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Posted by on Aug 21, 2014 in Blog, Essays, General Poker, Politics | 15 comments

Political Censorship Has No Place in Poker





At a major poker tournament recently held in Barcelona, Spain, two poker players ignited controversy by wearing t-shirts emblazoned with strikingly similar political messages.  Some observers considered the statements to be provocative.  A few spoke out and posted their own messages that these acts were wrong.  But there was nothing profane nor vulgar about either item of clothing.  Frankly, the t-shirts would hardly even be noticed on the streets of any cosmopolitan city.

Here’s some more background.  Oliver Busquet and Daniel Colman both participated in the European Poker Tour’s High-Roller Championship.  Ironically, they ended up finishing first and second, respectively.  While at the final table Busquet, the champion, wore a t-shirt with the message “SAVE GAZA.”  Colman, the runner up, wore a similar t-shirt with the message “FREE PALESTINE.”  At the time of this writing, it’s unknown whether this was a coordinated fashion statement between the two players who are known to be close friends, or simply a highly-unusual coincidence.  Not that it matters.

This leads to an interesting question, namely — is the infusion of politics into poker appropriate?  If not, then what should be done about it?  Should poker tournament organizers and/or casino management assume the role of Big Brother and become the game’s new fashion police?

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Posted by on Aug 21, 2014 in Blog, Politics, Rants and Raves, What's Left | 1 comment

What Made Texas Go Politically Wacko?




I have a quick question.

What made the great State of Texas go so politically bat shit crazy?

Think about it.  Texas used to produce maverick politicians.  The nation’s second-most populous state gave our country real leaders who talked straight to us.  They worked with elected officials from other regions and even the opposing party to improve the quality of life for all Americans.

Once upon a time, Texas produced political greatness.

Now, the state has become a national laughingstalk.  But nothing is funny anymore.  The joke’s on us.

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Posted by on Aug 14, 2014 in Blog, Politics, Rants and Raves, What's Left | 4 comments

A Repulsive Rush to Judgment




Is anyone really surprised or shocked by the repulsively insensitive and highly-inappropriate remarks made by conservative political ass-hat Rush Limbaugh on the tragic death of Robin Williams?

The pill-popping protagonist of reckless right-wing radio slammed Williams on the airwaves Tuesday, barely 24 hours following the widely-reported suicide, essentially ascribing the actor-comedian’s lifelong troubles and battles with addiction — now get this — to liberalism.  So, as is typical in Rush’s twisted fantasyland, liberals are to blame for addictions and suicides, too.

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Posted by on Aug 1, 2014 in Blog, General Poker, Politics, Travel | 4 comments

Mr. Dalla Goes to Washington




Most of my yesterday was spent on Capitol Hill in Washington.

We were filming and interviewing for what promises to be one of the more interesting upcoming features for the new television series “Poker Night in America.”  The reality-themed weekly show about poker debuted in late June and can now be seen on CBS Sports Network.

The crew visited the Capitol Hill Club for lunch.  We met Congressman Pete Sessions, the third highest-ranking member of the House of Representatives. Later, we met and interviewed Rep. Joe Barton in his office.  He’s been a true champion for poker players’ rights.  That was just for starters.

We also filmed out in front of the White House (President Obama was too busy to see us).  We paid respects to Abraham Lincoln (well, his statue anyway).  Then, we did happy hour at “Bullfeathers,” where the real business of Washington gets done (it’s a bar).

Once there, we interviewed former Nevada congressman, the honorable Jon Porter.  We were also joined by longtime Capitol Hill correspondent and USA Today writer Vin Narayanan, who is known in poker for his great work at

Later that night, we all gathered for a private poker game which was just steps away from congressional offices.  One wonders what goes on inside some of the old Victorian-era townhouses around the Capitol.  Well, the answer to that is — poker games.  Two tables of congressmen and staffers gathered for their weekly game.  Poker pros Phil Hellmuth and Robert Williamson III even made appearances.

Here’s some impressions that I came away with by end of the day:

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Posted by on Jul 6, 2014 in Blog, Politics | 2 comments

“Georgia On My Mind….Bam! Bam! Bam! Bam!”




Georgia should change it’s official nickname to “The Vigilante State.”

Think of how exciting all those sleepy magnolia-canopied streets are about to become with law and order — Dirty Harry style.

Out of my way, you punk!  Bam!

Earlier this week, a new law went into effect where it’s now legal to openly carry a firearm in Georgia.  Now, any licensed gun owner can bring a loaded weapon into a business — provided that establishment agrees to let them inside.  Seriously, that’s the way the law is written.  Which now makes me wonder — what business owner is going to turn away a customer packing heat?

Imagine this exchange — Go away, Sir.  We don’t want you or your gun in here.


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