Germans have just a little less than 24 hours to get in on the largest lottery cash jackpot in the country’s history. An estimated 43 million euros – or about 64
trillion million US dollars – could go to the winner in the 6/49 draw, the jackpot for which has been left unclaimed for 12 straight draws since the end of October.
And it’s not just the Germans who are scrambling for a chance to get in on the game. Ticket-sellers in border towns near Poland, Holland, Denmark, and Switzerland have reported a jump in sales.
I wasn’t going to write this, because I just can’t think of any way to put it without sounding preachy or moralistic, but I just don’t understand why anybody plays the lottery.
Maybe it’s the thrill of knowing all the money you’ve spent on losing tickets is going toward roads, hospitals, schools, buying kids lunches, that sort of thing.
But then you have to look at it as a tax on the poor and those who can’t do math. Yeah, I know, really original, but I can’t see it any other way.
The German jackpot up for grabs is incredibly hard to win. The odds of getting six numbers correct out of 49 are one in 13.9 million. For that you get a set prize of 600,000 euros. No small change, but to win the big one here, you have to get six numbers PLUS the SUPERNUMBER. The odds of winning that are one in 140 million, or about the same as a three-tonne asteroid labeled Made in USA hitting your house, shattering open upon impact to spill onto your living room carpet a chorus line of Paris Hilton clones doing the can-can.
It’s a tax on the poor because it is often those who can least afford it who hook their hopes on a dream of instantaneously transforming their life. I was once called a raving right-winger for suggesting this – you can stop laughing now – but imagine if everyone stopped thinking they could get something for nothing by buying lottery tickets and used the money they saved to invest in bettering their own education or developing a small business, and got rich slowly? Wouldn’t the payoff be more assured if you worked toward something concrete, if only you’d believe in yourself that you’d get it? Hell, blowing it on a trip to Asia sounds like even more fun.
Or maybe it’s like my brother calls it: an idiot tax. After spending 50 bucks week in, week out and winning nothing, when you win 10 bucks, you get an idiot tax refund.
© 2007 lettershometoyou