Carl's Casino Quotes & Commentary

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In the course of human events it becomes inevitable to stand up and take action.  Some actions require the dissemination of information to inform and educate the masses.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is at a crossroads.  First there was tha Mashpee Wampanoag Middleborough Resort Casino that has failed under a February US Supreme Court ruling.  But they and the Aquinnah Tribe of Martha's Vineyard stubbornly and continually attempt to hit the jackpot vying for an Indian run casino in Southeastern MA. 
MA Governor Deval Patrick and the Democrat led House and Senate leadership have passed a gaming law to bring 3 commercial resort casinos and 1 slot parlor.  The battle is continual against such stupidity.
I hope to display and comment upon effectively quotations from various individuals their convictions and attitudes on this pressing subject.  May it educate, inform and entertain you thoroughly. 

If you would like to leave a comment about a particular post, please feel free to e-mail me at, be respectful and sign as how you want to be known and I'll publish your comment.  Posting a comment is 100% my call.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Confessions of a Gambling Consultant

"Gamblers like to smoke and drink. You've got three co-dependent bad behaviors that go together. The joy of playing is that you're focused on the game. All of life's hassles disappear, and the rest of the world stops for a little bit."Harvey Perkins, a senior vice president at Spectrum Gaming, a gambling consulting company in Linwood, N.J.

Take it from the race horse's mouth.  If anyone would know what gambling really is, it would be a consultant for the gambling industry.  The self confessed gambler and smoker, Harvey Perkins, knows.  You are delusional, if you are a gambler, like he.  And, Gov. Deval Patrick wants a delusional person writing a study on how great it would be to have a three casinos in Massachusetts?  Also stated in this article:

"But once you have to get up for the desire to have a cigarette, that's it, you're leaving the zone. You're pulled back into reality. And it's easy to walk away."

This whole debate comes from the theory that Illinois gambling revenue is down because of the the new smoking ban just taken place.  It is possible, though as explained by some, it is the economy, stupid.  Either way, the addictive behavior of gambling takes a person out of reality.  What a way to live your life?  Throw your life away at a casino and nail it shut with coffin nails.  Congratulations Mr. Perkins for making a living out of your own destructive behaviors.  And, you want to spread the delusion away from reality to here.  No thank you, Mr. Perkins.  We don't need no stink'n casinos.  Stay in reality and you're cured, safe and secure.

2:30 pm est

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Lipstick On A Pig Casino
"These actions stem from failed regulation, reckless management, and a casino culture on Wall Street that has crippled one of the most important companies in America." US Senator John McCain, Presidential Candidate
Is it any wonder that what is happening this week in the stock market is comparable to casinos.  Is it any wonder that casnio stocks are taking some of the biggest tumblesBad investments all around.  Too many view the stock market as a high stakes, high return money maker instead of an investment (shared ownership) in growing vibrant companies with predictable returns.  Play the market like Lehman Brothers played with mortgage financing bubble and you lose.  Hope of casino revenues to solve state or town fiscal mismanagement and you lose.  Hope on walking into a casino with more money than you walked out with is a fools gamble.  You lose.  The stock market is supposed to be an investment.  Monopoly is a game.  Casinos is gambling.  Failed regulation, reckless management and an addictive casino culture cripples people, families and communities.
I always love your blogs.  The quotes you post are pure gold and your commentaries are priceless!  Your right, and John McCain is right....the stock market is an investement in our future, not only a personal one but a national one and it is not a game.  This entire Country is in a financal mess and reckless investing or relying on casino revenue will not fix the problem. 
Great blog!
Anonymous said:
Great Analogy! 
The promise of fabulous returns for a pittance is too inviting for most who don't understand the 'fundamentals.'  Subprime mortgages allowed many to be seduced by the no money down, interest only, ARMs, no documentation creative mortgage schemes that swelled the balancesheets and cooked the books.
We got homeowners into overvalued homes they couldn't afford and the ranks of the middle class now homeless are swelling.
Casino gambling, particularly slots, are promoted and devised along the same formula, paying out small amounts, just enough to convince that the pot of gold is just around the corner.
Just keep feeding that slot machine and you're sure to strike it rich!!!
2:47 pm est

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Calling Treasurer Tim Cahill and Gov. Deval Patrick

"Gambling is risky, it's stagnant. It's unpredictable and it's not the best way to balance the budget." - Incoming Florida House Speaker Ray Sansom

Okay boys, lets take a lesson from a state that just recently added gambling to their state revenue mix.  Lottery sales are down in FL.  Here is more form this Gainsville Sun editorial:

For years the "enhancement" of public schools, universities and community colleges has rested on the sale of lottery tickets. But it turns out that the urge to gamble isn't eternal as assumed. Because of stagnant sales, officials say the state will have $48 million less in enhancement funds this year than anticipated. Ticket sales in July alone were $21 million less than in the previous July.

Treasurer Tim, take notice.  The Mass State Lottery is your baby.  Tim tell the gov.  Somebody ought to tell Gov. Devalue this.  In his zeal to give property tax payers relief, Devalue would have the state depend even more on gambling revenues, and not just from the lottery.  We tell you, now you go tell him.  Let's impress upon him not to make the same mistake FL has.  Let's not bring back Devalue's failed resort casino plans, ever.

10:12 am est

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

An Exercise In Futility

“Please allow me to articulate several reasons why we believe the immediate commencement of compact negotiations makes sense,” – Shawn Hendricks Sr., Chairman of the Tribal Council of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe


Please allow me to articulate several reasons why I and so many others believe the immediate commencement of compact negotiations is premature.  In a continual exercise in futility, the Middleborough BOS is sending a letter of support for negotiations to the governor also. You can read all of the Tribe’s letter here.


“We are gratified by your support for the concept of destination resort gaming as an economic development tool for Massachusetts.  The Tribe wholeheartedly agrees. We are also gratified by your support for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe.”


I would say that both the governor and the Tribe wholehearted disagree.  The Tribe does not want commercial casinos to compete with their proposed sovereign Indian casino and the governor does not want competition for his commercial casinos.  Just the fact that the Patrick administration has formally opposed to the Middleborough site to the Department of the Interior should give you a clue to this.  The only benefit for the Tribe in regards to commercial casinos is the access to class III gambling.  Having carbon copied the speaker of the house Sal DiMasi should be concern for both the Tribe and the governor.  He opposes both commercial or Indian casinos.  Good luck with that.


“The Tribe, with the support of its development consultant, has assembled over 500 acres of land in beautiful and centrally located Middleborough with easy access to I-495.”


Beautiful now and completely made gaudy if your world class casino goes in which currently has no easy access to I-495 if you are one of 30,000 new cars on the road.  There are currently only to routes from the 500 plus acres to I-495.  RT 105, which is a small, curvy 2 lane road for a couple of miles until it reaches I-495.  There is no commitment from the Tribe to improve the road which would be a major disruption for commuters and home owners who live along it.  RT 44, on which the land is adjacent to it has this wonderful thing called a rotary just before I-495 that is already a mess.  Planning for a change has been in the works for years.  $170 million is a nice chunk of change, but given the way construction costs are, would it ever be enough?  Why would the administration commit to a binding amount in the compact with the price tag expected to rise in the future.  Those in the legislature who would have to actually allocate the funds from the budget would be reluctant to fork over the cash.  As one state rep told me last year, “They can go pound tar!”


“That application (to the BIA for land-into-trust) is proceeding on schedule and we are confident of an approval in the first or second quarters of 2009.  We believe that this schedule could be expedited with the state support.”


Although a state/tribal compact signed could reduce time spent by about six months just for writing it up, a major problem in going at it early is that it is non-binding and can be withdrawn prior to DOI approval.  Circumstances could change prior.  Of the compacts I have seen they are very specific in terms of location, size, $$ amounts etc.  The Aquinnah have a compact with the state.  Conditions that existed when it was signed have change considerably and render it useless today.


“Our expectation of a fast track decision is grounded in reality and precedent.”


I label this under wishful thinking and falsehoods.  There is no real precedent here.  Their application asks for TWO initial reservations, which the BIA has called “problematic”. This has NEVER been asked for before. The Mashpee land does not appear to have issues, but as I will explain further later, Middleborough does.  The application is under the new guidelines for initial reservations.  The hurdles for this land are higher than before, especially the 25 mile limit away from the tribal center, Mashpee.  The land is over 30 miles.  Just too far away.


“The BIA has concluded its local scoping hearings in the EIS process…”


This is false.  As stated last week, the EIS has not even been released in draft form.  The BIA knows when something is a draft and isn’t going to sign off on anything until it is a completed EIS.  Something Mr. Hendricks has already displayed some confusion.  This is going to take months and still requires 2 more public comment periods.


“…the Tribe has submitted extensive documentation prepared by a nationally respected anthropologist substantiating its cultural and historic ties with the town of Middleborough.”


As “respected” Ms. Grabowski may be, her analysis is a broad brush of Wampanoag history with sprinkles of Mashpee mixed in.  The Mashpee Tribe is only one small portion of Wampanoag history and has weak connections to Middleborough.  But even worse is what Ms. Grabowski leaves out is that one of her own researchers she sights concludes that the land specific to the Middleborough site was never even Wampanoag territory, let alone Mashpee.  According to Historic Approach to Titicut, by Maurice Robbins, the 26 Men Purchase of 1661 where the land sits was acquired from the Massachusett Tribe Sachem Wampatuck.  This cuts into any claim of historical ties.


“Most importantly, the BIA has never rejected an application for an initial reservation.”


That may be so, but as stated above.  No tribe has ever asked for two initial reservations.  This is purely unique.


“The Tribe has already publicly committed to substantial matters of importance to the citizens of Massachusetts…”


Verbal commitments mean nothing, especially when the person who initially made these commitments is the confirmed liar and convicted rapist, Glenn Marshall.  He is still behind the scenes of this project and is the principal signer of the Tribe’s application.  There are those who are still waiting for promises fulfilled by the Tribe.  Until it is in writing and the promises acted upon, it is all hot air.


“The Tribe is planning for the development of a Class II gaming facility which requires no Commonwealth approval or payments to the Commonwealth.”


Plan all you want for your bingo hall.  Your investors TCAM LLC have only signed off for only class III according to documents you provided with the application.  What investment bank will finance a Destination Resort Bingo Hall?  Where will the financing come from since Kerzner & Wolman will only commit to a full fledged casino?


“Nothing prevents the Tribe and the Commonwealth from entering into a Tribal/State compact at this time even though we acknowledge that final approval will not come until after the land is taken into trust or simultaneously therewith.”


Like stated before, it would be meaningless.  One thing that IGRA in Section 2710(d)(3)(A) is that it states a compact may go in if  “Any tribe having jurisdiction over tribal lands upon which class III gaming activity is being conducted, or is to be conducted, shall request…” negotiations for a compact with the state.  The definition of “tribal lands” under IGRA is “(A) all lands within the limits of any Indian reservation; and (B) any lands title to which is either held in trust by the United States for the benefit of any Indian tribe or held individual or held by any Indian tribe or individual subject to restriction by the United States against alienation and over which an Indian tribe exercises governmental authority.”  The Mashpee have no reservation and no land into trust with in the US.  Any compact is no compact according to the DOI without reservation or Indian governmental jurisdiction.  TCAM LLC owns or has options to purchase the land.  The Mashpee Tribe has no such land ownership in Middleborough.


“We believe that a Mashpee Wampanoag tribal casino can and will produce superior results for Massachusetts, as is being proven every day in Connecticut.


What is proven daily in CT is low paying jobs, increased crime, no economic engine, greater burden of school systems and increased gambling addiction.  Any revenues funded to the state go to mitigation that is woefully inadequate.  Thanks for the promise of “superior results.”


“No matter what ultimately happens with the negotiations, please know that it is the Tribe’s intent to operate America’s most successful casino resort in Middleborough.”


Is this a threat or a pie in the sky promise?  Last look at the plans submitted to the BIA don’t show a resort casino that would rival Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun.  Is the Tribe changing the plans submitted?  We have heard this largest and most successful bit since the beginning, but the plans don’t back it up.  I can only conclude this as a threat to attempt to scare the governor to talk with the Tribe.  Or, they only down graded the plans for easier BIA approval and community acceptance.  It ain’t working.  The governor says no and threatening to operate without negotiations hasn’t worked so far for the Kickapoo in Texas, has it.


“We look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience.”


You got your answer quicker than you thought.  No compact until you have land into trust.
Gladys said:
I can't believe some of the BS I read in that letter!!  Thank you for your exceptional analysis!  Biting sarcasm was a bonus!  Keep up the great work - it is much appreciated.
Anonymous said:
Well done, Mr. Carl! I believe you very simply explained the issues involved with the tribe's letter to Guv.
And you can't beat the Guv's response, blabbity, blabbity, you don't own the land, your BIA app aint approved.  Come back 'n' see me sometime.
What is more alarming is the willingness to accept such sketchy plans that clearly include property takings. Since property taking requires a 2/3 town meeting vote, that seems pretty important. Since the TMFH failed to gather a 2/3 vote, even with all of the voting irregularities, that seems pretty important.
If any other developer produced such vague plans, hyped as super duper colossal world's mega-casino, with the lack of details, they would be labelled some pretty
offensive names. The first that comes to mind is flim-flam.
One wonders at what point the investors will be forthcoming with detailed plans. Has Hell frozen over yet?
Guv clearly sees the flim-flam on the wall and Carcieri v Kempthorne writ large. There is nothing to indicate this crowd can be trusted.
1:42 pm est

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Answer Is...
"Until we know the extent to which the Bureau of Indian Affairs approves the Tribe's land-in-trust application, and the Tribe's jurisdiction over the land located in Middleborough is established, any agreements we might reach would be purely hypothetical." - Governor Deval Patrick's chief legal counsel, Ben Clements
It appears that the governor is sticking to his guns and feels no need to do something that in essence would be a waste of time and resources.  As long as the land is not placed in trust, a compact is meaningless.  Noted before, it could take well over the tribe's stated time table for the secretary of the DOI to approve the LIT.  Why bind a compact so early and possibly have the surrounding conditions and circumstances change and have the state committed to a short change in revenue or costly expenditures?  I'm glad to see this common sense decision by Gov. Patrick.  In the alternate universe of the casino friends, they are glum.
Anonymous said:
And I'm glad to see the Governor begin to deal with reallity. What a shame the Middleboro Bored didn't do the same.  Instead of Mr. Bond's bulldozing, maybe he should have done the same.
Gladys Said,
There is just no logical reason to begin negotiations in advance, for land that isn't even owned, while market conditions remain uncertain, and gambling is still illegal, for a project without final plans, while strong legal challenges still exist, and true monetary impacts remain a mystery.
You are the Middleboro Board of Selectman!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
7:50 pm est

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Joe: Why Always Me?

The Mashpee Wampanoag tribe says a letter floated yesterday requesting official compact negotiations with the state about a proposed casino was just a draft, and tribal leaders are now revising it to include a representative of the town of Middleboro at the bargaining table. - Brockton Enterprise 8/4/2008 (emphasis mine)


Poor Joe "Why is it every time I do a story on the Middleborough, casino things change overnight?" Shortsleeve of WBZ Ch4.  This is the second time he has produced a news story on the Mashpee Tribe wanting to conduct negotiations with the Patrick administration and it turns out not to be as correct as reported.  I don't necessarily blame Mr. Shortsleeve for these failings.  It is the people he is dealing with that bring the whole story into question.  You have a Governor who wants commercial casinos to bring in revenue for the state at the expense of the poor and you have an Indian tribe with foreign investors wanting to line their pockets at the expense of the poor.  Both will say anything to push their casino agenda.


Poor Joe does a piece Tuesday which is interesting to watch.  If you watch the video version, it is amusing to see Mr. Hendricks eyeing Joe to get the camera over to watch him sign the letter to the governor that DOES NOT include any Middleborough representation.  He was supposed to "hand deliver" it yesterday, but then came the complaints of Adam Bond same day, as I posted yesterday.  Now all of a sudden, this letter was only "a draft".  Please, Shawn, cut the crap.  You might be able to placate some of the people with that act of yours, but not all the people.  You mean to tell me you went on regional television only to sign a draft letter to give to the governor?  At the Bingo Hall ground breaking are you going to bring a Tonka truck?  I doubt you had any real intention to include Middleborough.  You got caught and now you are back pedaling.  Instead of saying that you were wrong and made a mistake, you decided to cover up instead.


Note to Joe Shortsleeve:  Think twice before interviewing these cast of characters again.  You are better than that.





Anonymous said:

Nice job, Carl.
It always seems as if Joe Shortsleeve is so anxious to get his EXCLUSIVE STORY, that he overlooks the facts, the law, the pending Supreme Court case (Carcieri v Kempthorne), the changes in regulations, the BIA process and reality. You didn't hear him raise a single one of those issues. Instead, he referenced a comment by the Governor from last June. Wasn't that before CFO pointed out the reality of the issue to the Governor and the media?
The only issue Joe seemed capable of raising was the slot revenue to the state. Doesn't Rhode Island get 50%? Joe needs to read your blogs before drinking the KoolAid.
And Joe, you need to wipe the egg off your face. That's the problem with the media these days. Short(sleeve) on facts! Casino Facts, that is.
As a regular viewer, Joe, you need to get with the Casino Facts
and do your homework before recording a photo op for Shawn
At least the Governor has finally caught on. Maybe he'll even meet with the Regional Task Force one day. After all, they only represent a significant voting block.
9:31 am est

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Tears In His Coffee
A: To come home to roost.
It appears that the Mashpee Tribe is pulling a fast one on the town of Middleboro, again.  And guess who has taken notice.  Yes, you guessed it, Middleborough selectman chair Adam Bond.  He's complaining on his Coffee Shop Talk Blog about being left out of the process.  Gee, what comes around, goes around.  Middleborough residents get the shaft when asked to thoroughly review the Inter-Governmental Agreement.  Neighboring towns are told they are not invited to the wedding.  Now the tribe avoids giving consideration to the town they signed the IGA with and goes to Governor Patrick alone for compact negotiations.  A bride left alone crying at the alter.  I have to say, "I told you so."  We knew this was going to happen.  I remember hear, though I forget where, that the tribe said if Middleborough wanted more money, "they" would need to go to the state and lobby for funds like all the other communities for compact negotiation funds.  They have already been promised their "fair" share.  I don't know if Mr. Bond has a leg to stand on, even if the regs or the IGA say he is right to be part of the negotiations.  What is he going to do?  Sue the tribe with money bags Kerzner & Wolman backing them up.  Somehow, I believe that Mr. Bond will get a phone call of reassurance from Shawn Hendricks and all will be fine and dandy.
And this just in.  As predicted, Shawn and Adam kiss and make up.  All it takes is a little casino Kool-Aid to wash the tears away.
3:23 pm est

Pushing Rope
"We'd like to start the negotiations and get the ball rolling, yesterday in an interview.  I see no reason why the state wouldn't sit and talk with us." - Mashpee tribal chairman Shawn W. Hendricks Sr.

Pushing rope is not a very productive exercise, unless you have someone on the other end pulling for you.  That is what the tribe is looking for.  Someone to pull their casino rope for them to move things along. As reported here, here, here and here, the tribe is hand delivering a letter to the governor to start negotiations to help move their stalled casino plans for Middleborough.  Although one of their spokespersons, Gayle Andrews, states that the tribe's application to put the land into federal trust is in the "final stages", it is apparent they are misleading the press and the public.  My friend Carver Chick gives a great overview on how hard it is going to be for the tribe to accomplish their goal.  But, the time line to start construction by 1st quarter of 2009 is just pie in the sky.  Let's see,

  1. It took 5 months from recognition to application.
  2. 7 months to the first public BIA hearing. 
  3. It has been 6 months and counting for the second hearing for the draft EIS with a 30 day comment period.
  4. Then the BIA will have to wait for the tribe's consultants to answer all the unanswered questions the draft EIS didn't give and submit a final EIS with another one month comment period.
  5. The National Indian Gamnig Commission will give a recommendation.
  6. The BIA will make a recommendation and finally the Secretary of the DOI will rule Yea or Nay for land into trust.
  7. This does not include any law suits that would be filed by concerned groups (including the state) to halt a ruling that the BIA and the tribe did not meet all the requirements as outlined in IGRA.  Which could hold it up for years.

It has already been 18 months since the process began (1-3) and all of a sudden by their assertions in just six months from now the shovels will be digging up the wet lands (4-7).  It is a scare tactic that still holds no water.  Hendricks wants the governor to pull their rope for them, speeding up the process.  If the governor does what he said before about not going into negotiations until land is in trust (we are talking years now), then Hendricks had better not hold his breath, because the casino would be a long time coming, even with a compact.  Patrick could negotiate as long as he wants to also scare the gullible populous that a casino is coming regardless, it is still the legislature's call for final approval.  With DiMasi in charge, good luck pushing rope, Shawn.  By the way, the governor is opposed to your casino in Middleborough.  That is why the state filed with the DOI against the project.  Is that a good enough reason to not talk to you, Shawn.


Anonymous said-

You made me dizzy with the bureaucratic delays that
have the potential to get lost on someone's desk or ...
a decision by the Supreme Court that makes this
project moot. The Governor's filing with DOI didn't seem
to leave anything out, including the Chapter land that
provides the Town with the Right of First Refusal.
Did it seem that there was a frenzy of activity and
articles and misinformation that never once quoted
Mr. Bond? Were his feelings were hurt because
no reporter called for his comment and he just needed
to see his name in print again? Wasn't he
the leader of the band? Does the media now believe he's
And let's not forget that the State Reps don't want a
Tribal Casino that's in the wrong location, impacts the
rest of the towns they represent beyond the ability
of the state to mitigate regardless of any compact,
and would further gridlock a region that's already
The media blitz reminded me of Macbeth. Full of
Sound and Fury, Signifying Nothing.
1:25 pm est

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Inflation Abounds
No, I am not talking about the economy.  Now that the price of gas is going down at least there is some relief in that area.  But when it comes to projected casino revenue.  There is never a shortage of inflation.  What happened with Deval Patrick's guestimation and the then "non-independent" Spectrum Group Report is the same story coming from Kansas.  Kansa is right now is in full casino lust and right know can't see the forest for the trees.
"Those willing to slog through hundreds of pages of arcane econometrics and consultant-speak gobbledygook and graphs will eventually arrive at a not-surprising bottom-line chart that suggests Kansas is unlikely to collect the estimated $200 million in annual gambling taxes that state officials think they’re going to rake in." - RICK ALM, The Kansas City Star, Final Kansas casino reports reveal no surprises
The concept of inflating revenues appears to be common ailment amongst the governments who would just love to have casinos to redistribute wealth from hard working Americans and given to casino investors and state coffers.  They have to inflate revenues in order to dupe the public to thinking it is a good thing for them.
Another interesting note comes from the above piece is Mr. Alm's perception of one of the proposed investors for casinos in Kansas, Leg Sun LLC.
"John R. Mills, a business professor at the University of Nevada,... (is) less comfortable, however, with Pinnacle and with the Leg Sun LLC partnership that includes Connecticut’s Mohegan Tribe and five investors in Kansas City-based RED Development, which developed the Legends shopping and entertainment district north of the speedway."
And there is good reason to be uncomfortable.  Mohegan Sun, part of Leg Sun LLC, is backed by none other than Sol Kerzner and Les Wolman through Mohegan Sun.  These guys are everywhere and their reputation for making people and the financial investors uncomfortable follows them where ever they go.  Hard luck puts cloud over casino group.  It is too bad that the Middleborough Selectman didn't do some reading up on who they were dealing last year.  It was Kerzner & Wolman dealing the cards and obviously Middleborough didn't realize they were being dealt a hand from the bottom of the deck.
3:38 pm est

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