Sheldon Adelson on Online Gambling – “It is a Cancer Waiting to Happen.”
Las Vegas Sands Chairman Sheldon Adelson has recently launched a huge attack against online gambling. The billionaire casino mogul has appeared on Bloomberg Television and wrote a lengthy rant on Forbes.com declaring his disdain for online poker and casino games.
On Bloomberg TV, Adelson used some choice words to bash internet poker. “I have 2 teenage boys. They get addicted to everything that is on the TV,” he said. “When they talk about Gary Loveman only wants poker. Gary Loverman and MGM have their own challenges. I do not have Challenges…We made billions of dollars last year. It is not a money issue with me. I think it is a train wreck. It’s really toxicity. It is a cancer waiting to happen.”
As for the Forbes column, Adelson argued that individual states should be prevented from offering their own legalized online gambling operations. Here’s one excerpt from his rant against internet gambling:
As an industry leader, and more importantly as a father, grandfather, citizen and patriot of this great country, I am adamantly opposed to the legalization and proliferation of online casino gaming.
You would think the chairman of the world’s largest gaming company would pursue any aspect of gaming which could increase profits, right?
Ordinarily that is true—but online gambling is ‘fool’s gold.’
Whether it is full casino gaming, poker only, or anything in between -this is a societal train wreck waiting to happen.
With the expansion of internet gaming now taking place at the state level, I strongly urge Congress to either rewrite the Federal Wire Act, or pass new legislation making internet gaming illegal nationwide.
Adelson went on to admit that, at first glance, it would appear his tirade against online gambling is a self-serving move to preserve land-based casino revenue. However, he claims that he’s not afraid to compete with other brands in the cyber gaming market and the activity wouldn’t hamper Las Vegas Sands establishments.
Adelson’s concern, according to him, lies with “other commercial casinos, Native American casinos, and racetrack-casinos” since they could take a major hit. He contends that this would cause a total loss of about 400,000 American jobs.
One more point that Adelson makes is the negative social impact online gmabling could have. Going further, he believes such easy access to cyber betting would create a lot more addicts and problem gamblers.
Despite Adelson’s insistence that his online gaming hatred has nothing to do with his own interests, few people are buying this. While many big casino brands are looking to capitalize on online poker and casino games, Sheldon Adelson seems more content on resisting change and keeping his business on top.