Maybe It Was Three-Card Monty
Tim Tagaris at the DNC Blog combines two of my favorite pastimes: gambling and systemic Republican corruption. Bob Ney(R-OH18) once went to a London casino with a convicted felon and a high-stakes gambler. He went back another time. On that trip, Ney said he turned his $100 into $34,000 after two winning hands. Tim has the odds:
I don't know how many three-card games of chance there are out there, but let's take a look at the two most popular.Daddy needs a new pair of shoes.
In this game, you have the option to bet on the banker, in which a win gets you 95 cents on the dollar - yourself, which is an even money payout - or a "tie" which is an 8 to 1 windfall. Even the totally unlikely event that Ney stepped up and bet his entire roll two straight "ties" that would have yielded $800 and then $6,400 maximum. Impossible there.
2.) Let it Ride
In this game, its actually possible, but highly highly unlikely. At any rate, Ney would have had to find himself with either two straight flushes which he had a 40,000 to 1 chance of aquiring, or a combination of four of a kind or better on a maximum 100 bet, and then decided to wager the whole five-thousand dollrs in winnings in another wager, and then draw either a full-house, four of a kind, straight flush or royal flush. And because of the nature of the game (you have the option to pull back chips), in one of these instances, he was wagering at least $3,300 or 100% of his stack on a blind draw of 2 cards.
The absolute lowest probability of that happening in any combination, regardless of poor play, is 550 to 1 odds -- about the likelihood of his story being true.