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Casino gambling: the economics and the sociology

Caribbean Studies Association
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  • Caribbean ( Lcsh )
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1 CASINO GAWLING: THE ECONOMICS AND THE SOCIOLOGY S. B. JONES-HENDRICKSON* Professor of Economics University of the Virgin Islands St. Croix, USVI 00850 e-mail: [email protected] Paper presented at The Annual Caribbean Studies Association Conference, St. Martin, Netherlands Antilles, May 28-June 2, 2001 ABSTRACT: This paper is essentially a methodological analysis of the underpinnings of casino gambling or casino gaming from the perspective of the Economics and the Sociology L involved. It is a thought piece for those who have the desire to play the game. It is designed to highlight some methodological issues at a time in the region when the region is now looking towards this form of entertainment as a tourist attraction. But, it is presented, also, because local consumption of casino gaming is widespread. On the whole, casinos are designed to attract tourists. Casinos are linked with hotel building. But only some of these features are real. Many of the patrons of casinos in the region are locals. And the many hotels that should come with the casinos do not materialize. INTRODUCTION Over the last ten years, and certainly within the last five years, many Caribbean countries have been trying all kinds of ways and means of generating revenues. Many countries now have lotteries. Several have casinos. It is believed that casinos and lotteries can provide quick money. This quick, easy money is sometimes stratified along the lines of the rich. The rich play the stock market and the not so rich play casino, whe-whe and the lottery. In the USA, according to estimates of Lyle Stuart (1996: 13), "More than 90 million people visit casinos each year. ... Casinos are proliferating so fast that it is estimated that by the year 2000,95% of all Americans will live within a three-hour drive of a (casino). Given the past behavior in the region as it relates to things USA, we are of the view that if people in the region see something happening in the USA, sooner

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