Must-see: New TV ad targets Disney on gaming bill hypocrisy

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A new ad criticizing Disney over its alleged hypocrisy regarding its opposition to expanding gambling in Florida is the theme of a new TV ad:

I’ve written previously about this issue:

Florida has been one of the states that has been hit particularly hard by the ongoing economic turmoil.  In an effort to breathe life into the tourism industry, one recent proposal involved the building of destination resorts in South Florida that will feature various gaming options.

As the debate heats up, both sides are making claims about the impact of casinos.  It is important to take into account who is making the claims. Despite the existing gaming options in Florida, some opponents have been making pleas against new destination casinos based on a supposed interest in maintaining Florida’s “family friendly” brand.

The problem is that some of those who have been shouting the loudest have been less truthful about their motivation.

For instance, a group backed by Disney called “No Casinos” has been running television ads opposing gaming expansion. While No Casinos and Disney would have you believe they oppose gaming on moral grounds, the truth is somewhat murkier.

As a multinational company, Disney has a wide range of subsidiaries, including Marvel Entertainment.  In addition to its better-known comic book and movie picture franchise, Marvel sells the rights to its characters–including Hulk and the X-Men–to be used for games on online gambling websites like Casino.com and EuropaCasino.

Marvel gets paid by the developers of the internet games for the use of their famous characters by companies like CrytpoLogic and Playtech.

Marvel, and by extension Disney, are engaged in the business of online slot machine gaming.

These types of comic book slot machines available online would not even be allowed in Las Vegas or other gaming locations in the United States because they are aimed at kids.

Therefore, despite their claims, ‘No Casinos’ is clearly taking money from gaming interests.

As Floridians continue to debate this issue, they deserve some transparency in regard to who is opposing new developments and why.  Clearly, claims coming from No Casinos and Disney that they are morally opposed to gaming ring false.

– Cross-posted at the Hispanic Leadership Fund.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.