Episode 235: Politics at the Poker Table with Matt Glassman

Matt Glassman is back with a new job (senior fellow at the Government Affairs Institute), a new podcast (Congress, Two Beers In), and as usual some refreshingly wonky insight into what’s really going on in Washington. Plus when is it OK to talk politics at the poker table, and should you ever enter another flight if you’ve already bagged?

Matt’s previous episodes (before and after the 2016 election, and once as a guest host filling in for Andrew) are among our most popular, and we’re excited to have him back! For more great insight from Matt, be sure to follow him on Twitter, listen to his podcast, and subscribe to his newsletter.


0:30 Hello & Welcome
3:00 Strategy
16:12 Matt Glassman

8 thoughts on “Episode 235: Politics at the Poker Table with Matt Glassman

  1. You guys are in top form on this podcast! I enjoyed the way you started on such a nitcast note, and moved seamlessly through deviations into hilarious topics and serious ones. I also thought it was impressive how Nate announced that he needed to change his baby’s diaper. It was unapologetic and professional. Women have struggled with balancing those concerns for so long, and we need to be more like Nate. Congratulations to Matt on his new job and podcast! He helped me see current politics in a new light.

  2. Andrew: The bonus bag problem is quite interesting. Say you have 9.5BB (20K starting) on the last hand of the night. The SB jams. What hands can call? You can fold, and have a stack that is worth about .47 buyins + the equity of double bagging, or about .87 buyins. If you call and win, you will have about 1.4 buyins. So, you are risking .87 to win .53. You need to be good 62% of the time. If your opponent is pushing any 2, you need AT+,66+ to call. If your opponent doesn’t know this, and is pushing a more normal range, even hands like AK might be a fold.

    Matt: Unlimited Redoubles were part of the early days of bridge, but mainly led to ‘coolers’ where they set up a sucker with a seemingly perfect hand, and took him for all he was worth. See https://www.bridgehands.com/M/Mississippi_Heart_Hand.htm In serious bridge, Redoubled contracts are very rare. The main change to the game would be an auction that started 1X-Dble-Rdbl-? The defending side would now have an extra call to get out of the mess.

    Nate: 5 year baseball bets? Tell me more!

    • Nice post, but I think you’re misvaluing folding. It’s a $1000 buyin and a second bag is worth $4000, so that’s 4 buyins right there. And you can’t really count your full stack, just the difference between what you’d bag by folding vs what you already bagged, which will be forfeited. That latter applies to calling and winning as well. Depending on what you already have in the bag, I could easily imagine folding AA in this spot.

    • Yes. Unlimited redoubles would be rare under current rules, especially with given the ability to negate the double by running to a higher bid.

      But I had an actual doubling cube in mind. If doubling was like backgammon, literally doubling the stakes or forcing a resignation at current stakes, it would change the game of money bridge quite a bit, especially if the doubling cube could be employed during the play. Might be fun. Lots of bluffing opportunities would be available, for sure.

  3. I was thinking of the first bullet. I agree, with a bag already in, I wouldn’t even look if I had a small stack.

    • Ah yes, that makes sense. I hadn’t even considered implications for your first flight, but you’re certainly right that there are some.

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