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ronin


Total Posts: 193
Joined: May 2006
 
Posted: 2016-07-29 00:06
The point of gambler's ruin is that there is a point from which you can not recover - when you run out of money, you are out of the game.

A random game path hits any single point eventually, so in the long run you are ruined no matter what your strategy is. The only way to avoid ruin is to not play.

That was sort-of the point in War Games. In the world of mutually assured destruction, launching nuclear missiles is the point of no return. In every scenario, that point was reached at some stage. That is why "the only winning move is not to play".

So my point was that once you have that point of no return, in the long run you will reach it - i.e. War Games is just another aspect of gambler's ruin.

In the real world, things are usually more complicated. The point of no return could be moving, and it may be fuzzier than a simple point (e.g. maybe you can bluff your way out of ruin, or your opponents may disappear after a while, or they may behave in some way that negates the point of no return, or whatever). So no political messages out of simple maths, sadly...

"People say nothing's impossible, but I do nothing every day" --Winnie The Pooh
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