Frequent reader(s) of this blog will recall the despicable face of eventuality which, for so many years hid behind the mask of idealistic youth...erm...we mean will recall friend of the blog and Donald Trump wannabe Phil Ruffin. Mr. Ruffin is the overlord who owns the Wichita Death Camp for Greyhounds. Well, owned is probably a better word since the track went belly up in 2007 when the voters of the area told him, "Hey Phil. You think greyhound racing is an actual thing a fully functioning human being should be engaged in? Go ahead then, we're not going to give you cover by letting you use the income from slots to subsidize the continued heartless exploitation of these poor dogs for no profit." Or words to that effect.
So Phil folded his tent and now presides over the mouldering remains of his once mighty money losing empire out there off I-135 next to the abandoned strip mall. Picture a dystopian scene of broken buildings and cracked pavement under a somber sky. A desultory breeze blows old newspapers across the empty parking lot which once held tens of cars. Somewhere in the distance a crow calls out. Locals believe the place has bad Juju and won't go near it.
Well, old Phil is not one to give up easily, or maybe he can only hold one thought at at time, but whatever, instead of actually trying to do something positive with the land, he's spent the last seven years trying to convince anyone who would listen--and believe us that's a pretty small demographic--that a bright future looms for the senseless injuring and killing of innocent living creatures--if they will just let him have slots to subsidize it.
Wichita Greyhound Park operator Phil Ruffin plans to try again to get legislation passed in Topeka that would allow him to add slot machines at the park so he can reopen it.Mr. Wingert would not comment on the report that the $50 million to $100 million was Monopoly money, explaining that he had just taken Mr. Ruffin on as a client after getting fired from his cab driving position and deciding to become a lobbyist. "He responded to the flyer I nailed to the telephone pole over on Cedar Street," Wingert said. "So we really haven't had much time to talk yet because my mom took the message."
Ruffin would invest between $50 million and $100 million to renovate the facility on I-135 in Park City if he could install the slot machines, said his lobbyist, George Wingert, on Friday.
Wingert said there is more optimism about getting a bill passed this time because of the success of the Kansas Star Casino in Mulvane, just across the southern Sedgwick County line in Sumner County."Casino style gambling is where it's at," Wingert explained. "Slots, table games, the excitement, the big payoffs. It's what people want. It's why they come out, for the total experience. There's nothing that can compare. Oh, and greyhound racing, We want to do that too. No really. We do. I guess. Like I said, I haven't really had a chance to meet with Mr. Ruffin yet, although if you ask me doing over what closed your business down in the first place doesn't seem like the smartest business move, but I'm just a cab driver...I mean a lobbyist."
Sen. Ralph Ostmeyer, R-Grinnell, who chairs the Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee, where gambling issues often start out, said he doesn’t see such a bill succeeding this year."And that's why were so excited and optimistic about this legislative session," Wingert said. "At least I think it is. I really need to talk to Ruffin."
“That’s been an on-going deal and I don’t see that going anywhere. I don’t think there’s enough votes in the Legislature,” he said. “I’m not getting any pressure to work it.”
Not sure that's going to help there Georgie boy. After all, old Phil has been "excited and optimistic" for seven years now and so far all he has to show for it is several acres of urban blight. What do you think Boom?
I am full of adventure. I am a very sweet and loving boy. I love people and to get attention. I am a very obedient and easy dog. Because I am young, I get bored so I need to have some kind of periodic activity. I get along great with kitties and dogs of all size. I am housebroken. I am learning to go up and down the stairs but haven’t perfected it yet. My foster mom and dad are working with me to help me get better at it. I love to play with my squeaky toys. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.
Cloud update: This sweet boy loves his toys! Cloud is a fast learner that strives to please.