Some of you may have heard this lottery story. A Hamilton woman will be 50 million dollars richer next month. Not because she proved she had the winning ticket by handing it in for the claim, but because the lottery corporation hunted her down.
The woman lost the winning ticket and to this day doesn’t know where it is. The corporation knew which retailer sold the winning ticket. There are cameras in the store showing who came in at what times. I’m going to ignore the big brother aspect of this for the remainder of this post. The retailer was paid for the winning purchase by the odd dollar value of $16. The winner’s credit card showed a $16 charge on that day by that retailer.
Now, if I’m clear that you no longer need a winning ticket to win the lottery, doesn’t that mean that someone who didn’t play can now win, too? If so, I’d like to have my name put down for the next lottery draws, too. Of course if the regular lottery players find out I won without paying, they might question why they even paid. I think this makes it even more exciting. The buyers of lottery tickets are thus being punished by the lottery corporation. The very next lottery they will not pay for.
So the lottery will have to become cashless. Perhaps the winners can get high ranking positions with the lottery corporation. To make it more interesting they could keep punishments as part of the lottery. Perhaps losers could get a pie in the face. How exciting.
I bet the lottery would become more exciting with even more ways to win or be punished. If you want to see what form the lottery will take in the end, I suggest you read Jorge Luis Borges’ The Lottery in Babylon. If you’re impatient and wish to see a summary, then follow this link.