Living La Vida Poker

Once just a hobby, it's become a lifestyle and career for many people, sparking moral concerns and fear of increased addiction.


03/19/2006 02:23:44 PM

n the Christian way of life gambling is associated with sin. Please don't speak for all Christians. And where did you get off inventing your own new "sin"? Sin starts small like a cell of cancer and spreads its poison very slowly and subtlely and incubates very innocently. Sin is very deceptive and starts small but destroys people in the long run. That's how milk chocolate is to the depressed person. It can lead to a chain cycle of obesity, but it's no more "sinful" than a game of video poker. Perhaps people think gambling is "sinful" because it's often tied to money. And, it's money they don't have. But, money is not evil. Greed is.


03/19/2006 02:15:57 PM

*doubletaking.* Beer? You have a problem with *beer?* I thought this was the religion of the dude that said, 'Take this and drink it, this blood's for you.' I thought churches were *supposed* to serve drinks. After all, once upon a time, those services went on for hours, and you *really* wouldn't want to drink the water. :)


03/19/2006 02:04:32 PM

Ah, I don't actually care *that* churches get together and play bingo or whatever, it's just yet another double-standard.


03/19/2006 01:41:45 PM

Cusidh, You raised an interesting point. What some churches do "Bingo, or selling beer" on church property and living the Christian life isn't always the same. Churches will not stand before God and be judged. Christian's or believers as individuals will! No matter how noble or worthy a church is, it will be the individual member of the church who will have to stand before God in the end. It won't be, "Well the church I..." The individual will be accountable!


03/19/2006 01:16:38 PM

Kind of funny they call it a 'sin,' when quite often the churches are the only ones *allowed* gambling. I don't think there's anything *essentially* wrong with it, but, suggest walking in considering any money set aside for gambling already spent on entertainment. Just remember, 'the house always wins.' I do worry, though, when I see poor people buying sheafs of lottery tickets, maybe cause they get the notion that that's the only way things could possibly get better. That's maybe different from gambling addiction, though, and more like a tax on despair.


03/19/2006 11:14:44 AM

In the Christian way of life gambling is associated with sin. Sin starts small like a cell of cancer and spreads its poison very slowly and subtlely and incubates very innocently. Sin is very deceptive and starts small but destroys people in the long run. One has to be careful playing poker, purchasing lottery tickets here and there, and playing slot machines and other gaming devices. At least be conscious of the danger and be careful. There are so many gambling and drug addicts who wish they had never started.


03/19/2006 12:52:52 AM

Some folks are addicted to worrying about other people's affairs when they should be minding their own business.


03/19/2006 12:52:16 AM

My father was, and continues to be, a total poker addict. He spent more time at the tables than he ever did with my life - and he wonders why the two of us aren't closer. Still, that's his problem. I have no interest in trying to intervene in anyone's addiction. Nor am I interested in adding yet another Chicken Little complaint to what is already an endless list inequities.


03/18/2006 10:39:50 AM

In the first place- I don't really think poker can be classified quite as much as gambling as most of the casino games - Though unfortunately the way some play it does end up throwing it back into the genre of roulette or slots, if the game is played correctly it is no more "gambling" than playing bridge or hearts etc for a penny a point. And that brings me to my other point -- as far as being a time waster for students- those who are going to spend time away from studies are going to do so whether playing poker or as more the case in my era - bridge, spades, pinnocle, pool, etc. - Playing a bit of poker for entertainment or study break is no problem -- doing so to the neglect of studies is -- but as noted if undisciplined - if not poker it will be something else.


03/17/2006 11:04:00 PM

Of course, this doesn't mean that I'm a big proponent of efficient market theory. Markets behavior according to human psychology, which can be quite unreasonable at times. But, overall, the general trend of the market is upward. But, this only really matters to you if you're investing long-term.


03/17/2006 11:00:10 PM

Gambling is not exactly the same as the stock market. However, there are some particular stock market investments that are very close to gambling. Volatile global commodities trading, IPOs, and penny stocks are what I'd call gambling. Blue chips, mid-cap growth funds, and preferred stock are certainly not the same thing. The reason I don't really like this comparison is because it makes it seem like it's impossible to make practical investment decisions because it's impossible to predict which direction the market will go. However, anyone who has tracked the stock market has see that long-term prospects of diversified portfolios tend to do well and that the overall trend of the stock market is upward and outpacing inflation.


03/17/2006 10:53:49 PM

I recently went to a casino with $100 and left with over $1,500 by playing video poker. But it wasn't "gambling" per se. I actually applied advanced mathematical concepts and used statistics to tilt the odds of play slightly in my favor. You see, it's only "gambling" if you don't put really much though into it, make careless mistakes, and allow it to consume you. Like sports betting or betting on penny stocks or IPOs in the stock market, what matters is that you understand that there is a lot of risk involved and always the possibility of losing everything. However, if this becomes a compulsive habit or addiction, you need to get help. If anything--not just casino playing--becomes an addiction, be it sex, video games, food, you need to get seriously checked out. Casinos don't create addicts. Addicts are people searching to fill a void. They already have their own problems before they enter the casino.


03/17/2006 08:04:19 PM

hootie1fan - The Enron misrepresentation of the truth and legitimate stock market transactions are very dissimilar. Much as buying a new Volvo from a dealer is unlike buying a used car from a guy in a plaid sport coat. "Sure there's a warranty." While you could fairly claim that getting into your car to head home after work is "gambling" that you're going to make it, if you can't see the difference between investing in the long term growth of a large corporation like Sysco Systems and drawing to an inside straight, you might do well to steer clear of both enterprises.


03/17/2006 01:44:11 PM

What is not being considered is how bad "real" jobs are getting to be. Most jobs pay little, there is no respect for good workers, no benefits, a lot of stress, no retirement, layoffs, no promotions, no raises. I certainly don't blame young people for wanting something better and I am not a poker player.


03/17/2006 12:06:41 PM

was free will not a gamble??


03/17/2006 10:19:14 AM

new ??? My father earned extra pocket money playing poker since he was 15, he is now 78 and plays a mean bridge game now. He always enjoyed the mental challenge and with friends never played for money. He has also done very well in the stock market. The thing about card games is that they can be played anywhere any time by everyone. Kids play cards to learn arithmetic and memory skills, adults for the challenge and social fun, add money and you get thrill of risk. I have good memories of evenings spent with family and friends of the family all playing cards and laughing and eating and drinking socialably. Lena


03/17/2006 09:23:57 AM

wifeinlove Tell that to Kenneth Lay and all the Enron employees/stock holders who lost everything. THe stock market is full of scandals involving working folks who invested their $$$ only to find out they had nothin left while some power player walked away with $$$$$$$$$$.


03/17/2006 03:04:57 AM

Firebird81: I wholeheartedly agree. Last I checked, sports involved some sort of physical activity. Besindes, There is no good and evil, only fun and boring. And watching poker on TV is BORING!!


03/16/2006 11:28:52 PM

I don't care if people are playing it, I just want one thing... FOR POKER TO GET OFF OF MY ESPN!!! I DETEST when they show poker on TV. Seriously, what is more boring that watching people play cards on tv. I would rather watch Swedish Curling Championships, the Afghani Buz-kashi semifinals, or the World Cup of Watermelon Seed Spitting. But please, please ESPN. Stop the madness. Poker is not a sport.


03/16/2006 02:31:00 PM

Harpo, well put. Hootie, I dont think so. One neednt be deceptive to succeed in stocks or in the corporate environment. In fact, many people do quite well honestly and without deceiving others out of their money and into the poor house, divorce court, etc.


03/16/2006 12:23:51 PM

harpowilbury_couldn't the same thing be said of the stock market and the corporate world? Just look at Enron.


03/16/2006 11:55:38 AM

Doesn't every sin begin as something seemingly harmless--ie, a full blown affair starts as a casual friendship, ect. The best way to boil a frog is to throw him in cold water and turn the heat up slowly. If you drop him into boiling water, he will jump out immediately. So it is with sin and temptation.


03/16/2006 11:49:09 AM

Texas No Limit Holdem Poker is a card game of chance but does involve much skill. It is a game more about betting than it is about the cards one receives.Skillful players will take a novice's money easily in most cases. What is the object of the game? It is to take all of another persons money by honing the skill of deception. From a personal perspective, you may not have a gambling problem, but what about the family whose breadwinner just lost his paycheck to you playing poker online?


03/16/2006 10:04:41 AM

Sarah Mahoney is either very young or not real good at research. The "craze" has been around for many more years then just since the 90's. Poker (and all it variations) have been played in bars and homes all over the world for many decades. Though admittedly it has been more of a mans game until now. The core problem she speaks of is addiction and this is a problem that has yet to be dealt with. Be it poker, food, sex or drugs, addiction is the problem. Addiction is not a "disease". It is a biochemical reaction within the brain, yet to be isolated for research. Be it poker, football, baseball or any of the other televised sports, it is just one more item the media has found for promotion to make lots of money. If Bingo wasn't so boring to watch, it would already be televised from churchs all over America. Life is a gamble in many ways and games of chance will always stay around. I'll give you 10 to 1 gambling won't end anytime soon. Any takers? (Just joking, I don't gamble!) Rev


03/16/2006 09:35:31 AM

From a moral standpoint, there is no real difference between thowing your money into the stock markets or the poker table.


03/16/2006 07:31:45 AM

For those who enjoy it - ok. Knowing that what I'm doing is placing a bet that pays ten to one on a chance that's twenty to one make me feel like a fool. The odds vary, of course, but they are never in the player's favor. Similarly, I couldn't run numbers either - I'd feel like a thief.


03/16/2006 07:09:28 AM

I like playing 7 Card stud and have won allot of big pots. Even though I am young I have played card for many years and I like playing all types of card games. I've played in big casino out in LA, Vegas, Budapest, Prauge, London and back home in Toronto as well. As long as it is not a serious problem or an addiction then I think gambling is ok. I know many deeply religious people even the Orthodox Jews and Muslims who gamble quite often and are good at it. You aren't any less religious because of it.