Read e-book online A World of Chance: Betting on Religion, Games, Wall Street PDF

By Reuven Brenner

ISBN-10: 0511424167

ISBN-13: 9780511424168

ISBN-10: 0521884667

ISBN-13: 9780521884662

Even though monetary markets frequently attempt to distance themselves from playing, the 2 elements have way more in universal than frequently inspiration. whilst, traditionally there have been no monetary associations similar to banks, lotteries constituted the methods in which dear goods have been disposed of, and governments raised cash quick. playing tables fulfilled roles that enterprise capital and banking do this day. "Gamblers" created clearinghouses and sustained liquidity. while these gamblers guess on expense distributions in futures markets, they have been redefined as "speculators." this day they're referred to as "hedge fund managers" or "bankers." although the names have replaced, the activities undertaken have primarily stayed an analogous. This publication exhibits how dialogue on "chance," "risk," "gambling," "insurance," and "speculation" illuminates the place societies stood, the place we're this day, and the place we can be heading.

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However, by 1880 thousands of enterprising German immigrants had transformed American tastes, and beer had become the American national beverage. Drinking alcoholic beverages became then – in the last two decades of the nineteenth century – even more of an issue in the United States than abortion or online gambling are now. The temperance movement spread and used lobbying tools that would put Jack Abramoff to shame. This episode in American history is worth noting, as there are parallels with the sequence of events that led to the UIGEA, which prohibits financial institutions from transfering money to online gambling companies.

It also allows us to question prejudices that have accumulated over centuries about gamblers, for an impartial picture of this facet of human behavior and of the industry. We emphasize the word “impartial,” because today politics has turned gambling into a partisan issue, and works written about the subject are categorized as being in favor of the industry or against it, as if any examination of facts and sequence of events surrounding the issue must have a political agenda. We wrote a book on the subject back in the late 1980s, parts of which are integrated here, much before gambling spread in the United States and around the world.

15 As we will see in Chapter 5, when looking at gamblers’ behavior in the United States, there may have been some truth to this: people often preferred to pay their gambling debts over their taxes – though, as we show, mistaken fiscal and monetary policies brought these attitudes about. The rapidly increasing population and its mobility during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, which led to density in cities, also led to the breakdown of many traditional pastimes, attending church in particular.

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A World of Chance: Betting on Religion, Games, Wall Street by Reuven Brenner


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