Venerable (I sort of hate that word, but I don’t know how else to describe him) Harvard Professot Charlie Nesson gave an excellent talk on poker and democracy. I’m sure this will be one of those events which will be part of the many excellent talks we have been seeing in the last few days, particularly because Professor Nesson is here after an operation, so we had to go to his hotel and had a session in a 5 star hotel lounge talkinga bout the online poker ban and the law.
Professor Nesson has a theory that poker is a game that teaches about life, about thinking for oneself, independent thought and strategic thinking on specific situations. It is relevant for the law because it is not about lying, but the minor deception involved in bluffing is all about a recognised excercise of risk. The ban on poker is tantamount to an attack on democracy (he did not put it in those terms, but it was implied on the discourse).
Some interesting discussion followed, talking about the benefit of the metaphor, about the specific developments on the American online gambling ban, and about regulation of such practices.