Friday 21 January 2011


Patrick Basham is continuing his celebration of all things sinful with a new book about gambling. So if you're in London on 27 January, why not go to his book launch at the Institute of Economic Affairs?

Gambling - A Healthy Bet

The authors argue gambling is a net contributor to public health, economic life, and an important component of a liberal society. Gambling has become a widespread pastime for a simple, single, and unassailable reason: gambling adds to the sum of human happiness. Based upon their rigourous examination of gambling’s many faces and many sides, the authors conclude that policymakers should leave gamblers – and the gambling industry – alone.

27 January 2011, 6.15pm
IEA, 2 Lord North Street, London, SW1 (door on Great Peter Street)

Dr Basham is a nonsmoking teetotaller but I understand that he enjoys a flutter so you can expect his defence of turf accountants, casinos and one-armed bandits to be particularly heartfelt. I'll try to be there if I can afford it (did I miss the protests when Boris Johnson hiked the price of a return journey in Zone 1 of the underground from an already extortionate £5.60 to a frankly criminal £6.60?)


JJ said...

I don't gamble, but I do play roulette online which is even more enjoyable when you can make a living at it.

Anonymous said...

I played Texas Hold 'Em for the first time recently with eight other people recently with a $10.00 buy in. What this means is that after playing for about two hours, the most you can lose is $20 and the most you can win is $160.

Beginner's luck: I nearly won the second round. (Who'd think they'd lose holding two Aces in their hand?)

If I'd gone out for a night of standing around at a club, I'd pay well over $20.00 for the supposed luxury.

Somehow, though, the fun four hours of poker I played that night at the cost of $20.00 was entirely illegal. Not only was it fun, but it was intellectually and emotionally engaging. Everyone is engaging in strategic thinking and everyone is trying to guess the strategy of others. After the game, my friend sat up talking for two hours over beers about how we were playing the game through various hands. So, I really received 6 hours of engaging social enjoyment for $20.00. That's a pretty cheap price compared to almost any other activity for a night. I had a lot of fun, and I'd love to do it again.