Noriko Tanaka

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    Gambling addiction bill set to pass House of Representatives

    Diet debate on the Basic Bill on Gambling Addiction Countermeasures began on Wednesday in the lower house’s Cabinet Committee, and the legislation is expected to be passed by a plenary session of House of Representatives by the end of business on Friday, May 25.

    Taking the temperature of the casino debate

    The Japanese language includes the idiomatic expression “ondosa,” which literally means “a difference in temperatures.” However, it often appears in newspapers to represent a situation in which various parties don’t quite see eye-to-eye—that they view a matter with disparate levels of support or commitment. When it comes to the legalization of casinos in Japan, there are vast temperature differences between the various interested parties. And amongst the public feelings are still running high against IRs. Proponents say more and better education is needed.

    Japan Casino Bill held up by gambling addiction concerns

    In a quiet neighborhood in Yokohama, Japan, about twenty senior citizens gather each day in a facility called Day Service Las Vegas. For hours on end they play at card games, mahjong, slot machines, and pachinko. At first glance this may look like an illicit casino patronized exclusively by the elderly, but on closer inspection the 10,000 yen bills that change hands are not Japanese currency at all, but rather the equivalent of Monopoly money. Although this may seem like innocent fun, in Japan even this pastime is viewed as controversial amid concern over problem gambling.