But George, to those "spending" that seed money, it's seen as an investment. Meaning, if they spend those millions today, within 5 years or so, they are expecting far more money to be coming in. And to the State, that means a steady flow of new revenues.
If those same investors became philanthropers, donating to schools and universities, that would be great. But would the State coffers get a steady stream of new revenues of equal size?
Like it or not, there are a lot of people out there who are compulsive gamblers. It's the craziest thing I've ever seen. I went to a conference a few years ago, in a casino hotel in Biloxi MS. In order to get to the conference rooms, we had to go through 3 smoke-filled floors of gamblers. It was busy at all times of day, as far as I could tell. Booz, cigarttes, and gambling. They seem to all go together.
If Maryland wants to replace its horse-racing deficits with other forms of gambling, I guess it shouldn't be surprising. (They won't get a dime from me, though!)