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Problem non-gambling

  • December 3rd, 2008


 Another campaign has started to make us all worry about a minority addiction, whether we can do anything about it or not.

The Ministry of Health campaign against problem gambling aims "to strengthen society’s response to gambling, and prevent gambling-related harm. 

Challenging TV ads "will extend the message about how problem gambling affects people, and what can be done about it".

All very worthy I’m sure, but I’m waiting for the Treasury/MED’s challenging ads to combat problem non-gambling.

To retain or regain our place among the world’s winners we’ll need to recapture our forebears’ willingness to take risks, to back ourselves to win more than we lose in business.

My work is among ever-increasing rules and legal penalties for taking risk. I see some of the best brains in the country spending their lives crawling through the past to find people to pillory for failure. In RMA and other work they fight over changes to the status quo, with the "precautionary principle". These brains magnify the costs and possibilities of failure instead of taking part in our civilisation’s glorious tradition of improving on the past and working out how to turn the unexpected to advantage.

Often we work for people who are reneging on their bargains (to get a return for taking risks) looking for the deep pockets still standing who can be forced to compensate those whose risks went wrong.

Let’s see "challenging TV ads" celebrating the lives and exploits of our big commercial gamblers – the ones who took risks and succeeded. 

"You got to know when to hold em, know when to fold em,
Know when to walk away and know when to run.
You never count your money when youre sittin at the table.
Therell be time enough for countin when the dealins done."




Like there is something wrong with enjoying protection and avoiding risks and losses? Most people actually crave protection and loss avoidance, and when they take risks they want to limit the extent of their exposures. Nothing wrong with cover for those who are willing to pay the premiums. We live in a very conservative culture, whether we like it or not.

The real issue is putting barriers in the way of those who are willing to accept risk, the consequence of guardian instincts applied by government, resulting in government paternalism.

I’ve tagged you too, see

  • Chuck Bird
  • December 9th, 2008
  • 12:34 pm

Stephen, very few people make money off gambling except for the occasional Lotto winner. Gambling addicts are drug addicts. The only difference is that the drug is manufactured by the body.

I am surprised you confuse taking calculated business and investment risks with a gambling addict pouring money in to a slot machine.

I can see no difference in ads about problem drinking and problem gambling.

School children should be taught about investments. For example how you can be successful by calculating investment risk and also spreading you risks.

I agree with you that successful entrepreneur should be celebrated.

I object to the about of money the States spends on promoting Lotto. Not only does Lotto disproportionately affect those who cannot afford to play Lotto but sends out the wrong message that confuses sensible risk taking with gambling.

  • Chuck Bird
  • December 9th, 2008
  • 1:16 pm

I just heard more news about Hanover. I heard one chap who had invested 700k. I am not a financial guru. I did not finish high school. While I sympathise with this man I find it hard to understand how someone could invest all their life’s savings in one business.

When I got into property investment I borrowed 100% against three flats using my home as security. People said what if tenants leave. I did my homework. I had the interest rate lock for I think five years. I looked at having drop rents. I looked at losing my job. I had a good redundancy agreement in place so I took that into account. None of this is rocket science. Anyone who can use a spreadsheet can be taught to do the same.

Does anyone not agree that students should not be taught risk analysis instead of some of the rubbish they are now taught.

  • mike mckee
  • December 11th, 2008
  • 10:13 pm

I’m with you Chuck.
In fact we should be celebrating and encouraging entrepreneurship in our schools from day one.
That’s one of the main reasons I cannot be a socialist.


gambling becomes bad with people getting too addicted and making it their ways of living instead of just a plain ol’ past time.


Yeah, when somebody is making either actual or online casino gambling as a source of their living, we can say that one has a gambling problem or is experiencing more dilemmas than fun from gambling.

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