Books and Movies Reviews

Gambling Its your bet

It's common these days to chatter about smaller governments and individual responsibility, but we are actually living in increasingly prohibitionary times.Choices properly decided by private individuals are now being limited or abolished by public policies.Hence the v-chip, government mandated regulations on TV, and attempts to regulate information flow on the internet.The latest target of prohibitionists is legalized gambling, which has enjoyed a decade or so of rapid growth.Ten years ago, only Nevada and New Jersey boasted casinos.Nowadays, there are two dozen states with casinos, including betting house run by 126 different American Indian tribes.Thirty seven states run lotteries and some have either allowed or are seriously considering slot machines at existing sites such as horse-racing tracks.Last year, Americans spent more than $40 billion on legalized gambling, up from about $10 billion in 1982.Ironically, in the name of morality, prohibitionists must strip individuals of the right to make moral decisions.
Gambling is a universal cultural phenomenon: one of a relatively small number of activities that occur in nearly all societies and every period.Gambling might be said to have had a determining role in the antecedents of American Society.The Old Testament God created man with a natural propensity to bet, and the Biblical account of the genesis of Western civilization begins with Adam and Eve wagering a stake, their innocence, in the hope of adding knowledge to that stake.Too many, mans fall from grace and subsequent history are proof it was immoral, or a sucker bet.To others, the wager was an act of self-actualization, with knowledge Adam and Eve acquired humanity, and from the human interdependence created by the loss of Paradise society began.This metaphor illustrates the human experience with gambling, and thousands of year's later mainstream America is still playing the game