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On to day two of wsop 27 [Jun. 14th, 2012|11:10 am]
As per before, timely updates on twitter @andrewprock and possible on pokernews.com once they figure out what my name is.
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(no subject) [Jun. 10th, 2012|09:32 pm]
Just an FYI. I am posting WSOP updates to twitter: @andrewprock
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5k lhe pic [Jun. 10th, 2012|12:33 pm]
Me at the table with the table from hell, which included five other high stakes limit regulars. The guy to my right is Brock Parker (tsoprano).

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WSOP shares [May. 25th, 2012|10:11 am]
I'll be heading out to Las Vegas the weekend of June 2nd for two weeks. I've been waffling around with the idea of soliciting backing, but it's something that I'm always a bit hesitant about. It means work for me (collecting and paying), and it costs me money (I like my own action). A recent post on the BARGE list reminded me that I should shit or get off the pot, so here is the official WSOP shares post. I've offered these every year except last year.

Here are the events I'm planning on playing:

June  5, 5 pm    Limit hold 'em         $1,500
June  6, 5 pm    Stud/8                 $5,000
June  8, 5 pm    Razz                   $2,500
June  9, 5 pm    Limit hold 'em         $5,000
June 10, 5 pm    2-7 Triple Draw        $2,500
June 11, 5 pm    Omaha/8                $5,000
June 12, noon    Limit hold'em shootout $1,500
June 13, noon    HORSE                  $1,500

That's $24,500 in buy-ins, and the pool set aside for all events played will be that size.

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Previously, I had offered rooting shares for 2x markup. Based on the current poker/economic conditions, this time around I'm offering th rooting shares roughly 1.5x markup. The total pool will be $24,500 and I will fully fund the remaining pool (up to 100%), so regardless of interest I plan on playing all the listed events. Due to the tight schedule, making day 2/3 will mean that I may not get to play all the events, meaning that the entire pool may not be put into action.

The rooting shares are meant to be small, but to avoid too much bookkeeping, they have a minimum buy of $150, which will buy a .4% share of my total winnings.

If you are interested, please comment here or send me an email.

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Making lemonade out of lemons. [May. 22nd, 2012|07:00 pm]
You may recall evwhore's comments on the recent Time cover. While I didn't think too much about the cover (despite all the press, good trolling Time), this one has that certain: "Je sais quoi!"

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Political "partisanship" [May. 11th, 2012|10:01 am]

Clearly this chart lacks a certain academic rigor, but it does illustrate a main thesis of many who don't follow cable news or talk radio.

The major political parties are practically identical.

Where the major parties are different it is in marginal "wedge" issues which account for a very small amount of national resources, but which are used to motivate and persuade. It's kind of like having two competing restaurants with identical menus, but one serves Diet Coke and the other serves Coca-Cola Zero.

Let the horse races begin!
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Propaganda versus understanding [May. 9th, 2012|10:34 am]
In a recent post, a friend of mine took on the topic:

What's Partisan Propaganda, What's Not
I think it would be interesting to analyze this, and the causes (imho) of the issues. So while I'm stuck not working (a ceiling fan is being installed in my office), let's look at the underlying issues.

He put forth a set of nine points based directly on this article from the "Canada Free Press". One of his the points was:

5. Record High Poverty. During a so-called recovery, poverty was the highest since 1993. As quoted in the article I linked to, "This is one more piece of bad news on the economy,” said Ron Haskins, of the Center on Children and Families at the Brookings Institution. “This will be another cross to bear by the administration.” To call the Brookings institution conservative is ridiculous; they're centrist to liberal leaning.

This point is based on this excerpt from a New York Times article:
The percent of Americans living in poverty last year, 15.1%, was highest since 1993. Minorities were hit hardest. Blacks experienced the highest increase, at 27%, up from 25% in 2009, and Hispanics rose to 26% from 25%. “This is one more piece of bad news on the economy,” said Ron Haskins, of the Center on Children and Families at the Brookings Institution. “This will be another cross to bear by the administration.”
The first thing to note here is that the only commentary added by my friend comes in the form of unsupported editorials. He characterizes the recovery as "so-called", then he fells a straw-man saying that the Brookings institution is not conservative, but "centrist to left leaning". These statements do not analyze the facts or the context.  Nor do they make any attempt to determine whether or not the data is being used for partisan propaganda.  What they do rather is reinforce a partisan viewpoint of both my friend and the referred source.  Putting aside the fact that no  credible analysis was done to determine propaganda, let's turn to the excerpt itself and see  if we can make the determination ourselves:

Question: Is the excerpt representative of the NYT article, or is the "Canada Free Press" cherry-picking to promote it's conservative agenda?

A careful reading of the excerpt and the article indicates that the "Canada Free Press" did not in fact quote the NYT, but instead took three separate quotes and stitched them together. In doing so, they chose to emphasize three points:
  1. poverty levels
  2. minority poverty
  3. election comentary
Reviewing the NYT article, here are the points that were not covered:
  • 15 year wage stagnation
  • the lost decade
  • no recovery for the poor
  • growing income inequality
  • unemployment
  • falling wages
  • very high child poverty
  • rising uninsured
The broad thesis of the article is that the US is an extended period of economic stagnation that began in the late 1990.  And that the economic malaise has primarily affected the lower and middle classes.

It's difficult to know exactly why the "Canada Free Press" chose to highlight poverty, minorities, and election commentary over the main thesis of the article.  But when an organization picks and chooses factoids while ignoring the main thesis of a source, it's usually an indication that they are trying to reframe the content to suit their own purposes. Reviewing the thesis of the "Canada Free Press" article, we see that they are trying to answer the question "Now the question is, what does Barack’s “change” resemble?, with a lead image showing Obama with a letter "F" superimposed over him.  Their thesis is that Obama is a failure, and they are using the NYT article as evidence of this failure.  Given that the NYT article does not address this issue in any way, it's clear that the "Canada Free Press" is trying to make conclusions of it's own.  Is the author, Kelly O'Connell qualified to make these sort of economic inferences?  As a Lawyer and a talk show host, the answer is certainly not.  The choice of highlighting minority performance is a curious one, and almost certainly intentional. As best I can tell, what we have here is a misuse of a source for the purposes of casting the president in a negative light.  

So well how did my friend do in sussing out "what is partisan propaganda, and what is not?" through the use of analysis, looking at the underlying issues?

You can be the judge.
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Data vs. Analysis [May. 7th, 2012|12:13 pm]
One of the most frequent tactics of dishonest commentators is to present data without serious contextual analysis, draw superficial conclusions, then "let the reader decide". The world is a complex place. Thus simpletons are often fooled by those trying to present "just the facts" as simply as possible. I refer to this phenomenon of uncritical acceptance of conclusions from propagandists affectionately as "drinking what they're selling".

A good example is a labor force participation rate graph from some random tea party idiot.

Looking at that graph, you might think "Hmm, it looks like people are working less!". And you'd be right. On the other hand, we should expect people to be working less. The workforce is aging, so there is a secular downward trend built into labor force participation rates. What happens if you break down labor force participation by age? Referencing a non-partisan economics blogger with a strong track record of good analysis we see:

The data here is clearer. Peak labor force participation occurs for those 25-54. Participation by those 16-24 is down significantly, down a bit for those 25-44, flat for those 45-54, and up significantly for those 55 and over. Given that, wouldn't labor force participation be closer to flat? Not once you consider shifting demographics:

What we see here is that the largest growing age demographic between 1990 and 2010 is for those 55+. Given the wave of baby boomers coming through the system, labor force participation is almost guaranteed to decline, despite the fact that a larger percentage of those aged 55+ are working.
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Google broken [Apr. 12th, 2012|02:02 pm]
Maybe it's me, or maybe it's google itself, but when I try to use the site without JavaScript enabled, I now get 404:

"The requested URL /&gbv=1&sei=SUKHT-DkN8nJiQLmsezQAg was not found on this server. That’s all we know."


They require JavaScript for searches?
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Ego surfing [Mar. 25th, 2012|10:23 pm]
Top images (as ranked by me) for the google image search: andrew prock poker

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Google is funny.
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