Re: Rep. Pete Kott's HB 182, and Rep. Bill Hudson's related concept of revenue generation by high-tech, virtual mugging of well-heeled tourists via video lottery terminals on the Alaska Marine Highway.
Imagine this: A Hawaiian-shirt-clad tourist with a 35mm camera around his neck, wearing dark glasses, baggy shorts, a straw hat, a pinky ring, and a money belt stuffed like a Christmas turkey, boards an Alaska Marine Highway vessel, and checks his brain with the purser.
Though he is eager to enjoy viewing the pristine wilderness, eagles, whales, etc, once underway, he looks out the window to see only gray water, clouds and a persistent drizzle. No mega-fauna or pristine flora to enjoy, and all he has is a couple of novels to read.
Instantly he is bored stiffer than a dead halibut. With a head full of air and a pocket full of Down-South dough, he remembers that, thanks to Rep. Pete ``Blackbeard'' Kott, and his faithful assistant Pat ``don't bore me'' Harman, the ship now has video lottery terminals, more commonly known as ``the crack cocaine of gambling'' due to their demonstrated ability to rapidly create gambling addictions. Silently cursing those who say he should seek professional help for his gambling habit, he thinks ``maybe this time, I'll hit the big one.''
Chockfull of false hope, the grateful-for-adult-entertainment tourist first gleefully, then painfully proceeds to part with a wad of cash the size of a grapefruit. Alaska pockets the filthy lucre, and thanks the tourist for coming and contributing to the great social climate and dizzying cultural heights of the state-owned floating clip joint.
What's wrong with this picture?
Just say no to HB 182. Let's not allow Pete to get our tails ``Kott'' in a wringer and end up ``Harman'' tourists and residents alike.
Guy J. Crockroft