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Old 08-16-2011, 09:04 AM
 
Location: Flo-Rida
1,975 posts, read 1,851,648 times
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I've always wondered if it was actually real or what. I'm talking about the big jackpot lotteries like Powerball and Mega Millions. I know scratch-off tickets are real because I've seen people actually win. I don't know anyone who's a big lottery winner & no one I know has ever heard of anyone they know winning either.

A retired math professor pointed out to me that the odds of winning Powerball (supposedly 1 in 195,000,000) are fudged numbers and that the real 1 in chance of winning is a number with 17 billion digits. I'm not sure how he figured that out, but it's beyond me I'm sure.

What are your thoughts? A real game, or a ponzi scheme for the government to make money?
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Old 08-16-2011, 09:21 AM
 
14,939 posts, read 7,354,752 times
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its a real game. the government actually uses a part of the lottery proceeds to buy an annuity that pays out the award, either as a lump sum payment or as yearly payouts. what the lottery really is, is a voluntary tax on the people.
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Flo-Rida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbohm View Post
its a real game. the government actually uses a part of the lottery proceeds to buy an annuity that pays out the award, either as a lump sum payment or as yearly payouts. what the lottery really is, is a voluntary tax on the people.
How real? I can see someone possibly winning the smaller ~$200,000 jackpot, but not the big one.
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:44 PM
 
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The lottery is a voluntary tax.
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:46 PM
 
Location: Vermont
7,826 posts, read 4,908,046 times
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There are a couple of ways of answering that.

First: of course it's real. The cash prizes that are announced are actually awarded.

Second: any individual's chance of winning is microscopically small.

Third: the odds in the state-run lottery games are worse than the numbers racket the Mafia runs (or used to run).
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:47 PM
 
1,460 posts, read 910,158 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hammertime33 View Post
The lottery is a voluntary tax.
Its a tax on stupid people. All gambling is.
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:47 PM
 
Location: Chicago
36,415 posts, read 57,334,890 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoomzoom3 View Post
A retired math professor pointed out to me that the odds of winning Powerball (supposedly 1 in 195,000,000) are fudged numbers and that the real 1 in chance of winning is a number with 17 billion digits. I'm not sure how he figured that out, but it's beyond me I'm sure.
Was he retired, or did he get kicked off the faculty for incompetence?
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Old 08-16-2011, 01:56 PM
 
13,074 posts, read 6,809,810 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoomzoom3 View Post
How real? I can see someone possibly winning the smaller ~$200,000 jackpot, but not the big one.
Go do some searches on past mega-jackpot lotteries from various states or multi-state ones. They exist, heck... they even made a TV show a while back out winners going broke soon after they won the money due to their poor spending habits.
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Long Island, New York
16,051 posts, read 5,779,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoomzoom3 View Post
How real? I can see someone possibly winning the smaller ~$200,000 jackpot, but not the big one.
the 'big' one or any of the ADVERTISED numbers at ballooned

ie the lottery jackpot is 100million...but that is ONLY if you take the 20yr payments...if you take the lumpsum its 50 million taxable dollars..getting hit with 35% from the federal and then from the state so in the end you only get about 27 million of a 100 million 'jackpot'
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:01 PM
 
13,074 posts, read 6,809,810 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnPaul View Post
Its a tax on stupid people. All gambling is.

I don't see people who play it as stupid generally, just those who play it with big hopes of winning (especially when they can't afford to play it). I play the mega one... heck... I don't know, once every couple of years for a buck. I don't put anything into it in terms of winning, and half the time I forget to check my numbers for a week or two after it plays. /shrug
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