You can bet the hacks will screw it up
The hacks on Beacon Hill are slipping – it’s been almost two weeks since the Supreme Court gave the okay to legalized sports betting nationwide, and no one at the State House has yet stepped up to suggest what the hackerama so obviously needs.
Namely, the Massachusetts Sports Betting Authority, although for acronym purposes, I prefer to call it the MA Betting on Sports Authority – the BS Authority, as it will heretofore be known.
Motto: “When it comes to BS, we’re the Authority.”
This could be very big – the old football cards “to be used for entertainment purposes only” were enticing enough. But now, with apps, it’ll be possible to bet on every pitch, every down, every possession, every jump ball, depending on the sport. And the Commonwealth will of course want its cut, because it’s running the ultimate protection racket.
They call it “the law.”
This new racket is all about “sanctuary” – a very big word at the State House these days. In the wake of disgraced former Sens. Stan Rosenperv and Brian “Multiple Choice” Joyce, the remaining unindicted solons just passed a resolution declaring the state a sanctuary for all illegal MS13 gang bangers and heroin dealers who can’t make it to the federal courthouse or Judge Timothy “Touchy” Feeley’s courtroom in Salem.
But the real sanctuary all hacks are always seeking is sanctuary from work, and that is where the BSA comes in.
The BSA can provide a whole new hackerama to be populated by all the usual suspects who haven’t already retired to UMass, or Massport, or some distant courthouse, or… the Mass. Gaming Commission.
The MGC would seem to be one of the likely candidates to try to grab a piece of the bookies’ business, and sure enough, last week, they made their move:
“Mass. Gaming board chair says states should oversee sports bets.”
But the day after that headline, the MGC chairman, a lifelong trough-feeder named Steve Crosby, began backtracking. He claimed the Commission has “no position” on legalization, despite his press release basically endorsing it.
“That’s not what we meant to say,” he mumbled. “It was certainly subject to misinterpretation.”
Classic MGC. They can’t even issue a press release without a major screw up. Of all the ridiculously inept and/or corrupt agencies in Massachusetts, the MGC may be the absolute worst.
Which is why they’re probably the frontrunner to get at least a piece of the sports betting action. The Lottery seems resigned to being passed over, but hey, there is a consolation prize – when their revenues start dropping, as they will, the Lottery can always blame the competition from sports betting. Hey, Keno like the ultimate in gambling until you could use your cellphone to bet on the coin toss at that pivotal Texans-Browns late game….
Check out the MGC payroll sometime on the state comptroller’s website – 27 hacks making over $100K, including 72-year-old Crosby at $161,522.08 a year, not bad for a payroll patriot who’s been gainfully unemployed almost since Foster Furcolo was a pup.
Yet even with all that high-priced “talent,” the MGC didn’t consider itself capable of managing the investigation as to the moral fitness of casino mogul Steve Wynn. So they spent $4 million on a law firm to do the sleuthing on Wynn. The law firm likewise rolled snake eyes on finding any dirt on the extinguished billionaire.
Apparently, it never occurred to any of the MGC’s high-priced p.i.’s to go down to the Clark County courthouse in Vegas, pull the Wynn v. Wynn divorce files and jot down the phone number of Mrs. Wynn’s attorney. That was left to the Wall Street Journal, and the rest is history, and so is Steve Wynn.
So what better agency to regulate sports betting than the MGC? They will leave no stone unturned, except the ones the fixers and point-shavers and past-posters are hiding under. That is one sure bet.
Whoever gains control of the new betting racket – the MGC, a new BSA, or some other hack-infested entity – will need a bare minimum of expertise, key word bare, this being Massachusetts. I mean, how’s that marijuana legalization coming along?
We used to have some serious local talent in this field – organized crime. The Angiulos and Doc Sagansky are long gone, but some of the old Winter Hill Gang is still around. I am willing to assist in the nationwide search, and for a reasonable price too.
For a mere $2 million – half what the Steve Wynn “investigation” cost — I will provide the MGC with the phone numbers of the two founders of the Winter Hill Gang – Howie Winter and Johnny Martorano.
Who better to manage sports betting for the Commonwealth – back in the 1970’s, they ran their own sports-betting operation… and they lost their shirts! They’d fit in great in any state agency, especially one that is already paralyzed by incompetence and corruption.
Oh sure, they’re a little long in the tooth now – Johnny is five years older than Crosby, and Howie just turned 89 – but they’re still game.
What’s that, Mr. Crosby? You want me to make the actual calls to the boys? No problem, and I’ll only charge you another million bucks. But what’s money to the MGC, or the BSA?
You know, MGC, you’re just the hacks to wreck a sure thing – you’ve already done it once, with the casino in Everett. Got a hunch? Bet a bunch.