New PDF release: A World of Chance: Betting on Religion, Games, Wall Street

By Reuven Brenner

ISBN-10: 0511424167

ISBN-13: 9780511424168

ISBN-10: 0521884667

ISBN-13: 9780521884662

Even though monetary markets usually try and distance themselves from playing, the 2 elements have way more in universal than frequently concept. while, traditionally there have been no monetary associations corresponding to banks, lotteries constituted the methods during which dear goods have been disposed of, and governments raised cash fast. playing tables fulfilled roles that enterprise capital and banking do this present day. "Gamblers" created clearinghouses and sustained liquidity. while these gamblers guess on cost distributions in futures markets, they have been redefined as "speculators." at the present time they're known as "hedge fund managers" or "bankers." even though the names have replaced, the activities undertaken have primarily stayed an analogous. This booklet exhibits how dialogue on "chance," "risk," "gambling," "insurance," and "speculation" illuminates the place societies stood, the place we're this present day, and the place we can be heading.

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Additional resources for A World of Chance: Betting on Religion, Games, Wall Street

Example text

In 1999 Abramoff, a Washington lobbyist now in jail (OK, so Machiavellians may not be that proud), promised to access three thousand pastors, ninety thousand religious households, the Alabama Christian Coalition, the Alabama Family Alliance, and the Christian Family Association to defeat a bill in the Alabama State Legislature. This bill would have allowed casinostyle games on dog-racing tracks, which would have competed with the Choctaw tribe’s casino. The Choctaw paid the companies Abramoff has been associated with some $2 million in 1999 alone for activities linked to the dog-track bill, and to oppose an Alabama state lottery.

Gradually, a new angle appeared in the condemnation of beliefs in chance, namely, that the rich are rich not because of chance, but because they did something good. The new teaching said that the poor, about a third or half of the population at the time, should be patient in their poverty, blame themselves, not rebel, and accept their fate. 42 “Since the World is but a kind of lottery, why should Gamesters be begrudged the drawing of the Prize? If . . 43 Indeed, the poor gambled and also believed in magic, witchcraft, and methods of divination.

39 Thus, gambling was linked with the debate over the proper nature of leisure, with secular economic models – and not just with either the Protestant outlook or the role of risk and chance in society. Poor people’s involvement in new leisure industries was deemed illegitimate because leisure could be respectably enjoyed only when work was put first. As Seton Churchill’s Betting and Gambling (1894) put it, working-class gambling had to be controlled because the “the law of labour . . 40 If There Are No Circuses for the Masses, How to Calm Them Down?

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A World of Chance: Betting on Religion, Games, Wall Street by Reuven Brenner


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