The Constitutional Case For Legal Sports Betting in The US

Posted by David Stone on September 9, 2011 under Gaming | Be the First to Comment

The Federal ban on sports betting has been blasted by anyone who knows anything about the subject for a number of different reasons. Though the US professional leagues suggest that sports betting threatens the integrity of their games, the opposite is the case. This is important because there would still be no shortage of outlets for college sport wagering, be it offshore or with your local illegal bookmaker. The professional bookmaking industry is usually where any type of compromised or fixed game is discovered. Ultimately, the true injustice of banning sports betting lies in its contempt for the Constitution.

Unfortunately, the Congress of the United States has shown very little respect for the Constitution in recent years. Were it to abide strictly by the role outlined for it by the founding fathers, the Legislative Branch of our government would have to relinquish any number of its powers in a variety of areas. The primary problem with our Congress is that it has increasingly become a collection of career politicians rather than a body representative of its constituency. As a result, the overriding concern of the average Senator or Congressman is increasing the power that he is able to wield, and as a result the power that his body is able to bring to bear.

The Federal prohibition of sports wagering which was enacted a few years back is of very dubious Constitutionality. Were it not for the grandfather clause, which allowed it to remain legal in jurisdictions in which it already existed, it would have certainly been struck down as unconstitutional on a number of different fronts. Ironically, the gambling industry supported this bill in the pre-Internet era.

Unfortunately, the mere fact that a proposed law or initiative is unconstitutional offers little protection for the citizenry. In fact, the concept of state sovereignty is one of the most important–and most abused–in the Constitution:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

The overriding concern of the writers and framers of the Constitution was that the personal liberty of the individual not be violated by a too-powerful central government. In other words, unless the power in question has been expressly given to the Federal government by the Constitution, and/or unless it has expressly been prohibited to the states (as in the case of treaty making) it is the right of each individual state to govern themselves as they see fit. If an individual state chooses not to regulate a certain activity, it is the right of each individual citizen to make their own decision.

So, here exactly does the Constitution delegate to the Federal government the right to make policy on sports gambling? The answer is that it doesnt, and it is very questionable that they have the Constitutional authority to do so.

Sports gambling may seem a minimally important issue to some, but the erosion of liberty is an incremental danger. The danger to broader concepts of personal liberty may seem a million miles away, but with each additional law intended to protect us from this or that the Federal government becomes larger and more powerful and the rights of the sovereign states”and the individuals that comprise them”are shrinking and being weakened.

 

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Finding A Poker Game That Suits You Best

Posted by Adrian Wall on February 7, 2011 under Gaming | Be the First to Comment

For a game that has been around for centuries, poker has of late had quite an upsurge in popularity. With professional tournaments broadcast live on TV, and channels devoted specifically to the poker game, it has never quite had the exposure it has of late. This has of course rubbed off onto the streets, and now you find more and more people playing the game, at the casinos and at home. Perhaps because you play opponents, rather than the house, it has always been one of the more competitive games in casinos.

The most popular version of the game currently is Texas Hold-Em, where you and your opponents are dealt just two cards, and you must make the best hand by using them with five community cards to make the best hand. The five cards are revealed through a series of deals known as the flop (where 3 cards are shown), the turn and the river. Between each of these rounds bets are made.

If you don’t have a casino nearby or just want to play for fun, many friends have a weekly card night, and this can be great fun to organize or just attend. Find out if anyone you know hosts one, or start it yourself with friends or work colleagues. Of course you need not actually play for real cash, as these nights are as much about interacting with friends as they are about the game.

Of course, if you are interested in playing for money, another option is online play. Online casinos have become a very popular option and some of today’s professional players began their careers this way, winning their way onto the professional circuit. With most online casinos you will need to have a credit card to play, so you can transfer funds into an account, and may involve downloading a small software program.

If money is not why you want to play, you can find a whole host of other poker games online too. Many offer online play or are part of a social network, and the play is just for fun.

There are also many games you can buy that include poker in them. These may come with a whole lot of other casino or card games included, and focus more on presentation than online play.

It is of course not just computers that offer you playing options, you will find versions on all of the latest consoles like the Playstation 3, Wii or Xbox 360. Most of these also offer online multiplayer options, so if you do prefer to play against real live opponents, you can do it from the comfort of in front of your TV set. There are also a number of games like GTA or Red Dead Revolver, where as part of the story you can play poker. Many people have actually said they find themselves playing for hours and forgetting about the rest of the story.

Handheld devices like the PSP, iPad, Nintendo DS and for that matter most cell phones, also offer a vast array of games to playing cards to download, so you can keep on playing on the move, or while waiting at the doctor’s office. But no matter the device, try and find a version of the game that you enjoy and get playing today.