Why politicians hedge their bets when it comes to gambling in Britain

Comment piece for The Guardian, published on August 7, 2012.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/aug/07/britain-nation-problem-gamblers

The question is whether here in the UK the economic benefits of slot machines in betting shops outweigh the drain on people’s incomes? Perhaps betting operators will also ask themselves whether extra slots in each of their shops are worth a sustained bout of negative headlines.