Untouchable gambling interests


My friend Gary Larson (not the cartoonist) has written an insightful essay in the Intellectual Conservative, on the subject of Indian casinos and America's treatment of its indigenous people. Located in my home state of Minnesota, Gary places in historical context the turn to gambling by Indian tribes, and then takes account of the actual impact on Indians and others of this massive new industry [now known as "gaming"]. There are many disturbing questions.

The practical issue Gary highlights is also one of increasing urgency, nationally and in California, my adopted state. We have witnessed the rise of a politically—potent new class of monied interests with a position privileged by treaties. Unaccountable wealth, generated by state—granted monopolies and largely immune from state taxation.

Count on it: any time you get a group with money to spare dependent on state favoritism, you have a hothouse in which to grow corruption.

Thomas Lifson   7 28 05