Monday, February 11, 2008

It's all a Lottery

Like Mr Angry, I too have noted the proliferation of Lottery games (and, like him, I have not played for years).
My first job was with one of the founding companies of the successful Lottery bidder, Camelot, so when I say this, I say it with some authority on the subject - they are just money grabbing cunts, the fucking lot of them.

Fair enough, but one of the things that really, really annoys me is when people refer to the Lottery as a tax.

"Oh," they say. "The Lottery is just a tax on the stupid." I hear people refer to "the Lottery tax", and suchlike.

Let me make this absolutely fucking clear: the Lottery is not a tax, OK?

Sure, you may think that people who spend cash on the Lottery (in any of its myriad guises) are credulous fools but there is a crucial difference between the Lottery and tax: people choose to spend their money on the Lottery, whereas one is compelled to pay tax—it is extortion with menaces.

The two are not comparable and the Lottery is not a tax.

End of story.


Alan Douglas said...

... except : The Lottery goes to "good causes", specifically EXcluding things that government would normally pay for out of taxation.

Then the government RAIDS the lootery funds to pay for stuff the lootery is NOT supposed to be paying for, but taxation is ....

Sounds pretty devilish to me !

Alan Douglas

Kronos said...

Agreed - I however still like the phrase ' Tax on people who can't do maths'

WalterBoswell said...

I imagine that the use of the word 'stupid' implies an exterior entity removing money from a pocket, that is of course only after the notion of free will and personal responsibility is removed from the individual, not a rare thing when referring to groups of people.

So in a way it is like tax but closer to the 'munchies' tax paid by stoners than to the tax governments levy.

Shug Niggurath said...

I think the idea of it being a tax on the stupid is an update of the original theory of it being a tax on the "poor" (or perhaps desperate).

The logic being that someone may be tempted to risk the grocery money on the lottery, just like deadbeat dads on the gee-gees.

Fuck 'em, not my problem.

What is my problem is as alan douglas said at the top - the government have too much say in what the good causes are. Fucking Millenium Dome, Olymmpics and the like. Whether these cunts like it or not, the pot of cash for distribution is NOT the governments.

Mark Adams said...

Except that not anyone is free to set up a competing monopoly with bigger prizes but that gives less money to government mandated causes. It would be like government selling the rights to be the sole distributor of apples but insisting you give a portion of the profits to schools. That's sort of a tax.

Joe Noory said...

Actually, the question is "what has seven balls and screws idiots?"

Henry North London said...


Anonymous said...

I think Mark Adams makes a fair point. The lottery is voluntary only in the sense that any excise duty or VAT is voluntary. Of course, I can choose to avoid alcohol, clothes, tobacco etc., but if I choose to consume them, then I will pay tax. So too with the lottery - if I wish to play a legal lottery with substantial prizes, there is only one game in town and it generates revenue for the government, both directly (via the lottery levy) and indirectly (by spending on items which might otherwise be funded by the government). So, in my books, it's a tax. Not the worst, by a long way, but still a tax.