Las Vegas were controlled by the Mob. A U.S Senate investigation into criminal activity in the casino industry found that skimming (Retaining a portion of the profit) was rife, resulting in tax evasion on stakes and profits. When legislation allowing corporations to own Las Vegas casinos came into being in 1965, entrepreneur and multimillionaire Howard Hughes was the first to take advantage of this change in the low, buying the Desert Inn and several other casinos, as well ass plots of land in the city. When MGM, Hilton, and Holiday Inn followed suit, the finances of the Mob proved to be no match for the might of the major corporations, and gradually the casino industry was cleaned up.
gambling has gone in and out of favor depending on the prevailing moral, social, and religious climate. Most objections to gambling are based on social and religious issues. However, despite numerous attempts throughout history to outlaw gaming, it has still thrived. Banning gaming simply results in the establishment of illegal casinos.
Gaming-related social problems are as old as gaming itself. In Roman times, gaming was restricted to one week of the year, during the Saturnalia festival (equivalent to the Christmas and New Year holidays). However, this not deter Roman players, who continued to gamble in private houses and clubs. Even when fines (equivalent to four times the stakes) were introduced for players caught gambling, the Romans managed to evade the law by using engraved disks, called roundels, instead of money. Almost as soon as playing cards were introduced to Europe, they were opposed. In Paris, legislation prohibiting playing cards was passed in 1377, and in Italy, playing cards and dice were burned.
In the U.S.A many attempts were made to prevent gambling. Early Puritan settlers initially banned the possession of gaming equipment, but relented, allowing games for recreational purposes. Later legislation was ineffective, as it banned specific games. Players simply changed the names or invented new games. By 1910, gambling was made illegal throughout the U.S.A, but due to widespread corruption among law enforcement officers, this law had little effect.
players are typically graduates in white-collar jobs with a higher than average income, who gamble to win money. A survey carried out by Roper Starch Worldwide Inc. of New York found that, for three out of four casino visitor, their prime motive is to win, while 57 percent go for entertainment and recreation. Australians are the western world s biggest gamblers, spending over 2000 $ a year per head of population.
Casinos operate around the world, mainly in tourist areas including Las Vegas, Australia's Gold Coast, and resorts in the Mediterranean and Caribbean. Gaming is mostly controlled by the state, and is an important contributor to national and local revenues, although percentages vary from country to country. Gaming is a huge industry in the U.S.A, where it is legal in 24 states. There has been a casino building boom in recent years, particularly in Nevada. Gambling was legalized in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in 1978, to revitalize the rundown resort. In 1987, after a legal battle, the U.S Supreme Court finally recognized the right of Native Americans to operate gaming establishment on their reservation. Since 1989, over 300 new gaming operations have been established on Indian Reservation. The largest casino in the world, Foxwoods Resort in Connecticut, is owned and operated by the Mashantucket Tribe and attracts over 16 million visitor annually. It comprises two hotels and five separate casinos. Foxwoods has 1.5 million sq ft (140.000m2) of floor space, of which 300.000sq ft (28.000m2) is devoted to gaming.
Las Vegas reigns supreme as the " casino capital " of the world, attracting 30 million visitors annually to over 50 casinos. When Wilbur Clark opened the Desert Inn on April 24, 1950, he ceremonially threw away the keys, announcing there would never be a need to lock the door again. That tradition continues today, with most Las Vegas casinos open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The minimum age for gaming in Nevada is 21 years. The 1960s saw the legalization of gaming in the U.K Bringing the gaming industry within the law led to the implementation of strict controls to regulate payouts and how the games operate. The Gaming Board of Great Britain ensures the fair running of casinos and scrutinizes casino personnel and operators. Of the U.K. s 116 casinos, 21 are located in London, with the remainder in major cities and tourist areas. Almost all countries in continental Europe have casinos. France has government-regulated casinos in over 170 towns and cities. Spain legalized casinos in the late 1970s and also allows slot machines in bars and arcades. In the Netherlands, a government company, Holland Casinos, was established to operate the casinos, which now exist in ten locations. Greece has nine casinos, which are privately- run, government-allocated franchises. Belgium s eight casinos remain illegal, but are tolerated by the government, which imposes taxation on them.
In the 1970s casinos were legalized in Australia. They are run by private operators under franchises granted by the government. Fourteen casinos now operate in the major cities and Gold Coast resorts, contributing A$2 billion annually to state revenues. Canada began opening government-owned casinos in the early 1990s, and now has a number of resort casinos that attract tourists, as well as some smaller provincial casinos catering for the local population. Although South Africa introduced casino gaming during the apartheid era, confining it to the so-called "independent homelands ", the demise of apartheid meant that the country had to face up to the reality of legalizing gaming operations that were formerly not considered to be within the boundaries of the state. Casino gaming was recognized in 1994 and a rationalization process, under the Gambling Board, has ensured that lucrative gaming licenses are equitably distributed throughout all nine provinces.