Wednesday, March 31, 2010

lottery and education as state monopolies

From Jeremiah Dyke at LewRockwell.com...

Gambling is a moron’s retirement plan, and it is certainly not our positive obligations to help morons. Yet, unlike the casinos, what is it about state lotteries that make these acts so contemptible?

By means of mandatory K-12 drill-and-kill public education, the state ill-educates the public into a pool of mathematical ignorance. Most high school students graduate without a single course in probability/statistics. Sure, in seventh grade they learn about the probability of pulling an ace out of a deck of cards, but permutations and combinations like that needed to calculate the odds of winning the mega-millionaire jackpot is only taught to the top percentile of high school students...

How convenient.

The state not only promotes the public’s ignorance in probabilities, but then maximizes that ignorance via a monopoly on gambling....

Again, I am not highlighting that casinos and other private gambling venues should highlight such depictions of probability, but at least these private institutions are upfront about their self-indulgence. The state, however, promotes such ignorance from their constituents under the veil of moral good....

But whose money are they giving away? What percentage of transfer payments like welfare, unemployment, disability or social security simply returns to the state via the "stupid tax"? More bluntly, what percentages of OUR paychecks are being given away?...

The state may choose what math is important for study, exploit that ignorance in mathematics, and veil its racketeering under the label of social good all from the comforts of its monopoly.