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’Round and ’round it goes (sort of like a roulette wheel)



Published: Sun, October 11, 2009 @ 12:00 a.m.

’Round and ’round it goes (sort of like a roulette wheel)

Casino proponents are taking a page out of the playbook of some government entities that apparently don’t know the meaning of no. How many times is the complaint heard that a school board, for instance, will put a tax issue on the ballot over and over again until, finally, a weary public gives in?

Well, here we are again, addressing yet another amendment to the Ohio Constitution that would give a small group of businessmen a monopoly on gambling in the state. And again, we find ourselves saying that it is madness to give special interests a constitutional right to pick pockets.

We understand that some people enjoy gambling, and that many, including those from the Mahoning Valley, travel out of state now to gamble. Casino proponents tell us that Ohio is losing $1 billion a year to such outward migration, and that Issue 3 will put an end to that.

Do the math

But the numbers don’t add up. For one thing, as anyone from this area familiar with gambling patterns can tell you, not everyone who goes to West Virginia or has started going to Pittsburgh to gamble will automatically switch to one of the four Ohio casinos permitted under Issue 3. Some who are going to Atlantic City, Las Vegas, Detroit or Niagara Falls to gamble may go, instead, to Cleveland, Columbus, Toledo or Cincinnati, but not all. Those dollars leaving Ohio are not the target of the would-be operators of Issue 3 casinos. If they captured every gambling dollar leaving the state, $1 billion isn’t enough to provide the jobs and taxes that Issue 3 proponents promise.

They’ve got their eye on billions of dollars in new gambling money, and those are dollars that will be drained from the discretionary budgets of hundreds of thousands of Ohio families. It is money that now goes for restaurant meals, theater tickets, new clothes, new cars and home furnishings and improvements. And that’s what underlies the deception of promoting gambling as an economic development tool.

Casinos produce little except false promises, the occasional sense of euphoria for the winners and the dejection of defeat for the losers and their families.

We have said before when commenting on other casino gambling issues in Ohio: Gambling is the most successful scheme for the redistribution of wealth ever devised. It takes from the poor and gives to the rich. That’s because, as any gambler can tell you, the house never loses.

Don’t be taken in by the promises of easy money being made by Issue 3 proponents. Vote no on Issue 3.


Comments

1pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

Vote yes...issue 3. So arent the casinos already doing that then..."redistributing" Then we might as well let it be here. Growth. Start building up the state. I dont know too many people bustin down the doors to come here.

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2pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

Or mabye you are right...Vote no...then all those who leave our state to gamble can cont to do so. Great. Perfect. Let them spend and/or lose money elsewhere...Wouldnt want that to happen here in our state. They are going to gamble anyway.

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3valleyred(1095 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

Vote NO on Issue 3

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4city_dweller(193 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

I have been having a hard time clearly framing my objections to the argument that casinos will improve the state's economy. And thankfully The Vindicator did it for me. I don't like the idea of the state profiting from what is essentially a rigged system. Casinos can be a lot of fun, and most people visit them responsibly and with a modest and predetermined amount of money set aside for that very purpose. But linking casinos to economic prosperity is no better than linking the economy to other industries that prosper on the worst of human nature: prisons, alcohol, etc.

I have no problem with building a casino in Ohio, but changing the state constitution and selling it as a lifeline for economic hardship is not the way to get my vote.

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5Alexinytown(246 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

This has no business being in the Ohio Constitution whatsoever. This should be set up under the Ohio Revised Code, not subjected to a vote to add this to the Ohio Constitution.

I agree in legalizing gambling, but every county in Ohio should have the opportunity to apply for a license rather than making it so only four cities (that are doing well enough without them) can have them. This does jack for the Mahoning Valley as it stands, and I cannot support the language in this amendment as it is written currently.

I keep saying over and over again why not form a gaming commission to oversee a limited number of casino licenses for the state, with one casino in each district being an example. Then, each county can apply for a license IF THEY WANT TO, so everyone has a chance at this. The gaming commission can decide which county offers the best plan, and then they can subject the new casinos to mandatory yearly audits to ensure everything is being operated on the up and up.

This can be done so many different ways and done better than the current plan. Unbelievable this is being voted as a constitutional amendment in this state.

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6Jumanji(7 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

Alexinytown - Why don't you form the gaming commission then? Lots of folks seem to want more, want better, want something different, but no one is actually willing to put their money where their mouth is and actually put up their private money to make it happen.

This is a good plan for Ohio. If other cities want to build casinos, the passage of this proposal will open the door for them. No one's saying other cities can't have casinos, this issue just happens to address casinos in our four largest cities.

The fact is A LOT OF MONEY is leaving Ohio every year to benefit other states with casinos. I want that money to stay here to benefit Ohioans. Whether it's a billion, half a million or more than a billion, we need that money here. We need the jobs here. We need a little light in our downtown areas that might actually attract people. We've waited too long. Now's the time. Wake up Ohio! Yes on Issue 3!

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7Alexinytown(246 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

I maintain, this has no business being a part of the Ohio Constitution. This should be statutory for a huge number of reasons, number one being it is a hell of a lot easier to make changes to the O.R.C. than it is to make them to an amendment without having to subject every change to a vote by the entire state!

I am all for Ohio gambling, believe me when I say that. However, every county ought to have the opportunity to get a casino--I am sick and tired of everything going to Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati, because we need the help a hell of a lot more than they do, and I WILL do whatever I can to look out for the best interests of my county, the state be damned.

Secondly, as mentioned above, you cannot make changes to amendments without going to a state vote--period. I am not comfortable with that, sorry.

Vote No on Issue 3 because of the lousy set up, not because you are against gambling. If we have to go through the process of making a constitutional amendment for something like this, then I seriously have to question the motives of the people who are sponsoring this.

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8Alexinytown(246 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

And I cannot go out there and form a gaming commission, because that would be the job of the state of Ohio and the General Assembly.

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9Hortus(34 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

Here is the list of states that already allow gambling.

http://www.ogpaper.com/casinos/United...

On your “profit and loss statement“, chalk up support services for gamblers. Addiction meetings, lost family values, poverty, sex for sale, drug use, murder, and any other crime element enforcement you can think of.

How did we go from the illegal numbers writing racket to organized legal gambling--crazy.

Gambling seems to have the element of entertainment for some people, I suppose I am not one those. I’ll leave that to the Trumps and Limbaugh crowd.

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10drrabbit(6 comments)posted 4 years, 9 months ago

A big problem is that the money WON"T stay in Ohio. These casinos, owned by outside interests, will be removing their profit from the state. They plan on making a LOT of money. Look at how much these guys are spending!

And where will this money come from? The people of Ohio! It will removed that money from our local economy.

This is a BAD deal for Ohio. If you want Ohio's economy to be healthy long term, do not vote for this issue. Lets keep OUR money here in our local businesses and not in the pockets of Casino owners and (probably) organized crime.

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