Got it. Your boss will be pleased.

While on the subject of fools, how about you put down your Sands Corp talking points and spend a few hours learning to write better before embarassing yourself in a major newspaper editorial? "Black men and women have the highest overall mortality rate for coronary disease THAN any ethnic group" is a sentence I'd expect from a Junior High C-student, not from a professional spokesman for a large casino corporation.

As for your long and mostly irrelevant digression about potato chips and fried chicken, they have plenty of both on sale at your boss's casinos.

scotto703

Mr. Webb obviously has some kind of paid or vested interest in seeing the demise of online poker and gaming in general. His views have little merit and aren't based on any kind of research, study, or even reflective thought. While I hesitate to called Mr. Webb racist, based on this article, I do find his comments about the African-American community in Philadelphia arrogant, condescending, and ignorant. As a former Philadelphia resident in Powelton Village, I know from experience that he is wrong, and wrong headed in his opinions. This gentlemen seems like another wealthy conservative, trying to stick his nose in other people's lives without any legitimate charge.

brianm

I'm not sure how a person playing poker online can be a 'chump' while the person who goes into Adelson's casinos are not, but apparently Webb does. It seems to me that the real 'chumps' are anyone who takes this article at face value, without looking at who the author is in bed with. (Note: I understand the other co-chair, and primary (or sole?) funding source for the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling is Sheldon Adelson, majority owner of Las Vegas Sands, a casino company.)

Legalized casinos in Colorado, and legalized lotteries nationwide don't impose limits on peoples' gambling. They're very happy to take money from the 'chumps' playing slot machines and blackjack where the player is guaranteed to be a long-time loser, rather than poker, where those with skill can be long-term winners.

It's also nice of Webb to determine what is good and right for Americans of all walks of life. Americans all over the country need 'selfless' people like Webb to offer his paternalistic views for the good of the country and its citizens. I'm also happy to hear that it is ok for African-Americans to spend their money on lotteries, with odds of winning anything of worse than 30-to-1 (and jackpot odds in the hundreds-of-millions-to-one) and in legalized casinos, but that it is somehow not ok to let them choose whether the casino they gamble in is internet-based or brick-and-mortar. Why, if Webb didn't make the choice for me, I don't think I would see any difference at all!

Mr. Webb - I suggest you reconsider your argument. Is your credibility worth a paycheck from someone like Adelson?

I-Can-Think-For-Myself

Typing "define chump" into the Google search bar returns the following:

chump
CHəmp
noun informal
a foolish or easily deceived person.
"how can this chump be a detective?"

This maladroit article was obviously penned by someone who knew all too well that Sheldon Adelson's chief CHUMP (aka: Wellington E. Webb) would be the perfect "foolish person" to appeal to the "easily deceived" audience of like-minded chumps. Well, as is clearly evident by the comments posted here, they missed their mark. All those chumps must be sitting in front of the slot machines in Adelson's casinos.

One wonders how much advertising dollars Mr. Adelson had to throw at the the Tribune to get it to post/print such nonsense? Does anyone remember a time when the Philly Tribune was considered a respected publication?

ColoradoJoe

Mr. Webb's comments are laughable.

He, for political reasons, differentiates between games of chance played on the internet and those played in brick and mortar casinos in his home state of Colorado. There is no skill required to buy a lottery ticket or pull the handle/push the button on a slot machine whether online or in a casino.

What Mr. Webb fails to acknowledge is that the outcome of some games such as Poker, are based on skill. I seriously doubt that his beloved Denver Broncos or Colorado Rockies would fare very well if the teams fielded players picked at random from their respective fans. They pay their players for skill. Good teams beat poor teams.

Poker whether played online or in a casino is a game that requires skill to be successful. There are numerous quotes and references about "it's not the hand that you are dealt but how you play your cards'. Chance will eventually deal the same cards to every player. Skill determines how to play them. That is why skilled players succeed and weaker players don't fare as well.

To suggest that casino based slot machine play is different than online play is absurd if both venues are regulated. To lump games of skill with games of chance is even more absurd. Clearly, he doesn't know much about the subject. Not much different than when he was Mayor.

Remember, he was and always will be a politician.

mommom247

Please do not volunteer to be my Nanny. If And when I need one, I will let you know. Truth is you just don't want the competiion.

Tony K

There are so many holes in this *opinion piece (written by the National Co-chair of the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling)* that I almost don’t know where to begin.

“Gambling on the Internet is for chumps.” But Mr. Webb fails to make any logical argument as to why in person gambling is a better proposition than online gambling for players.

“U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy saw the dangers of illegal gambling and organized crime.” The dangers of ILLEGAL gambling? Is Mr. Webb asserting that LEGAL gambling is free from the dangers he assigns to ILLEGAL gambling? That doesn’t make sense to me (or any reasonable person).

“…the Justice Department — without consulting Congress — said the Wire Act does not apply…” How is this a problem? It is Congress’s job to write legislation. It is the Judicial Branch’s responsibility to INTERPRET the legislation. Which is what they did.

“The difference is the casinos are a controlled environment where limits are set…” There are limits in live casinos? I lived in Las Vegas for a number of years. I never saw the betting-limit-bouncer send someone home. Perhaps Mr. Webb is referring to table limits - of which, online casino offer much smaller table limits. Online casinos also offer cooling off periods or daily spending limits that can be set by the player.

“A few visits to a casino or buying lottery tickets won’t bankrupt most families but providing 24/7 Internet access could.” Except that a problem gambler will GO TO the casino in order to gamble. I’m not familiar with the casinos in Colorado. But in Las Vegas and any other city I’ve been to the casinos are open… 24/7.

That is just a point by point against the obvious inflammatory or ridiculous statements. The only good thing I can say about this op-ed is that he’s made it easy for us to out him as the shill he is.

helloWorld

Actually, I think the author of this article is a chump. Probably a big chump, too!

davetharave

Mr. Webb, I've never met you and I don't know who you are or what you've ever done, but your comments in this article offend me on so many different levels and in so many ways that it's hard for me to believe we reside in the same country.
First off, if you condemn Internet gaming but still support brick and mortar, you are a hypocrite plain and simple. Don't make the argument that people in their homes can gamble all they want but to play in a casino you must have access, i.e. proximity; casinos are everywhere in this country now and anybody with the will to play can find one. Gaming is gaming and people will find a casino to dump their cash, if that is their intention. They will find one.
How dare you call me a chump; you don't even know me. I have engaged in plenty of online gaming (though not recently, obviously) and I have very defined limits when I play, and I adhere to those limits. I play for fun, not out of desperation. Of course there are people who are going to play desperately, but there have been people like that living on this planet since they took the first over/under on how long it was going to take to build the pyramids, and there always will be. I can't help that and I feel bad for them, but I cannot help them, they must decide to help themselves. But I do NOT want my freedoms unhinged by a desperate few, that's not fair and it's not the American way. I work hard for my money and for the right to decide how and where I want to spend it.
The Kennedy-era wire act had NOTHING to do with Internet gaming, everyone knows this, it was conceived to inhibit the cash-laundering activities of organized crime. It is desperation on your part and the part of all the anti online-gaming proponents to claim that this act in any way can be used as an argument against Internet gaming.
If you don't want 'Black Americans' to gamble, please push for the outlaw of State Lotteries, every corner candy store sells them in every town and city in America. They are far more insidious to the out of control gambler than online gaming will EVER be.
Your fried chicken and potato chip references are just plain ridiculous, please stop.
Finally sir, I have deep and serious questions about your alliance with the billionaire adelson. This man is throwing large bags of cash around to an ever growing cadre of past and present politicians, in a naked attempt to buy influence in the US Congress and many State Houses. We the people are not so naive as to be unable to see the connection between large bags of cash and political figures doing the bidding of a select few; it's dirty business for sure.

Charlotte C

What a bunch of BS!!!! You and your rich cronies, including Adelson, just don't want the competition. You could care less about the rights of Americans everywhere, including those of us who don't live near bricks and mortar casinos. Get off the greed kick and join the American democracy instead of trying to manipulate it to your advantage.

Keith watson

Rich Muny has it right this article has it wrong PLEASE ALLOW US TO BE FREE IN THE LAND OF THE FREE!!!!! shouldnt u have to know something about poker to write an article about it shameful shameful also i really like s1nnr comment online u can play in much lower steaks then at casino. it can be really cheap entertainment although i like to play online as well as at the casino lets face it i just love to play poker and want the right and consumer protection to do so no matter if i choose online or at the casino

acoskie

This article is full of mistruths, rhetoric and propaganda. Do you really think people don't see through that? Give people more credit, you hypocrite.

iL0v3Fr33dom


Who's the chump? Poker players, Adelson or Webb?
"Doubling down: Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson backs another losing campaign" published on 'The Week' By Laura Colarusso

"That dismal track record isn't stopping Adelson from wading into another political battle that sits squarely at the intersection of government regulation and his business interests... Already he's hired three high-profile spokespeople — Wellington Webb, a former mayor of Denver, .. and is dispatching teams of public relations experts to state capitals to lobby against it."

Who's suprised that Webb is a 'paid lobbyist' trying to 'save people from themselves'? Not me.. Webb and Adelson are a match made in unlimited campaign contributions. Who is ready for a real change?

Poppopjules

LOL at someone who supports casinos but not online gaming. Casinos a "controlled environment"? Controlled by who, Father Adelson who is there to protect us? He's been exploiting gamblers for decades for his own profit. We don't need you, or Adelson, or anyone protecting us. I guess Republicans only fight regulation when it benefits them, but if regulation negatively impacts the business of a big donor (Adelson) then its all good? You are insulting, obvious, and possibly racist. Shame on you. Politicians have been shills since the dawn of time, but never have they been so obvious. I hope you were paid well.

prillman

You know what I miss? I miss being able to fire up my computer whenever I want to enjoying myself for an hour before work in a $5-20 one table tournament (a Sit-N-Go for Mr. Webb's info). I also miss turning my $50 deposit into $200 and advancing in buy-ins, only to get knocked down a couple of pegs and retreat back to a "safer" level. You know, realistic and enjoyable gambling! I am the person that an Internet gambling ban hurts, not someone that is intent on wasting all of their money or life on gambling it away, which they will do with or without the Internet. I am not a chump! The chumps are those that I pass on the way to the Poker Room, those that spend their time at a losing proposition, where the "house" (such as Sheldon's house) has an overwhelming edge over the player (e.g. slots, blackjack, craps, etc.) Those casinos don't pay for themselves!

Jeff Stokes

Why don't you just man up and have the balls to say that you and your colleagues want to racketeer this market. Some of the intelligent people here would have a little more respect for you at least. To write an op-ed that is complete BS, and have the nerve to speak down on online gamblers, while you and you associates offer online gaming is beyond hypocrisy. You should honestly be ashamed, but I doubt you are.

The funniest and saddest thing about the whole attempt by you and Shelden Adelson and others to stop online poker is that you guys actually BENEFIT from this market expanding, but you're too greedy and short sighted to see or understand that.

Scooba

The small pleasure of playing online poker has been taken away from me by people who do not want me to have the freedom to make my own choices - even though I am an adult living in, supposedly, the land of the free.

It is beyond hypocrisy that the money bankrolling the anti-online poker campaign is coming from bricks and mortar casinos. It is also ridiculous on business grounds - don't they realize that once I advance beyond .01/.02 stakes (that they don't and can't afford to offer) that I may take my shot at in person tournaments and tables?

The bricks and mortar casinos will become Blockbuster if they don't embrace new technologies and new ways of enjoying poker.

This is not to downplay the perils of gambling - I am all for very tight controls to make sure people are who they say they are and that systems are in place to help people who lack the self control to play within their limits. However, I would not be in favour of banning alcohol because some people abuse it and I am not in favour of banning online poker.

I hope this "news" orgnaization and its customers realize and acknowledge that this article is bought and paid for by a hyporcritical monopolist who deserves nothing except all right-thinking Americans absolute contempt.

Darren Inderlied

A few years back I decided to check out the game of poker. I deposited $50 into an online poker site and started playing $1 to $3 tournaments. I enjoyed the idea of playing against other players instead of a game against the house. The card room down the road from where I live has a poker tournament on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s that has a cost of $55 and is structured nowhere near as well as what I was able to find online. I decided that online poker was the way to go for a beginner because of the inexpensive price point.

I ended up winning some and losing some and had to redeposit a few times before I started to win more consistently. Along the way I even decided to quit a 20 year addiction to cigarettes largely because I was able to justify the price of a pack of cigarettes a day to fund my micro stakes online play. Let me emphasize that again. I QUIT SMOKING BECAUSE I ENJOYED THE GAME OF POKER MORE! I understand that some in our society have addiction issues but their protection should not come at the expense of those that do not.

GoldMiner1849

Of course his efforts are all about keeping their business going and lining their pockets and not allowing players to find other avenues to play poker. It's all about the money; I'm sure his interests are not about protecting the online players against any wrongdoing.

BTW, has he cited how well the "Chumps" that go to their casinos do? I'm sure their customers are not "Chumps" and actually win more and are better protected than those playing on their PC. I"m sure their customers don't go overboard either, as the casino must have protections put in place so the "Chumps" won't place a bet larger than they are able to lose.

I'm boycotting LVS casinos and I ask others to do the same. If LVS won't support online poker, which so many of us enjoy, why would we go to LVS casinos and give them our money?

HugoX

First, we will no let anyone turn this into an us (online poker players vs them (casino players) debate. It is not. It's a freedom vs greed issue. Period.

Now to the concern of limiting loses for "chumps" or anyone else who doesn't know how to say uncle and call it a night.

The state can control this and at the same time open a new revenue stream.

I repeat: The state can control this and at the same time open a new revenue stream.

How?

By only allowing buyins to state regulated or cooperative online poker sites with NV or NJ, by way of a state issued debit card. The state makes a profit each time someone loads their state issued debit card.

Now how do they limit loss? To be issued a card, the player must provide the amount of their taxable income and proof, i.e. state tax return. then the maximum they can deposit into their state issued debit card in a year would be set as a percentage of their taxable income. Say no more than 5% of first 50K, 10% of next 50K and 15% of next 100K and no limit on individuals with taxable income over 200K per year. and for those who do not file taxes, limit deposits to a flat 20 dollars a month, entertainment value. I'm pretty sure that casinos let unemployed individuals and welfare recipients lose a heck of a lot more than twenty dollars a month.

Of course net winnings will be taxed as income. Also withdrawals from online poker accounts would have to be via the same debit card.

This is just one scenario, I'm sure someone can imagine another.

One more thought, this plan or any other that is applied to online poker should also be applied to brink and mortar casinos as well. What's fair for the goose and all.

Mike

[thumbup] I most certainly agree with the article written although some of it may not be true for certain country like Thailand and Vietnam. Wherein in Thailand, internet gambling is illegal and has many offshore online gambling sites so as not to be ban from Thailand or Vietnam. Some offshore gambling companies (Empire and Happyluke) are earning from it so it is really a matter of good and evil. Oh my, this topic has been long overdue...lol

Guest

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davidin

I totally agree with your article. Once upon a time I also used to play online gambling games like casino, poker. but I realize that it is dangerous for financially, health and etc. We become habituated to that. But one can manage if play with proper control and guide. for more details, Visit Here: http://www.norskcasinoguide.com/

Guest

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ali rejeki

gambling is just fun, we live is a gambling bro
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Guest

online gambling if for fun, not a mistake

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