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Bettors are better.

The pundits don’t know. They are joined by people who consider gambling immoral.

Want to bet on Thursday’s NFL game between Chicago and Dallas? I do..

Just as Prohibition created Al Capone, bans on betting create crime. That will limit the site’s prediction ability, but at least America will allow one site that will generate real predictions instead of just hot air.

In 2012, Intrade gave Obama a 90 percent chance of winning, while pundits still said the race was “too close to call.” Gallup predicted a Romney win.

First, although individual bettors are no more enlightened than any one pundit, a large and diverse group of bettors usually is.

In the New York Times, he wrote, “Gambling has increasingly become a popular and accepted form of entertainment in the United States. Why?

Unfortunately, regulators will allow no more than 5,000 traders to make bets on a given contract (that is, a predicted outcome), and each trader can bet no more than $850. Polls suffer from a “self-reporting bias,” where participants say what they think they should rather than what they actually feel. Commodity Futures Trading Commission recently gave New Zealand’s University of Wellington permission to run a prediction market in the U.S. It gave 89 percent odds that Republicans would win the Senate.

Second, people are more realistic when betting than when answering a survey. Prediction markets like Betfair, and allow bettors to predict everything from the gender of England’s next royal baby to the winner of the next Nobel Peace Prize.

Legalization efforts might get farther if we stopped thinking of betting as a vice and instead recognized that it’s a useful part of rational decision-making.

Most of these bets are illegal. Before elections, Intrade’s bettors consistently out-predicted the pundits.

The Iowa Electronic Markets has outperformed political polls 74 percent of the time since 1988. Most states offer lotteries.”

Newspapers and websites all over America tell their readers that Dallas is favored by three points. Casinos oppose them because they don’t want competition. On average, polls underestimated Republican performance by 4 percent.

Pollsters and pundits rarely suffer much penalty for being wrong. In 2012, conservative pundits confidently predicted a Romney victory. With money on the line, forecasts are more accurate.

By the way, Betfair now gives Hillary Clinton a 40 percent chance of being the next president. People figure these expert guesses are the best anyone can do.

“Bootleggers and Baptists” is what economist Bruce Yandle called these coalitions. They also deprive Americans of useful information, such as who is likely to be the next president.

There’s knowledge to be tapped in people’s heads about what will happen next, and markets, as usual, are the best way to unleash that wisdom.

So allowing betting helps us make better predictions about the future.

Last month, I wrote about how U.S. Click here for more information on John Stossel.

Legalization efforts might get farther if we stopped thinking of betting as a vice and instead recognized that it’s a useful part of rational decision-making.

Silver writes, “There is an obvious appetite among sports fans for a safe and legal way to wager.”

But bills to legalize betting go nowhere in Congress. This is not a good thing. 

Recently, National Basketball Association commissioner Adam Silver became the first major professional sports commissioner to endorse legalizing sports betting.

In Maryland, most polls had the Democratic candidate for governor up by double digits, but the Republican won. Bootleggers got rich off Prohibition.

But they aren’t. That’s the “spread” posted by bookies. Except they aren’t so great either.

They do, and states give worse odds than bookies.

Luckily, the U.S. regulators shut down Intrade, a site that allowed people to bet on all sorts of things. Stossel also appears regularly on Fox News Channel (FNC) providing signature analysis. When politicians allow people to put their money where their mouths are, bettors do a better job predicting future events. The site,, allows users to bet on elections, court cases, regulatory decisions and more.

John Stossel is the host of “Stossel” (Thursdays at 9 PM/ET), a weekly program highlighting current consumer issues with a libertarian viewpoint. We in the media try to rely on “scientific” polls. Millions will be bet on that game, and billions will be bet on other games this weekend — college football, NBA games, NHL matches, UFC events …

Although American regulators killed Intrade, the British online prediction market Betfair still operates. This year, Democrats predicted they’d keep the Senate

James R. Dorfman

James R. Dorfman

James R. Dorfman is a successful webmaster and publisher of an Internet Shopping website. This site showcases, among other topics, Online Sport Betting sites and Sport Betting Providers from the UK’s leading bookmakers.
James R. Dorfman

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