Published: Saturday, July 6 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT
I lived in Nevada for years. There was a pervasive population of people with
middle income jobs who lived on the edge of poverty. Gambling was the addiction
of choice to many of these people. They made enough money to live comfortably
and if they were smart with their money, become wealthy. Yet they and their
children lived in on the edge of poverty. I saw it over and over again. At
work, I would hear about their victories. The weekends that they won $1500. I
didn't hear anything about the weekends they lost. But I saw it in their
daily lives. When the car broke down and suddenly they couldn't fix it.
When their kids came to school wearing shoes that were taped together and pants
so threadbare you could see through them. Gambling is the cause of poverty in
too many situations just like these. Talk about redistribution of wealth. The
gambling kings laugh all the way to the bank and wink when they throw a little
to the State or County for "the people's share."
I know that many will argue that gambling is just entertainment. And for some
it is. But I have watched several businesses close over the years due to
gambling habits. And it doesn't matter how much you make either. You can
always gamble it away.Some call gambling a game of skill. A few
are. But, like the carnival games of skill, they are structured so that you
lose more than you win. How could it be otherwise - the house has to make
What's the difference between gsm king and playing the stock market?
As long as cigarettes are available on the shelf in utah anyone who harps on
about the personal costs of gambling here is just blowing smoke. Yeah, it's
easy to be righteous about it but if you can ignore something like the effects
of smoking to play this banjo I think your efforts are just a little self
I know people who are literally addicted to video gaming. I know others who are
addicted to foods. I know some who are addicted to some kind of hobby. There
are plenty of people who are addicted to TV viewing. And I know some who have
so many pets, they can barely afford the time or money to care for them all.In each of the above mentioned instances, the behavior is
self-destructive. But none of the above self-destructive behaviors is regulated
by the state of Utah to the same degree as gambling. Some people can enjoy
video games without letting it become self-destructive. The same is true for
food, reality TV and pets. Those who are prone to addictions and
self-destructive behavior will find something on which to focus their
obsessiveness. It can't all be controlled.As I see it, the
reason our state attempts to so tightly regulate gambling, while allowing
personal freedom to be addicted to food or reality TV, is based more on the Word
of Wisdom than actually protecting individuals and society from the costs of
self-destructive behavior. It's codified religious doctrine.
TRM, clearly both are a form of "gambling." The difference though is
that when betting on the stock market, you at least -- with intelligence and
research -- have the ability to consistently do well. You're using your
God-given gifts to come out ahead. What God-given gifts are utilized in casino
gambling that relies 100 percent on luck?
There is a widely accepted myth that gambling depends on luck. Gambling is
based on relatively simple mathematics. For example, slot machines with a 92%
payoff return $92 of every $100 placed in the machine. Pay-outs are random and
often far exceed the investment, but in the long run, the owner of the machine
gets the $8 and the players get $92 back.
BarkforSark:I disagree with your premise. Gambling is more than
just luck especially games like Poker. If you choose to investigate you would
see in say the World Series of Poker that there are players much better than
others that win or cash on a regular basis. The game takes skill. You might
also see that an inordinate amount of these top players are good at math, were
engineer majors in college or worked in the computer industry etc. Basically
they have good math skills. Is there is chance with the game? Most certainly.
But one can't rely on chance alone. The people that possess little of
these skills that still want to "gamble" stick with slots, keno or even
the lottery etc. which are by far more chance oriented. What is funny or ironic
to me is that some states have areas with legalized gambling but don't
allow poker but will allow slots or do the lottery which take advantage
completely of the stupid more or less. As they say "a fool and is money
shall soon be parted." But they outlaw the games like poker which requires
This article brought to mind Boyd K. Packer's Conference talk. In the
middle he briefly shifted to the "tolerance trap". Gambling,
pornography, homosexual behavior, drinking alcohol, smoking are addictive vices.
All these are legal, although with some restrictions, like age or place.But, tolerating vice only leads to loss of spirituality. This is the
"tolerance trap" President Packer spoke of. I know these
vices have yanked aquaintenances right out of their church activity and brought
harm to children and ruined marriages. Enough said.
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