Over 100 gaming industry analysts and execs recently assembled in Connecticutt to discuss the New England land-based casino business. The big question on everyone’s mind was, if Massachusetts were to legalize casinos, would the fallout for other New England states that already offer gambling – like Connecticut’s Indian-run casinos and Rhode Island’s slot parlors — be similar to what happened when Pennsylvania cannibalized Atlantic City’s monopoly? The short answer appears to be, yes, but because Gov. Patrick and the state’s legislators couldn’t get the deal done back in August, it’s not clear if/when Massachusetts will take that step, so for the moment, Casino Armageddon is merely a hypothetical.
However, while the industry may believe there’s not enough capacity to accommodate any more full bore casinos, there does appear to be room to add more slot machines across New England, at least according to invited guest Clyde Barrow. Wait a minute… Why the hell is Clyde Barrow, the male half of the notorious Depression-era bankrobbers/cop-killers/hellraisers Bonnie & Clyde, giving advice to casino bigwigs? More importantly, didn’t he die in a hail of bullets in Louisiana in 1934? Oh, this Clyde Barrow is director of the Center for Policy Analysis at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth… Hmmm… Damn, New England is boring.