Barney's Anti-UIGEA bill defeated


Ueber Meister Mouse
Sep 12, 2004
There are probably more indepth articles out there, but I just don't have the heart to search any further right now.

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25 June 2008

By Vin Narayanan

The House Financial Services Committee rejected a bill Wednesday that would have prohibited the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve from proposing and implementing regulations to enforce the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act.

In its mark-up session, the Committee adopted an amendment proposed by Rep. Peter King (R-NY) that would not only stop the implementation of any UIGEA regulations, but would also force the Treasury Department, the Justice Department and the Federal Reserve to sit down and define unlawful Internet gambling. King said that this "was a banking issue, not a gambling issue" and that the banking industry shouldn't be in the position of determining what is legal and illegal.

The King amendment was defeated by the full committee with a vote of 32 for and 32 against. The original bill proposed by Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) was defeated in a voice vote.

The defeat is a blow to both the online gambling industry,
The Saved be Damned!

Let's face it. The reason this bill got defeated is olde time rational argument.

Focus on the Family also supports prohibition of all gambling in America. This position has created some controversy within the Christian community, as gambling is not prohibited in the Bible[11]. This schism is evidenced by the fact that many churches hold gambling contests, especially bingo, to raise funds. Focus’ insistence on this position, as a result, has been interpreted as “extra-Biblical doctrine” that was created by some within the Christian Right who are personally opposed to gambling. At the November 14, 2007 House Judiciary Committee hearing entitled “Hearing on Establishing Consistent Enforcement Policies in the Context of Online Wagers”[12], Family Research Council Vice President Tom McClusky testified that his organization favored banning Internet poker in the United States. When questioned further by Steve Cohen [D-TN] on how much gambling FRC advocated banning, McClusky testified that FRC wished to ban all gambling in America, including even poker[13]. Upon hearing this, Rep. Cohen incredulously asked "is there any fun you are for?", leading many in the blogosphere to nickname FoF “Foes of Fun”[14].

Keep in mind that these folks know what's right for everyone, God told them.

If you could knock someone in the forehead on television and cure their cancer, or convince a homosexual that they made the wrong lifestyle choice, or prove that Darwin was a deeply religious hoaxster who all these crazy scientists now take seriously or steer huricanes away from call centers or talk with someone who's been dead for 2000 years...or know for a fact that Carbon 14 dating is a complete carnival scam then you might just be humble enough to speak the truth and let everyone else have the freedom to know what is right for them.

I hope they implement the UIGEA in all it's glory and it brings about the total collapse of the US financial system, that'll teach em...uh, maybe it'll teach them, uh, something?

"Monkeys are having babies all the time, why don't they have another human today?" -Kent Hovind, leading intellectual of the christian right

Actually scratch that thought.
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By ERICA WERNER 1 day ago

WASHINGTON (AP) Lawmakers failed Wednesday to agree on setting a clear definition of illegal Internet gambling to go along with a ban on online betting passed in 2006.

The Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department have been unable to finalize rules to implement the ban because Congress didn't clearly define online gambling when it passed legislation less than two years ago.

The House Financial Services Committee voted Wednesday on legislation to require federal regulators to write a uniform definition of which types of gambling should and should not be allowed on the Internet, followed by new rules implementing the ban. The tie vote, 32-32, meant the legislation failed under committee rules.

Senate Republicans, pushed by then-Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, had attached the online gambling ban to an unrelated port security bill in a rush of year-end legislation in 2006.

Banks and other financial institutions have complained that they are being forced into a law enforcement role because the Internet gambling ban prohibits them from accepting payments to settle online wagers without giving them a clear set of rules.

"The financial institutions are in the position of being told not process bets, but it's not clear what is legal and what is illegal," said Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., the committee's chairman. He said financial institutions had been given "a job that is undoable."

The committee's top Republican, Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama, argued ....
Children-based bullsh*t arguments

The committee's top Republican, Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama, argued that gambling is the fastest-growing addiction in the United States and having it online makes it accessible to children.

Really? The fastest growing addiction, huh? In real numbers or percentage points? If last year 2 people were addicted to Skittles and this year 10 people are then I could plausibly argue that it is the fastest growing addiction.

Spencer Bachus from Alabama, a republican. Let's keep in mind again this is coming from the same camp who has 2000 year old dinasaur bones and who think the Old Testament is a good moral guide.

Spencer Bachus is a funny guy who has great comedic value. Problem is, all these republican pigs don't see the punch line.

Oh The Children!

I'm a big fan of "what about the children" arguments. They seem to work otherwise these flat-liner scum wouldn't keep laying them out time and time again over decades.

How many children are killed EVERY DAY in accidental gun discharges? We have to stop these horrible tragedies before they happen. We MUST ban gun ownership!

When young children are exposed to indecent sexual acts they are scarred for life (note no scientific evidence cited). We MUST BAN PORNOGRAPHY!

If children are not exposed to the word of god from a young age they may grow up to be godless heathens. We MUST HAVE PRAYER IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS!

If marijuana was legal, what would stop a 5 year old from walking up to the gas station, buying a pack of joints and overdoseing and dying of ventricular fibrillation. We MUST KEEP MARIJUANA POSSESION CRIMINAL!

A marriage is between a man and a woman, it's what the Bible says. There have been hundreds of thousands of studies which all agree on one thing; children who are raised by homosexual couples have psychological problems when they grow up. We MUST BAN ADOPTION BY HOMOSEXUALS!


These pieces of rat sh*t read 1984 and apparently got some good ideas.

F*ck these swine.

Maybe instead of gambling for a living we can all do something constructive like getting together and chanting mindless recitations out of some hokey 2000 year old fairy tale. We can burn Jazz cd's and biology books and Einsteins photograph then maybe even throw a witch or two into the flames. Then let's eat some doughnuts and go shoot an abortion doctor. I'm talking about keeping our morals straight, u know?
Good Reasoning for Social Policy

Spencer Bachus says:

Todays vote was a victory for young people because illegal Internet gambling brings the casino into their bedrooms and dorm rooms, sometimes with tragic consequences.

No footnotes, no studies, no expert testimony, no evidence.

Implicit in the argument is that the testimony of some stupid reverend who testified before congress about the weak will of his poker addict son proves that the ultimate consequence of gambling online is financial strife and eventually, suicide.

In what percent of cases does this occur? We don't know. No evidence was cited and apparently none is needed.

MJackson says:

The hospital's coronary care unit being completely destroyed by fire today was a victory for old people because it brought them from their bedrooms and nursing homes for treatment, sometimes with tragic consequences.

My argument is more logical because far more old people by percent die, are financially harmed and suffer grave consequences from medical treatment than do from gambling online.

I like the Representative's logic though. You can make arguments of the most implausible kind appear legitimate when you pay no attention to evidence and reject any kind of risk-reward analysis.

Do you want to ban seatbelt use? Just find one case of someone who was ejected from a vehicle before it was consumed by fire.

Do you want to get rid of nuclear power? Just keep talking about Chernobyl over and over and over.

Do you want to ban air travel? Look what happened to that Airbus at the Sao Paolo airport.

Let's ban eating. Someone choked to death yesterday.

Let's ban sunshine. Look at all the cases of Melanoma

Actually he did go on later to cite one study that I couldn't find anywhere claiming that a third of teen compulsive gamblers commit suicide and another saying that online gambling among college students had decreased by 75% since the UIGEA (highly doubtful). If you could find these studies you could explain to him that correlation doesn't imply causation but it doesn't do any good if the study doesn't exist.

That's not to mention the points CM made in another post recently about the benefits of regulation etc.

A study by McGill University found that nearly one-third of teenage compulsive gamblers attempted suicide.

Couldn't find it.

I did find the other one he referred to.

Weekly use of the Internet for gambling among college-age youth also declined, going from 5.8 percent in 2006 to 1.5 percent in 2007, a statistically significant drop. Use of the Internet among high school-aged male youth was already very low in 2006 and did not change this year, going from 0 percent to 0.8 percent.

No word on methodology but this was a survey and the jump from 0 to .8 percent was considered statistically insignificant. Also no word on when this survey was taken and thus how long the poker rooms had time to work out the new payment kinks. Obviously there would have been a precipitous drop in the months immediately following the UIGEA's passage and the Neteller incident.

That aside, without proving a net adverse effect when comparing regulation with prohibition the point about the 75% decline, even if true, has no merit.

UIGEA made it easier for me to use Credit Card so I think the statement regarding teens is bull
Don't know if you guys saw this but the vote was apparently a tie, but under 'the rules' that means it failed. Interesting that it ended up in the tie situation, gives you some idea how many people actually oppose the religious and moral rhetoric used by people like the FoF to fob off their fear-mongering.
A point well worth noting, Max.

Bachus even used that now weary cliche: "You click the mouse and lose your house," in his address to the committee.

Typical generalisation and emotive Republican rhetoric that ignores both the facts and the impracticality of the UIGEA.

And it was trotted out yet again despite the renewed concern by the banks about the lack of precision in the regulations, and Rep. King's explanation that the intent was to halt implementation of the regulations because noone in government has actually defined what the banks should define 'illegal transactions.' This is something government has deliberately avoided doing because it raises the inequities and grey areas in US gambling policy.

The PPA chairman best summed up the opposition view when he said:

""It was clear today that those who oppose this bill chose to focus on emotional and non-germane issues, such as the harmful impact of gambling on children, instead of on the merits of the bill itself," he said, commenting that as it presently stands the UIGEA is "a completely unworkable and unenforceable bill that would do little to address the main concerns of its sponsors – namely, protecting underage and compulsive gamblers as well as cracking down on money laundering."

“Unfortunately, debate over the morality of gambling trumped debate on the fact that UIGEA is completely ineffective and unenforceable."

The other quote I felt hit the UIGEA nail on the head was that from Congressman Melvin Watt, who said: "We [Congress] kicked the ball over to the regulators. They don't know how to figure this out so they kicked it over to the banks. That is not responsible legislating on our part."
The problem here, like many political hot topics I guess, is that how many of the 64, on either side, knew what the people they represent actually wanted and how many voted based on their own opinions of right and wrong?

Politicians in any democratic/republican country shouldn't legislate on moral values, they should legislate to allow people to make their own decisions but to make sure that a) there is sufficient knowledge available for those decisions to be made and b) that the legal boundaries between right and wrong are clearly marked.

Moral legislation marks the border between a true democracy and a fascist, dictatorial or communist regime.

That said, politicians aren't unintelligent - they are hiding the real issue of $ behind a moral argument to protect their open trade obligations and to help "sell" the idea into society. If any truly believe they are voting on moral grounds, which I actually doubt, then they are not serving their electorate as they should.
Another very good point.

Unfortunately I think too many politicians around the planet are (a) not trained for the job they ought to be doing (ie representing the people who elected them) and (b) operate in a system where big money and party politics can be brought to bear to influence events.... and not always in the real interests or for the benefit of the electorate.
(a) not trained for the job they ought to be doing (ie representing the people who elected them) and (b) operate in a system where big money and party politics can be brought to bear to influence events.... and not always in the real interests or for the benefit of the electorate.

Also very true.

Easy to forget that the original perpetrator of the bill received campaign funding from Harrahs among others. The system in the UK and USA where companies with vested interests can donate to politicians campaigns clearly acts against the interests of the eloctorate.
The problem with politicians is that people elect them... And people (as a group) are not that smart and are easily manipulated... For example the 2000 and 2004 US general elections...

In the last two general elections we ended up with a president that did NOT win the most votes, we did nothing to stop or remove the usurper and look where we are at now.

The entire US Government system is now so corrupt that the government is protecting it's own corruption by creating a police state. The only way, in my opinion, to fix this mess is to tear it all down and start over.

Thomas Jefferson was right... "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." Our Tree of Liberty is dying... It needs to be refreshed...

I respect and value your posts here at Casinomeister. And in theory, you echo the thoughts of many.

In reality, your opinion of the only solution is simplistic, not realistic in today's world.

It is perfectly possible to change things for the better in small increments, taking "baby steps", to right the wrongs, to change things that have gone awry. To make many things better.

It just requires the masses to be willing to be more involved and educated, so that things do not just get taken over by more of the same type of people that keep creating the unhappiness of the populace.

Who decides which people are going to tear down and rebuild this current government and the way it is run? I know I couldn't, I know who I think maybe could help but that could very well be someone you do not think is capable.

I get pessimistic and angered at a lot of things in our country, but I also enjoy and am grateful for many, many things that we should be thankful, grateful and blessed for having. And, I do believe that I am an optimist, as to the future of this country, generally speaking.

For the record, I hate this gambling BS though!! :p I miss my casino entertainment!!! :)
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The problem with the financial part of the UIGEA is the people have no voice in the matter, if we did U.S. citizens would have the right "As we should" to spend our money where ever we like in the states or not, without the government interfering with the finiancial institutions we use to spend our money and force regulations on the banking instituions to control the money spent with online gambling by U.S. citizens, not possible, and it's a ridiculous assumption it could possibly work.

And statements like this: "You click the mouse and lose your house," What idiots do our represenatives have sitting around thinking up these stupid quotes.

If our represenatives want to focus on something useful, why not focus on all the over spending in this country by U.S. citizens with credit card institutions that's causing many people to go into bankruptcy, "And lose their house" but do they, no! the reason why? simply put, they get their share.

This is a political agenda at best, trying to guarantee who gets what at the in of the day. "Control of the money" and not the poor person who gambles to much or religious beliefs, it's about the money! as soon as they figure out who gets what there will be no more problems.

We do have a voice in America by who we vote into office, but until all our represenatives are forced to listen after we do, there will always be these type of political agendas going on in Washington D.C.

For now, they can send me the bill on what I owe and it will get paid, but, there's no reason to visit their not welcome. The past eight years with the Bush administration has gotten totally out of control.
Hey guys,

I'm going to put a positive spin on this:

Nothing has been done to date as far as the UIGEA is concerned. It has
definitely had an impact in regard to scaring operators away from the US,
and probably in scaring some potential players away. However, the
banking system is in a total state of decline and turmoil due to economics,
and there is NO way anyone is going to spend any time on implementing
or reinforcing the implementation of UIGEA on the banking system at
this time - Especially with an election just 5 months away, and with the
guard imminently to be changed (seriously, can you even conceive of
Obama losing ???).

Hence, we're looking at status quo through January, and with a
Democratic President in the White House along with a Democratic
Congress, the chances of a Barney-like bill being resurrected and
seriously entertained, increases dramatically. However, it will take
YEARS before this comes to fruition and gets implemented.

Hence, we are looking at the status quo for many years to come.
Although we lost what we had just a few short years ago (and we will
never see again), the defeat of this bill in Committee, just means that
the status quo lives on for at least a couple of more years. I can
certainly live with that..............
Here's a bit more from Rep. Barney Frank:

In essense:

I regret the fact that this became partisan. I was hoping that it wouldn't be, and I have been working closely with some of those most dedicated to economic deregulation of the appropriate sort.

But it became partisan because the religious/social extreme conservatives continue to be in control of the Republican Party on a whole range of issues, and they demonstrated once again that it is they and not those dedicated to what they believe are free market principles who have the upper hand in internal Republican Party disputes.

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"Click your mouse and lose your house", I don't think so! (My house is paid for and I did it in 5 years while clicking my mouse wherever I chose!):D
I know of a few people who kept clicking their mouse till they bought a house, and paid cash.

I also know of a few people, like Anal Haggard (oh sorry I get him and Oral Roberts confused, ah nevermind) who paid cash for a house telling other people which mouse they could and could not click, if they had any consideration for their eternal well being.

Hey, when your turning gay meth tricks in the park urinal I guess any extra cash helps.

The Christian Right has no respect for freedom and is run by illiterate conmen who are too dumb to see their own errors. They have to be spoken out against. We cannot allow people with contempt for reason to form and carry out public policy. We all lose. Even they lose.
Of course that said, as that worrisome alliance known as the Republican Party goes, I don't know who's worse, Frank's 90% religious wackos or the completely secular New American Century crowd.

William Kristol et al.

on January 26, 1998, in the PNAC's open letter to President Bill Clinton, ...called for a U.S. ground campaign to oust Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq.

How might that have fit into the framework of international law? Oh yeah, who gives a sh*t.

The Project for a New American Century website has now been removed. I guess the neo-conservative manifesto that advocated in no uncertain terms total unending US global dominance through force was too nuanced for the uneducated voting masses to appreciate.

George Soros attributed the following statement to a "Senior advisor to Bush" which he believed was Karl Rove, a proud member of the "We Own The World" club,

"[people] in what we call the reality based community believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernable reality. That's not the way the world really works anymore. We're an empire now and when we act we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality - judiciously as you will - we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors...and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."

The New Paradigm For Financial Markets, pg. 42
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02/07/2008 11:45:00 - by Martyn Warwick

A couple of years ago the US government whipped itself into a rare old froth of ersatz indignation over Internet gambling and then very rapidly and incredibly sneakily passed an astonishingly restrictive piece of legislation called "The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act", the ostensible purpose of which was to stop US citizens from having a flutter online but, in reality, was an exercise in naked protectionism.

However, many months later, the US Congress is still quite unable to define in law exactly what constitutes "unlawful Internet gambling".

In a series of cynical actions more akin to something...

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