The National Lottery in the UK is quite amazing. Although it’s basically a form of gambling, since 1994 it’s raised 17 billion pounds (about 30 billion dollars), 28% of which is fed back to “good causes”. These include a huge number of local projects, maintenance of the UKs heritage as well as funding some major new buildings.
I’ve always admired the lottery, taken advantage of the things it’s helped to pay for and recognized what a positive impact it’s had in the last decade on culture in Britain. So in July 2005 I “did my bit” and signed Shannon and I up on their website to play automatically every Saturday, with the funds drawn by direct debit from my bank. We’ve just left it alone knowing that we’re at least contributing regularly.
Since then, though, we’ve won twice. Not huge amounts, but enough to make me feel like I’m not really contributing anything, but instead just milking the cash cow for everything it will give. Sorry.