Texas Hold ‘em, a Very Simple Game

Posted June 5th, 2008 by Joe Kaiser

Why the poker talk on a blog about foreclosures and real estate?

Dear Rob,

Do you play poker?

If you do, you know Texas Hold ‘em is a very simple game.

It’s so simple, in fact, you can learn it in five minutes, tops. Nothing to it.

How to Play

It’s this easy . . .

  1. You’re dealt 2 cards face-down, as is everyone at the table, and there’s an initial round of betting.
  2. Then 3 community cards everyone shares are dealt, “the flop,” and a round of betting ensues.
  3. Next another card community card is dealt, “the turn,” and yet another round of betting takes place.
  4. And at long last, a fifth community card, “the river,” is dealt and the final round of betting happens.

The winner is the person making the best hand out of his two cards and the five community cards on the board (provided, of course, he isn’t bluffed out of the pot at some point along the way).

5 minutes

They call Texas Hold ‘em “the Cadillac of Poker,” adding, “it takes five minutes to learn and a lifetime to master.” Sure, it’s a simple game, if that’s all you know.

In reality, there’s nothing simple about it.

There are nuances a beginner wouldn’t understand, if he realized they existed (he doesn’t). And there are dozens of things effecting every hand someone with little experience could not discern nor appreciate.

Simple it’s not

What things?

Position, blind size, chip stack size (both yours and everyone else’s), pot odds, table image, who’s at your table (particularly who’s to your left), betting patterns, hands previously shown down, your opponent’s playing style (tight, loose, passive, aggressive, and in what combination). . . and on and on and on.

To the inexperienced it looks like a very simple game, and on paper it is. To someone who understands the game, it looks a lot more like this poker lesson.


Why the poker talk on a blog about foreclosures and real estate?

I still can’t get over AAG Jim Sugarman testifying before the legislature and describing HB 2791 as “a very simple bill.”

This bill completely changes the real estate industry in Washington. It goes well beyond anything ever done in any other state . . . to the point of being laughable.

Can you imagine suggesting a buyer has a fiduciary responsibility to a seller?

That’s ludicrous and demonstrates yet again just how out-of-their-over-zealous-minds these foreclosure-scam, consumer protection advocates actually are.

And the absurdity of creating a law requiring buyers to put seller’s needs above their own rocks the fundamental core of all transacting and is fatally flawed on so many levels. Mark my words, it will be one of the first things tossed out as “bad law.”

And simple?

It’s the exact opposite of simple.

Understanding lacking

And do you know why Jim Sugarman calls it a very simple bill?

Obviously, in terms of understanding the foreclosure marketplace, Jim doesn’t have the knowledge to appreciate how NOT simple this new law is.

Texas Hold ‘em, like foreclosure investing, on paper at least is simple and takes five minutes to learn . . . it’s that “lifetime to master” thing that bites you on the ass if you’re not careful.

In the arena,

Joe Kaiser

7 Responses to: “Texas Hold ‘em, a Very Simple Game”

  1. DaveD responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 5:15 am

    I don’t know much about hold-em, either, but “Kid Poker” is my favorite and would be the first guy I would turn to for advice,

    I’m thinking (and would bet aggressive ;-) Jim doesn’t know any more about this “simple game” than he does about real estate foreclosure, especially knowing when to fold. Then again, doesn’t really matter (to him) when HE gets to play with YOUR chips.

  2. Joe Kaiser responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 5:32 am

    Actually, he’s not playing with my chips, he’s playing with chips belonging to Washington State taxpayers.

    I’m advised my recent Public Records Request is available. I’ve asked for documentation to confirm the cost of this investigation and lawsuit to the citizens of this state. I’m imagining it now exceeds half a million dollars.

    And for what?

    Additionally, I fully intend to sue the state for defamation once this case comes to a close. And I think I’ve got a decent shot of winning that one, too.

    The actions of the AG’s office in its handling of this matter is on par with its handling of the new foreclosure rescue laws. It’s the Keystone Cops in action every step of the way.

    And Kid Poker busted out last night after having made an amazing run.

  3. Vlad responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 6:20 am


    I remember when Jim Sugarman took over, I sensed a grain of hope in your posting that the AG’s office may have finally put someone knowledgeable and objective on this case. I think, at the time, you even qualified Jim as “reasonable”….

    Could you have been wrong?

  4. Joe Kaiser responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 6:37 am

    Vlad, I was hopeful, for sure.

    It seemed Jim as an outsider might have the sense to look at this case, conclude grievous errors had been made and do the right thing by ending it.

    Sadly, he doesn’t.

    Instead, I sense he’s determined to prove he’s a capable prosecutor who saves the day, the facts in the case be damned.

    After all, as primary author and advocate of the inartfully worded HB 2791, we’ve seen how far over-the-top he’s willing to take things.

  5. David Alexander responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 6:19 pm

    Yep… Holdem’… is certainly analogous (is that a word?) to life, business etc… etc…

    I’m on that lifetime to master course…. lol

    Joe, bought a one way ticket to vegas.. leavin’ saturday, not sure when I’m comin back… a week, two, maybe three… lol.. WSOP action is in full swing there….

  6. Joe Kaiser responds:
    Posted: June 5th, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Good luck at the WSOP, David. Wish I could join you, but they’d eat me alive, I suspect.

  7. David Alexander responds:
    Posted: June 7th, 2008 at 10:33 am

    I’ve played poker with you… I know better…

    On my way to the airport…

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