A Free Thought Project

Betting and Gambling: The Last Thing You Need To Hear

Men of action are favoured by the goddess of good luck. The Richest Man in Babylon

 

I have thought and postponed writing about this issue severally. But it’s coming out as something that is impossible to ignore. How can it be ignored when it is everywhere, almost omnipresent? On television and radio, 50% of the ads are about betting and gambling. When browsing, these ads keep showing up. Whatsapp groups are filled with spammers who claim to be selling fixed matches (I have no idea what a fixed matce is). Even some notorious telecom companies keep sending promotional  messages about betting.

Finally, everyone is doing it; not just teens but even mature adults with families.

Why it bothers me is the effects it has. I have witnessed parent-child relationships break because of it, couples break up, families slide into poverty, individuals drown in debts, depression and some even take their lives because of betting.

“To  ignore the  gaming  table  would  be  to  overlook  an  instinct  common  to  most  men,  the  love  of  taking  a  chance with  a small  amount  of  silver  in  the hope  of  winning  much  gold.” The Richest Man in Babylon.

The desire to make huge profits from a small investment is universal. But what distinguishes whether or not to make an investment is the risk involved. Some investments are too risky. Such is betting. Even the least clever person can tell that betting is a high risk game, with the chances of losing always higher. But our brains don’t work logically (I’m not sure yet whether that’s an advantage or disadvantage).

Those who place bets have no control or influence over the outcome. There’s nothing like hardwork, smartness or experience: it’s simply fate that decided.

“What  reason  have  we  to  feel  the  good  goddess  would take  that  much  interest  in  any  man’s  bet  upon  a  horse  race?  To  me  she  is  a  goddess  of  love  and  dignity whose  pleasure  it  is  to  aid  those  who  are  in  need  and  to  reward  those  who  are  deserving.  I  look  to  find her,  not  at  the  gaming  tables  or  the  races  where  men  lose  more  gold  than  they  win  but  in  other  places where  the doings of  men  are  more  worthwhile  and  more worthy  of  reward. “In  tilling  the  soil,  in  honest  trading,  in  all  of  man’s  occupations,  there  is  opportunity  to  make  a profit  upon  his  effect… But,  when  a  man  playeth  the  games,  the  situation  is  reversed  for  the  chances  of  profit  are always  against  him  and  always  in  favor  of  the game  keeper.  The  game  is  so  arranged that  it  will  always favor  the  keeper.  It  is  his  business  at  which  he  plans  to  make  a  liberal  profit  for  himself  from  the  coins bet  by  the  players.  Few  players  realize  how certain  are  the  game  keeper’s  profits  and  how  uncertain  are their  own  chances to  win.” The Richest Man in Babylon.

 

In my entire life, I have not seen a betting company or gambling house close down because most customers are winning and few are losing. It’s never  been that way, it’ll never be.

It’s a big problem: If you look at the effects of betting I mentioned earlier, you’ll realize that they are life-impacting, for most people. The threshold of betting is either you win a mega amount of money (which is less than 1%), or your life takes a turn for the worse (the remaining percentage).

Since the times of Babylon, there has never been a consistent winner at the gaming tables, nor a known successful man who started his success from gaming.

Easy come, easy go.

 

Mind occupation, and ‘control‘.

Analyzing the life of a gambler, particularly those who bet on games (the majority), a lot of time is spent (or rather wasted) following the games, ‘carefully’  studying the teams, players and waiting for their bets to mature. Time is money. If it were spent with family, reading a book or working on a constructive project, real progress could be achieved. It’s also a wastage of energy, brainpower, and inevitably, money.

“Behaviour is not simply an individual affair, for when multiplied by thousands, it has profound effects on the life, future existence and well-being of the total people.”

 

Personal problems, when they affect many citizens, become state problems.

To highlight this, I’ll outline some ways in which this problem affects the state to set the stage for you to visualize others.

There’s a reduction in productivity. That’s obvious, because the brainpower and time of citizens is used inappropriately. Broken relationships and depression just come in to reinforce this problem. Business and innovation should also not be expected to thrive in a country of rampant gambling. We end up with a picture of ‘lazy’ youth, both mentally and physically. Poverty is therefore the final destination of a nation of gamblers.

It’s said/written that Babylon became wealthy in it’s time because it’s men were shrewd men and keen thinkers. Gambling culture promotes the opposite of this….

In conclusion

I’m not trying to infringe into anyone’s right to watching games or doing whatever, but I think people need to discern whether they are being entertained or being taken for a ride in a global circus.


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