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Posted by on Mar 26, 2015 in Blog, Politics | 4 comments

No, George Soros is not Sheldon Adelson




It’s time to stop comparing George Soros to Sheldon Adelson.

They are not one and the same.  The only resemblances they share are being octogenarians, an accumulation of vast wealth, and a tenacious determination to spend huge sums of money contributing to political campaigns and much broader international causes.  Both are Jewish.  The similarities between Soros and Adelson abruptly end there.

Yet, whenever critics allude correctly to how dangerously egomaniacal and shamefully dubious Sheldon Adelson and many of his extremist ideas are, his well-funded army of defenders, apologists, and enablers point an accusatory finger at George Soros.

Sure, Soros unwaveringly supports liberal candidates and progressive causes, not just in the U.S. but all over the world.  Don’t blame Adelson for supporting Republicans, they insist — he’s just countering the influence of Soros who supports Democrats.  Adelson’s wealth and influence presumably balance out.

Thing is, they don’t balance out.  Soros gets defamed.  Adelson skips free.

There is absolutely zero moral equivalency between these two powerful men.  They share no common virtues, nor motives.  There’s no question as to which power broker is truly dangerous, not just making a mockery of the political system we presumably cherish, but also threatening America’s increasingly fragile foreign policy, which has become globally unsustainable — and frankly self-defeating.

Here’s just one example:  An unapologetic war hawk and an unwavering Zionist positioned to the right of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Adelson has openly declared he wants to drop an atomic bomb on Iran.  [READ MORE HERE]  Such an incendiary comment should instantly disqualify any other fanatic from being taken seriously in a reasonable discussion of current events among civil people.  But this fanatic is a billionaire.  So, he’s not considered a crackpot.  He’s afforded a place at the head of the Republican Party dinner table.  Indeed, when the fanatic just so happens to be the 12th-richest man on earth and is in the midst of holding his own “political primary” to interview and then handpick who might become the next Republican Party presidential nominee (which happened in 2015), as well as the driving force behind federal legislation in Congress (which is happening now), he’s not just a fantasyland kingmaker playing a hypothetical game of political Monopoly.  Not a single Republican has the courage to call out nor stand up to this bold-faced bully.  Shame on them.  They are cowards.  Every single one of them.

While Adelson’s financial support and personal belief system not only puts America’s inherent goodwill and prospective role as a peacemaker seriously at risk, his so-called counterpart George Soros bequeaths the vast bulk of his financial support to international causes with which he has utterly no personal connection.  Soros has nothing at all to gain when he gives away his billions.  It’s easy (and selfish) for Adelson to act entirely in his own self-interest in blindly supporting his beloved Israel, and the ultra-conservative Likud Party’s expansionist agenda (such as continuing to build illegal settlements in the West Bank, in defiance of international law, including the United States own objections).  On the other hand, it’s far more unusual — and quite commendable — for Soros to give away his millions (actually billions) to progressive movements throughout the world, on every continent, intended to help the most disenfranchised members of societies.  Soros is a champion of the oppressed, regardless of race or religion, while way too often Adelson is a champion of the oppressors.

Adelson’s shameless support for Israel is a matter of public record.  Yet, he doesn’t appear to do much elsewhere, or anywhere, at least relative to his vast wealth.  Meanwhile, consider this short list of Soros-funded causes:

  • Support for Black students to attend Cape Town University in Apartheid South Africa for the first time, during the 1970s and 1980s;
  • Financial backing of dissident movements in Eastern Europe and Russia before the fall of the Iron Curtain;
  • An estimated $4 billion in contributions (so far) to pro-democracy movements in Eastern Europe and Russia in the post-Soviet era;
  • Hundreds of millions in contributions for universities in Russia and Africa;
  • $50 million to a campaign in Africa to help poor villages and eradicate diseases;
  • Soros has given money to several separatist movements, particularly Kosovo independence;
  • $1 million to legalize marijuana in California.  He’s also given large sums to movements in other states when decriminalization has been placed on the ballot;
  • $600 million per year to fund Open Society Foundations, which “shape public policy to promote democratic governance, human rights — and economic, legal, and social reform.  In the last 30 years, Soros has contributed about $11 billion to such organizations;
  • In 2009, Soros donated $35 million to the State of New York to be ear-marked for underprivileged children and given to parents who were poor and caught in the bureaucratic snafu of not qualifying for state or federal aid

Let’s get the facts straight.  Most of Sheldon Adelson’s charitable contributions and political initiatives directly benefit causes with which he has some vested personal or financial stake — often connected to Israel, Jewish organizations, and his properties (casino gambling).  There are rare exceptions, of course.  What organizations he does fund are usually branded with his own name, for maximum publicity sake, which isn’t necessarily to say that Adelson isn’t sincere about helping others.  Just that all this giving sure seems to necessitate a glowing reflection on the mirror.  Not so, with Soros.

By contrast, virtually all of Soros’ contributions (which are substantially greater than Adelson — both in gross amounts and longevity) go to places which have no bearing on Soros’ own fortune or financial well being.  Adelson is a self-centered philanthropist who seems to expect a payback — be it in Las Vegas, Washington, or Tel Aviv.  Soros appears far more motivated purely by humanitarianism, his sincerity bolstered by frequent anonymity.  His monies have gone to more than 105 different countries.

Then, there’s the current congressional bill being debated before a House subcommittee, essentially bought and paid for by none other than Adelson.  Most readers are at least familiar with the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA, which is House Bill 7o7), a disgraceful scrap of federal legislation pimped through the halls of a Republican-led Congress by elected officials who might as well be on Adelson’s personal payroll.  RAWA intends to make online gambling illegal.  Passage of RAWA would undoubtedly financially benefit Adelson and his company, the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, essentially wiping out the prospective profits of casino competitors and opportunities for others eager to jump in and try and compete for a slice of America’s gambling pie.  Adelson, not content to share anything and willing to buy anything or anyone, is perfectly willing to threaten politicians, travel to Washington to demand his bill gets introduced in committee, and is essentially granted royal head-of-state status as a guest on the front row when a foreign leader disgraced this nation a few weeks ago by directly lobbying to a joint session of Congress.  This all begs the larger question….

Where’s George Soros?  He’s not granted a front row seat in the chamber of the House of Representatives, even though he’s done far more for international causes which promote democracy.  Soros is nowhere to be found lobbying our elected officials or threatening candidates with campaign money.  Soros isn’t spewing hate, cheering for atomic bombs to be dropped on a nation that hasn’t invaded a neighboring country in 2,500 years.  Soros isn’t supporting illegal settlements or an Apartheid-like regime which threatens to start another wave of terrorism.  Soros isn’t raking in hundreds of millions in profits from shady business deals in Asia, which are under increasing scrutiny by regulators.  Soros is no hypocrite, professing to protect defenseless children while encourage mom and dad to keep on hitting the ATM machine for one more cash advance.  Adelson’s vast wealth has created real human victims.  Measurable fallout.  Soros’ wealth has saved countless lives and protected victims.

George Soros is no Sheldon Adelson.  The Las Vegas billionaire can only wish he were such a positive force for good.  He’s not.  Adelson is the epitome of bad.  He’s the manifestation of all that’s wrong with a corrupt corporate-controlled system where elected officials are leashed to the whims of the wealthy, not only just in politics now, but world affairs, as well.

There is no comparison.

Writer’s Note:  Since this article appeared, Adelson has tirelessly lobbied the Trump Administration to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, which happened in 2018.  He also purchased the Las Vegas Review-Journal and endorsed Donald Trump.  Interestingly, once Adelson bought the local newspaper, all coverage of Adelson’s legal problems in the U.S. and Macau disappeared.





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Posted by on Feb 27, 2015 in Blog, General Poker, Politics, Travel | 8 comments

I Want All Fortune Tellers Executed




Driving down La Cienega Blvd. in Los Angeles at about 1 am tonight and while waiting at a red light, I pulled up alongside this veritable lighthouse of crime.  And that’s when it suddenly hit me.

Look what’s open for business 24-hours a day, seven days a week.  A self-professed “psychic.”

How in the fuck are these businesses even legal?  And more important to the current discussion facing so many of us in what’s become a time of crisis, how is there an active movement and well-oiled machine to outlaw playing poker on your home computer here in the United States of America, but there’s no such even remotely comparable righteous indication targeted towards the swindlers and liars and con artists and menaces to society that make up those who run these cathedrals of exploitation?  Where are the Sheldon Adelson’s of the world on this subject?

Can someone please explain this to me?

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Posted by on Feb 20, 2015 in Blog, General Poker, Politics | 2 comments

How the American Gaming Association Betrayed Poker Players




Next time the American Gaming Association (AGA) appears at a trade show, I suggest they provide some kind of giveaway.

Appropriate swag might be a yo-yo, a flapjack spatula, or perhaps a pair of flip-flops.

Given that the AGA has taken three different positions, each a contradiction, within just the past ten years on the big question of legalizing and regulating online gambling/poker in the United States, is there now a reason to take any of their policy statements seriously?

I pose this as a serious question.  If a paramour initially pledges to be faithful, but then strays away when something better comes along, and then finally declares she’s in limbo about her true feelings, does such a relationship merit any trust or confidence?  I think most of us would label her one of either two things — a manipulator or a flake.

So, which one applies to the AGA?  Are they manipulative or just plain flaky?

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Posted by on Feb 19, 2015 in Blog, General Poker, Politics | 3 comments

Ten Reasons Why Online Poker Could Get Outlawed




Go back and read the poker forums sometime.  The evidence is all there in black and white.

In 2006, popular sentiment at the time was the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act would never become a law.  Then, after the UIGEA did indeed pass and become law, the prevailing thought within the poker community over the next five years was the federal government wouldn’t do much to shut down the most popular sites and actually prohibit Americans from logging online to play poker.  Then, after Black Friday happened in 2011 an all the biggest poker sites operating within U.S. jurisdiction were shut down and hundreds of millions in player deposits were frozen, many of those same disengaged and apathetic voices are now saying the same thing.


Nothing to worry about, they insist.  Nothing to see here, so move on.  Just as before, the false presumption is — the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) has no shot of passage.  After all, the federal bill which would outlaw online poker in all 50 states failed to muster enough support during the last session of congress.  Our side won the last time around, so why won’t we repeat the same victory in 2015?

Will we ever learn?

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Posted by on Feb 18, 2015 in Blog, General Poker, Politics | 2 comments

Could American Online Poker Be Holding a Losing Hand?





Two recent news stories highlight a serious cause for concern for the proponents of legalized online poker in the United States.

Both developments reiterate to the alarming prospect that right now we’re not only sizable underdogs to win federal support for legalization and regulation in the foreseeable future.  We even may be in serious danger of losing the significant gains made since Black Friday devastated the American poker landscape back in 2011.  All indications are the Sheldon Adelson-backed federal bill known as Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) could very well pass both houses of congress during the current session, be signed by the president, and might  become the law of the land by year’s end.  If that were to happen, it would be tantamount to a federal prohibition against poker and most forms of gambling online.  In other words, permanent Black Friday would be the law in all fifty states.

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