Friday, August 22, 2008

'games of chance'

Among the many things deviously invented and the many words deliberately invoked to hide the viciousness of gambling and to assiduously cover up its deceitful nature and intention, nothing beats the long perpetuated nonchalantly invoked phrase “Games of Chance.” This is why even the infamous and infectious government downright entity is ridiculously called “Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation.”

The truth is that no form of gambling is either a “game” or any venture of “chance.” No matter how one looks at it, a game basically means fun, entertainment, pastime and it does not require much learning to know that a “chance” is just that, i.e., a possibility, a potential, a prospect.

The 2008 Olympics amply say just that.

They are games wherein athletes take their chances of winning. There is a lot of cheering, clapping and shouting on the part of the on-lookers. Theirs is much joy and fun. On the other hand, the athletes all try their best to win first, second or third – with none of them sure of really winning until so declared by the judges.

This is why the different forms and designs of gambling can be anything by honest to goodness “Games of Chance.” And this is true for the so-called “legal” and “illegal” gambling.

The title is not only a falsity but more particularly a deception. While in games, practically any participant has a chance of winning, in gambling, it’s the capitalists who are sure winners. And no matter who are the gamblers who might win and how much these could win, one thing however is definite and defined, viz, the gambling operators rake in much, much money ever. It is enough to know how many billion of pesos PAGCOR cleans their clients off every quarter of the year. (Never mind where these billions go, what they are spent for, who gets big chunks of it).

Even the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, which has not long since pitifully engaged in gambling such as Small Town Lottery (STL), has records to show how much money is taken from presumably poor bettors.

For example, in the Province of Albay alone for the month of April 2008, the STL “Gross Sales” amounted to no less than Phil. Pesos 12,968,713.00. And this amount excludes even its Fourth District where STL appears to be officially non-existent.

Only a measly 10% is taken from the said total shares. This includes all “expenses” for the gambling operation, all “prizes” included. The big 90% goes everywhere else in the Province. The said multi-million amount of money, of course, in no way includes the likewise millions of dirty money also taken away from the poor bettors of “Jueteng” that is an infallible accompaniment of STL.

Wherefore, various gambling formed are “Games of Chance,” as fondly said: Tell it to the marines!

+OVCruz, DD
August 22, 2008