Wagering is interesting, the house takes a cut and is profitable, so therefore the wagering population as a whole cannot win. However, when dealing with averages, there are wide disparities between individual outcomes. It’s always amazed me how people can be convinced that they are part of the select minority that can benefit rather than part of the great unwashed masses who won’t.
Years ago, when I got out of college, I was desperate for a job. One of my interviews turned out to be with the state lottery commission (I answered a newspaper ad to send a resume to a post office box). The interview was going swimmingly, and I thought I had the job. Then the interviewer told me that, should I be hired, I would not be allowed to purchase tickets — and then he asked me if that would be a problem. I told him that was no problem since I had never purchased a ticket up to that point. He asked me why, and I told him that I had taken “Probability and Statistics” in college, and hence knew the odds. The interview went right into the toilet after that, apparently they want employees who are also deluded — it probably makes it easier to draw in the suckers.
August 01, 2014