Do you support the proposal for a casino near Yampa Valley Regional Airport?

Yes, it would create jobs and bring money to the area 1041 votes

54.96%

No, it's unlikely to be successful long term 202 votes

10.67%

No, it would cause problems in the area 520 votes

27.46%

I don't know enough about the proposal 82 votes

4.33%

I don't care 49 votes

2.59%

1894 total votes

Comments

Steve Lewis 2 years ago

Looking back, a few polls such as gay marriage, sand hill crane hunting, airline sales tax, canceled fireworks, and the airline sales tax garnered 604, 531, 650 and 559 votes.

1075 votes on gambling by Tuesday morning?

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Steve, Are you suggesting that a poll which allows people to vote as many times as they are willing to delete cookies is not a scientific poll?

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Steve Lewis 2 years ago

Seriously? That's all you have to do to hack this poll?

Sounds like that may be a way of getting around some cookie-block to voting twice. But the Pilot should still be able to identify those computers voting multiple times by looking at the site statistics for the vote page. And then bar their use of the site.

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Steve, The IP address is meaningless since those are often assigned dynamically by the ISP. And how are they going to deny anyone from the site when there was no log in to identify whom to bar?

Pilot stops just short of saving these polls are scientific. They have written articles as if the results were meaningful.

If I ever did want to distort a poll then it would be only after the Pilot wrote an article claiming the results of some poll was significant on a topic which perception of local opinion mattered. And then I'd write a script to add a couple hundred thousand votes to demonstrate how absurd it was to consider poll results to be relevant.

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Robert Dippold 2 years ago

There are 20,000 people living in Routt County. There are several 100,000 people coming to Routt County every year. It doesn't seem right that the self interest of 20,000 people should dictate what hundreds of thousands of people would want. Maybe it isn't required legally, but ethically the voting population should include people other than the direct beneficiaries.
On another note, I sure hope someone is factoring in the negative cost to the economy from this as well. Steamboat is a brand. It stands for laid back, country family ski/summer area. I don't see how this casino fits in with this brand. This is a short sighted attempt to create jobs that is going to mess up a hard earned brand and make Steamboat the Jersey Shore of ski town IMHO..

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Bob, The logical flaw in your 20K vs 100K argument is that the 100K come here because this is a nice place to visit and if the 20K fail to keep it a nice place to visit then the 100K can go elsewhere.

This proposal makes no sense to me because the gambling business is no longer about being thankful for being allowed to open a casino in some remote spot to hopefully spur tourism. It is about putting them closer to population centers and the state government taking a bigger slice.

Thus, I think if there is a tribe willing to team with investors to open a casino far from their reservation then it is far more likely that they'll team up along I70 or I25 than Hayden.

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Steve Lewis 2 years ago

Pilot, How many Pilot polls have seen more than 800 votes?

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Nicole Miller 2 years ago

lewi,

I found two polls this year that garnered more than 800 votes. They are: January 2012: "Do you support the legalization of marijuana?" with 883 votes. February 2012: "Do you agree with the decision to raise Steamboat Ski Area lift ticket prices midseason?" with 895 votes.

Our polls typically get closer to 500 votes, depending on the interest in the question.

Nicole Miller Assistant editor nmiller@SteamboatToday.com

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John Fielding 2 years ago

. Legalized gaming could work with the Steamboat brand but not as a casino. It would need to be a small "Gunsmoke" saloon type venue, not more than two or three card tables, a couple of old time manual one armed bandits, preferably toward the back. But it really ought to have some "Miss Kitty" dance hall girls and rooms to take them upstairs for it to be right. It would probably work very well and have several of them open within a short time. It would get some national attention, and reinforce our brand of being a piece of the real Old West.

I also think we should issue ten-gallon hats, leather vests and long barrel revolvers to our police, and have them walk a beat downtown in the evenings. Nothing like a real Colt .45 to get the attention of any troublemakers. . .

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Robert Dippold 2 years ago

John, As far as your idea goes about the saloon type gambling being consistent with the brand, I'm afraid I have to agree with you. I have no defense. My only hope is that there are not any entrepreneurs reading your post.

You are imaginative.

Bob

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Steve Lewis 2 years ago

Thanks Nicole. This one is more than twice the votes of any poll you have done before. Hard to believe it represents anything other than poll hacking skills.

Hope you can fix that next time.

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Steve, Look at the last four polls and ask yourself if there is any reason for the paper to care if people can hack results? Ready for Fall? Hit a hole in one? Fav free concert show? Whatcha doing this weekend?

The paper's polls are not meant to be taken seriously. Anyone that attempts to take them seriously loses credibility.

Interesting to me that No Casino have got nearly as many signatures on their online petition as no votes in the Pilot poll. That petition lists names and limits signing to one per email account.

Seems to me that pro-casino folks are either missing a great opportunity to get a petition with nearly 1,000 named supporters and the ability to organize them for the casino, or know their yes vote tally was hacked.

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

"Hard to believe it represents anything other than poll hacking skills."

Which would surprise me not one bit, after checking into Sleeping Giant Group's DNS records. It's always a bad sign when a business obfuscates their domain ownership, which is allowed for privacy reasons and thus makes sense for personal vanity domains, but makes no sense when the domain is owned by a business -- on-the-level businesses have no reason to cloak who owns their domain name, or their contact information.

The most boring detail is usually the mail server record, as it typically points to a service (hotmail, yahoo, etc.) anyone with a credit card can sign up for in under five minutes. Theirs points to one of several consulting businesses owned by an attorney in Australia, about which/whom I can determine very little, other than that he provides "legal services management and related IT consulting services... advises on IT-based strategies and solutions for the procurement and management of legal services," whatever that means.

Seems to me like the sort of operator who sets up shell companies and perhaps even manipulates Internet poll results on behalf of clients, i.e. pretty shady in my professional opinion as someone who once outed a group of convicted-felon Estonian-American fraudsters who specialize in destroying webhosting companies in the guise of acquiring them. I can see the attraction of contracting with such people for certain types of businesses, but why, in this case, an Aussie?

Something here doesn't smell right at all, and it's why I believe Sleeping Giant Group should come clean about any silent partners they may have. Or am I the only one who thinks that, as impressive as their C.V.s may be, this group doesn't have the resources or knowledge to start an Indian casino, given the massive regulatory and financial obstacles which must be overcome? The risk profile (despite the potential rewards) is far higher than what I've come to expect from local groups of entrepreneurs, and everything about their actions and plans screams "we've done this before" despite the lack of anyone (publicly) involved having any pertinent experience in casino startups.

I can't help but think how much different the business plan for Lake Catamount Ski Area would've looked, had it been backed by a large corporation like Intrawest, from the one I saw for an investor group headed by a successful real-estate developer (Martin Hart), in the course of putting together their website back in '94. Which fell apart before anyone ever saw my work (weren't that many folks with Internet here, then), leading me to always state that Dick Yeager (Quintin, remember bidis and clove ciggies?) was my first web-development client...

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Eric, Appears to me that your research just shows that Sleeping Giant outsourced their website management and development.

Pretty ridiculous to claim that a group with named locals involved is going to hide the ownership of their website. Makes no sense to claim they are intentionally hiding their website ownership when they could have easily assigned it to one of their named partners.

But it is not that rare for a company hired to manage online marketing (including website) to make sure their side gets lots of website hits and other signs of popularity including thing like adding votes to anonymous polls.

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

There are lots of casino-management companies out there who manage Indian casinos, so as a sanity check I decided to see if any of them have ties to Melbourne, Australia...

http://www.smh.com.au/business/packers-us-casino-gamble-in-250m-loss-20090610-c3mi.html

...the answer is, yes. James Packer invests in casino-management companies in the U.S. which handle everything from major resorts to small Indian casinos, as part of his (mostly inept) attempt to establish a global casino-gambling empire.

Sheer speculation on my part, here, like I said it's just sanity checking into the possibility that anyone in Melbourne, Australia would have any interest in an Indian casino planned for Hayden, CO. IOW, I'm not saying James Packer is behind Sleeping Giant Group -- but I am asking.

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

"Appears to me that your research just shows that Sleeping Giant outsourced their website management and development."

Yes, to a Colorado outfit, none of whose other customers have their e-mail records pointing to an attorney in Australia. I checked. So their web developers don't appear to be responsible for this decision.

"Pretty ridiculous to claim that a group with named locals involved is going to hide the ownership of their website."

That isn't a claim, it's a matter of fact. Please don't talk out your ass about things you know nothing about, to cast aspersions on me. If you knew how to check DNS records, which apparently you don't, you'd see that they indeed obfuscate the ownership of their domain.

"Makes no sense to claim they are intentionally hiding their website ownership when they could have easily assigned it to one of their named partners."

Again, this is not a claim, it's a matter of fact. The fact that indeed, they could have assigned it to one of the named partners or to their business name, is what makes it so curious that they didn't, choosing instead to obfuscate.

I can think of no reason why I shouldn't be curious about their e-mail server belonging to an attorney in Australia. Highly curious.

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

"But it is not that rare for a company hired to manage online marketing (including website) to make sure their side gets lots of website hits and other signs of popularity including thing like adding votes to anonymous polls."

If indeed this poll has been manipulated, which is speculation, it could be their web developers, sure. But the high participation in this poll is an anomaly, as is their mail server record. When I'm investigating companies online, which I have a history of doing which reaches beyond outing the Estonian mafia (I'm no rookie at this), it's the anomalies I find most interesting.

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

A serious question to ask Sleeping Giant is whether or not they have an agreement with an Indian tribe. If yes then that is a heck of a secret of which tribe and under what terms the casino will be operated to be keeping from the public. If no then why are they talking to locals about this project instead of talking to Indian tribes to join their project.

Personally, if I was part of an Indian tribe willing to open an off reservation casino then I'd be asking why are we opening it in Hayden and not Longmont or along I70? An Indian tribe seeking to open a casino in a busier location is going to have no problems finding investors and could promise enough money to the state to interest them in the project.

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

"A serious question to ask Sleeping Giant is whether or not they have an agreement with an Indian tribe. If yes then that is a heck of a secret of which tribe and under what terms the casino will be operated to be keeping from the public. If no then why are they talking to locals about this project instead of talking to Indian tribes to join their project."

You obviously haven't been paying attention, as they've publicly stated that they do not have a tribal partner at this point. Or is it just that you're inept at reading newspaper articles, preferring irrelevant conspiracy theories about secret tribal involvement? Nothing strange about that, obviously such a project would appeal more to any tribe if someone else has spent the money to overcome the regulatory, PR, and financial obstacles, first. Given that the desired location is not part of any reservation.

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Scott Wedel 2 years ago

Eric, What a joke.

Looks like you mixed up sleepinggiant.com.au with sleepinggiantgroup.com

Registrant: Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States

Registered through: GoDaddy.com, LLC (http://www.godaddy.com) Domain Name: SLEEPINGGIANTGROUP.COM Created on: 01-Jan-12 Expires on: 01-Jan-14 Last Updated on: 22-Feb-12

Administrative Contact: Private, Registration
Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States (480) 624-2599 Fax -- (480) 624-2598

Technical Contact: Private, Registration
Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States (480) 624-2599 Fax -- (480) 624-2598

Domain servers in listed order: NS1.GREENGEEKS.COM NS2.GREENGEEKS.COM

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

"What we have here is a local group whose e-mail service is provided by an Australian lawyer..."

Whoops, forgot my weasel-words, replace "is" with "appears to be." The reason I'm asking, instead of asserting, is because I can't pin down the connection between the casino group and a certain Australian attorney. But, that connection does keep turning up in my searches, which I'd never have bothered with had the domain ownership info not been obfuscated. I don't want to skew searches by connecting the two names here, but anyone who does a Google search (for example, and using a private tab, as cookies could alter your results by "tailoring" them for you) for "whois sleepinggiantgroup.com" can see what I mean by looking at the last result on the first page; here's a link to a screenshot of my results:

http://i1066.photobucket.com/albums/u405/EJBigBison/aa83f0be.png

Here's what an obfuscated DNS registration looks like, the ramification is that it takes a subpoena to determine who owns the domain:

Registrant: Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States

Registered through: GoDaddy.com, LLC (http://www.godaddy.com) Domain Name: SLEEPINGGIANTGROUP.COM Created on: 01-Jan-12 Expires on: 01-Jan-14 Last Updated on: 22-Feb-12

Administrative Contact: Private, Registration sleepinggiantgroup.com@domainsbyproxy... Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States (480) 624-2599 Fax -- (480) 624-2598

Technical Contact: Private, Registration sleepinggiantgroup.com@domainsbyproxy... Domains By Proxy, LLC DomainsByProxy.com 14747 N Northsight Blvd Suite 111, PMB 309 Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States (480) 624-2599 Fax -- (480) 624-2598

Domain servers in listed order: NS1.GREENGEEKS.COM NS2.GREENGEEKS.COM

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Eric J. Bowman 2 years ago

Now, it could be that the obfuscated record is the result of inexperienced developers who don't understand the implications of cloaked records for businesses, and the association between this domain and that of an Australian attorney has some innocent (or even unknown) explanation. So make of this information what you will, provided you don't flip your lid by accusing me of conspiracy theories, propagating rumors, or any other such crap.

I believe that any group proposing any casino for anywhere, needs to be vetted, due to the nature of that business. In order to satisfy my concerns, SGG needs to make their domain ownership (and that of sleepinggiantcasino.com and any other domains they may have) public like that of any legitimate business. And, they need to answer my yes/no question about silent partners. Preferably here, as opposed to in a newspaper interview or a letter to the editor; I lose respect for them when they refuse to engage directly with critics/concerned citizens unless I travel to one of their meetings -- it isn't that hard to register and reply here, so purporting to answer a question asked here in the Craig Daily Press just comes across as dodgy.

Plus, the answer needs to be to the question I'm asking, which is "Do you have any silent partners?" Stating that no Australian is involved, as Mr. Hofman did in the Craig Daily Press, is just playing games -- do I really need to then ask if there are any Germans involved? Or Swedes? (etc.) All that answer tells me about the Australian in question, is that maybe he was contracted with, as opposed to being part of the ownership group. Which is not the question I asked. It should be noted that I have not stated an opinion for or against the casino, nor can my name be found on the NoCasino petition.

The reason for this is that I'm a fence-sitter, who has taken exception to the dismissive attitude towards concerns, overly-rosy studies, and cloaked domain ownership this group has offered. The result is that, while I may be receptive to the idea of a Hayden Airport casino, I'm not inclined to support this proposal until the group behind it changes their behavior.

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