Generations ago, gambling in America was an illicit activity, dominated by gangsters like Benny Binion and Bugsy Siegel. Today, forty-eight out of fifty states permit some form of legal gambling, and America’s governors sit at the head of the gaming table. But have states become addicted to the revenue gambling can bring? And does the potential of increased revenue lead them to place risky bets on new casinos, lotteries, and online games? In Gangsters to Governors, journalist David Clary investigates the pros and cons of the shift toward state-run gambling. Unearthing the sordid history of America’s gaming underground, he demonstrates the problems with prohibiting gambling while revealing how today’s governors, all competing for a piece of the action, promise their citizens payouts that are rarely delivered. Clary introduces us to a rogue’s gallery of colorful characters, from John “Old Smoke” Morrissey, the Irish-born gangster who built Saratoga into a gambling haven in the nineteenth century, to Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire casino magnate who has furiously lobbied against online betting. By exploring the controversial histories of legal and illegal gambling in America, he offers a fresh perspective on current controversies, including bans on sports and online betting. Entertaining and thought-provoking, Gangsters to Governors considers the past, present, and future of our gambling nation. Author's website (http://www.davidclaryauthor.com)
During the 1990s, the "roving bandits", big business or the oligarchs, stole Russia. They gained influence over President Yeltsin and his government, and gradually shaped policy in their own interests. In this first comprehensive account to explain why Russia took the course it did, Martin McCauley examines the period through the prism of government, including Yeltsin's shadow government, and looks at the military, police, security and intelligence services. Relations between Moscow and the regions, industry, agriculture, social policy and foreign policy are also explored.
These are the true stories of several of America's most notorious Black and Latino gangsters whose careers created the utmost revered legends of the past 40 years. Their exploits and extremes have been chronicled across many mediums, including film and television but as a firsthand participant in the lifestyle, I was a friend to many and a contemporary of most so I have written stories that few have either the knowledge or experience to share. This is BEYOND THE HOOD.
This book provides an account of the emergence, nature and impact of armed youth gangs in an East London Borough over the last decade. It describes the challenges these armed young men and women pose to their communities, those charged with preventing crime and those struggling to vouchsafe 'community safety'. While the focus of the book is 'local', the processes it outlines and the effects it chronicles have both a national and international relevance. It argues that the main reason behind the emergence of the armed youth gang has been the coalesence of two previously discreet socially deviant groups; the rowdy, episodically criminal, adolescent peer group on the one hand and the locally-based organized criminal network on the other. The book analyses the impact of the globalisation of the drugs trade and the consequent shift in the focus of local organized crime from the 'blag' to the 'business'. It also discusses how socio-economic and cultural factors, as well as family and neighbourhood histories and loyalties and localized racial antagonisms all play their part in the emergence of the armed youth gang.
The story of Chicago gangsters in the 1920s is legendary. Less talked about is the tale of the politicians who allowed those gangsters to thrive. During the heyday of organized crime in the Prohibition era, Chicago mayor "Big Bill" Thompson and Gov. Len Small were the two most powerful political figures in Illinois. Thompson campaigned on making Chicago "a wide open town" for bootleggers. Small sold thousands of pardons and paroles to criminals, embezzled $1 million, and was then acquitted after mobsters bribed the jury. This book is the story of those Jazz Age politicians whose careers in government thrived on and endorsed corruption and racketeering, from Chicago to Springfield. It complements author Jim Ridings's groundbreaking biography, Len Small: Governors and Gangsters, which was praised by critics and situated Ridings as a trailblazer among Chicago crime authors.
Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, the archbishop of Chicago, had long been considered the leader of American Catholicism and was so widely respected throughout the world that he was thought to be the only American who might become Pope. His life took another path, however, after he was falsely accused of sexual abuse in 1993. Vindicated and about to embark on a broad program of renewal, he was stricken with pancreatic cancer in 1995. His destiny, as those close to him soon sensed, was not to become a Pope but a saint instead. Between his first diagnosis in June 1995 until the recurrence of his cancer in August, 1996, a period of fourteen months elapsed. There are fourteen stations in the traditional Catholic devotion of the Stations of the Cross that commemorate the events from Christ's judgment through his carrying of his cross to his crucifixion and death. In the last months of his life, Joseph Bernardin lived out those stations in his own life, from being judged unjustly by the high priest brother Cardinals who wanted to eliminate his influence in American Catholicism, to his bearing in his own cross, and from his last meeting with his mother to his public death, Cardinal Bernardin reproduced the passion and death of Jesus in his own. This book is a series of meditations on the traditional stations, based on scriptural scholarship, and the stations Bernardin lived, revealed by the author, Bernardin's close friend for thirty years.