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Casino Owner Sheldon Adelson Says He’s “Morally Opposed” To Online Gambling

Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire who made his fortune in Las Vegas casinos and became a public figure during last year’s Presidential race for the funds he donated in support of Newt Gingrich’s campaign for President, insists that his opposition to a potential competitor to his casino operations is based purely on morality:

Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson is “morally opposed” to online gambling, calling it a “toxin” that will rob the young and poor.

“It’s a train wreck, it’s a toxicity, it’s a cancer waiting to happen,” Adelson said today on Bloomberg Television’s “Money Moves With Deirdre Bolton.”

Adelson, who controls the world’s biggest casino company by market value, also outlined his objections to online gambling in an opinion piece in Forbes yesterday. The Internet betting option is gaining momentum as U.S. states seek to tax a business forecast to generate billions of dollars. In February,New Jersey became the most-populous U.S. state to legalize online gambling, following Nevada and Delaware.

“Younger people, people who can’t afford it, can gamble while they’re on a subway or a bus or a passenger in a car, or while they’re lying in bed in their birthday suits on their smartphone or on their iPad,” Adelson said. “What is the purpose of putting a casino on everybody’s kitchen table?”

The fact that online gaming is a serious competitor to Adelson’s bread and butter, of course, has nothing to do with the position that he’s taking.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Let me see…. A guy who has made a fortune off of old people spending money on nothing is now opposed to other people making money off of old people spending money on nothing….

    Let me take a guess, he is a Republican, isn’t he?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 3

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Really, there is nothing more morally bankrupt than a casino owner.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  3. @OzarkHillbilly: Better: he was a Democrat who became a Republican once Democratic policies – such as the tax rate – bit him in the ass.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  4. While the article is blatantly self-serving, it should be noted that Adelson does not actually say he’s “morally opposed” to online gambling, so it’s not quite as hypocritical as the Bloomberg article’s apparently fabricated quote suggests.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  5. Tony W says:

    @Stormy Dragon: Actually it is an exact quote.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Christopher Bowen: That is better.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Sam Malone says:

    The only morality Republicans are familiar with is money.
    Online gambling could potentially hurt his bottom line.
    Therefore Adelson is morally opposed to online gambling.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. @Tony W:

    Except it’s not an exact quote. I was thinking about posting something about the article on another forum and I wanted to get a larger quote, so I went to the Forbes article and did a text search. He never writes “morally”, “moral”, or any close variation of the word. The closest thing in the actual piece is a bit where Adelson says he’s “adamantly opposed”.

    So then I though, “Well, maybe the quote is from someplace else and Bloomberg just did a bad job sourcing it”. So I googled “Adelson morally opposed”. The only places that comes up is the Bloomberg article or places quoting the Bloomberg article.

    So as I said, it appears Bloomberg made up that quote, which appears unnecessary since Adelson’s op-ed is bad enough without embellishing it with imaginary quotes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  9. Gromitt Gunn says:

    @Stormy Dragon: I did something similar (I did a text search on the editorial) before I realized that the article was quoting a TV appearance, not the editorial.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  10. al-Ameda says:

    Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson is “morally opposed” to online gambling, calling it a “toxin” that will rob the young and poor.

    “It’s a train wreck, it’s a toxicity, it’s a cancer waiting to happen,” Adelson said today on Bloomberg Television’s “Money Moves With Deirdre Bolton.”

    Hasn’t Sheldon Adelson wasted enough oxygen already?

    So, it’s fine if people come to his casino in person to impoverish or further diminish themselves, but not okay if those same people do the same at his competitions’ online casinos.

    You can see why he supports Gingrich – they are partners in hypocrisy and phony morality.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  11. Tony W says:

    @Stormy Dragon: Fair enough I stand corrected. Serves me right as I didn’t dig deeper than the first link. The guy is still a jackass though :)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  12. @Stormy Dragon: Thanks!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  13. @al-Ameda: Online gambling opens up gambling to people who can’t afford it, just as State Lotteries do. It’s very disturbing to watch persons buy several or more lottery tickets and then watch them get into an old, decrepit car: they’re poor and are gambling addicts.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

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