Putin Aides Mafia
By outlawing gambling in most of Russia.
Moscow's high-rollers could be in for a shock. Under an anti-gambling law proposed by President Vladimir Putin and given key parliamentary approval on Dec. 15, the city's casinos will have to close by June 30, 2009. Instead, Russia will create just four special zones nationwide—similar to Las Vegas or Atlantic City—where gambling will be allowed. And in the meantime, casinos will face tougher size and capital requirements aimed at driving out smaller operators.This, of course, is part of a larger effort by Putin to revive the Soviet Union's war on activities that distract people from laboring for the common good.
This is a serious problem, and it has to be dealt with like the spread of alcohol," the President declared when he unveiled his plan in early October.More here.
He evidently has plenty of support: A recent survey by Moscow's Levada Center polling agency showed that 79% of Russians support the proposed law. "We are trying to protect millions of poor people," says Alexander Lebedev, a member of Parliament who has long campaigned against gambling. "Those with idle money can spend it in the newly created zones, but schoolchildren, pensioners, and single mothers won't go there."