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    Eventually it would strike Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi, and would continue north overland, losing energy all the while. The behavior of this storm repeatedly defied prediction; this cut short what little time those in its path had to prepare, and this volatility may have caused the elevated loss of life seen as a result of.
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Constant excuses and blaming of others for your lack of effort to build a life doesn't cut it. That is not going to stop. But what has changed greatly since last week is my faith in my president and government. The State of Louisiana receives money every year to prepare for hurricanes and levies that are not strong enough to hold the water.

When it finally happened everyone failed. It started at the local level, then state, and finally federal when the fourth branch of our government. I guess I am tired of seeing my tax dollars wasted and no one is accountable. I love my country but I hate my government.

You are never going to be able to please everybody no matter what. I think they started with not having the Levee's prepared for a category 5. People should already know that and be prepared; there is also such a thing as personal responsibility. There was plenty of notice given as to the possibilities with this storm. They are the people who have forgotten how to roll up their sleeves and help out. If the only thing they have to offer is a negative response then the people from the Gulf Coast are better off without their help.

The only thing to do now is get on with rebuilding with the best we know how. What is important now is to save lives and to rebuild. The chips will fall where the may later. Right now, both sides need to stop this disgusting politicizing of this tragedy.

Bush is to blame. The buck does stop with him. The local and state leaders are to blame as well. It is utterly appalling that the richest nation on Earth cannot protect it's own citizens.

They can figure all this out at the appropriate time. I am sick of the shameless people who take advantage of a disastrous situation to advance their obvious agendas. While many heroic people are working their collective butts off to help their fellow Americans regardless of race Jesse , many people seem to have nothing better to do than to figure out how to continue their political whining. This was by far an unprecedented disaster and there will be mistakes made since there no data to base preparations on.

There will be many lessons learned by many different government agencies. Let them do their best and stop complaining because at this time it is not doing anyone any good. People are still without food and water, have to live in a shelter, and lost their homes and pets! There is no one else to blame except the officials of each state and the people themselves that didn't prepare if they were going to stay!

The levies broke on Tuesday. The realization of the magnitude of the consequences occurred on Wednesday. The Feds were there on Thursday and became efficient on Friday. Who can expect any logistics team to mount and execute a monumental task like that, in less time?

Only the naive and the prejudiced. They are not too badly off. There are many, many worse off. I think America needs to do what we can and stop this carping and whining and blaming, and stop the political posturing. Our duty now is to help in whatever way we can. They believe that to criticize others takes the heat off of themselves. The mayor, most our local authorities, the US senator lady, excuse me I should say person the Governor have all blamed the federal government for what was and is their responsibility.

In addition the Mayor left hundreds of school buses near the dome to flood that should have been used for those who had no transportation. Remember that the rest of those people chose to stay there and have suffered the consequence.

Also remember that the New Orleans police have the reputation as being the most corrupt in the nation. I paint not a pretty picture because that is the way it is. The folks out there using this tragedy to further their political agendas disgust me. With this type of behavior I am afraid it is only a matter of time before another disaster of this magnitude destroys thousands of American lives. My condolences to your country.

Why do they not have the best public services money can buy? Why don't they have the best Levee system money can buy? Money would not have been able to stop the storm but it could have helped the people of this state to be better prepared. I hope that when New Orleans is rebuilt that the funds from the States vast resources will help to make it the best it can be.

If we have to blame someone, blame the people of Louisiana who decided to build levees that would not stand the strongest hurricane imaginable. I knew the storm was coming and made preparations to survive without power, etc. With storms such as this, you never really know where it will make a direct hit. However, I feel like New Orleans should have been better prepared.

But, the almost arrogance of those who chose to stay and not evacuate cannot be overlooked. The Bush administration is doing what it can while still respecting the state sovereignty of Louisiana. Do the right thing Governor! I think all emergency personnel are doing the best job possible in an impossible situation.

They are all heroes and we should pray for them. Their lives will never be the same. They need our support and help as much as the victims do. Words are not what we need right now especially inflammatory ones.

It makes me mad. Where were the local police and officials in New Orleans? What a lousy job. Only they would have known how bad it would be for their people to get out. The crime in New Orleans was bad before the hurricane so they should have known. They were ill prepared. This was a horrible disaster and everyone is trying to help. Mississippi has been deserted and betrayed. The refugees that are safe and sound here in Houston are getting more attention than those who still need help.

We in Houston will take care of those who have come here for our help. The media needs to shine a light on those still in danger of dying for lack of food, water, and medical attention. I would guarantee you that came into play prior to and during this humbling event. God bless the people of Louisiana. They need it in more ways than one. It is the living that has to be helped now. The American people have rallied and are up to the challenge. It is the government that is lacking.

President Bush and his party might as well resign now. Nobody in their right mind would elect a republican after this. FEMA is a joke. But the American people are not laughing. We are disgusted with the administration. As well we should be. Bring our boys home from Iraq. Let them mourn with us instead of dying in that foreign country.

All of the citizens, directly or indirectly involved in keeping that wonderful city alive for the rest of the United States and the world, have been profoundly misrepresented and put in unbelievable danger for all these years. What I would like to know, are the people who were in charge of the levees going to be criminally charged with neglect or what ever for what has happened to those wonderful people and to the nation's city? To this I add the media, too busy leaching ratings off the suffering of others to tell us how to help.

Anyone in a position of power to affect the situation, anyone whose phone calls always get returned, that whole class of people all bear responsibility for this debacle because any of them could have taken the initiative to get busses, boats, and resources out to these people, to mobilize help both public and private, both organized and individual. This should have been a time like the evacuation of Dunkirk.

It should have been an inspiring story of people stepping up to the plate and making things happen. Instead, it is a huge embarrassment. Shame on them all. Double shame on the sorry people who try to defend the response to this disaster as good, adequate, or the best we could hope for.

Good luck to Republicans running for re-election next year cause they are going to need it. Louisiana needs to elect a new governor and not pass off all their infrastructure problems" — Thomas West Palm Beach, FL. The local and state governments did not do their jobs. They should have had an evacuation plan in place in case of emergencies. If this had been a terrorist attack it would all have been the same difference.

Maybe they will see this and do something about it. Those in the local governments have NO ONE to blame but themselves for lacking an efficient and effective disaster relief plan Now that is a stupid statement. It is as stupid as blaming Bush for all of this. For those of you who are using this national tragedy brought to you by Mother Nature as a political forum to bash those you oppose, you make me sick. You are the worst the U. Houses and churches devastated, no electricity or water Let's don't forget anyone.

Regardless of skin color or financial standing, those who lost everything due to this Hurricane are victims, and they need the rest of America to accept that. They've been displaced through no fault of their own, and as Americans we must help them through this difficult time. To avoid another tragedy of this magnitude or larger, I can't see why anybody is talking of rebuilding a city that is both below sea level and in the permanent path of hurricanes.

It makes sense to spend every dollar that is needed to address this disaster, but I can't see spending a penny to rebuild a doomed city.

If that is the case, read the Constitution. Stop pointing fingers and help! However, he is just as responsible, if not more! He could have been proactive in the days preceding the hurricane and used city and school buses to transport the people stuck in New Orleans to safety. This would not only have saved many lives, but could have saved many thousands of dollars of city resources. The governor of Louisiana could have used state resources in the same manner.

Now we see flooded parking lots filled with buses. Seems like the governor and the mayor were more interested in partying on Bourbon street than developing disaster prevention and recovery plans. It was HIS responsibility to maintain law and order. It was HIS responsibility to protect his city by being prepared. It was HIS responsibility to serve. A real leader doesn't blame, but takes the blame and fixes the problem at hand. Whining is not an option.

Where are Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton now? I'm sick of seeing him smirk his way through national disasters, lost wars, and failed policies. I hate Democrats, but now I hate Bush more. I, like others, are wondering why the media seem to be only talking to victims, instead of picking them up, giving them water, or helping in some other way. What some people fail to realize is that you can't just snap your fingers and make these things better.

We were some of the first people in place, but it took hundreds of people working 24 hours a day for three solid days to make that happen. People just need to know that it takes a great, great effort to make these things come together.

I am still in contact via text messaging with survivors on the coast. The handling of this tragedy by our government is atrocious at best.

The food and water are still not there! If we never have another Republican leader, it will be too soon! Someone with proven experience and competence should head up FEMA. Michael Brown should be removed immediately.

Maybe if President Bush didn't send billions of dollars to Iraq, there would have been money to shore up the levees, or send more National Guard troops, or offer more supplies, or rescue helicopters. The list goes on and on. It's high time to get rid of the irrational gun-control laws that prevent honest citizens from obtaining the very best means of self-defense, a firearm. Now great Americans are in there trying to save their sorry butts.

Plus, they have the audacity to complain about the speed in which help arrives. Give me a break! We would prefer you just said thank you. They need to think about it: The government takes a year to decide that they need to buy a hammer and then it takes another year for them to pick which one to buy and what to do with it.

When you think about how long it takes the government to do everything else, they responded relatively quickly. These people have lost everything they have ever owned.

Please given them the respect they are entitled to. All federal responses are coordinated at the local level with local authorities. The infrastructure is obviously flawed. Thank God the good men and women of our armed services, as well as the efforts and donations of our nation, are there to save them from themselves.

Other FOX Fans can save their breath about what a great nation this is. I think enough has been said, but I have an interesting twist.

We have heard about the issues in mobilizing troops and equipment to get to New Orleans. We have also heard about shortages in fuel. I just saw four Fs fly into Seattle. They are here for the University of Washington vs. Air Force Academy football game. I don't know how much fuel they burned getting here, how much they will burn doing the flyover, and how much they will burn flying back to where they came from.

This amount of fuel may be a drop in the bucket, but it sets a poor example for the rest of the country. We must finally realize that the historic city of New Orleans is gone forever as we knew it. I feel in my heart that it is now best to concentrate on rebuilding the city as only a port, no residential housing at all. We should never have to face such a national horror again. Spend our tax dollars for the good of the economy for a change. It's so very sad, but not surprising. Bush is president, not God.

People like Teddy Kennedy should pipe down. Now is not the time to blame an act of nature on people who have no control over the weather. That was until I saw and heard flood victims who originally refused to evacuate as ordered and the mayor DEMANDING help, blaming others, acting extremely entitled, looting unnecessary items, raping, etc.

I saw a women throw a military meal to the ground, complaining of the taste of it. Thanks for nothing, stars! This is not the time to worry about the '08 presidential election. That's fine if folks are going to be displaced for days, but not for weeks.

Casinos tally damage in Gulf Coast region Gambling industry may be crippled for months, even years Below: Mississippi casinos hit Open in new window. Most active discussions votes comments. Search Most popular on msnbc. Popular stories currently unavailable Top videos Popular videos currently unavailable.

View rates in your area. A number of streets and bridges were washed away, including the bridge sections of U. In particular, the roadway portion of the U. Highway 90 bridge between Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian was completely destroyed by the storm; only the support structure was left.

The three counties most affected by the storm were Hancock County , Harrison County , and Jackson County , although almost all counties had damage, and 47 counties were declared full disaster areas. Katrina's storm surge was the most extensive, as well as the highest, in the documented history of the United States; large portions of Hancock County, Harrison County, [1] and Jackson County were inundated by the storm surge, affecting most of the populated areas.

Louis , and flowed up the Jourdan River, flooding Kiln. In Harrison County, Pass Christian was completely inundated, along with a narrow strip of land to the east along the coast, which includes the cities of Long Beach and Gulfport ; the flooding was more extensive in communities such as D'Iberville , which borders the Back Bay of Biloxi.

Biloxi, on a peninsula between the Back Bay and the coast, was particularly hard hit, especially the low-lying Point Cadet area. In Jackson County, storm surge flowed up the wide river estuary , with the combined surge and freshwater floods cutting the county in half.

Surveying the damage the day after Katrina's passing, Mississippi governor Haley Barbour called the scene indescribable, saying "I can only imagine that this is what Hiroshima looked like 60 years ago.

Holloway, told the Biloxi Sun Herald , "This is our tsunami. Many historic buildings were destroyed in Mississippi, including the cottages and second-story porches around the Beauvoir mansion, home of Jefferson Davis. Hundreds of irreplaceable Civil War-era artifacts from the Jefferson Davis home and museum were either lost or destroyed. Along with countless others affected by the hurricane, U.

Both the Mississippi residents who survived the hurricanes as well as the disaster relief workers who supported them are at high risk of developing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD , a mental health disorder that can develop after exposure to an extreme situation such as warfare, a natural disaster or abuse. Slowly turning north along the eastern coast of Louisiana, at 4 a.

CDT , [26] with hurricane-force winds travelling up central Mississippi until weakening at Meridian , [27] and entering Tennessee as a tropical storm. Despite the hurricane force centered on Mississippi, neighboring areas were also affected: See extensive details below. CDT, on August 29, , just hours before Hurricane Katrina landfall, many shelters in Mississippi were full to capacity, including many Red Cross shelters, the Jackson Coliseum which allowed pets , and five special-needs shelters.

The shelters had filled within 24 hours of opening. Days earlier, on August 25, when Hurricane Katrina crossed the southern tip of Florida , government offices in Mississippi had already discussed emergency evacuation plans for days. On August 26, the Mississippi National Guard was activated, raising the level of concern, and on August 27, the state government activated its Emergency Operations Center, and local governments began issuing evacuation orders: However, on August 28, the Red Cross also opened shelters in coastal counties, and by 7: Moreover, 57 emergency shelters were established on coastal communities, with 31 additional shelters available to open if needed Since the evacuation was not total, many people survived the foot 9 m storm tide by climbing into the second-floor attic, or knocking out walls and ceiling boards to climb onto the roof or nearby trees.

Other people had swum to taller buildings or trees. Because of federal intent to rebuild or recover projects of the US Federal Government, the damage assessment to federal buildings in Mississippi covers actual costs: The following federal projects are described in terms of damage, along with the cost to resume operations: The cost amounts were decided for work continuing in Note that repairs include modern renovation, since it is not feasible to assess damage in terms of restoring federal buildings to the year they were built.

However, the costs provide a condensed measure of the construction damage, without counting the millions of lost roof tiles, thousands of broken windows, etc. Hancock County was the scene of the final landfall of the eye of Hurricane Katrina , causing total devastation in Waveland , Bay St. Louis , Pearlington , and Clermont Harbor , as well as southern Diamondhead. The bridge between Bay St.

Louis and Pass Christian was destroyed. Katrina's foot 9 m storm surge, and foot 17 m sea waves, [13] practically obliterated Waveland, Mississippi, and state officials said that it took a harder hit from the wind and water than any other town along the coast.

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His colleagues did not question his absences from the office, because his job involved overseeing various companies in different locations. Stacy had no idea. In Vegas, Stevens had always kept plans to join her and the girls for lunch. At home, he was always on time for dinner. So she was stunned when he called her with bad news on January 30, She was on the stairs with a load of laundry when the phone rang. Stevens never did come clean with her about how much he had stolen or about how often he had been gambling.

Even after he was fired, Stevens kept gambling as often as five or six times a week. Stacy noticed that he was irritable more frequently than usual and that he sometimes snapped at the girls, but she figured that it was the fallout of his unemployment. When he headed to the casino, he told her he was going to see his therapist, that he was networking, that he had other appointments. When money appeared from his occasional wins, he claimed that he had been doing some online trading.

Jack Of Hearts Casino Journals On Education, Stacy studied gambling addiction and the ways slot machines entice customers to part with their money. Inshe filed a lawsuit against both Mountaineer Casino and International Game Technology, the manufacturer of the slot machines her husband played. At issue was the fundamental question of who killed Scott Stevens. Did he die because he was unable to rein in his own addictive need to gamble?

Or was he the victim—as the suit alleged—of a system carefully calibrated to prey upon his weakness, one that robbed him of his money, his hope, and ultimately his life? The preferred mode of gambling these days is electronic gaming machines, of which there are now almost 1 million nationwide, offering variations on slots and video poker.

Their prevalence has accelerated addiction and reaped huge profits for casino operators. And, despite the popularity of slot machines and the decades of innovation surrounding them, when adjusted for inflation, there has not been a significant increase in the amount spent by customers on slot-machine gambling during an average casino visit.

Noffsinger, 72, has been here before. A soft-spoken personal-injury attorney based in Indiana, he has filed two previous lawsuits against casinos. Four years later, Noffsinger filed a suit on behalf of Jenny Kephart, then 52 years old, against Caesars Riverboat Casino, in Elizabeth, Indiana, alleging that the casino, aware that Kephart was a pathological gambler, knowingly enticed her into gambling in order to profit from her addiction.

Kephart had filed for bankruptcy after going broke gambling in Iowa, and moved to Tennessee. When the casino sued her for damages on the money she owed, Kephart countersued. Unlike in his earlier gambling cases, however, he decided to include a products-liability claim in this one, essentially arguing that slot machines are knowingly designed to deceive players so that when they are used as intended, they cause harm.

In focusing on the question of product liability, Noffsinger was borrowing from the rule book of early antitobacco litigation strategy, which, over the course of several decades and countless lawsuits, ultimately succeeded in getting courts to hold the industry liable for the damage it wrought on public health. When Noffsinger filed the Stevens lawsuit, John W. E ven by the estimates of the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which was founded by industry members, 1.

That is more than the number of women living in the U. Others outside the industry estimate the number of gambling addicts in the country to be higher. Such addicts simply cannot stop themselves, regardless of the consequences. Gambling is a drug-free addiction. Yet despite the fact that there is no external chemical at work on the brain, the neurological and physiological reactions to the stimulus are similar to those of drug or alcohol addicts.

Some gambling addicts report that they experience a high resembling that produced by a powerful drug. Like drug addicts, they develop a tolerance, and when they cannot gamble, they show signs of withdrawal such as panic attacks, anxiety, insomnia, headaches, and heart palpitations.

Neuroscientists have discovered characteristics that appear to be unique to the brains of addicts, particularly in the dopaminergic system, which includes reward pathways, and in the prefrontal cortex, which exerts executive control over impulses. Gambling addicts may have a genetic predisposition, though a specific marker has not yet been uncovered.

Environmental factors and personality traits—a big gambling win within the past year, companions who gamble regularly, impulsivity, depression—may also contribute to the development of a gambling problem. Given the guilt Jack Of Hearts Casino Journals On Education shame involved, gambling addiction frequently progresses to a profound despair. The National Council on Problem Gambling estimates that one in five gambling addicts attempts suicide—the highest rate among addicts of any kind.

There are no accurate figures for suicides related to gambling problems, but there are ample anecdotes: P roblem gamblers are worth a lot of money to casinos. According to some research, 20 percent of regular gamblers are problem or pathological gamblers. Moreover, when they gamble, they spend—which is to say, lose—more than other players. At least nine independent studies demonstrate that problem gamblers generate anywhere from 30 to 60 percent of total gambling revenues.

Casinos know exactly who their biggest spenders are. According to a article in Time magazine, back in the s casino operators bought records from credit-card companies and mailing lists from direct-mail marketers.

These days, the casinos have their own internal methods for determining who their most attractive customers are. Machine Gambling in Las Vegas70 percent of patrons now use loyalty cards, which allow the casinos to track such data points as how frequently they play electronic gaming machines, how long they play, how much they bet, how often they win and lose, what times of day they visit, and so on.

Each time a patron hits the Spin or the Deal button, which can be as frequently as to 1, times an hour, the casino registers the data.

In some machines, miniature cameras watch their faces and track their playing behavior. Several companies supply casinos with ATMs that allow patrons to withdraw funds through both debit and cash-advance functions, in some cases without ever leaving the machines they are playing.

Some of the companies also sell information on their ATM customers to the casinos. All of these data have enabled casinos to specifically target their most reliable spenders, primarily problem gamblers and outright addicts. They also Maximum Stake Casino Pauma Promotions By Design hosts who befriend large spenders and use special offers to encourage them to stay longer or return soon.

Some hosts receive bonuses that are tied to the amount customers spend beyond their expected losses, which are calculated using the data gathered from previous visits. The business plan for casinos is based on the addicted gambler. It increased the limits on some slot machines so that she could spend more on single games. It also made a new machine off-limits to other customers so that Richardson could be the first to play it. Given the guilt and shame involved, gambling addiction frequently progresses to a profound despair.

Machine Gambling in Las Vegas , 70 percent of patrons now use loyalty cards, which allow the casinos to track such data points as how frequently they play electronic gaming machines, how long they play, how much they bet, how often they win and lose, what times of day they visit, and so on.

They also employ hosts who befriend large spenders and use special offers to encourage them to stay longer or return soon. Management assigned Richardson an executive host, who offered her free drinks, meals, hotel stays, and tickets to entertainment events. In , Richardson, then 54, was sentenced to 14 to 20 years in prison for the crime.

The thefts ultimately put the company out of business. A representative for Ameristar Casino declined to comment on the lawsuit. District Court for Nebraska agreed that Colombo had sufficiently proved its initial claim of unjust enrichment, which the casino would have to defend itself against.

W alk into the Mountaineer Casino in West Virginia, and the slot machines overwhelm you—more than 1, of them, lights blinking, animated screens flashing, the simulated sound of clinking coins blaring across the floor. But the vast majority sit at the slot machines. Slots and video poker have become the lifeblood of the American casino. They generate nearly 70 percent of casino revenues, according to a American Gaming Association report, up from 45 percent four decades ago. Three out of five casino visitors say their favorite activity is playing electronic gaming machines.

Their popularity spells profits not only for casinos but for manufacturers as well. Old-fashioned three-reel slot machines consisted of physical reels that were set spinning by the pull of a lever. If the same symbol aligned on the payline on all three reels when they stopped spinning, the player would win a jackpot that varied in size depending on the symbol. The odds were straightforward and not terribly hard to calculate. But where each reel stops is no longer determined by the force of a good pull of the lever.

The physical reels are not spinning until they run out of momentum, as it might appear. Thus it is possible for game designers to reduce the odds of hitting a big jackpot from 1 in 10, to 1 in million. Moreover, it is almost impossible for a slots player to have any idea of the actual odds of winning any jackpot, however large or small.

The intent is to give the player the impression of having almost won—when, in fact, he or she is no closer to having won than if the symbol had not appeared on the reel at all. Some slot machines are specifically programmed to offer up this near-miss result far more often than they would if they operated by sheer chance, and the psychological impact can be powerful, leading players to think, I was so close.

Nelson Rose, a professor at Whittier Law School and the author of Gambling and the Law , has written, Nevada regulations operate on the theory that a sophisticated player would be able to tell the real odds of winning by playing a machine long enough.

Research has shown that an elevated number of near-miss results does increase playing time. Indeed, as early as , B. Astonishingly, the patent application for virtual reel mapping, the technology that made all these deceptive practices possible, was straightforward about its intended use: In the United States, by contrast, the federal government granted the patent for virtual reel mapping in IGT purchased the rights to it in and later licensed the patent to other companies.

Of course, classic, spinning-reel slot machines make up only a fraction of the electronic gaming machines available at most casinos. Technology has evolved such that many machines lack physical reels altogether, instead merely projecting the likenesses of spinning symbols onto a video screen.

Instead of betting on one simple payline, players are able to bet on multiple patterns of paylines—as many as on some machines.

This allows for more opportunities to win, but the results are often deceptive. You can get to of these false wins, which we also call losses , an hour. Because the machine is telling the player he or she is winning, the gradual siphoning is less noticeable. Related to the video slot machines are video-poker terminals, which IGT began popularizing in The standard five-card-draw game shows five cards, each offering players the option to hold or replace by drawing a card from the 47 remaining in the virtual deck.

The games require more skill—or at least a basic understanding of probabilities—than the slot machines do. As such, they appeal to people who want to have some sense of exerting control over the outcome.

They saw, for instance, patrons going more often for four of a kind than the royal flush, a rarer but more lucrative hand, and they adjusted the machines accordingly. Video poker also offers its own version of losses disguised as wins. Whatever the exact figure, the house odds make it such that if a player plays long enough, she will eventually lose her money.

T echnological innovations have not only rendered electronic gaming machines wildly profitable; they have also, according to experts, made them more addictive. A crucial element in modern gambling machines is speed. Individual hands or spins can be completed in just three or four seconds. For many gambling addicts, the zone itself becomes more desirable even than winning. Players have gone for 14, 15, 16 hours or more playing continuously.

They have become so absorbed in the machines that they left their young children unattended in cars, wet themselves without noticing, and neglected to eat for hours. Casinos and game designers have come up with many ways to keep patrons at their machines and playing rapidly. The chairs are ergonomically designed so that someone can sit comfortably for long stretches.

Winnings can be converted back to credits or printed on vouchers to be redeemed later. Waitresses come by to take drink orders, obviating the need for players to get up at all. Public-policy advocates compare slot machines to cigarettes.

Both, they claim, are products specifically and deliberately engineered to have addictive properties that are known to hook users. Eubanks was the lead counsel for the Justice Department in successful federal litigation against the tobacco industry between and She joined Noffsinger in representing Stacy Stevens after he convinced her that the deception used by the gambling industry paralleled that of the tobacco industry.

The data they track in real time on player cards alert them to these pain points: Hosts are also on the lookout for telling behavior, such as someone striking a machine in frustration or slumping over it in discouragement. When hosts spot someone in a state like this, they may swoop in and offer a voucher for some free credits, a drink, or perhaps a meal in the restaurant, where the player can take a break until the resistance passes and he can resume gambling.

When players do exhaust all their funds, casinos will sometimes loan them additional money. In , she spent an entire night gambling at Caesars Riverboat Casino, drinking strong alcoholic beverages provided for free.

When she eventually came to the end of her money playing blackjack, the casino offered her a counter check, basically a promissory note, to enable her to keep playing. She signed the check and gambled away the money. That happened five more times. Noffsinger countersued on her behalf. Experts say casinos should be aware that when they extend credit to losing patrons, they are by definition enabling problem gamblers.

Casinos might similarly be held liable for the financial consequences suffered by gamblers to whom they extend credit beyond a certain limit. In , the widow of a man who killed himself after racking up insurmountable debt at a Mississippi casino sued the casino under an extrapolation of dramshop laws. So far, no U. Nor should they, according to the gambling industry. Nothing of that sort exists to measure what the level is to have gambled too much. Mountaineer Casino and IGT both declined repeated requests for comment.

It does not, however, prevent them from losing money if they visit a casino despite the restriction. Some experts believe self-exclusion lists are not effective, because they seem to be erratically enforced. Despite the presence of sophisticated surveillance technology, patrons are not routinely screened for their self-exclusion status.

Given that casino operators and slot-machine manufacturers are adamant that the blame for gambling addiction resides with the individual, it is not surprising that research by the industry-funded National Center for Responsible Gaming favors studies directed toward confirming this conclusion. Members of the board of directors, she asserts, do not make research decisions, and the center has a separate scientific advisory board.

She says that the problem is rooted in the individual. Independent research not funded by the NCRG has shown how false wins, near misses, and other such features influence gamblers, especially the way they perceive expected outcomes. Most of them are making correct conclusions based on deceptive information.

Keith Whyte, the executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling, says that although the industry should have a role in research and public-education efforts, it cannot be effective on its own.

The group, which maintains a neutral stance toward legal gambling, receives a large share of its funding from the industry. A lmost a decade after the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act launched the dramatic expansion of casino gambling into new jurisdictions, the federal government appointed a commission to study the impact of the proliferation. Despite that warning, states have been unable to resist the continued expansion of casino gambling.

One reason for the ongoing growth is the financial clout of the industry itself. Many states provide tribal casinos with regional monopolies in exchange for revenues skimmed off the top of casino profits—as much as 30 to 40 percent in some places.

Kansas actually owns the games and operations of nontribal casinos. New Jersey, Delaware, and Rhode Island have all provided financial bailouts to faltering casinos. Communities typically build casinos based on a mirage of false promises: It should not be allowed by anyone, anywhere, anytime. In defense of its products and practices, the gambling industry insists that it is heavily regulated and therefore safe. Nelson Rose, the author of Gambling and the Law.

Each state in which gambling is legal has set up its own commission to regulate the industry, but there seems to be a symbiotic relationship between regulators and the industry. Many gaming-commission members—including those who approve applications for casino licenses—are advised by consultants for private companies also on casino payrolls.

Yet such essential disclosure is not required of electronic gaming machines. As it happens, the Nevada State Gaming Control Board addressed exactly this question during its hearings on virtual-reel technology. They seem unwilling to deal with the social costs. Les Bernal of Stop Predatory Gambling agrees that the close relationship between the state and its gambling interests was crucial: Sept 6 Arab guerrillas kill nine Israeli Olympians in Munich.

Sept 9 President Ford pardons Nixon of Watergate crimes. Jan 29 Seven killed in U S Challenger space shuttle explosion. May 10 Hider invades Holland Belgium Churchill prime minister. Dec 15 dead wounded in Pearl Harbor attack. March 24 Americans cross Rhine River in major advance. Aug 6 US drops first atomic bomb on Hiroshima Japan.

Nov 3 Truman upsets Dewey Rennebohm wins governorship. April 12 Russia orbits first man in space and recovers him. Together we can do it. Oct 4 O J Simpson found not guilty in double murder. Dec 20 Clinton impeached charges go to Senate. Oct 13 Terrorist blast rips U S ship Cole kills six.

Jan 19 Gov Thompson sailing smoothly to Cabinet post. Clues of complex plot. Nov 28 Chavez school cancels classes because of mold.

Essentially what the West Virginia Supreme Court has said is that gambling interests in West Virginia are immune from liability. Former West Virginia House Majority Leader Rick Staton has expressed regret over his role in expanding legalized gambling in the state.

There have been more people who have lost a lot of money, there have been more people who have had to file bankruptcy, there have been more people who have embezzled, there have been more people who have committed suicide. And that, according to several experts, is what it will probably take—a court trial, which would open access to private industry documents.

They cannot afford to have that made public, because it would confirm what everybody knows: The more lawyers read about it, the more they are going to start smelling blood in the water. It just takes for a case to be brought up in the right jurisdiction. A photograph of him later that week, when he was deep-sea fishing in Cabo San Lucas, a place that usually brought him happiness, reveals the heaviness in his expression—his eyes defeated, his smile gone.

In the months after he was fired, Stevens tried taking the antidepressant Paxil and saw a therapist, but he did not admit to Stacy that he was still gambling almost every day. As spring turned into summer, he knew that charges from the IRS were forthcoming following its investigation into his embezzlement and that even after serving time in prison, he would likely still be on the hook for the hundreds of thousands of dollars he owed in back taxes and penalties. His former employer seemed close to pressing charges, having put the police on notice.

He would never be able to work in the financial sector again. Once the affair hit the papers, his family would be dragged through the gantlet of small-town gossip and censure. He could see no way to spare them other than to sacrifice himself. By mid-afternoon on August 13, , Stacy had started to worry. July 3 Congress passes most extensive U S civil rights law. May 6 UW students battle police in antiVietnam protest. A former top procurement official in the Bush administration , David H.

Safavian , has been convicted of lying and obstruction of justice in connection with the Abramoff investigation. Safavian, who traveled to Scotland with Reed and Ney on a golf outing arranged by Abramoff, was accused of concealing from federal investigators information about Abramoff's plans to do business with the General Services Administration at the time of the golf trip — in particular, seeking help finding property for his private religious school, Eshkol Academy, and for one of his tribal clients.

Safavian was then GSA chief of staff. Jack Abramoff was a highly influential figure as lobbyist and activist in the Bush administration. The draft report of the House Government Reform Committee said the documents — largely Abramoff's billing records and e-mails — listed lobbying contacts with White House officials over three years, including 10 with top Bush aide Karl Rove. The report said that of the contacts listed, were described as meetings or other in-person contacts; 71 were described as phone conversations and 69 were e-mail exchanges.

In the first ten months of , the Abramoff lobbying team logged almost contacts with the Bush administration. The Department of the Interior has Federal regulatory authority over tribal affairs such as tribal recognition and gaming.

White House and State Department officials described Bush's meeting with Bongo, whose government is regularly accused by the United States of human rights abuses, as routine.

Officials at Gabon's embassy in Washington did not respond to written questions. Susan Ralston , Rove's assistant since , previously worked as an administrative assistant for both Abramoff and Reed. Mahathir insisted that someone unknown to him had paid for the meeting. Abramoff was identified in the background of a photo taken at the meeting. According to the organization's communications director, John Kartch, the meeting was one of several gatherings with Bush sponsored by ATR.

Louis , Pearlington , and Clermont Harbor , as well as southern Diamondhead. The bridge between Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian was destroyed. Katrina's foot 9 m storm surge, and foot 17 m sea waves, [13] practically obliterated Waveland, Mississippi, and state officials said that it took a harder hit from the wind and water than any other town along the coast. Katrina came ashore during the high tide of 8: The storm dragged away almost every structure within one half mile of the beach, leaving driveways and walkways that went to nowhere.

The destruction brought forth by Katrina also caused about one-quarter of the labor force to lose their jobs, with the unemployment rate reaching as high as Harrison County, Mississippi was hit particularly hard by the hurricane and the storm surge. Its two largest coastal cities, Biloxi and Gulfport , suffered severe damages and a number of casualties.

Nearby Gulfshore Baptist Assembly, a camp owned and operated by the Mississippi Baptist Convention, has been permanently closed, and recommendations have been made to build a new facility elsewhere. In the tourist town of Biloxi, widespread damage was reported as several of the city's attractions were destroyed.

Residents that survived Hurricane Camille stated that Katrina was "much worse," with a storm surge reportedly reaching further inland than the previous catastrophic storm. Katrina's wind estimates were lighter than Camille's, and the central air pressure was slightly higher, but Camille was also a much smaller storm so the greater impact of the storm surge may be due to the size.

Keesler Air Force Base , also located in Biloxi, reported extensive damage to its facilities. Gulfport authorities reported to news station CNN that up to ten feet of water covered downtown streets.

Thirty of the confirmed deaths in Harrison County were at the St. Rebuilding in Harrison County proceeded at different paces in different towns. The town of Biloxi was greatly helped by the resurgence of the casino industry, while smaller towns such as Pass Christian did not have an economic base with which to start the reconstruction effort. By January , almost a year and a half after the Hurricane, Pass Christian had still not yet begun rebuilding its city buildings, and volunteer labor was still involved in rebuilding private homes in the town.

The team resumed play in In Jackson County , the storm surge flowed up the wide river estuary , with the combined surge and freshwater floods cutting the county in half.

United States Navy officials announced that two Arleigh Burke -class guided missile destroyers that were under construction at Litton-Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula had been damaged by the storm, as well as the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island. After Hurricane Katrina, all counties in Mississippi were declared disaster areas, with 49 counties eligible for full Federal assistance.

The following Mississippi counties alphabetical order reported deaths, tornadoes, or damage: The names of the 49 counties in Mississippi, declared disaster areas for full Federal assistance, are: Since Hurricane Katrina traveled up the entire state, Mississippi lies in the center of the disaster areas for the region.

Outside the area of high winds and storm surge, other areas were affected by spin-off tornadoes and rainfall flooding. The map below shows the declared disaster areas in the region. Rebuilding of towns took years, and some areas were not restored. The bay bridges were rebuilt taller and stronger, as had been done around Pensacola in the years following Hurricane Ivan The casino-gambling regulations were changed to allow casinos to be built on land in taller buildings, no longer forcing the use of massive floating casino barges near a city, which could again become battering rams along 2nd and 3rd-story levels of nearby hotels.

Celebrities who had previously visited New Orleans came to understand the massive devastation that occurred along the Gulf Coast cities. The US Army Corps of Engineers developed plans to rebuild the protective barrier islands that had been washed out to sea along the coastal areas.

Detailed reports were written describing how people had survived by swimming to taller buildings or trees, and noting that those too old or unable to swim did not survive. Many residents moved away and never returned. Medical studies attempted to estimate the indirect deaths caused by people losing their homes or local medical support.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Responds to Anderson Cooper that it felt like it would never end, saying winds were at least miles per hour in Gulfport for seven hours, between about 7: For another five or six hours, on each side of that, they [Gulfport] had hurricane-force winds over 75 miles per hour; much of the city [Gulfport, Mississippi, in Harrison County] of 71, was then under water.

Hurricane Katrina August 23—31, " June , pp. Tornado Reports Associated with Hurricane Katrina" 62 tornadoes. Emergency crews rescued over people, from rooftops or trees, in Mississippi. Responds to Anderson Cooper that the governor preferred that folks did not go out on the streets because the "streets are literally littered with kitchen appliances. Performance of Transportation Systems. Archived from the original on Volunteering in Post-Hurricane Mississippi.

A Failure of Initiative: Archived from the original PDF on March 26, Disaster relief International response Media coverage Diaspora. Retrieved from " https: Webarchive template wayback links All articles with unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from August Views Read Edit View history. In other projects Wikimedia Commons. This page was last edited on 23 October , at By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Hurricane Katrina near peak intensity. Mississippi , particularly the coast. Part of the Atlantic hurricane season.

taste

When money appeared from his occasional wins, he claimed that he had been doing some online trading. Jack Of Hearts Casino Journals On Education, Stacy studied gambling addiction and the ways slot machines entice customers to part with their money. Inshe filed a lawsuit against both Mountaineer Casino and International Game Technology, the manufacturer of the slot machines her husband played.

At issue was the fundamental question of who killed Scott Stevens. Did he die because he was unable to rein in his own addictive need to gamble? Or was he the victim—as the suit alleged—of a system carefully calibrated to prey upon his weakness, one that robbed him of his money, his hope, and ultimately his life?

The preferred mode of gambling these days is electronic gaming machines, of which there are now almost 1 million nationwide, offering variations on slots and video poker. Their prevalence has accelerated addiction and reaped huge profits for casino operators.

And, despite the popularity of slot machines and the decades of innovation surrounding them, when adjusted for inflation, there has not been a significant increase in the amount spent by customers on slot-machine gambling during an average casino visit. Noffsinger, 72, has been here before. A soft-spoken personal-injury attorney based in Indiana, he has filed two previous lawsuits against casinos.

Four years later, Noffsinger filed a suit on behalf of Jenny Kephart, then 52 years old, against Caesars Riverboat Casino, in Elizabeth, Indiana, alleging that the casino, aware that Kephart was a pathological gambler, knowingly enticed her into gambling in order to profit from her addiction. Kephart had filed for bankruptcy after going broke gambling in Iowa, and moved to Tennessee.

When the casino sued her for damages on the money she owed, Kephart countersued. Unlike in his earlier gambling cases, however, he decided to include a products-liability claim in this one, essentially arguing that slot machines are knowingly designed to deceive players so that when they are used as intended, they cause harm.

In focusing on the question of product liability, Noffsinger was borrowing from the rule book of early antitobacco litigation strategy, which, over the course of several decades and countless lawsuits, ultimately succeeded in getting courts to hold the industry liable for the damage it wrought on public health.

When Noffsinger filed the Stevens lawsuit, John W. E ven by the estimates of the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which was founded by industry members, 1. That is more than the number of women living in the U.

Others outside the industry estimate the number of gambling addicts in the country to be higher. Such addicts simply cannot stop themselves, regardless of the consequences. Gambling is a drug-free addiction. Yet despite the fact that there is no external chemical at work on the brain, the neurological and physiological reactions to the stimulus are similar to those of drug or alcohol addicts.

Some gambling addicts report that they experience a high resembling that produced by a powerful drug. Like drug addicts, they develop a tolerance, and when they cannot gamble, they show signs of withdrawal such as panic attacks, anxiety, insomnia, headaches, and heart palpitations.

Neuroscientists have discovered characteristics that appear to be unique to the brains of addicts, particularly in the dopaminergic system, which includes reward pathways, and in the prefrontal cortex, which exerts executive control over impulses.

Gambling addicts may have a genetic predisposition, though a specific marker has not yet been uncovered. Environmental factors and personality traits—a big gambling win within the past year, companions who gamble regularly, impulsivity, depression—may also contribute to the development of a gambling problem.

Given the guilt Jack Of Hearts Casino Journals On Education shame involved, gambling addiction frequently progresses to a profound despair. The National Council on Problem Gambling estimates that one in five gambling addicts attempts suicide—the highest rate among addicts of any kind. There are no accurate figures for suicides related to gambling problems, but there are ample anecdotes: P roblem gamblers are worth a lot of money to casinos.

According to some research, 20 percent of regular gamblers are problem or pathological gamblers. Moreover, when they gamble, they spend—which is to say, lose—more than other players. At least nine independent studies demonstrate that problem gamblers generate anywhere from 30 to 60 percent of total gambling revenues.

Casinos know exactly who their biggest spenders are. According to a article in Time magazine, back in the s casino operators bought records from credit-card companies and mailing lists from direct-mail marketers.

These days, the casinos have their own internal methods for determining who their most attractive customers are. Machine Gambling in Las Vegas70 percent of patrons now use loyalty cards, which allow the casinos to track such data points as how frequently they play electronic gaming machines, how long they play, how much they bet, how often they win and lose, what times of day they visit, and so on.

Each time a patron hits the Spin or the Deal button, which can be as frequently as to 1, times an hour, the casino registers the data. In some machines, miniature cameras watch their faces and track their playing behavior. Several companies supply casinos with ATMs that allow patrons to withdraw funds through both debit and cash-advance functions, in some cases without ever leaving the machines they are playing. Some of the companies also sell information on their ATM customers to the casinos.

All of these data have enabled casinos to specifically target their most reliable spenders, primarily problem gamblers and outright addicts. They also Maximum Stake Casino Pauma Promotions By Design hosts who befriend large spenders and use special offers to encourage them to stay longer or return soon. Some hosts receive bonuses that are tied to the amount customers spend beyond their expected losses, which are calculated using the data gathered from previous visits.

The business plan for casinos is based on the addicted gambler. It increased the limits on some slot machines so that she could spend more on single games. It also made a new machine off-limits to other customers so that Richardson could be the first to play it. Given the guilt and shame involved, gambling addiction frequently progresses to a profound despair. Machine Gambling in Las Vegas , 70 percent of patrons now use loyalty cards, which allow the casinos to track such data points as how frequently they play electronic gaming machines, how long they play, how much they bet, how often they win and lose, what times of day they visit, and so on.

They also employ hosts who befriend large spenders and use special offers to encourage them to stay longer or return soon. Management assigned Richardson an executive host, who offered her free drinks, meals, hotel stays, and tickets to entertainment events. In , Richardson, then 54, was sentenced to 14 to 20 years in prison for the crime. The thefts ultimately put the company out of business. A representative for Ameristar Casino declined to comment on the lawsuit.

District Court for Nebraska agreed that Colombo had sufficiently proved its initial claim of unjust enrichment, which the casino would have to defend itself against. W alk into the Mountaineer Casino in West Virginia, and the slot machines overwhelm you—more than 1, of them, lights blinking, animated screens flashing, the simulated sound of clinking coins blaring across the floor. But the vast majority sit at the slot machines.

Slots and video poker have become the lifeblood of the American casino. They generate nearly 70 percent of casino revenues, according to a American Gaming Association report, up from 45 percent four decades ago. Three out of five casino visitors say their favorite activity is playing electronic gaming machines.

Their popularity spells profits not only for casinos but for manufacturers as well. Old-fashioned three-reel slot machines consisted of physical reels that were set spinning by the pull of a lever.

If the same symbol aligned on the payline on all three reels when they stopped spinning, the player would win a jackpot that varied in size depending on the symbol.

The odds were straightforward and not terribly hard to calculate. But where each reel stops is no longer determined by the force of a good pull of the lever. The physical reels are not spinning until they run out of momentum, as it might appear.

Thus it is possible for game designers to reduce the odds of hitting a big jackpot from 1 in 10, to 1 in million. Moreover, it is almost impossible for a slots player to have any idea of the actual odds of winning any jackpot, however large or small.

The intent is to give the player the impression of having almost won—when, in fact, he or she is no closer to having won than if the symbol had not appeared on the reel at all.

Some slot machines are specifically programmed to offer up this near-miss result far more often than they would if they operated by sheer chance, and the psychological impact can be powerful, leading players to think, I was so close. Nelson Rose, a professor at Whittier Law School and the author of Gambling and the Law , has written, Nevada regulations operate on the theory that a sophisticated player would be able to tell the real odds of winning by playing a machine long enough.

Research has shown that an elevated number of near-miss results does increase playing time. Indeed, as early as , B. Astonishingly, the patent application for virtual reel mapping, the technology that made all these deceptive practices possible, was straightforward about its intended use: In the United States, by contrast, the federal government granted the patent for virtual reel mapping in IGT purchased the rights to it in and later licensed the patent to other companies.

Of course, classic, spinning-reel slot machines make up only a fraction of the electronic gaming machines available at most casinos. Technology has evolved such that many machines lack physical reels altogether, instead merely projecting the likenesses of spinning symbols onto a video screen. Instead of betting on one simple payline, players are able to bet on multiple patterns of paylines—as many as on some machines. This allows for more opportunities to win, but the results are often deceptive.

You can get to of these false wins, which we also call losses , an hour. Because the machine is telling the player he or she is winning, the gradual siphoning is less noticeable. Related to the video slot machines are video-poker terminals, which IGT began popularizing in The standard five-card-draw game shows five cards, each offering players the option to hold or replace by drawing a card from the 47 remaining in the virtual deck.

The games require more skill—or at least a basic understanding of probabilities—than the slot machines do. As such, they appeal to people who want to have some sense of exerting control over the outcome. They saw, for instance, patrons going more often for four of a kind than the royal flush, a rarer but more lucrative hand, and they adjusted the machines accordingly.

Video poker also offers its own version of losses disguised as wins. Whatever the exact figure, the house odds make it such that if a player plays long enough, she will eventually lose her money. T echnological innovations have not only rendered electronic gaming machines wildly profitable; they have also, according to experts, made them more addictive.

A crucial element in modern gambling machines is speed. Individual hands or spins can be completed in just three or four seconds. For many gambling addicts, the zone itself becomes more desirable even than winning. Players have gone for 14, 15, 16 hours or more playing continuously. They have become so absorbed in the machines that they left their young children unattended in cars, wet themselves without noticing, and neglected to eat for hours. Casinos and game designers have come up with many ways to keep patrons at their machines and playing rapidly.

The chairs are ergonomically designed so that someone can sit comfortably for long stretches. Winnings can be converted back to credits or printed on vouchers to be redeemed later. Waitresses come by to take drink orders, obviating the need for players to get up at all. Public-policy advocates compare slot machines to cigarettes.

Both, they claim, are products specifically and deliberately engineered to have addictive properties that are known to hook users. Eubanks was the lead counsel for the Justice Department in successful federal litigation against the tobacco industry between and She joined Noffsinger in representing Stacy Stevens after he convinced her that the deception used by the gambling industry paralleled that of the tobacco industry.

The data they track in real time on player cards alert them to these pain points: Hosts are also on the lookout for telling behavior, such as someone striking a machine in frustration or slumping over it in discouragement. When hosts spot someone in a state like this, they may swoop in and offer a voucher for some free credits, a drink, or perhaps a meal in the restaurant, where the player can take a break until the resistance passes and he can resume gambling. When players do exhaust all their funds, casinos will sometimes loan them additional money.

In , she spent an entire night gambling at Caesars Riverboat Casino, drinking strong alcoholic beverages provided for free. When she eventually came to the end of her money playing blackjack, the casino offered her a counter check, basically a promissory note, to enable her to keep playing.

She signed the check and gambled away the money. That happened five more times. Noffsinger countersued on her behalf. Experts say casinos should be aware that when they extend credit to losing patrons, they are by definition enabling problem gamblers. Casinos might similarly be held liable for the financial consequences suffered by gamblers to whom they extend credit beyond a certain limit. In , the widow of a man who killed himself after racking up insurmountable debt at a Mississippi casino sued the casino under an extrapolation of dramshop laws.

So far, no U. Nor should they, according to the gambling industry. Nothing of that sort exists to measure what the level is to have gambled too much. Mountaineer Casino and IGT both declined repeated requests for comment.

It does not, however, prevent them from losing money if they visit a casino despite the restriction. Some experts believe self-exclusion lists are not effective, because they seem to be erratically enforced. Despite the presence of sophisticated surveillance technology, patrons are not routinely screened for their self-exclusion status.

Given that casino operators and slot-machine manufacturers are adamant that the blame for gambling addiction resides with the individual, it is not surprising that research by the industry-funded National Center for Responsible Gaming favors studies directed toward confirming this conclusion.

Members of the board of directors, she asserts, do not make research decisions, and the center has a separate scientific advisory board. She says that the problem is rooted in the individual. Independent research not funded by the NCRG has shown how false wins, near misses, and other such features influence gamblers, especially the way they perceive expected outcomes. Most of them are making correct conclusions based on deceptive information. Keith Whyte, the executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling, says that although the industry should have a role in research and public-education efforts, it cannot be effective on its own.

The group, which maintains a neutral stance toward legal gambling, receives a large share of its funding from the industry. A lmost a decade after the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act launched the dramatic expansion of casino gambling into new jurisdictions, the federal government appointed a commission to study the impact of the proliferation. Despite that warning, states have been unable to resist the continued expansion of casino gambling. One reason for the ongoing growth is the financial clout of the industry itself.

Many states provide tribal casinos with regional monopolies in exchange for revenues skimmed off the top of casino profits—as much as 30 to 40 percent in some places. Kansas actually owns the games and operations of nontribal casinos. New Jersey, Delaware, and Rhode Island have all provided financial bailouts to faltering casinos. Communities typically build casinos based on a mirage of false promises: It should not be allowed by anyone, anywhere, anytime.

In defense of its products and practices, the gambling industry insists that it is heavily regulated and therefore safe. Nelson Rose, the author of Gambling and the Law. Each state in which gambling is legal has set up its own commission to regulate the industry, but there seems to be a symbiotic relationship between regulators and the industry. Many gaming-commission members—including those who approve applications for casino licenses—are advised by consultants for private companies also on casino payrolls.

Yet such essential disclosure is not required of electronic gaming machines. As it happens, the Nevada State Gaming Control Board addressed exactly this question during its hearings on virtual-reel technology. They seem unwilling to deal with the social costs. Les Bernal of Stop Predatory Gambling agrees that the close relationship between the state and its gambling interests was crucial: Sept 6 Arab guerrillas kill nine Israeli Olympians in Munich.

Sept 9 President Ford pardons Nixon of Watergate crimes. Jan 29 Seven killed in U S Challenger space shuttle explosion. May 10 Hider invades Holland Belgium Churchill prime minister.

Dec 15 dead wounded in Pearl Harbor attack. March 24 Americans cross Rhine River in major advance. Aug 6 US drops first atomic bomb on Hiroshima Japan. Nov 3 Truman upsets Dewey Rennebohm wins governorship. April 12 Russia orbits first man in space and recovers him.

Together we can do it. Oct 4 O J Simpson found not guilty in double murder. Dec 20 Clinton impeached charges go to Senate. Oct 13 Terrorist blast rips U S ship Cole kills six. Jan 19 Gov Thompson sailing smoothly to Cabinet post. Clues of complex plot. Nov 28 Chavez school cancels classes because of mold. Essentially what the West Virginia Supreme Court has said is that gambling interests in West Virginia are immune from liability.

Former West Virginia House Majority Leader Rick Staton has expressed regret over his role in expanding legalized gambling in the state. There have been more people who have lost a lot of money, there have been more people who have had to file bankruptcy, there have been more people who have embezzled, there have been more people who have committed suicide.

And that, according to several experts, is what it will probably take—a court trial, which would open access to private industry documents. They cannot afford to have that made public, because it would confirm what everybody knows: The more lawyers read about it, the more they are going to start smelling blood in the water.

It just takes for a case to be brought up in the right jurisdiction. A photograph of him later that week, when he was deep-sea fishing in Cabo San Lucas, a place that usually brought him happiness, reveals the heaviness in his expression—his eyes defeated, his smile gone.

In the months after he was fired, Stevens tried taking the antidepressant Paxil and saw a therapist, but he did not admit to Stacy that he was still gambling almost every day. As spring turned into summer, he knew that charges from the IRS were forthcoming following its investigation into his embezzlement and that even after serving time in prison, he would likely still be on the hook for the hundreds of thousands of dollars he owed in back taxes and penalties.

His former employer seemed close to pressing charges, having put the police on notice. He would never be able to work in the financial sector again.

Once the affair hit the papers, his family would be dragged through the gantlet of small-town gossip and censure. He could see no way to spare them other than to sacrifice himself.

By mid-afternoon on August 13, , Stacy had started to worry. July 3 Congress passes most extensive U S civil rights law. May 6 UW students battle police in antiVietnam protest.

A former top procurement official in the Bush administration , David H. Safavian , has been convicted of lying and obstruction of justice in connection with the Abramoff investigation.

Safavian, who traveled to Scotland with Reed and Ney on a golf outing arranged by Abramoff, was accused of concealing from federal investigators information about Abramoff's plans to do business with the General Services Administration at the time of the golf trip — in particular, seeking help finding property for his private religious school, Eshkol Academy, and for one of his tribal clients.

Safavian was then GSA chief of staff. Jack Abramoff was a highly influential figure as lobbyist and activist in the Bush administration. The draft report of the House Government Reform Committee said the documents — largely Abramoff's billing records and e-mails — listed lobbying contacts with White House officials over three years, including 10 with top Bush aide Karl Rove.

The report said that of the contacts listed, were described as meetings or other in-person contacts; 71 were described as phone conversations and 69 were e-mail exchanges. In the first ten months of , the Abramoff lobbying team logged almost contacts with the Bush administration. The Department of the Interior has Federal regulatory authority over tribal affairs such as tribal recognition and gaming.

White House and State Department officials described Bush's meeting with Bongo, whose government is regularly accused by the United States of human rights abuses, as routine.

Officials at Gabon's embassy in Washington did not respond to written questions. Susan Ralston , Rove's assistant since , previously worked as an administrative assistant for both Abramoff and Reed. Mahathir insisted that someone unknown to him had paid for the meeting.

Abramoff was identified in the background of a photo taken at the meeting. According to the organization's communications director, John Kartch, the meeting was one of several gatherings with Bush sponsored by ATR. The details of the Kickapoo meeting and a letter dated May 10, , from ATR thanking the Kickapoos for their contribution were revealed to the New York Times in by former council elder Isidro Garza, who with Raul Garza no relation , is under indictment in Texas for embezzling tribal money.

According to Isidro Garza, Abramoff did not say the donation was required to meet Bush; the White House denied any knowledge of the transaction. The photos were found on a site that published many pictures of governmental events, ReflectionsOrders. The owner of the site removed the photos almost immediately when the presence of Abramoff and Bush together was discovered.

An NPR news report from March stated that: Abramoff recently granted a rare press interview to Vanity Fair magazine , where he asserts President Bush and other prominent figures in Washington know him very well. He called them liars for denying contact with him". Chafetz, without the knowledge of Abramoff's attorneys or the federal prosecutors with whom Abramoff had been cooperating.

These interviews — conducted before and during Abramoff's imprisonment — continued until May John McCain and the Demonization of Lobbyist Jack Abramoff was rushed into print prior to the presidential election.

About 14, people work in the dozen casinos along the Mississippi coastline. Each casino has a land-based hotel. All three properties closed Sunday before Katrina struck. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Casinos tally damage in Gulf Coast region Gambling industry may be crippled for months, even years Below: Mississippi casinos hit Open in new window. Most active discussions votes comments.

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