Friday, December 03, 2004

MM Lee on casino 

Channel NewsAsia picks up Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew’s comments on the setting-up of a casino in Singapore. Excerpt:

Having a casino is something the new leaders will have to decide: MM Lee
It was a policy he was once dead set against. But with a globalised world, Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew feels the decision on having a casino is something for the new generation of leaders to look at. He made this point on Thursday in a wide-ranging question-and-answer session at the CEO Dialogue in Bangkok...

Mr Lee said he was once dead set against it. “In the 1970s, Stanley Ho of Hong Kong said, ‘Have a casino.’ He had a casino in Macau. So I said, ‘No, over my dead body!’” But the world has changed. Increasingly, people can easily fly to gambling centres just a few hour’s flight away.

Mr Lee said: “I believe the Chinese are congenital gamblers...it is a game of chance. If you believe putting in an extra dollar or even a million can garner you a windfall, I say god bless.”
Channel NewsAsia omitted a few more lines from MM Lee that was picked up by The Straits Times.

Why do you believe that you go in with a hundred dollars and you will come out with a thousand dollars? That’s a mug’s game. But there are lots of mugs in this world. But I hope Singaporeans are not mugs.
How true. The odds are against the individual gambler.

Incidentally, in the arena of business start-ups and entrepreneurship, the odds of survival are also stacked against the entrepreneur. That does not stop the government from promoting entrepreneurship.


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