Latest Pope Betting – Surprising Names and the Chance to Make Big Money?

Mr Ratzinger is to step down as Pope at the tender age of 85. It is only the fourth time a pope has retired. The Vatican’s pension plan must be very poor.

But who will replace him in the next few weeks? Needless to say, the bookies have odds worked out already. The front runners are all cardinals with the odd archbishop thrown in. But guess who Ladbrokes have at a whopping great five hundred to one? The man of faith and peace himself: Tony Blair is 500-1 to become the next pope. I can’t see that price lasting for long. It has to tumble faster than a clumsy person trying to climb up a steep cliff wearing flip flops and carrying a canoe under one arm.

Blair sounds a better bet than Richard Dawkins, who is 666/1 at Paddy Power. They may think that’s a joke, but if the Vatican are looking for a moderniser, he’s their man.

There is a comparison website for all the main bookmakers and I see that you can actually get a stonking 5,000 to 1 for Blair at a bookies called Stan James. That’s the kind of name that sounds like it should be prefixed with the word “Honest”.

You can get a thousand to one on Bob Gelfof and Bono at Corel. Jose Mourinho is also 1,000 – 1, and Madonna and Oprah Winfrey are 2,000 – 1.

Then it just gets silly! The two surviving priests from Craggy Island, Dougal Maguire and Jack Hackett, are 10,000 to 1 with Stan James – but Dougal is only 1,000 – 1 with Paddy Power, which suggests there may be money being wagered on him. Mrs Doyle’s probably been gambling away this week’s housekeeping money.

As for me, I haven’t gambled in about fifteen years and I don’t intend restarting now, even though a £200 bet on Blair with Honest Stan James could make me a millionaire. With Blair’s proven record as a gold star useful idiot and the Beast system being set up good and proper, it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that this Hellish man could find himself with the job. A crook with a crook.

All this pope stuff has a very serious side to it, but at the moment I feel a bit like Jack Hackett after he’s drunk half a bottle of Toilet Duck, so I’ll leave the theological talk until later. I’ll probably wait until after Pope Antonio Bliar is elected.

£200 to make a million? Mmmm.

Nah. If you believe Malachy’s 16th century prophesy, this next pope is to be the last before the Judgment and his name will be Peter.

I wonder what odds I can get on Peter Mandelson…

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4 Responses to Latest Pope Betting – Surprising Names and the Chance to Make Big Money?

  1. Leg-iron says:

    Aha, so that’s why Blair became a Catholic. He was after the top job. Blimey, if they think the Catholic church is corrupt now, wait until he gets his hands on it.

    I’d prefer to see Father Jack being carried around in his tatty armchair though, shouting ‘Drink!’ at the gathered masses. With his hairy hands…

    I won’t be placing any bets either. I never gamble, not for any moral reason but because I worked out many years ago that I’m just no good at it.

  2. Stewart Cowan says:

    There is a way to win at gambling and it’s something I was starting to get the hang of. I wasn’t the sort of “gambler” who’d back a horse because I liked its name or had my favourite jockey on board, I did serious study. About an hour-long study was required to get an accurate handle on what the average race was all about.

    The sure-fire winning method takes incredible knowledge and study and doesn’t work with games of pure chance, like you find in a casino.

    You can win at a betting shop only by backing horses or dogs or football results or competition winners where the betting company is offering better odds than the *true* odds and these can be hard to locate.

    For example, I’ve seen punters go ape for a particular horse and reduced its odds right down to a silly odds-on price and this, naturally, pushes out the prices of the other horses. In real life the hot favourite might really be a 2-1 shot, rather than, say the new price of 5-4 on – based on the large sums of money going on as opposed to its true chances of winning – so a horse that is genuinely, say 6-1 (a figure derived from years of experience and study of the particular race) becomes pushed out to perhaps 8-1 or better from the bookies.

    Whether it wins or loses is irrelevant! – because you’ve beaten the odds, so unless you have the worst run of events in history, you cannot fail to lose in the long term as long as you know your “trade” and get odds which are better than the true ones (and make a suitable margin to account for the small? number of races that are fixed).

    Why don’t I still gamble, then?

    a) Because I never perfected it and still made a small loss overall.

    b) The amount of study required to gain experience (and keep it going) is enormous.

    c) It’s addictive, so unless you have a BSc with honours in self-control, you end up betting on races you haven’t studied properly just for the buzz.

    d) It’s not how I want to “earn” my living or waste my free time. I would rather do something more honourable, rewarding and purposeful, which is probably most things!

  3. Leg-iron says:

    There was a guy in the 1800s who made a living by betting on horses. The taxman tried to get him by claiming it was income and therefore should be income-taxed.

    The guy responded, in court, that if that were the case, then all his losses should be tax-deductible. Which was fair enough.

    The tax office dropped the case at once. They realised that if they pressed ahead, all gamblers could offset their losses against tax, and most of them lose…

  4. Stewart Cowan says:

    That’s brilliant. If you can get an argument as good as that behind you, you could do just about anything.

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