I was thinking about buying a lottery ticket this week. The Mega Millions multi-state lottery pay out is estimated at $640 million – the largest in history. So I was thinking about it and then I realized – that is too much money. I know some of you may think there is no such thing as too much money, but there is. Think about it – the lump sum payout is $462 million. In California, where I live, the state and federal taxes will be, say 30% bringing your winnings to $323 million. So let’s assume I am the only winner of the jackpot. I need to pay off the mortgage and any other bills. Then I would pay for my friends cancer treatment and probably pay off his mortgage to help keep his stress down. Then I need would pay off everything in my business. Then I would probably buy another house and sell the one I just paid off. OK, that can all be done with, let’s say $2 million. Then there are the family members who come out of the wood work. I don’t have a big family so that could be another $1 million. So now I spent $3 million and I still have $320 million. Now I would want to feed the hungry, house the homeless and inspire the hopeless. But what if I get caught up in the money and forget about the poor, homeless and hopeless. What if I forget all about Shakyamuni and Nichiren. Everyone says they will give their winnings to charity, but how many actually do that?
It is just too much money. If you worked for 40 years to amass this fortune, you would be prepared, but it’s like over night fame – no one is prepared for all that attention. Then you have to trust that your advisers won’t rip you off. Accountant, financial planner, banker — I have these now, but that’s alot of money.
It is interesting to think of the things that can be done with a huge sum of money, but I’m going to pass on this one. Some good will come of this. This lottery will generate $1.4 billion of which $490 million will support government services in the member states and $210 million will go to retailer commissions. The odds are something like 90 million to 1. I think I’ll wait until the next one. Everyone will be played out and the odds will just be 1 million to 1. Much better.