Breaking News From the Land of Duh – MA Casino Edition

The Globe’s front page today has one of those articles that just makes a careful reader want to pound his head against the nearest wall.  Titled “Gambling projections for Mass no sure bet,” the basic conclusion of the lengthy analysis is that the 2008 gaming-industry-generated “study” on which Massachusetts political leaders are relying for jobs and revenue projections in their latest rush to pass a casino bill, a study that assumes a pre- recession economy and ignores growing gaming competition from surrounding states, might just not be a reliable basis from which to draw reliable numbers.

Well excuse my French, but: No (*Bleeping*) (*Bleep*).

The fact that Governor Patrick, Speaker DeLeo and Senate President Murray doggedly refuse to allow a new study – by an impartial analyst – is but one among many red flags flying up to all sides of the latest gaming bill.  But it’s a huge one.  In a political culture that commissions a study at the drop of a hat, there is but one rational conclusion to be drawn from that refusal: Patrick, DeLeo and Murray know their numbers are crap.  Not “suspect.”  Know.

The first three paragraphs of the Globe piece really say it all:

Massachusetts policy makers are basing their hopes for the gambling market in large part on a consultant’s analysis that views the ongoing recession as an economic blip and assumes consumer spending will resurge by the time casinos are established in Massachusetts.

That study, first produced in 2008 and updated in 2010, also assumes Massachusetts casinos could not only reclaim money state residents now cross the border to bet in Connecticut and Rhode Island, but also entice them to spend much more.

Neither is a sure bet, economic analysts say.

On the other hand, neither is a worse bet than emptying your savings account, converting it to tokens and shoving them one by one into a slot machine in the hopes of landing on easy street.

The article only gets more cringe-inducing from there…. READ THE REST at CriticalMASS

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