Wednesday, April 07, 2010

The Truth is Out There

Boasting that Massachusetts building a casino in the South Coast would ruin Rhode Island's Twin Rivers, Clyde Barrow tells the Projo that the only solution, should we build one, is for Rhode Island is to go out of business, or build a bigger casino.
“Rhode Island’s only options are to exit the gambling business or move toward a full-scale casino that would buffer it against competition from Massachusetts and recapture some of the considerable revenues still leaving Rhode Island for Connecticut,” he said in an e-mail last Friday.
Oh, if only they had built a bigger casino! Twin Rivers, being one of the biggest in the world (literally), isn't quite big enough to stack up against Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun. Truly, Barrow has never seen a casino he didn't like.

Of course, we know this is where Massachusetts slot proponents take their cues. Barrow's numbers to them are sacred, even if they're bullshit. (Apparently, Barrow missed the memo: Twin Rivers is going bankrupt, with Foxwoods not particularly far behind.)

Well, it pains me to read this, but that's not all the Speaker's looking at. There was, of course, the at-that-time roundly criticized Spectrum Gaming Report, which the Speaker, apparently, took as Holy Grail. You know, the report that covered Patrick's 3-casino plan, not the Speaker's 3,000 slots at the Race-Tracks and two-casino* plan. Of course, the Spectrum report barely covered the costs of a casino at all in its effort to study the 3-casino plan, never mind the Speaker's much bigger and different (and worse) plan.

*The Speaker leaves the option open for more casinos in his plan if they're tribal casinos (but don't worry, there's only two tribes in Massachusetts -- and another 6 pending -- for potential casino compacts /snark off).

So, let's get this straight. The Speaker bases his numbers off a report that studied a plan that wasn't his, that was much different than his, and even that report failed to take a comprehensive look at the costs. Will the legislature really travel down the rabbit-hole with the Speaker? Does the Speaker and Barrow even believe this stuff, or do they really just want to believe?


Middleboro Remembers said...

Nice job, Ryan!

As flawed as Clyde might be, it's worthy to note that even he recognized that the lottery would take a steep hit and the casinos and slot parlors needed to pick up the cost.

It's not included in DeLeo's bill.

Anonymous said...

Don't know where you got the idea Twin Rivers is big. I've seen quite a few and it's on par with an oversize slot parlor like Immokolee in Fla. not a real casino like Foxwoods (or Reno,Las Vegas,Atlantic City). A lot of companies teeter near bankruptcy but come back, look at GM. Just went to Twin River Tues afternoon, a lot of Mass plates in the parking lot.

Ryan said...


Twin Rivers statistically is one of the biggest in the world in terms of how many slots and 'games' it has on its floor. I was careful with my wording, because obviously it's not one of the "biggest" in terms of total size -- ie with a massive hotel, space for shows, conventions, etc. But the slots are where casinos make their money, anyway.

As for "bouncing back," maybe they can a little, but the fact of the matter is the casino market in New England is getting very saturated. Add casinos in Massachusetts and things would get even more saturated.

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