For starters, I am no gambler. I have only been to a casino once and still never gambled. I do play hold’em over the internet (for play money). I was recently reminded that the US government went after people gambling over the internet a few years ago…
The government takes 3 key positions on the topic of online gambling. The first is that revenue earned in such a fashion would be hard to tax, and therefore rather than create a way to tax it, the government bans it. The second is that online sites cannot be trusted, so rather than having legal sites based here in the USA, the government bans all online gambling, for your own safety. Lastly the government bans online gambling with its claims that it can lead to addiction, and hurt families. All 3 of these ideas are complete BS.
Firstly, it is true that revenue earned in this fashion is difficult to tax. The tax code is complicated already and most people need a CPA to complete a regular tax form. A flat tax that added all of an individual’s income and then taxed it at 1 rate would solve this problem and eliminate this as 1 of the excuses it uses for making it illegal.
When the government claims that the sites are often outside the US and cannot be trusted, I believe that they are missing the opportunity to have legal sites that are American. Even if the government took $.01 per hand as a fee for its oversight to ensure that it was fair to all, the government would do really well on that investment. I will most likely never see the day where the government is run as a business, but I believe it should be. In gambling terms it would be a rake taken at every hand played. It would be easy, efficient, and profitable.