Have you noticed more and more people are living under the cloud of a “Lottery Mentality” instead of crafting a long-range plan for success in continued hard work? Here are the 20 daily games you can play in New York State alone to win quick money on an intangible hope for grabbing money without working:


I have yet to see even a multi-million dollar lottery winner truly be satisfied with the evergreen ends of their lucky win. Beyond just playing the lottery, you see the Lottery Mentality when people talk about waiting for their one big break that will change their lives once-and-for-all or when they say “if you could just do this one thing for me my life would be set!” Living a Lottery Life requires betting on luck to save you.

The people I have met who most verily believe in luck and the lottery are the eternal luckless who spend a buck a day buying a lottery ticket — fully taken in and ashamed by — the outstanding and viral advertising slogan: “A Dollar and a Dream.” You also see this Lottery Mantra on television in the awful show Deal or No Deal where contestants try to win a million dollars by picking suitcases filled with dollar amounts. There is no skill required to play the game. It’s all chance. The odds are always against you.

Those who bet the weekly family food budget on the spread of a Sunday NFL football game are also unwittingly doubling down as they wager in parallel the health of their families and the ongoing fooling of their station with dreams of hitting a big bet while those around them suffer the ills of Lottery Losing. How can we help those who live not in reality but within the realm of the Get Rich Quick world of Lottery Thinking where The Next Big Thing and SuperBall and MegaMillions and the Quick Fix and the Instant Millionaire tease and tempt the weak of spirit who forever hope on a star that one win will salvage the entirety of a desperate life?


  1. Even the lottery winners often turn out to be losers.
    Ellen Goodstein writes about 8 lottery winners who won millions, but are dead broke today:

    “Winning the lottery isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be,” says Evelyn Adams, who won the New Jersey lottery not just once, but twice (1985, 1986), to the tune of $5.4 million. Today the money is all gone and Adams lives in a trailer.
    “I won the American dream but I lost it, too. It was a very hard fall. It’s called rock bottom,” says Adams.

    It seems that most lottery winners end up losing in strange ways.
    I remember hearing about the multi-million dollar winner from West Virginia whose $500,000 was stolen at a strip club. A follow up story in the Johnsville News shows the lottery winner with a sad face and chronicles the “slow-motion train wreck” of his life, including jail time, death, and various other forms of destruction.
    It seems that even in winning, you’re losing!

  2. Chris —
    Thanks for that excellent link that shows what bad things can happen to good people who win money bet on the dreams of others.
    Lottery money is blood money because it was bet and lost with the direct intention of an instant gratification and things are not meant to happen that way.
    Recently there was a SuperBall jackpot in Lincoln, Nebraska where a team of meatpackers — several of them legal immigrants — who slaughtered pigs for a living and each week they pooled their money in the dream of striking it big in the lottery.
    Their bet paid off. I think they each won $60 million dollars. When you saw them at the interview to discuss what they planned to do with their winnings it was obvious most of that money would be piddled away on the stupid and the inane.
    Do smart people bet the lottery?
    If I won $60 million I would move into a neighborhood where I was the poorest resident. That way my neighbors would not be looking to me for their big payday. The problem with people who win big money is they don’t want to change and they stay put in their community and station and that always leads to bad things. People have been killed for much less than a shot at $60 million dollars. Winners become the local bank. Friends and family assault them for their “fair share” of the winnings and soon they are all miserable and the money is dead and gone.

  3. I remember a coworker winning $20K when I was working at the grocery store.
    She instantly quit her job — even without having anything else as backup. Of course, people quit their jobs at the grocery store on a whim all the time, so it might not have been related.
    I don’t know what happened to her, but by the time the taxes are taken out of the $20,000, there probably was only $10,000 left — not too much to do anything with.
    I decided to take a look at my state’s lottery winners in my county. Most of the amounts won are pretty small.

  4. Crazy, Dave! You’re absolutely right. Where is the genesis of the idea that we cheap out on the necessities of life but we splurge on luxury items? How did that become part of the acceptable landscape in America?

  5. Chris!
    That’s an interesting link to winners in your county, Chris. I guess the thrill of winning $1,000 is enough to get people to keep playing.
    I like state-sponsored gambling as long as some of that money serves the greater good like funding schools and other human initiatives that would never be covered by a straight tax base.
    You’re right $10,000 is not going to last your long on the unemployment line. It could be a nice savings pad but it wouldn’t — and shouldn’t — change a lifestyle.

  6. That’s a very strange disconnect, Dave, between the rights of necessity and the spoils of pleasure. What a rotten reality you rightly share!

  7. It’s a troubling thing, Dave that the people who can least afford to gamble away their money play the games. That’s why it’s blood money to me.
    Isn’t there some statistical fact that says you’re more likely to be hit by lightning three times in your life than to win a lottery once?

Comments are closed.