Thursday 8 December 2016

How the bookies have died and gone to betting heaven

Nothing these people do, no matter how crass, is ever done without calculation

Published 09/03/2014 | 02:30

Illustration: Jim Cogan
Illustration: Jim Cogan

On the wall of a pub in Dublin there's an old ad for Lucky Strike cigarettes. "Lucky Strike," it declares, "Will Not Affect Your Throat".

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There are times when the gambling industry seems to be roughly at the same stage of awareness as the tobacco industry was, when it was boasting that cigarettes "will not affect your throat".

With the arrival of online gambling, we have seen the rise of what is effectively a new industry, one that governments have struggled even to tax properly, let alone to comprehend on any intelligent level. The media, likewise, have been largely clueless.

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