The lobbying efforts to get Online Poker legalized in the country are only getting stronger. Poker lobbyists are backed by the multi-million dollar offshore gambling companies which are based in Antigua, Malta and other foreign sanctuaries. The lobbying efforts have been successful to some extent with the Obama administration agreeing to delay the implementation of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) til June 2010. This has given some reprieve to online gaming operators who argue that if gaming is regularized in the United States it could generate billions of dollars of tax for the Administration. However not all are convinced. Opponents argue that online gambling would increase crime rate, threaten children and increase the overall percentage of Americans addicted to gambling. Some of the major opponents are National Football League, Focus on the Family and Republican Senators like Jon Kyl from Arizona.The primary support for legalizing online gambling are from Rep. Barney Frank (Mass.) and other Democrats who are leaving no stone unturned to legalize online gambling in the United States. Till this time online gaming lobbyists have spent more than $4 million in lobbying efforts to convince lawmakers that prohibition of online gaming is not a great idea. Other supporters include former Republican senator Alfonse M. D’Amato (N.Y.), chairman of the Poker Players Alliance who is the Chairman of the Poker Players Alliance. The Poker Players Alliance has 1.2 million members and funded by the Interactive Gaming Council, a Canada-based trade group for offshore gambling firms. John Papas, Executive Director of the Poker Players Alliance feels that prohibition is not going to succeed in any of the objectives for which it is intended. Another strong supporter of online gambling is Richard A. Gephardt whose firm is lobbying for PokerStars, a large poker gambling firm based in the Isle of Man.The opposition to online gaming is also very vociferous and strong. It includes the four major US sports leagues, religious groups and some casinos. Their argument states that online gambling and poker will take gambling right into the living rooms of Americans which is a dangerous proposition. It is fair as long as gambling is confined to ‘brick and mortar’ casinos or a lottery store. In US online gambling is illegal under a 1961 law which was focused on bookies using telephone lines for taking bets. The UIGEA is aimed to iron out any ambiguities that are present with Internet gambling. The new law will prevent banks from accepting credit card payments, checks or any other form of electronic payment related to online gambling. However, the hard lobbying by Poker Alliance and even the financial institutions has put it on hold til June ’10. Though the Obama administration is officially neutral on the issue, it needs to be seen which direction the boat sails after June.
There is no magical cure for gambling addiction and there is no one particular medication that can actually stop and individuals’ impulse to gamble. If you surf the net you can find various small studies that have shown that certain medications can curb the urge to gamble. Results of these studies have not shown any major significant indications.Gambling is a behavioral addiction which is also known as an “impulse disorder”. It is a learned behavior, even though many biological influences have been shown to effect gambling behavior.Many significant studies have shown that the drugs actually prescribed to patients with Parkinson’s disease have actually increased gambling behavior severely in these patients who never had a gambling problem in the first place. Because these drugs known as “dopamine -agonists”increased the available supply of dopamine in the brain, strong conclusions have been made regarding the role of dopamine in compulsive gambling behavior.If an individual with a gambling addiction suffers from depression or anxiety, medication may be prescribed to treat these underlying problems. Sometimes a physician will prescribe an anti-depressant that can improve mood and curb the urge for self-destructive and addictive gambling.Medications may be prescribed for gambling addiction, however, it is my belief that an overall lifestyle change including healthy diet, self-care, exercise, and good sleep habits can help as well. Every unique situation is different, and it is a good idea for an individual with a gambling addiction to visit his or her physician for an expert opinion.Sometimes we all look for that magic pill that will make a huge change in our lives without taking personal responsibility for that change. An individual with a gambling problem needs to make life changes in all areas of his or her life to truly beat a gambling problem. It is a lifelong process of change that will solidify a good, healthy recovery.
Human beings have engaged in betting since antiquity. For a long time gambling was an activity that took place only in exclusive casinos. Not everyone could afford or access these places. Online gambling, which became a reality around 1995, allowed gambling to be a past time for many more people. Software that simulates games of chance had been in existence for a while. The use of internet became common place and inexpensive and was crucial to the establishment of gambling websites. Another necessary factor was the mechanism to make and receive payments online in a secure manner. The final piece of the jigsaw puzzle was the creation of authorities that licensed and regulated gambling operators.Once gambling websites were established around 1995 they began to proliferate quickly. The period 2000 to 2006 was a boom time for the online gambling industry. This is because online gambling offers many advantages over land based gambling. The biggest advantage is that players can engage in online gambling from home. All that they need is a home computer or lap top with an Internet connection. Players no longer have to spend money to travel to the casinoNo spending time and money to travel to casinos or going on holidays to Las Vegas. Players can come home and immediately log on to their favorite online gambling site.Online gambling is exceptionally convenient for people who are afraid of posh casinos, with well dressed staff efficiently conducting operations and knowledgeable players who are proficient at the art and science of gambling. Internet gambling is an anonymous activity. Many of these games are played solo with the online casino software. Even in multiple player games there is no need to be face to face with other players. Most of players use nicknames and no one need know from which part of the world they are from. They can make their mistakes without fear of being made fun of and can learn the ropes at their own rate without worrying about losing a lot of money. And formal dressing can be dispensed with.Another major advantage of gambling websites is that it delivers greater average returns to the player. The costs involved in setting up and operating internet gambling sites is much lower than that for land casinos. Because there is no real estate, there are no expensive buildings and minimal staff to pay. Thus making gambling sites do not need to make a lot of money to cover their costs and provide a return to their owners. Because of the competition in the online gambling industry, the savings are handed on to the players in the form of larger average returns. This is particularly evident in online slots where the average return is around 95%. Where as land based slots the average return may be well below 90%.Online gambling today covers a wide range of product verticals. Sports betting can be conducted online. Players have access to the most current odds and can even engage in live betting through online gambling. Poker is yet another well-liked form of gambling. Players can play both fast cash games and in online tournaments. Online casinos offer gambling on blackjack, baccarat, roulette, craps, video poker, online slots and other games. Other forms of online gambling can include bingo and financial betting.