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Thread: The Smart Bet?

  1. Default The Smart Bet?

    Legend has is it that when a reporter asked renowned 20th-Century thief Willie Sutton why he robbed banks, Sutton shot back, “Because that’s where the money is.” In his autobiography, Sutton agreed it was a great and perhaps obvious answer, but he denied having actually said it.

    When it comes to betting, a similar line of thought holds true: you’ve got to go to places where you can make the wagers – and in short, the money. In the case of betting politics, that place is not the United States. Even in this new era of expanded legal betting, you can still only wager on sports.

    But that’s not the case elsewhere, particularly in the United Kingdom, where betting on politics is huge sport, if you will. That’s why, on Thursday night, Robert Barnes hopped aboard an airplane in Las Vegas for a nonstop flight to London.

    Barnes told Covers that he’s set to get down – in a big way – on the midterm elections taking place Tuesday in the U.S. And the play he likes most is one that goes against all the conventional wisdom.

    “I’m definitely betting that the House stays GOP. That’ll be the biggest bet,” said Barnes, a trial lawyer who spends two-thirds of his time practicing law, and the other one-third investing, predominantly in betting-oriented markets. “My second-biggest bet is on the Senate. My view is Republicans will add at least two seats. And these are six-figure wagers.”

    Republicans are expected to keep the Senate majority but potentially get rolled in the House, as that body is widely expected to flip to the Democrats. FiveThirtyEight.com, the popular forecasting website of Nate Silver, predicts a landslide 85 percent chance that Democrats take the House.

    Barnes is firmly on the opposite side of that prediction.

    “I would set odds at a 65 percent chance of a GOP House,” Barnes said.

    So what accounts for the large discrepancy between what the analytics and numerous other political outlets think, and what Barnes believes is a bet so good, he’s traveling 5,000 miles to make it? Barnes said two key reasons are political analytics not being of a high enough quality, and that erratic polling reinforces biases.

    “There’s a problem with polling around the world, particularly in America,” Barnes said. “The response rate is so low, and landlines are no longer reliable means to reach people. We’re in an experimental polling age. I became obsessed with polling in the 2016 election, diving into the polls. The polling problems that were present in 2016 still exist in 2018, and in fact, they’re worse. That’s enhanced and increased the odds being in favor of the Democrats.”

    That, in a nutshell, is why Barnes is willing to bank on the aforementioned propositions. In fact, he says legitimate skin in the game makes one more keenly aware of the probabilities, and that pollsters and pundits don’t have that awareness – what he termed “motivated reasoning.” Political forecasters and the media too often allow their motivations to influence their reasoning.

    “If you want to change your reasoning, change your motivation. Political betting does that better than anything,” Barnes said. “What’s fascinating is that none of these people in the political data journalist space would last six months in Vegas in a sports betting market. They’re like the kids who come out here for March Madness.

    “If you’re not willing to put your money where your mouth is, or even make just a reputational bet for no money, then you don’t really have confidence in your opinion. Put money out there. That’s not done in the entire media punditry. But the upside is it creates massive, wonderful opportunities for people like myself.”

    http://www.covers.com/Editorial/Arti...-play-them/amp

  2. #2

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    I don't know if Republicans will keep the house but I'll laugh my ass off if they do.

    I will say this; this election is the first election I have voted in in over 15 years. Yes, this includes 2016 where I didn't vote at all, but watching the far left lose their minds and being so open in hating America and wanting to tear it apart actually motivated me to vote this time around. So I guess thanks for motivating me to vote, Democrats, but something tells me I'm not the type of person you wanted to convince to vote.

  3. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tgo01 View Post
    I don't know if Republicans will keep the house but I'll laugh my ass off if they do.

    I will say this; this election is the first election I have voted in in over 15 years. Yes, this includes 2016 where I didn't vote at all, but watching the far left lose their minds and being so open in hating America and wanting to tear it apart actually motivated me to vote this time around. So I guess thanks for motivating me to vote, Democrats, but something tells me I'm not the type of person you wanted to convince to vote.
    I predict lots of stunned faces and maybe some sobbing on CNN and MSNBC come Tuesday night.

  4. #4

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    I'll be surprised if the GOP keeps the House. With all the retirements and open seats, it would be a huge upset if they only lost a few races and kept it.

    And the meltdown would be apoplectic.

    And I would laugh my ass off.
    Quote Originally Posted by Androidpk aka The Creepy Sponge View Post
    And feel free to get me banned, not going to stop my lawyer from sending Kranar a subpoena for IP information on a couple of people.

  5. #5
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    Hoping the dems take over, but either way the drama will be juicy.
    You had better pay your guild dues before you forget. You are 113 months behind.

  6. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Taernath View Post
    Hoping the dems take over, but either way the drama will be juicy.
    It certainly has people excited to vote, going by early #'s.
    Last edited by Androidpk; 11-04-2018 at 11:50 PM.

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