December 4th, 2013

Watson’s ‘Crack Cocaine’ Gambling Flip Flop

Tom Watson has found another target to keep him occupied. Writing in today’s Guardian he makes the case against fixed odds betting terminals, the so-called “crack cocaine” of the gambling industry.

“We’re in the grip of a new addiction – high-speed, high-stakes gambling. What’s fuelling this destructive habit is the fixed odds betting terminal (FOBT), a machine that allows people to bet £100 every 20 seconds for 13 hours a day. These digital roulette terminals are making millions for the gambling industry, and making losers out of those who can least afford to lose.”

Worth noting that Watson’s name is on last year’s Culture, Media and Sport select committee report on gambling, which drew some very different conclusions. Indeed, the committee Watson sat on recommended that the rules regulating FOBTs be relaxed:

“We therefore recommend that local authorities be given the power to allow betting shops to have more than the current limit of four B2 [FOBT] machines per premises”

Not like Watson to waste an opportunity for select committee grandstanding…


  1. 1
  2. 2
    Tessa Jowell says:

    I thought these were a great idea when I forced the Gambling Act 2005 through Parliament.

    I am not corrupt, nor is my husband.

  3. 3
    Genghiz the kahn says:

    Watson spins more balls than Shane Warne.

  4. 4
    Mornington Crescent says:

    We must do something… We must intervene…

    Oh, just fuck right off, the lot of you. Underemployed parasites looking to justify your existence.

  5. 5
    Twatson says:

    I am a fat fuck and fuck am I fat.

  6. 6
    Genghiz the kahn says:
  7. 7
    Kebab Time says:

    What is the difference between a gambling machine and the State? You are only forced to fund the state.

  8. 8
    Milibandwagon says:

    I have monopoly rights on grandstanding and bandwagon-jumping. Twatson should get lost.

  9. 9
    Ken Dodd's Dad's Dog's Dead says:

    Have you ever been in a bookies, Mr Fawkes?

  10. 10
    The Pay Day Loan, Cheque Cashing, Fencing and Pawn Shop Industry says:

    The great thing about the FOBs is that we can open one of our stores a couple of doors down from the each of the many extra betting shops which have infested the High Street in the last 8 years and financially strip-mine the cash out of the very poorest communities in the country. And its all legal thanks to the last Labour government.

  11. 11
    RED ED - SON OF BROWN says:

    There is a gambling crisis in this County!!! When we are in government, we will freeze all fixed odds betting terminals and ensure that the regulator looks into the profits of these firms. Only the Labour party can rectify this Tory shambles.

  12. 12
    Miliband is despicable shite head says:

    “Everybody likes a flutter”

  13. 13
    Tom Fatson says:

    Sit down, shut up and wait till my friend Red Len has told you what you’re doing about it.

  14. 14
    That went well says:

  15. 15
    Jessa Towell says:


  16. 16
    Small businesman says:

    Good God

    Coming from Fatso Watson?!

    Labour took bungs from every gambling joint that they could lay their grubby hands on

    This just one of their gamboling contributors

  17. 17
    Paniagua V5 says:

    What are the odds on that?

  18. 18
    Margaret Hodge says:

    It’s only a tiny, tiny existence.

  19. 19
    Ed Dafty, LimpDim MP, Climate Change Chieftain says:


  20. 20
    Soap Dodger says:

    Gimme 15 scratch cards please.

  21. 21
    Vlad the Energy Impaler says:

    So, little inglish, you like a gamble. I have just the thing, bring me here the roulette, now.

  22. 22
    Yo Tim says:

    Generally unemployable elsewhere but fortes in largesse, cash for questions, favours and contracts and of course general troughing and expense matters should not go unnoticed. Except me.

  23. 23
    Ed Miliband says:

    I’ll have a go, but I want a bullet in each chamber so if I win I can pay Len and the Coop back and not have to kowtow to these people.

  24. 24
    Anon says:

    I had a gamble in 1997 on a decent honest labour government and look how that turned out.

  25. 25
    The Liebour Party says:

    The public are dumbed-down cretins. They are incapable of making decisions for themselves. They must not be allowed to gamble with their own money.

    And anyway, it’s our money.

  26. 26
    Tay King-dePisse says:

    “[A] machine that allows people to bet £100 every 20 seconds for 13 hours a day…”

    All right, Fat Bastard, I’m putting you to your proof– show me the punter who’s throwing away a C-note per wager that frequently for that duration.

    I’ve nowhere to go– you can get back to me anytime you care to put down the Xbox, crisps and beer, and reply.

  27. 27
    A Lottery Funded Fairtrade Somali Lesbian Outreach Co-ordinator says:

    All in a good cause

  28. 28
    Phil from Pentonville says:

    This is Watson trying to protect Nigella by starting a smoke screen.

    She is the daughter of an ex Tory Minister.

    Smoking and obtaining crack cocaine is a three stretch minimum.

    Plenty of space here. We don’t mind going three to a cell.

    We are great believers in equal rights and sex equality here.

    What I am saying here goes for the Italian twins too.

  29. 29
    Easy mistake says:

    Oh, you fell for that “we promise you, we won’t fuck the country up this time” line as well, did you? Me too.

  30. 30
    IDS says:

    You want more than one chamber! You pay bedroom tax now!

  31. 31
    Will says:

    the Lawson trial is at the right time for the panto season.

    You have a couple of shifty characters, a principal baddie and a drama queen and lots of people dressing up in funny clothes.

    All we need is a couple of topical songs and it would be a complete day out

  32. 32
    The Job Centre says:

    It often is

  33. 33
    FatPeopleEatTooMuch says:

    Call me a traditionalist. But I don’t trust any one that looks like an aborted foetus.

  34. 34
    I nearly shouted HALLELUJAH says:

  35. 35
    Engineer says:

    The State is a reverse gambling machine. The more you pay in, the less you get out. If you pay virtually nothing in, you may get a lot out. See any council estate or traveller site for details.

  36. 36
    bergen says:

    When I read the piece I immediately thought of Jowell. Did Watson protest at the time, I wonder. Did he vote for the measure? If so, shouldn’t he now apologise ?

  37. 37

    Each-way with Watson, one imagines.

  38. 38
    Gove says:


  39. 39

    Elementary my dear Watson.

  40. 40
    Will says:

    that’s nothing compared with how the last labour government spend on PFi contracts when last in power. It has cost is billions and then asking us to pay for it in higher taxes

  41. 41
    Arthur Sixpence says:

    Haven’t seen much news about the twat from the Coop going down for a three stretch

  42. 42
    Lard Prescott says:

    A bit rich from super casino Labour innit? Or does Tommy Tucker think we have forgotten about them?

  43. 43
    Sick of the lies says:

    Oh no we don’t …..

  44. 44
    Popeye says:

    Refresh my memory, who was it allowed unfettered gambling in this country?
    Was it someone called Bl… Bl… Bl. Damn, what was his name?

  45. 45
    Tony Blair says:

    I bet it was me, right?

  46. 46
    Engineer says:

    I didn’t fall for it, but I still have to put up with the fucked-up country.

  47. 47
    The Bogus Quack Doctor says:

  48. 48
    Hypocrits says:

  49. 49
    Hypocrits says:

  50. 50
    Ed Balls - Shallow Chancer says:


  51. 51
    A flying seagull says:

    Remember it was the Socialists who gave us the National Lottery.

    We were told by one of those Socialist ministers that betting on the Lottery was “good fun”.

    It is not so much “fun” it seems to me if you cannot get your hands on any of the cash.

  52. 52
    i don't n eed no doctor says:

    There are other words to describe Watson but mine are – Watson is an obese lying hypocritical arsewipe.

  53. 53
    Food Can Be an Addiction Too Watson says:

    Looks to me like Watson needs to deal with his food habit! Too much good living subsidised by the taxpayer no doubt.

    He could probably loose 10 stones and thus refrain from taking up two seats wherever he goes!

  54. 54
    uk benefit scroungers supported by labour says:

    Can’t get out of bed. No worries, you’ll get used to it.

  55. 55

    You could spend at a faster rate than that at Harrods so presumably that would need to be closed too.

  56. 56
    Name of fellow MP withheld says:

    I bet he stinks.

  57. 57
    Gordon Jonah Brown says:

    I have battled all my life against mental issues of jaw dropping magnitude!

    I still found time to wreck a country though!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  58. 58
    The Public says:


  59. 59
    (Not so)Dangerous Brian says:

    Its £23,400 per day, must be based on an MP’s disposable income.
    Watson, you really are a stuid c**t.

  60. 60
    i don't n eed no doctor says:

    Never heard Waston complain about Blair’s and Brown’s gambling habits. Blair with tens of thousands of peoples lives, and Brown with the country’s finances.

  61. 61
    (Not so)Dangerous Brian says:

    Sorry £234,000 per day, must be based on a bankers disposable income.
    Maths never was my strongest point!

  62. 62
    safe bet says:

    Labour relaxed the gambling laws while in power then complained about the inevitable consequences while in opposition.
    Labour introduced 24-hour drinking while in power then complained about the
    inevitable consequences while in opposition.

  63. 63
    Vote Tory get heir to Blair says:

    If someone bets £100 every 20 seconds for 13 hours that comes to about £200,000. What is stop someone betting £200,000 on one horse race?

  64. 64
    Liebour MPs at their best jumping from one bus to another says:

    Wow, Watson caught the next bus, a politicians dream.

  65. 65
    le nez says:

    Indeed, I can confirm, I have sat next to him, it’s a combination of stale sweat, old rasberries, a hint of damp mushrooms laced with smegma all held together with old feacal matter.

  66. 66
    I want to know says:

    What does Watson know about the Falkirk vote-rigging scandal?

  67. 67
    i don't n eed no doctor says:

    Does anyone know what “intimate terrorism” is about?

  68. 68
  69. 69
    Vote Tory get heir to Blair says:

    What makes me laugh is that these socialist hypocrites complain about the rich all the time and yet gamble on things like the lottery so they can become just as rich themselves.

  70. 70
    BBC News and Propaganda Unit says:

    We won’t be mentioning that Labour are responsible for
    these latest gambling addictions. It’s all the fault of those
    nasty Tories.

  71. 71
    Paniagua V5 says:

    * thumbs air *

  72. 72
    Mornington Crescent says:

    A blow-up doll?

  73. 73
    Gordon Jonah Brown says:

    Why should I, I am really only like a benefit scrounger, I do f..k all and my money gets paid into my account every month, thank you very much.

    Leaves me time to reflect on the sad consequences of boom and very very bust for you sad proles.

  74. 74
    Someone says:

    I would ban all forms of gambling machines.

  75. 75
    i don't n eed no doctor says:

    Sounds like a poncey wine merchant describing a bottle of red.

  76. 76
    Everyone says:

    Being an MP representing Labour must be very depressing.

  77. 77
    Ma­qboul says:

    Why are Catholics allowed to vote?

  78. 78
  79. 79
    Genghiz the kahn says:

    Channel 4 to run repeats of Whose Line Is It Anyway.

  80. 80
    Ma­qboul says:

    What’s the problem? If they lose their benefits to the slot they can always get more from Wonga.

  81. 81
    W*nga says:

    Ok punters, we’re just about ready to launch our new one-armed bandits! Our take will be a very modest 97.5% … but YOU could win a major prize!!!

  82. 82
    Ma­qboul says:

    …because the luvvies refuse to re-locate North.

  83. 83
    Observer says:

    Yes, the socialists under John Major. It was the swerve to the left during his governing time that made me start wondering whether it was sensible to carry on voting Conservative.

  84. 84
    DAVE'S FIRE SALE theres no money left says:

    I am a swivel eyed loon and a total twat !
    I need to be removed before i do any more damage to your country

  85. 85
    BBC says:

    Being ‘Green’ is for the little people.

  86. 86
    Ed B@llth says:


  87. 87
    M102 says:

    Sounds like a quote from J!mmy S@ville

  88. 88
    Naturalist says:

    Man is of course an animal. And many animals in these Northern climes hibernate at this time of year. In fact, our body’s metabolism does change rate.

    And staying in bed’s cheaper on the leccy bills.

  89. 89
    BBC Luvvie says:

    Do you really expect us to live work and mix in with the scum of Salford darling?

    I think I have one of my migraines coming on again dear, quick pass me a boy.

  90. 90
    Nigel says:

    I’m working on it Dave.

  91. 91
    BBC News says:

    Don’t worry, our major story today is to do with the words actually spoken to the policeman.

  92. 92
    Anonymous says:

    Yes, sorry, but fell for it too, I even thought that “things can only get better” thing sounded great, turns out things only got better for Tony Bliar and Peter Mandelscum both now multi multi millionaires.

    Never again!

  93. 93
  94. 94
    All Genetics My Dear Watson says:

    Oh no they’re exporting Watson’s semen to China!

  95. 95
    Dave says:

    I would have called a referendum before the next parliament, but that really nice, honest, concise, hard-working Neil KinKnock hasn’t got me and Nick our new EU jobs sorted yet.

  96. 96
    Reader says:

    Credit where it is due: the coalition government is trying to deal with the socialist kill-joys lying about health and safety to bully colleagues

  97. 97

    Can you blame any business who has thousands of mathematically ignorant, poorly educated, mug punter clients ,who are prepared to literally pour money into their gaming machines from filling their boots I wish I had shares.

  98. 98
    Quiet Bat person says:

    Watson is just hedging his bets.

  99. 99
    Scouser says:

    yeh, but when I wins the jackpot!

  100. 100
    Quiet Bat Person says:

    In my case, the absence of £200,000 in the first place.

  101. 101
    LiebourkilledallIluv says:

    Nice of you to spare the time away from your tax forms.

  102. 102
    Reader says:

    I have no problem with the idiots living with the results of their foolishness. The problem is though, that it not just the idiots who have to live with the results of this ‘industry’. Too many bettng shops blight High Streets in my experience.

  103. 103
    Antonio Teflon Bliar says:

    Working for who?

  104. 104
    Vazeline® - The Slipperiest Substance On The Planet says:

    I believe it may be a euphemism for attempted anal sex without the use of the second most slipperiest substance on the planet, Vaseline.

  105. 105

    It beats row after row of derelict shops, and the bookie’s mug clients do help to pay the local counsel business tax.

  106. 106
    Blinky Balls says:

    Why doesn’t everyone like me ?

  107. 107
    broderick crawford says:



  108. 108
    broderick crawford says:


  109. 109
    broderick crawford says:


    you called

  110. 110
    Rob says:

    The number of betting shops has barely risen over the past five years and was falling before that.

    So there cannot be “many extra betting shops” infesting anywhere.

    You seem to suffer from the belief that if only you could ban something it would go away. The history if the world suggests the opposite.

  111. 111
    Tom Catesby. says:

    ‘£100 every twenty seconds, for thirteen hours a day’. Sh^t! I’d need to be on MPS’ expenses.

  112. 112
    Tom Catesby. says:

    He won’t, Lawson won’t. You would and I would.

  113. 113
    Ballox Economics! says:

    Labour gamble with our lives everyday. They are scum!

  114. 114
    NE Frontiersman says:

    @110: My local road junction in a deprived part of east London has seven bookies within fifty yards. Four opened after Labour created the current gambling regime. Three of them are William Hills. There are about ten in Walthamstow High st, which is Stella Creasy’s stamping ground for campaigning against high-interest lenders, next to sellers of overpriced tat on crucifying HP, such as Brighthouse and Cash Converters, who infest the street equally.
    Perhaps things are fine in Midhurst.

  115. 115
    Milismegma-red+ncuts~inc-zanu-lavs says:

    Slug slime Watson, slivers all over the slug garden aka Westminster and @ the Zanu-lavs – oozing unctious crud streaked goo and the BBC love him – that says it all really.

  116. 116

    If I owned the machines I’d never close.

  117. 117
    Mary Whitehouse says:

    Another idiot , it was labour that deregulated gambling . Ruined so many lives

  118. 118
    Blowing Whistles says:

    Ahh that old nutmeg of Super Casinos – did you know that the bloke who tried to get one down in Dorset was was connected to the aspinalls – Trevor Osborne?

    Apparantly he had something of a £300M debt against him – but he still continued in business.

    I of course was never ever published on the Super-Casino ruse dupe foisted upon the public by Lardy Presclott and the Labour Tribe of the reign of terror.

  119. 119
    Blowing Whistles says:

    See above Mrs Mills! Comment no 118. btw You ever been to Bournemouth you bitch?

  120. 120
    Blowing Whistles says:

    Ahh yes …Margaret Hodge – One of those promoted [for failure] way beyond her intelligence and authority – as a controlled ‘leading’ placeperson.

  121. 121
    Blowing Whistles says:

    Sick and tired of this ‘spoiler story’ given to the masses to distract from the impending implosion that is happening RIGHT NOW at the EU.

    But hey let’s all pretend we are side-tracked by the Coke heads’ getting free publicity for themselves’ narcissistic love of one another.

    Are we saying that old satchi boy never had a snort or two imself – Do me a favour guv?

  122. 122
    Polywolydoodle says:

    Murdoch is not fit to run a business What toss pot you are Watson.

  123. 123
    a well-armed bandit says:

    Including the Stock Exchanges ?

  124. 124
    Wait - what! says:

    Hedging his bets?
    Tom Watson votes the ‘wrong way’ on FOBTs. Read his excuse and wonder.

  125. 125

    What is it that your area is deprived of and by whom ?

  126. 126

    Since when has it been the business of government if some bloody idiots are stupid enough to pour their money into machines ?

  127. 127
    Wait - what! says:

    Indeed, they don’t complain when the populace are forced to pour money in to Government coffers however.

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