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?
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?
Presidential politics can be a dirty business. And, the campaign trail is where people often get the dirtiest.
When it comes right down to gathering political dirt, money is the mud. The more of it a candidate can rake in, the more mud there is to sling at the opposition, which presumably increases the odds of victory.
Senator Bernie Sanders (S-VT) is about to learn these painful lessons the hard way, especially if he chooses to run for president in 2016. The darling of populists and progressives everywhere is now seriously considering making a run, which likely requires a conversion to the ethically cluttered Democratic Party ranks from his current Socialist Party affiliation (to be accurate, inside the Beltway he’s officially classified as an “Independent” — a slap in the face both to his party and to those like me who share his ideology). Hence, before Sen. Sanders even goes out on the stump and delivers his first campaign speech, he’s required to compromise his principles because of the two-party system’s suffocating stranglehold on the rigged American political system.
Congratulations to President Barack Obama for finally standing up and challenging the fables of historical Christian righteousness in a bold speech he delivered yesterday in Washington.
Predictably, the speech pissed off lots of witch doctors in the audience and has since frenzied the political right into a pack of rabid wolves who are now foaming at the mouth after what they heard the President say.
His controversial remarks about religious extremism and Christianity’s long and loathsome tradition of violence (READ MORE HERE) were offered at an annual gathering of Christian leaders called the National Prayer Breakfast. Organized by a super-secret organization known as The Fellowship Foundation, the group purports to “provide a fellowship forum for decision makers to share in Bible studies, prayer meetings, worship experiences, and to experience spiritual affirmation and support.” The meeting has taken place every year since 1953. [Footnote 1]
Remember the Ebola scare?
Recall the virus that caused a nationwide panic and metastasized into an October surprise for Republicans, who unabashedly fanned the flames of fear for months, thus ending up as an unseemly political windfall for the party which spent most of the last election cycle inciting hysteria. For Republicans, fear has become a viable political strategy. It’s their nuclear weapon, or in the case of Ebola, their biological weapon.
Unfortunately, instigating fear works. Scaring the hell out of people triggers votes. Fear wins elections, even when it turns out there wasn’t all that much to worry about, after all.
No one remembers yesterday’s news, nor recalls last year’s lies. Like the tiny microbe with origins in west Africa that caused many Americans to avoid public places and cancel their travel plans, the farce of fear perpetuated upon the nation has pretty much been forgotten now. Out of the news, out of sight, out of mind. Our attention is now focused elsewhere, on the next
flavor crisis of the month.