Im-Postle-Able

The poker world has been consumed over the last week or so by revelations of apparent cheating by Mike Postle, a regular player on a live streamed cash game originating at Stones Gambling Hall near Sacramento, CA.

If you’ve been hiding under a rock, you can catch up at PokerNews here or on Joey Ingram’s YouTube channel here.

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Update #1 — 10/9/19… a lawsuit was filed in federal court yesterday, alleging racketeering, fraud, negligence, unjust enrichment, etc. and seeking $10 million in punitive damages in addition to triple actual damages. Read the full legal complaint here. Discovery is going to be interesting…

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I was asked last night why I haven’t written about this on my blog.

The brazenness of Postle’s cheating is astonishing. Unfortunately I don’t have any truly original thoughts on the matter, nothing to say that hasn’t been said, written, podcasted, recorded, liked, shared, retweeted, stated or replied to in a chat thread.

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Update #2 — 10/9/19… OK, maybe one area of curiosity that hasn’t come out much. I’d like to see some expert explanation of the criminal mind at work here. Is Postle’s progressively bold behavior best explained as:

  • A criminal’s secret desire to get caught, a general theory popularized by Sigmund Freud?
  • “Superoptimism” derived from a perception of careful planning and past success at getting away with cheating that leads to a sense of invulnerability?
  • A form of addiction, where cheating feels like getting high and feelings akin to withdrawal form in between his poker sessions?
  • Something else… I don’t know???

I’ll try to use my vastly underrated networking skills to get some answers!

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The evidence and analysis by numerous poker sleuths is overwhelming. Stones Gambling Hall management should have known. Surely if a player in a house-banked game were beating the house as consistently and massively as Postle beat the poker games over an extended period, the casino would be all over it (like white on rice on a paper plate in a snowstorm).

I’ll be interested to see what is learned about the mechanics and/or co-conspirators behind the cheating, and what regulatory enforcement actions are taken by the California Gambling Control Commission.

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