The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Opinion

August 24, 2007

Mark Liston: Weighing the effects of gambling

A recent article on the front page of The Joplin Globe began, “Area dignitaries on Tuesday praised the Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma’s plans for a $200 million casino and hotel as an investment that could boost the economy of the entire area.”

As I read of 1,200 new jobs and a payroll of more than $50 million, I could see why my fellow members of the Joplin Chamber of Commerce would be excited. My feelings were mixed. In my upbringing and experience, gambling has always been associated with crime, dishonesty, losing lots of money, addiction, and poverty. I thought perhaps my training was wrong, that I was shortsighted and not progressive, and that I needed to have an open mind to this new area “business.”

Numerous friends have said they go to casinos and plan to lose a certain dollar amount and stop there. They make it sound harmless enough. I decided to do a little research to see what the possible benefits of such a large enterprise might have on the local economy. Also, as a professional counselor, I wanted to know what effect the big casino might have on the quality of life for marriages, families and the community.

I didn’t have to look very far to find an abundance of information. A quick Internet search of “gambling casinos business” produced both instructions about gambling and critiques of its pros and cons. The pros were mostly projective, promising new jobs, more tax revenue, and more traffic in local businesses. The cons were mostly the experiences of communities that had brought in casinos and researchers and their findings. The latter group’s information was startling. Regarding the impact of gambling on business, tax revenue and employment, I learned:

* A U.S. Judiciary Hearing in 1995 stated that for every 1 job created by a gambling interest, 1 to 2.75 jobs were lost within 35-mile radius.

Text Only
Opinion
  • Our View.jpg Our View: Safe and sound

    Of the 7,500 Joplin and Duenweg homes hit by the 2011 EF-5 tornado, fewer than 20 percent of them had basements.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Other Views Other Views: Funding for state’s roads

    Missouri is finding there is no good alternative to growing the economy, adding new well-paying jobs and expanding the tax base.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Your View: Step aside

    The people of Joplin made it clear they wanted change at City Hall with their decisive votes to replace two council members.

    April 16, 2014

  • Your View: Serious drawbacks

    Joan Banks’ guest column (Globe, April 13) lays out clearly and persuasively the serious drawbacks with so-called right-to-work legislation.

    April 16, 2014

  • Your View: Free choice

    Joan Banks’ guest column (Globe, April 13) regarding right-to-work seems to assume that if workers are given the choice of joining a union, they won’t join.

    April 16, 2014

  • Our View.jpg Our View: Pledge must be priority

    Mike Seibert, after being elected Joplin’s mayor on Monday, immediately pledged that the city will be operating with transparency.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Geoff Caldwell, columnist: Government without apology or explanation

    Americans feel closest to their Uncle Sam at this time of year as he extends his hand for his “fair share” to fund his numerous endeavors.

    April 16, 2014

  • Phill Brooks, columnist: Value of outside fiscal experts for government

    Missouri recently lost a man who had been one of the state’s tax leaders of decades past.

    April 15, 2014

  • Our View.jpg Our View: Hate hurts us all

    Investigators say Sunday’s shooting of three people — two at a Jewish community center and another at a retirement complex in Overland Park, Kan. — were hate crimes.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Other Views Other Views: State’s theatrics

    Conservatives in the Kansas Legislature have taken advantage of a serious problem — inequities in public school funding — to attack teachers and create new problems.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

Local News
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Poll

Would you use a community safe room when the area is under a tornado warning?

Yes.
No.
     View Results
Facebook
NDN Video
Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case Author Gabriel Garcia Marquez Dead at 87 Beau Biden Plans 2016 Run for Del. Governor Chelsea Clinton Is Pregnant Horseless Carriage Introduced at NY Auto Show Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing
Sports