Once again, Business Insider has articulated a concern that I have believed for years; that being the desire to “Hit It BIG” on the lottery is, in fact, nothing but a tax perpetrated on the less advantaged in our society.
As Business Insider said in one of their recent posts, “Lotteries are (1) regressive taxes on poor people, in that a ticket costs relatively more for a poor person than a rich person, and (2) punitive taxes on the poor and uneducated people who are the most avid buyers.
The people whom least can afford it are throwing away on average 47 cents on the dollar every time they buy a ticket. And the government, which relies increasingly on the lottery for funding, goes out of its way to tell them it is a good idea.”
In the wake of the recent Mega Millions drawing, as drawing that apparently will be split between three winning tickets, we can all come back to earth and realize that the money that we spent on tickets could have been used in a far better way.
With a 1:175,711,536 chance of winning the Mega Millions lottery, winners are the luckiest people alive. Or so they say. Actually, if you have no education in, and feel for, finance, – it will likely be the most unsatisfying experience of their lives. “If you buy 50 tickets a week, you will win the jackpot every 68,000 years.”
As I said earlier, Business Insider has released 18 charts that clearly illustrate the point of this piece. I urge you to take the three minutes that it will take to review them!
In 1989, Michigan lottery winner Willie Hurt won $3.1 million, only to get divorced, lose custody of his children, charged with attempted murder, and have a crack-cocaine addiction by 1991. Is this what you are dreaming of?
So, what do we have in the end? If you do not win, you are paying an additional tax (the schools thank you) that you need not pay. If you do win, it is the end of a peaceful life as you know it.