Friday, March 30, 2012

The Lottery

I just heard that the Mega Millions lottery is now offering a jackpot of 640 MILLION dollars! I have never participated in a lottery or gambled (unless you count driving on a near-empty tank), so I don't have much experience with it, but I do have an opinion on the subject. I don't how how to say this tactfully, so let me just say I consider the lottery to be a self-imposed tax on stupid people.

I understand how enticing it can be to think "what if", so you go ahead and buy a ticket. I think it's important to dream and imagine what things could be like if you had more money, but I don't think the lottery is the wisest way to achieve your financial dreams. I suppose many people are willing to part with a couple bucks if it gives them a feeling of hope. Apparently 640 million dollars worth of people are.

The problem with a lottery is that one person, or maybe a group of coworkers, are going to win an obscene amount of money, and that is great for them, but millions of others will just be heartbroken and even more short on cash than they were before they had the idea to try their luck.

The odds of winning are astronomical and you pretty much have better odds of  becoming a pro athlete, winning an Academy Award, dating a super model, or going back in time and beating out John Denver for the role of Gilligan.

This is what people think they look like when they gamble. 

This is what they really look like

The world paints a picture of sophistication and excitement when it comes to gambling but, the truth is, many of the lottery losers are already in poverty. I heard about a study on the news recently that said people making less than $13,000 per year, who were polled, regularly spent 9% of their income on lottery tickets. 

People freak out when they hear about CEO's or upper management who make millions of dollars off the backs of their "exploited employees", but you don't hear people complaining about someone who makes 640 times that as a lottery winner. At least the CEO is providing a product or service and employing people. The lottery only benefits one person and screws millions of others. 

So instead of wasting your money and false hope on the lottery, you should spend your efforts doing something more productive, like finding out how to get in touch with the winner and beg them for some money before they blow it all.


Kristina P. said...

Ha! So true! Plus, have you seen those TLC shows "After the Lottery", and crap like that? They end up being homeless prostitutes! Who needs that?

Eric said...

If no one wins the MegaMillions (tm) for many more years now, I'd imagine that you'd agree it is theoretically possible that the lottery prize would eventually be equal to all the money less the amounts that the last players would play (M4, or broad money supply - tiX)?

Lisa said...

Funny and interesting, and true!

Cathy Olliffe-Webster said...

"self-imposed tax on stupid people"
PERFECT! That's exactly how I feel about lotteries. Having said that, I do contribute to the pool at work because it would just SUCK if they won and all quit and I had to stay... Happy A to Z!

Pa Ul said...

interesting to know about the lottery

nutschell said...

Hi! I'm dropping by from the A-Z. I bet about $5 bucks in the lottery. Didn't win a thing, but oh well. one can hope.


Grammy said...

Hi, I agree with you on the lottery. It takes money of hardworking people who have no better sense than to buy the tickets. Our pastor back home told us that if any of us won the lottery, the church didn't want any of it, because it is "ill-gotten gains". I have never bought a lottery ticket and have no plans to ever do so.
Best regards to you, Ruby

Sharkbytes said...

No kidding. I'm trying to visit all A-Z Challenge Blogs in April