Risk-Taking Is Profitable—but Perilous in Our Interdependent World

From Freeway Speeding to Financial Instruments, Big Gambles Can Spin into Disaster

Risks are inherent in life and so, over the centuries, people have devised many mechanisms to pool and reduce risks.

These institutions range from families to religious tithing to formal insurance contracts and diversification strategies for market investing. But, whether formal or informal, social or financial, all serve to ensure that those of us who are unfortunate enough to face adversity at any one time are taken care of by those who are not.

The very ability to share risks allows us to be bolder, more adventurous and frankly, …

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The Mob, the Mayor, and Pinball

Why 20th-Century Law Enforcement Wielded a “Sledgehammer of Decency” on the Game Machines

Soon after I founded the Pacific Pinball Museum, an ex-police officer contacted me, offering to sell a rare artifact that was once confiscated by the Oakland Police force.  …

Fielding a Daily Fantasy Sports Team Is No Different Than Playing Online Poker

Websites Like DraftKings and FanDuel Bear All the Hallmarks of Gambling—Including Addiction

Tonight’s NCAA men’s basketball championship will also crown the champion in millions of fantasy pools. As the nation gets ready for the excitement or frustration that this game will bring, …

Your March Madness Office Pools Should All Be Legal

The U.S. Government Doesn’t See It That Way, But Everyone Could Benefit from the $9 Billion Dollars Americans Wager on College Hoops

Roughly 40 million Americans are expected to fill out a total of 70 million brackets and bet $9 billion on March Madness this month, according to data from the American …

Los Alamitos Race Course In All Its Decaying Glory

Kentucky Derby Winner California Chrome’s Home Track Is Where a Suburban Kid Fell for a Rough-and-Tumble Pastime

Sometimes a thing so special needs to be approached slowly, in small steps that get closer over time.

I grew up a few short miles from Los Alamitos Race Course in …

Hospitalizing Asian Gamblers and Scratching My Car

The Casino Buses of San Gabriel Are Dangerous Nuisances. They’re Also a Reminder Of How Unaware We’re Becoming Of Our Own Communities.

I was in the city of San Gabriel parking on Valley Boulevard, the 42nd Street of Chinese-American commerce, when a man missing a lot of teeth walked over to me. …