Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Canadian Lotteries: A (dishonest) roll of the (loaded) dice

Lotteries are big news in Canada these days. Seems that lottery ticket sellers report winnings far more frequently than is statistically reasonable. Seems they are stealing from legitimate ticket-holders, by telling them their ticket has only won $5, or has won a "free ticket". Meanwhile, they are pocketing the thousands and tens of thousands of dollars of winnings themselves.

It also turns out that government agencies that run these things have been aware of this for years -- and done nothing about it.

Let's do some accounting:

The lottery ticket sellers desired the money that belonged to the purchasers ("thou shalt not covet").

They misrepresented the tickets to the purchasers and claimed to have purchased them themselves to the lottery agencies ("thou shalt not bear false witness").

They defrauded the legitimate purchasers of their winnings ("thou shalt not steal").

All perfectly legitimate behavior in a society that says we must keep religious values separate from public life.

There was a time when Ontario was built on the judeo-christian value of honesty; that time has gone.

And that's the way the Ball bounces.


frappeur said...

Maybe I'm cruel but I have always considered lotteries a tax on the stupid.

These people were so incompetent that they couldn't check their own tickets.

The gruesome part of the whole set of events is the government participation.

A pox on all their houses.

I must say that I am quite happy to let other people pay my taxes so I suppose I have to share in the blame.

RkBall said...

I agree to some extent, but on the other hand these are people who trusted the store workers to be honest, and they violated this trust.

The whole lottery business is a sorry affair because it is based on a desire to win at other peoples' expense; nothing of value is produced in the process. Plus, governments dangle false dreams in front of peoples' eyes.

frappeur said...

In this secular age government has replaced God. It's the modern idolatry.

I'm not surprised it offers false dreams.

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"