Thursday, January 24, 2008

LATimes: Yes on Gaming Expansion and My Takedown

The Los Angeles Times gives a Yes endorsement on Expanded Gaming.

Here is my analysis of the LATimes editorial which is YES on Props. 94, 95, 96, 97

In an amazingly well thought out, well sourced and compelling editorial, the LATimes gives its endorsement on expanded gaming. Here is their convincing argument conveniently displayed under a YES on Expanded Gaming Banner, paid for by the Big 4 Tribes: There is no reason for the state to back out. Vote yes on Proposition 94, 95, 96 and 97.

OP: The state is NOT backing out. The people of California are having their say. While the ballot measure may have been sponsored by anti-expansion funds, 3,000,000 Californians signed the petitions. It’s OUR propositions now, not horse tracks and other tribes. And, remember, there are over 3,000 Indians who have been forcibly removed from their tribes since the advent of Indian Gaming, by these tribes and others, this is a civil rights issue, as Pechanga should NOT be rewarded for violating the rights of their people.

LAT: All four already were covered by compacts that grant them and other tribes exclusive rights to operate slot machines in California.

OP: So? This is completely different and a NO vote will not change the compacts that the tribes are currently working under. These four tribes will continue to make hundreds of millions of dollars each year. A no vote will not allow an expansion which will make these four tribes the Wal-Mart of gaming.

LAT:The new agreements expand the number of machines and, the tribes expect, the amount of revenue they take in; the agreements provide that 15% to 25% of the take, depending on a complex formula, will be remitted to the state.

OP: A better compact would clearly spell out the formula as to how we get paid. The state should be clear. And, if the state taxes the lottery at 83%, how can they claim that 15% is a good deal? A better deal for the state would be to collect 25-40% of the next 3,000 machines, and reduce that for the next level of machines. We should get more money up front, and if the tribes feel that the extra machines (up to 7,500) are so profitable, let them have those extra at a reduced cost.

LAT: Predictions that the state will reap more than $9 billion from these agreements may be on the rosy side because they are based on assumptions that more gamblers with more money to spend will flock to reservations.

OP: MAY BE on the rosy side? The Legislative Analyst said they will NOT meet these numbers. So then, what is the real number? Should we as voters say, “well I know they say $9 billion, but that isn’t true, so we should vote YES anyway? I think not. For the state to get $9 billion, for our 33,000,000 people, the tribes will get $36 BILLION for its 1800 people! It’s 1800 because the Pechanga tribe has thrown out 25% of their tribe and are keeping another large percentage out via an illegal moratorium. (Against the tribes own constitution and bylaws)

LAT Still, opponents are overplaying their hand. They claim that the tribes have exclusive control over how much to send the state. Not true. The State Gaming Agency will audit each quarterly payment, and although The Times would prefer those audits to be publicly available, we find the audit and dispute procedures acceptable.

OP: As a sovereign government, the tribes can and HAVE kept auditors out. They also have control over what the auditors will get. “Two sets of books?” And THIS STORY says there are still questions of payments

LAT: Voters would be foolish to believe that gambling will rescue the state from its perpetual fiscal crises.

OP: Then why in their first commercials, did the Big 4 tribes insinuate that these deals would wipe out our deficit? They won’t, only being a half-penny’s worth to our budget, while increasing the social ills to our citizens. And besides, there is a Bush recession coming. Still think that the people will have all this money to spend on gambling? And there is still the unanwered questions as to what happened to the compacts when they were sent to the Feds. It smells fishy.
See Captains Quarters for more

LAT: But it does bring in revenue while also bringing much-needed wealth to impoverished indigenous Californians

OP: Don’t make me laugh. The Pechanga Indians are currently making $40,000 per month, that’s $480, 000 per year, which could TRIPLE thanks to them taking away per capita from the 25% of their tribe that was eliminated. And, the tribe is keeping rightful members out, via an unconstitutional (Pechanga Constitutions) moratorium. Also, the Pechanga tribe, among others have tried to keep smaller tribes from getting compacts. Ask yourselves this question: Who will gain more power with our legislators, rich tribes getting richer, or impoverished tribes waiting for their chance at the table?

Vote NO to Pechanga and NO to Expanded Gaming.

Please see these sites to learn more:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Patterico calls this paper the Dog Trainer.

Does the LA Times have anyone's respect anymore?

Good job in getting Mabuhay, the will be a voting force.