DING!!! You Are Now Free To Gamble Around The County--and The Country! ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

DING!!! You Are Now Free To Gamble Around The County--and The Country!

Voters!  Don't Let Our Money Go to West Virginia or Delaware! Send it to....Fabulous Las Vegas!!!  I just had to laugh. Today's Baltimore Sun editorial urging voters to support Question A to allow slots at Arundel Mills www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/editorial/bs-ed-question-a-20101025,0,2492750.story is slapped right next to a big color ad urging gamblers to leave AnneArundel County to get a free Southwest Airlines vacation to "Fabulous Las Vegas."....aka "lost wages".  [note  the ad changes, so other ads may appear in place of the Las Vegas ad]

The Sun's editorial makes the same old arguments as to why we need the revenue. Implicit in the Sun's and other's support is that gamblers will spend money outside of the state, notably in West Virginia or Delaware or now outside of the county in the new Perryville casino. Therefore, we should keep our money here and reap the revenue benefits for public services rather than lose it to another jurisdiction.

There may very well be some truth to that and it may be hard to argue with their contention but I think it still comes down to state-supported efforts to encourage people to throw their money away (disproportionately hurting the poor) so developers and casino owners can get rich and some cash will flow to support education and public safety. The wealthy win by keeping taxes lower and support still goes to education and safety, but has it ever happened? Apparently not with our lottery here at home and apparently not in New Jersey with the big casinos in Atlantic City.

BUT--and this is what cracks me up. With all the arguments about money going to Delaware and West Virginia, right nest to The Sun's online endorsement of slots here in AA County, sits an ad encouraging us not to go to Delaware, or West Virginia (as everyone fears!!) or even to Perryville but to the big city brought to us by gambling!! Hmmm....maybe if we took this argument a step further, we should shut down BWI because it takes people away from the county and Maryland. But wait, it also brings people to the county and the state. Whatever. Blow you money here or blow your money there. The question remains as to whether this is a good way to fund the basic government services of education and public safety. No, it is not. But it does give lawmakers of every stripe a chance to spend more without taxing more. Maybe.

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1 Comment:

Will Small said...

The funny thing is I'm all for legalizing slots, gambling, controlled prostitution and respectful recreational drug use, but I will be voting Against question A. Why, any sensible person would ask. And my point would convince any sensible person that they should vote with me:

Our legislators are effectively offering us a bait and switch. They say all this money is going to schools that should already be paid for out of the general treasury, but they "can't fund". This legislation allows them to continue to fail to balance their responsibilities and the means the taxpayers are willing to give them. They built a bloated bureacracy and not can't, but WON'T drain the fat. This bill allows them to fund more of this or that pork barrel project that will never generate a Return on Investment with general dollars which currently should be going to education. That is all.

If our "leaders" applied a Return on Investment principal our government would not be a ever-growing pig -- they would be figuring out based on ROI what citizens truly want because demand = increased value and corresponding revenue unless businesspeople/leaders fail to factor inefficiencies into their fiscal model.

NO to Question A tells our leaders to live within the means they've already voted to coerce from the people. No to Question A says we demand integrity from our leaders. We can allow slots anywhere with more integrity than this shenanigan.

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