Budgeting for Stupid

Dear Dave,

Do you think it would be a good idea to budget a little money each month for playing the lottery? I spent $10 on scratch tickets the other day and won $100. I think it might be a pretty good idea to save $90 and put the other $10 toward more tickets.

Edward

Dear Edward,

Here's a thought. Just stuff ten bucks down your garbage disposal each month and save the cost of driving to the nearest convenience store.

Really, now, you can't be serious! The lottery is a tax on the poor, and on people who can't do math. I'm not riding a moral high horse. Research shows that people from lower income brackets, folks who can't afford to be throwing their money away on some ridiculous game, spend four times as much on lottery tickets as anyone else. Rich people don't mess with this garbage, because they know the lottery isn't a wealth-building tool. When was the last time you saw a line of BMWs and Mercedes pull up to your local convenience store to buy lottery tickets?

The only winners in the lottery game are the students who get scholarships, but in reality they are riding to school on the backs of the poor masses who gamble away their grocery money.

Lots of people think winning the lottery will mean life on easy street. The truth, however, is that it rarely works out that way. Did you know that 65 percent of Lotto winners go bankrupt in less than 15 years? Your chances of winning big are about 125,000,000 to 1. You're more likely to be bitten by a snake, or die in a car accident on the way to buy the stupid lottery tickets!

If you've got money to throw around, do something smart with it, like get out of debt! Do you have an emergency fund? Are you investing for your retirement, or your kid's education? If you've done all of this, give it to someone who's hurting, or invest it in your community. Don't waste it on something as dumb as the lottery!

- Dave

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