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gambling + happiness « Previous | |Next »
January 31, 2007

Gambling damages families and disrupt their communities yet it is accepted even fostered by governments. Gambling ranges from bingo to betting on horses and dogs, scratchcards, raffles, lotteries, poker clubs and casinos aplenty. The internet is afloat with roulette, blackjack and poker sites. Britain has embraced Internet gambling and gets a substantial amount of tax revenue from the $12 billion U.S. consumers spend gambling online each year, much of it with U.K.-incorporated gaming sites.

Peter Brook

Being for more gambling yet against "problem gaming" is seen as the pathway to happiness. It is odd isn't it. Governments support and patronise the alcohol and gambling lobbies and yet repress other indulgences and addictions, notably street drugs. They accept city centres with drunks and gamblers yet fill prisons with drug users.

Libertarians say that citizens in a free society should be able to spend their money on whatever peaceful pursuits they fancy.Why is spending money in a casino any different from spending money in a tavern or a sports arena or at a political fund-raiser? And why should those who gamble "responsibly" be punished simply because some choose to gamble "irresponsibly"? Excessive gambling is an ethical problem that should be dealt with by individual choice, not government coercion.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:18 PM |