Paigowdan
Paigowdan
Joined: Apr 28, 2010
  • Threads: 115
  • Posts: 5692
April 29th, 2011 at 2:50:42 AM permalink
Guys,
The story about Stokes' poker playing career is sad, poignant.

http://blog.mlive.com/deadmoney/2011/04/us_online_poker_crackdown_leav.html

He was a professional poker player who paid his bills - and his taxes - and supported his family from online poker playing.

If it is viewed as a crime, then it's arguably a victimless one - as the only ones he "took" from were from players who did play as well as he did, precisely because he was disciplined and worked hard at it - professionally, many would say.

However, the "gubment" lawyers are will make the argument that income from a technical crime is still illicit income, but it's hard to argue with on a compassionate basis.
What if he robbed banks - but worked out a method where he didn't carry out shooting anyone in the process? The banks or "system" can afford it. He didn't hurt anyone, and I would do it too if I could.
What if he counterfeited money? - The economy and "system" can support it.
What if he sold grass - people don't overdose on pot like they do on meth or crack, so then it must be "okay."
What if he were a corporate procurement executive, and took a kickback for a product that was "almost as good but slightly more expensive" - with a mortgage to pay, car loans to pay, and college tuition for his daughter at Carnegie-Mellon? Okay now?

All these arguments can be made for beating or bleeding the system when it suits us, and BOY can we present some very compassionate arguments that sound absolutely reasonable on that basis.

Maybe the evil IRS and the state tax departments want their cut - and they do indeed. It's how we pay for schools and police and Medicare and social security - and for wars and "International police actions" that we may strongly disagree with, too.
Maybe they want to prevent children and unauthorized people from gambling - and they do, and that's all right also.

But when gambling is in any sort of a dirty or in a "grey area," the floorboards really buckle under the industry.

People did know - or should have known - that going in it all was technically illegal, ("marginally illegal but apparently tolerated" is a much better description), and that it all would eventually be shut down with the tolerance limit point reached - until re-opening legitimized.

"Job Closure Scenarios with heartbreaking stories" happened for all sorts of good and bad people, and obeying the law or not: factories that shuttered their doors on its workers when operating legally: U.S. Steel, Automotive parts suppliers, ship building docks, you name it.

But illegal gamblers who made a living from it - even if their proceeds were spent on their children's Catholic School Tuition, and live an All-American middle class life - stretch it a bit for me a tad.
Dealing is a legal job, - and so is being a professional player in a legal card room or casino.

There are players who make a good living by playing player-banked poker and Pai Gow in the legal card rooms of California and Washington State, (and some house-banked games, too.) They suit up for work often in jeans or in a wheel-chair, just like the rest of us, even if disabled, in Disability-compliant casino facilities. All legal, no excuses about traveling.

The argument that "we weren't arrested or stopped quickly enough - to prevent us from making a living from it for a while - should make it permanently legal for us" - doesn't fly with me. If a victimless crime taxes the population as a whole - in any tiny but widespread way - it adds up to a massive deficit.

The squatter's rights argument of:
"We got away with this for a quite without getting caught or shut down - so it should now be made legitimate for me, and given to me, dammit!" is at question.

IMHO.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.
odiousgambit
odiousgambit
Joined: Nov 9, 2009
  • Threads: 302
  • Posts: 8339
April 29th, 2011 at 3:29:37 AM permalink
I have sympathy, sure. That sympathy might evaporate if I knew all the facts, a guy like this, making this kind of cake, often has software assistance against his opponents. Just saying.

But I have said all along you have to be nuts to play poker online. This is just one of the things that could happen. You pays your money and you takes your chances.
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
Paigowdan
Paigowdan
Joined: Apr 28, 2010
  • Threads: 115
  • Posts: 5692
April 29th, 2011 at 4:16:46 AM permalink
Quote: odiousgambit

I have sympathy, sure. That sympathy might evaporate if I knew all the facts, a guy like this, making this kind of cake, often has software assistance against his opponents. Just saying.



Odious - thank you.
Hold 'em in poker in many online poker rooms has become more of a math exercise than its original mix of gambling espionage, deduction, and yes - luck.

Bots have somewhat destroyed the game, and made it a superficial "computer operators' job" and math exercise, - and not a gambling skill game. This should be illegal as a definition of gambling.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.
buzzpaff
buzzpaff
Joined: Mar 8, 2011
  • Threads: 112
  • Posts: 5328
April 29th, 2011 at 5:25:38 AM permalink
Yes, we can not have a man support his family with on-line gambling. Same logic as putting numbers runners in jail
until the states decided to have their own version of the numbers game. Off course the state can only afford to pay
500 to 1 , not the 700 to 1 the bookies paid. Need to run all those commercials to attract bettors. So nice to know my buying a lottery ticket supports our parks systems. Seem almost unpatriotic not to spend half my paycheck on the numbers or lottery !
DJTeddyBear
DJTeddyBear
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
  • Threads: 178
  • Posts: 10249
April 29th, 2011 at 5:44:53 AM permalink
Sympathy? For what?

Why is his situation different from any of the gamblers who suddenly find themselves without one of thier income streams?

Are we really supposed to feel sorry because this was his only source of income?


You'd have to be living in genuine denial to think that the golden goose would be immortal.
Superstitions are silly, childish, irrational rituals, born out of fear of the unknown. But how much does it cost to knock on wood? 😁
Wizard
Administrator
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
  • Threads: 1336
  • Posts: 22046
April 29th, 2011 at 6:52:08 AM permalink
Quote: Virgi

There has to be SOME losers.



Then let me be the first to admit that I am a net loser in online poker.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
vert1276
vert1276
Joined: Apr 25, 2011
  • Threads: 70
  • Posts: 446
April 29th, 2011 at 8:58:59 AM permalink
There's no such thing as an online pro, only live table pros. In a live game you learn to quickly read other players or you take the highway. You learn who's going to fall for this or that based on their physical movements and idiosyncracies. Online is nothing more than a lot of guessing about this or that. The skill level is not even half of what it is in a live game.



While first off I agree online poker is horrible because half the fun of poker is the conversation at the table and the interaction with people. But lets not act like online poker takes no skill, because it does! I play lots of no limit poker live(granted the buy in is only 1k and the blinds are 5/10) and I always laugh when people think poker is like the movie "rounders". First off are you really going to get a "tell" off someone at a 4-8 table LOL? And secondly big time pros playing for big time money dont have any physical tells. At most you might be able to pick up on someones betting rabbits but thats about it.
MathExtremist
MathExtremist
Joined: Aug 31, 2010
  • Threads: 88
  • Posts: 6526
April 29th, 2011 at 9:06:49 AM permalink
Quote: Paigowdan

People did know - or should have known - that going in it all was technically illegal, ("marginally illegal but apparently tolerated" is a much better description), and that it all would eventually be shut down with the tolerance limit point reached - until re-opening legitimized.



Not at the Federal level it wasn't. There are no federal laws against a player making a house-banked non-sports wager online. The CAFC has ruled that "the Wire Act does not prohibit non-sports internet gambling" (cite). See also this pre-UIGEA analysis. The UIGEA was passed because Congress could not agree on language that actually outlawed the placement of wagers themselves. It's far easier to go after a handful of electronic payments processors than millions of US citizens.

Absent clear Federal law, it's a State issue. In many states, Oregon included, the act of placing a wager on a proposition that is not specifically authorized by law is a crime -- usually a misdemeanor. As the article above indicates, in Nevada it's the opposite -- the Commission has explicitly been authorized to figure out how to regulate online wagering as a precondition of legality.

In any event, given the recent US DoJ opinion of online gaming, it seems poor planning for the poker player to have nothing lined up in the event of a crackdown. Just because something's not illegal doesn't mean it can't disappear anyway. Ask any manufacturing worker whose company has moved production to a foreign factory or any tech professional who's been terminated in favor of outsourced overseas labor.
"In my own case, when it seemed to me after a long illness that death was close at hand, I found no little solace in playing constantly at dice." -- Girolamo Cardano, 1563
Mosca
Mosca
Joined: Dec 14, 2009
  • Threads: 178
  • Posts: 3798
April 29th, 2011 at 9:50:48 AM permalink
Puritanism, plain and simple.
NO KILL I
MathExtremist
MathExtremist
Joined: Aug 31, 2010
  • Threads: 88
  • Posts: 6526
April 29th, 2011 at 12:51:55 PM permalink
Quote: Mosca

Puritanism, plain and simple.


True, but it's not like the guy didn't know it going in.
"In my own case, when it seemed to me after a long illness that death was close at hand, I found no little solace in playing constantly at dice." -- Girolamo Cardano, 1563

  • Jump to: