Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Want to build, just build

There has been far too much discussion about the 'casino issue'.

A casino is a good idea - I think the government is doing the right thing. Critics' arguments have been very weak so far, as you can see below.

1) 'Social problems' argument
- come on, which country doesn't have social problems? The 'families will break up, people will die etc' argument is simply ridiculous - it's a slippery slope argument. And have these critics ever met a gambling addict in real life? I suspect that they are drawing on stereotypes of a 'typical gambling addict' (for example, as portrayed by the media) to make their arguments.

2) 'We shouldn't copy others' argument
- Why should we not copy other countries? After all, the 'copying' need not be wholesale copying. These critics treat 'the casino' as a black box, an object with universal characteristics. They are unable to visualize how the casino can deviate from a standard (global) template to exude local flavour.

3) 'Not sure whether it will definitely make money' argument
- This is a business venture, and like all business ventures, there are risks involved. These critics are, simply put, too risk-averse. It's time to be more risk-loving, especially in the New Economy. Also, how do they know it won't make money?

A casino adds diversity to the leisure scene in Singapore. This is the single most important benefit. This is my summative analysis of what I see as a rather straightforward issue; it's not as complex as the numerous newspaper articles suggest.


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