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Online crackdown hurts poker tourney

To the editor:

It’s unfortunate that personnel in the gaming industry would shrug their shoulders at the impact Black Friday will have on the upcoming World Series of Poker (Howard Stutz’s Thursday article, "Poker officials don’t expect downturn in ’11 tournament"). With the country in general, and Las Vegas quite specifically, stumbling through a recession, I understand that tournament directors have no choice but to spout positive predictions about the money the series will generate. And don’t get me wrong, I hope it is the most lucrative to date.

It is beyond naïve, however, to think that the crackdown of online poker will not severely limit the income of the series. Professional and amateur players still reek of the effects of not being allowed to play online. Players’ incomes have been reduced, not only by their money being frozen, but because at least a part of their work has officially shut down, as they cannot play online.

While you note that the 2010 WSOP was held during the recession, the 2011 series will be held amidst a poker drought, a time during which thousands of players are out thousands of dollars — dollars that would have been used for entry fees, rooms, food and gambling.

The WSOP is an energizing and lucrative event. However, until the U.S. government expressly permits and regulates online poker, thus allowing Americans to play online, the series will always be missing those few extra participants.

I would hope that the gaming industry is savvy to this logic and is actively supporting legalization of online poker. It doesn’t matter whether we play at pokerstars.net or harrahs.net, for example. What matters is that the integrity of the game is upheld by those hosting the best poker series in the world.

Morgan Young

Henderson

ISLAMIC JIHADIST

To the editor:

It is now 30 years ago, on May 13, 1981, that the Islamic jihad against the West started in Rome. Then, the first jihadist, Mehmed Ali Agca, tried to assassinate Pope John Paul II in Rome — and almost succeeded.

The latest attempt happened the other day on a flight to San Francisco, when the jihadist, shouting "Allahu Akhbar!" pounded on the pilots’ cabin which, happily, was locked.

I wonder about Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s policy of no profiling. There was that Muslim-looking young fellow with no luggage. On the other hand, a thorough search was performed on American families with their children, together with exhaustive questioning of their travel plans and intentions.

Let us think about this, shall we?

Marc Jeric

Las Vegas

RENTER’S BLUES

To the editor:

As a renter, my concern with the economy is that people who own their own homes are able to work out payment arrangements through their mortgage company or lawyers. If they miss a payment, they get to stay in their houses.

As renters, if we miss a payment, we are out on the streets after five days.

We moved into a beautiful five-bedroom house five months ago, and now that the casinos are in a bidding war with the union, my husband will be out of work at the end of May. We will not only lose our house, because landlords are not willing to work with us, but we will also lose our deposit.

I just want to know, who is here to help the renters? This has been an ongoing battle for two years already. How do we know if we should move into something we can afford now or stay in something cheap? You never know how long you will be working.

Why are the casinos always packed yet complaining they are losing money? They aren’t losing money, they just aren’t making as much as they did. A lot of these casinos need upgrading, big time. When will they realize if they get our unions working, we would have money for entertainment in their casinos?

Tammie Schmieder

Las Vegas

HOUSE RACE

To the editor:

How dumb are they? I’m talking about the contenders for Nevada’s 2nd Congressional District special election. They will split the Republican vote five ways, and will put a Democrat in that seat.

Two things win elections — name recognition and money. The key is money. The GOP contenders will beat up each other and bleed each others’ funds. The Democratic National Committee will back one Democrat. Harry Reid will send a high-speed train to Nevada filled with cash. Then we will have a repeat of last year’s Senate race.

Sen. Reid and the DNC will round up all the "give-me, give-me" generation and bus them to the polls.

What the Republican contenders need to do is all get together before the ballots are printed and choose one candidate. They can draw straws or cut cards, whatever works.

That would beat Secretary of State Ross Miller at his own game.

Jim White

Las Vegas

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