Sunday, August 2, 2009

Colorado Casino Crap

On July 2, 2009, rules for Colorado casinos changed. They can now be open 24 hours, the maximum bet went from $5 to $100 and “games” such as roulette and craps were added.

A story in the Denver Post this morning reported that business at Colorado casinos was up about 20%. The story estimated that the casino profits for the month of July would be $78 to $81 million. The same month last year brought in about $65.7 million.

I thought how different the casino business is from a regular business. If people go to the grocery store and spend $80 million they have a lot to show for it. That same money spent at casinos leaves people with nothing. I know some would argue that the value was entertainment. For a few that probably is true. My dad made occasional trips to Central City or Black Hawk and would spend a few bucks. To him it was the same as someone else spending money on a movie ticket.

I wonder how much of the $80 million spent at the casinos left people and families hurting. You can blow your whole paycheck a lot quicker with $100 bets than with $5. I wonder how many people who previously came to their senses at the 2 a.m. closing time now gamble on until some other reality slaps them in the face.

Another thing mentioned in the story is that the casinos are trying to draw in a younger crowd. One uses female dealers in “revealing outfits.” I guess there is no end to their creativity. The casinos in their greed gladly put another vice before the vulnerable.

It may take some time but I’m sure we will see the social fallout from the new casino rules in Colorado.


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