How can a politician – in this case Andrew Wilkie stand in front of the public and decry The Crown Casino for making a profit on poker machines…:
But in a statement Mr. Wilkie hit back, citing Crown’s $340 million profit and saying “[Mr. Packer’s] address is thick with the story of Crown’s success”.
The Australian Federal Government does not bat an eyelash at making money from Alcohol and Cigarettes, horse racing and football betting, (amongst other things), yet fights against businesses making a profit from other types of gambling. Something seems very wrong here.
Now please do not misinterpret what I am saying. I am well aware that there are problem gamblers, as well as problem drinkers and smokers. What is annoying me is the seeming hypocrisy of wanting to stop one lot of problems, yet refusing to even consider broadening the scope, so that alcohol and tobacco are included.
Of course the Federal Government would lose a considerable amount of income if they were to effectively ban, or price out of all proportion alcohol and tobacco. I doubt there is anyone who would deny that alcoholic bingeing does irreparable damage to the human body, let alone the destruction and havoc it causes on society. And Tobacco’s dangers are well documented. But our Government does not push for them to be discontinued, or registration requirements to be instigated.
And remember that Andrew Wilkie, in 2010, backed Julia Gillard when she was seeking the Independent on her side, to enable her to form a minority Government.
The Tasmanian independent MP said a Gillard government would be “stable, competent and ethical”, and also revealed he had won concessions on poker machine reform and health in return for his support.
These are back room deals, done to gain votes. If Julia had said ‘NO WAY JOSE’ Would Andrew Wilkie have given his support to Tony Abbott? Quite probably me thinks!
Come on Federal Government – if you are going to impose a tax on so-called ‘problem gamblers’ in Australia, and specifically on poker machine players, what is to stop you from going a step further and dealing with alcohol and tobacco problems at the same time? If you truly want to clean up Australia then do it properly, don’t simply make a play at keeping your back room deals alive simply so you can stay in office Julia!