V for Vicarious

It's been interesting to see the NRL's take on the Federal Government this week with regards to planned tax reform on poker machines. Whilst part of me was glad to see David Gallop and Co taking the fight to a Government whose first move in office was to scrap $10 million dollars in funding for a rugby league hall of fame one can't help but wish this sort of aggressive stance was saved for Channel 9's subpar game scheduling rather than poker machines.

The gambling issue is a long and winding road that the NRL is bound to feel every bump of. Anyone who's ever had a bet and a $5.95 schnitzel down at their local leagues club would realise that rugby league in Australia and gambling have a history longer than a Jamie Soward drop-out, and if people are going to bet on the NRL itself then it's only fair that the NRL gets a slice of the pie (not you Ryan Tandy).

However, trying to defend poker machine revenue is akin to the Under 9 Ormeau Shearers trying to stop a team full of angry Paul Gallens. The majority of Australians hold a place in their heart for pokies usually reserved for Paul Harrigan karaoke sessions on the Footy Show and any move to try to talk them up is likely to only marginalise rugby league fans, many of whom are already of the opinion that a number of large rugby league clubs need to Like

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