There are so many reasons that we’re going to miss Globe columnist Steve Bailey. Among those reasons is his staunch, principled, fact-based opposition to casino gambling. Bailey’s got a good one today, poking holes in the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce study — not that it already didn’t pretty much look like Swiss cheese.
Something I had missed, but that Bailey picks up on right away: the very title is “Casino Gaming in Massachusetts,” thus relying on the preferred PR term for gambling rather than the English language. His description of so-called revenues as gambling losses is dead-on. And he wonders how long it will be before Donald Trump starts seeking a tax cut.
Bailey’s column comes on the same day that the Globe’s Sean Murphy reports that slot-machine revenues are plunging in Connecticut and Rhode Island, showing that oversaturation is already taking a toll. People only have so much money they can lose, apparently. The Patrick administration says it sees no need to revise its numbers, which makes sense once you understand they’re based on nothing but wishful thinking in the first place. (Plus whatever Clyde Barrow jotted down while hanging out in parking lots.)
In today’s Herald, Scott Van Voorhis offers some horrifying tales of gambling addiction, but says advocates are neutral on Gov. Patrick’s three-casino plan because of the money he would include for treatment. The advocates seem not to understand that there will be a lot more gambling, and a lot more addiction, if people don’t have to drive all the way to Foxwoods.
Not to mention that treatment money can always be cut. Especially if it’s needed to give a tax break to Donald Trump.