The twisted logic of pokie reform

It’s been a few weeks since the Gillard Government backflipped on its agreement with Andrew Wilkie to introduce pokie reform.

In retrospect, and with the benefit of hindsight, it seems that the main lesson to be gleaned from this was, as Tim Costello said a little after event: if something looks like it’s too good to be true, it probably is.

The gambling lobby, notably ClubsNSW and their casino-owning comrades, were never going to take this lying down. Their response was well organised, very well funded, and well targeted at governments (both state and federal) with no stomach for a fight.

The pokie back-down provided, it seems, a case study in how corporate money can defeat social reform. I’m sure it will be studied as such for years to come — via

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