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:


    • 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


    • 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?


  7. 7
    Kebab Time says:

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


    • 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.


  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.


    • 15
      Jessa Towell says:



    • 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.


      • 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.


  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. 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


  13. 19
    Ed Dafty, LimpDim MP, Climate Change Chieftain says:



    • 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.


  14. 21
    Vlad the Energy Impaler says:

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


  15. 24
    Anon says:

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


    • 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.


    • 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!


  16. 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.


  17. 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.


  18. 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.


  19. 33
    FatPeopleEatTooMuch says:

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


  20. 34
    I nearly shouted HALLELUJAH says:


  21. 39

    Elementary my dear Watson.


    • 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.


      • 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.


  22. 49
    Hypocrits says:


  23. 50
    Ed Balls - Shallow Chancer says:



    • 54
      uk benefit scroungers supported by labour says:

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


      • 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.


    • 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
      The Public says:



      • 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.


    • 76
      Everyone says:

      Being an MP representing Labour must be very depressing.


  24. 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.


  25. 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!


  26. 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.


  27. 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.


  28. 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?


  29. 64
    Liebour MPs at their best jumping from one bus to another says:

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


  30. 67
    i don't n eed no doctor says:

    Does anyone know what “intimate terrorism” is about?


  31. 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.


  32. 74
    Someone says:

    I would ban all forms of gambling machines.


  33. 78
  34. 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!!!


  35. 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


  36. 94
    All Genetics My Dear Watson says:

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


  37. 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.


  38. 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


  39. 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.


    • 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.


      • 105

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


  40. 99
    Scouser says:

    yeh, but when I wins the jackpot!


  41. 111
    Tom Catesby. says:

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


  42. 113
    Ballox Economics! says:

    Labour gamble with our lives everyday. They are scum!


  43. 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.


  44. 117
    Mary Whitehouse says:

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


  45. 124
    Wait - what! says:

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


    • 126

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


  46. 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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