Thursday, July 27, 2006

Internet Gambling

Interesting Town Hall article from economist extrordinaire Walter Williams on the truly disgusting Federal bill banning internet gambling.

This was another one of those, *sigh* not again moments - I hadn't really taken the time to consider the full impact of such a bill. I'll ignore Professor Williams Tenth Amendment argument for the moment, as the Tenth Amendment is questionable as an actual limitation on federal power. However, the real interesting question is the commerce clause one. With the blurring of the line between actual commerce and mere economic activity in current commerce clause jurisprudence, internet gambling probably falls under the commerce clause.

What gets a bit stickier is the question of internet regulation in general. And why is gambling somehow different via the internet as opposed to over the phone, or actually travelling to a state which allows gambling?

The truly frightening part of the act are the restrictions on internet service providers. Ridiculous laws are bad enough, and it doesn't help when the government puts private companies in the business of enforcing these laws.


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