John Oliver reveals just how dumb and evil the lottery really is

Mo' money, mo' problems.


Miles Klee


Published Nov 10, 2014   Updated May 30, 2021, 6:01 am CDT

“The lottery is in the business of selling people hope,” John Oliver explained on Sunday’s episode of Last Week Tonight, “and they do a great job of that.” It’s just too bad your chances of winning a Mega Millions jackpot are one in 176 million, roughly equal to that of “getting struck by lightning at the same time you’re being eaten by a shark.” 

But the lottery business isn’t just raking in billions by posing as a fun, life-changing investment opportunity for low-income families—it also does little to support state education systems while ruthlessly exploiting addiction. And even the actual winners get more than they bargained for: mo’ money, mo’ problems, right?   

So really, save your money under the mattress (or, you know, invest it). And if you simply have to gamble, do so responsibly. Like at a mafia poker game or something.

Photo via Last Week Tonight with John Oliver/YouTube

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*First Published: Nov 10, 2014, 12:09 pm CST