A report has been quietly released which shows a causal relationship between gaming and crime in Victoria. Does this come as a surprise to you, Networkers? Not to your Miss Eagle it doesn't. She has long regarded casinos, for instance, as venues for money laundering and wealth transferrence.
A sardonic smile flitters across Miss Eagle's face in these matters. You see here in Victoria not only do we see a government addicted to gambling income but a government unduly influenced by high rollers like James Packer and the rest of the casino 'establishment'. What Packer wants Packet gets, it seems to me, and - if I am wrong - could someone please publish the long (haha) or very short (ahem) list of wht James asked for and didn't get? I reckon one day Melbourne will wake up and it won't be called Melbourne anymore. We will be called Crown Casino City. Won't that be wonderful.
So back to the issue of crime and gaming. Networkers, do you think there should be a sequel (or perhaps prequel might be a better word) on crime, gaming and corruption in Victoria? You see if we leave the story only at crime and gaming we are left with images of the poor pokie sods committing armed robbery at the petrol station or the 24 hour grocery or the middle class embezzling their banking employers. In reality an official inquiry of the kind which asks the question, Which comes first the chicken or the egg? Buying political and bureaucratic influence or the decision?, might be more helpful.
And all this from holier than thou Victoria which has had to be dragged kicking and screaming (and I am not speaking of only the current Labor Govt but the Liberal/National Party lot as well) to set up some sort of anti-corruption commission. Not for Victoria, though, the effective models of the ICAC in NSW or the CMC in Queensland.
No, Victoria has gone for a highly customised version which is set to be complex, complicated, difficult and it won't have the effect of frightening the horses. Whether it will ever frighten corrupt cops, criminals, politicians and bureaucrats will remain to be seen. The proof of the VIACC pudding will be in the eating.