The issue of the day is whether online “fantasy sports” (where you select imaginary teams from among real players, whose actual performance determines winners) is a “game of skill” or illegal gambling.
Our local newspaper quotes the state Attorney General’s spokesman (my emphasis): these are “illegal sports betting websites . . . causing the same kinds of social and economic harms as other forms of illegal gambling.”
The same kinds of social and economic harms as the New York State government’s own horse betting operation; its state lottery; and the string of officially-sanctioned casinos now being built? That prey upon and exploit the poor, and destroy families by creating gambling addicts? Enticing poorer folks to blow their limited funds on foolish lottery bets with rip-off odds (compared to those in illegal gambling), promoting a something-for-nothing culture rather than working and saving?
Bad enough when the killjoy nanny state stops people doing things they enjoy. Worse when, with its other hand, it engages in the very same activities. The hypocrisy takes one’s breath away. Gambling used to be outlawed based on a misplaced moralism. Now it’s to enforce a government monopoly.
And meantime Governor Cuomo loudly (literally; that’s his idea of oratory) touts a $15 minimum wage* to supposedly help the poor. Maybe we should stop milking them for lottery revenues.
I’m so glad we live in a politically “progressive” state.
*Not applicable to the state government’s own employees! But finally the other day Cuomo said they too would get $15 — in 2021.