Posts Tagged ‘GAMBLING’


June 18, 2009

Palin gambled…she threw a “”hate Letterman” party and nobody came.  Bad choice Sarah.  However, there’s hope for you.

Its takes a rat to to prove that there’s hope for overly-ambitious-salivating-for-power politicos and compulsive gamblers.  The University of British Columbia has a study in motion that tests rats ability to use winning strategy and play the odds.  There’s hope for obsessive Wall Street high rollers, political strategists and me.

Therapies to treat pathological risk takers depend upon adjusting dopamine and serotonin in the brain.  It’s working on four legged rats and altering their ability to make good decisions.  The rats make choices…when tempted with instant gratification of large amounts of treats that end in a “time-out” punishment, after a few blunders, the rats decide to choose less treats at one time and get to go after treats again.  Rats can learn that long term satisfaction wins over immediate gratification.

If two-legged habitual gamblers could learn to choose the long term pleasure and fore-go the immediate thrill of a ‘big kill”, with therapy, Wall Street wheeler dealers would be less likely to tempt customers with risky buys, Obama’s far-seeing health care and banking reforms would attract more supporters and I would not be tempted to hit the casinos.

So as Smuckers Jams and Jellies report unexpected higher earnings (probably because we’re substituting sweets for the sour situation we’re in) – the Stock Market slithers up today and jobless claims drop a smidgen, the un-therapied gambler in me is making even odds that the “rat test” results will not have doctors treating obsessives tomorrow.  A fast application of this test is a “long-shot.”  The non-gambler wheels of the AMA turn slowly.

However, if you identify with the rats, there’s hope.  If rats can benefit from dopamine and serotonin brain therapy and learn to make profitable choices based upon negative and positive experiences, so can the compulsive money moguls, pathologically slow moving Senate bill-passers, you and me.


April 9, 2009

Tis sad, the largest building project in the world, the 9 billion dollar Las Vegas City Center, an MGM Mirage and Dubai World extravaganza geared to spiff up a becoming tawdry strip, may be doomed to bankruptcy.  The economy is hurting corporations that own Vegas now.  However, corporations run Vegas on spread sheet checks and balances – casino employees use business etiquette.  If “the Boys” maned the tables, we’d see gamblers loyalty.  Steady gamblers were ‘family” before the 80’s.  Families stick together when times are tough and Vegas regulars – little fish or gigunda whales – would be loyal to their adopted Vegas uncles and come home when times are tough.

Corporations courted penurious engineers who attended tech conventions and went to sleep at 9.  They invited families with toddlers that left strollers in the way of perspiring gamblers rushing to the sound of a hot streak at a crap table.  Corporations think like corporations.  This surprising Las Vegas Pearl Harbor blow never would have happened if “The Boys”  were protecting the “family business.”. 

They took a risk in the 1930’s on Bugsy Segal’s Flamingo Hotel extravaganza – a gold mine in the middle of the desert – that laid the foundation of impeccable hospitality and reckless generosity to gamblers and created the miracle that became Las Vegas.

After corporations took over Las Vegas hospitality things really changed from warm to cool.  Pre 1980’s corporate takeover of hotel-casinos,  you gambled without calculating how-many-hours you stayed at a machine or stood at a table.  True, you had to meet casino bosses expectations.  However, they never made you conscious of it.  It’s not that way now.
The Boys” seemed to nurture, comfort and ply you with gifts anyway you played – as long as you stayed more than  three days and returned and returned.  They commiserated with you if you were losing…suggested you go home and return at another time – presumably when your luck would be better .  If you were winning, they sent Dom Perignon your rooms and made sure you celebrated.  As long as you came home to them regularly, knowing that the house always wins in the long run – no matter how they got your money, you were treated like family.

Tis sad…If the 9 billion dollar City Center – a complex of hotels, shops, condos, casinos…bling and glitz – .must fail, it will hurt 8,500 construction workers – 10,000 permanent workers and collapse the city “The Boys” built.  The original Las Vegas investors have critics too – as well as supporters like me.  However, think them “good people” or “no-so-good-people”. I cannot believe “The Boys” would lose their classy “cool” or their protective brand of checks and balances or their visionary talents and let Vegas sink to this embarrassing level.