The final word on Bill Bennett: From Ken Layne:
Millions of dollars on machines, with no human company beyond the wandering cocktail waitress and the oxygen-tank guy honking quietly a few seats down? That ain’t gambling. That’s masturbation.
I’m not sure I understand the point of this article. It would have been okay for Bill Bennet to gamble if he would have played blackjack? Hmmm. I ONLY gamble on slot machines (where I don’t have to count, keep track of cards played, etc.) and I never once considered it to be masturbation. The article is a huge what.ever.
I would contend that it’s not possible to understand the difference if you only play slots. Go play blackjack for a half hour sometime and see the difference– you’ll be exhausted, not physically but mentally from trying to keep up with a fastpaced game. (And that’s blackjack, which is still essentially mechanical and antisocial compared to, say, poker, which is an actual form of human interaction.) Slots lull you into a stupor where it’s easy to be separated from huge sums of money over a long period. That’s why it resembles certain other forms of solo gratification (specifically the form practiced in places where you have to keep pumping money in to get visual stimulation).
Gambling, per se, is not wrong.
I love blackjack.
As I told Ken (and said on my own site), I understand why Bill did what he did … alone.
That said, I love blackjack.
Buy my new book and get clickable footnotes and links.
Buy my new Kindle Single on Amazon.
Now out in paperback!