By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Exposing the “casino culture”

Last week it was “objectivity.” This week it’s a complaint that the Massachusetts House shouldn’t hold a hearing into the harmful effects of gambling because, well, you know, it would hurt Gov. Deval Patrick’s proposal to open three casinos in the state. Here’s what state Sen. Michael Morrissey, D-Quincy, a gambling supporter, told Boston Globe reporter Andrea Estes:

If you’re going to give the guy a fair shake, you should schedule a hearing on the casino bill and then, if necessary, ask other committees to hold hearings. Have the governor’s bill up first and go from there.

Somewhere in the background, Jack Nicholson is sneering, “You can’t handle the truth.”

Fortunately, House Speaker Sal DiMasi is less interested in giving Patrick “a fair shake” and more interested in educating his members and the public about the downside of casino gambling.

As DiMasi’s spokesman, David Guarino, told Estes, “The governor has proposed opening the door to a casino culture in the Commonwealth. We think it’s imperative to look at what that will really mean, warts and all.”

My standard disclosure.

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  1. Peter Porcupine

    Well, Dan, the timing of the vote by DiMasi is the best news of all for you. As you probably know, the State House is deserted from June 30 onwards, as legislators go home to get reelected (or get their ticket puched, as some of us have come to call it). Getting them to take a controversial stand….no, getting them to take a stand on RICE PUDDING…will be well nigh impossible in a Presidential election year.

  2. Anonymous

    Gee, it’s almost as if they already know their numbers don’t really add up. Peter, I must disagree. A resoluton declaring rice pudding to be “goddamn delicious!” is a no-brainer in an election year.

  3. Anonymous

    Well, well, well, isn’t it convenient that on the very same day the house is supposed to be looking into and focusing on the ills associated with casino gambling, the Red Sox are paying a visit to the State House to be congratulated. I wasn’t aware that was part of the government’s role, although I do believe law making is.How nice of channels 5 and 7 to carry the festivities live. Do you think, just maybe, society as a whole has a problem with priorities? Casinos will have some impact, if it is positive or negative on everyone in Massachusetts, forever! This is opposed to the Red Sox, who with $500,000 of taxpayer money merely severely inconvenienced those of us who were attempting to conduct business as usual in Downtown Boston yesterday.

  4. Dan Kennedy

    Anon 10:12: You underestimate the awesome power of the chocolate-pudding lobby.

  5. Anonymous

    As a member of the chocolate pudding lobby, maybe we need to examine the campaign contributions of some of the ‘supporters.’ Election year? Some may be in for a rude awakening. Voters have failed to consider their previous performance in past elections, but that may change. Casino gambling as bailout to failed fiscal policies by a legislature without a backbone is flawed.

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