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POOR TAX
Monday, March 20, 2006
I doubt if it will surprise you to learn that, in South Carolina, those who can afford it the least spend the most on the lottery. Because North Carolina is about to begin its own lottery program, the Charlotte Observer analyzed four years of data from its neighbor to the south and found that not only spend a higher proportion of their incomes on lottery tickets, they spend more money than other income groups. Duke University public policy professor Philip Cook, who has studied lotteries, told the Observer that in most states, the dollar amount spent on lotteries generally does not fluctuate much over income brackets. But in South Carolina, the Observer found that lower-income people spend more - a lot more. People earning less than $30,000 a year spent an estimated $627 per household annually, nearly triple the spending of those making more than $50,000. Cook said it's not immediately clear why that is, but he says race could be a factor. Cook said minorities have historically been over-represented among lottery players. In South Carolina, households with the same income levels in predominantly black neighborhoods generally spent more money than people in predominantly white neighborhoods. About 70 percent of South Carolina's lottery profits are given to higher education, and most of that in the form of Life, Hope and Palmetto scholarships based on SAT scores and grade point averages. Unfortunately, not too many poor black kids are in those groups. To review, the South Carolina Lottery is a scheme that tricks poor uneducated black people into paying for the college education of smart, middle-class white kids. Some people tried to warn that this would be the effect, but they were largely dismissed as right-wing religious extremists, using racial stereotypes to try to deprive poor people of a better education.
posted by Jack Mercer @ 3/20/2006 11:32:00 AM  
2 Comments:
  • At 3/20/2006 03:42:00 PM, Blogger Smorgasbord said…

    Personal finance skills really need to be taught in k-12 schooling. It's mind boggling how little people know about managing their own money.

    Many people I know who play the lottery say to themselves, "I have a dollar. I might as well spend it on a lottery ticket and try to win $1,000,000" without a thought of the ridiculous odds against it. They'd be better off saving all those dollars in some kind of investment vehicle... but take away the "get rich quick" possibility and you take away the fun. There's a sucker born every minute.

     
  • At 3/20/2006 11:36:00 PM, Blogger English Professor said…

    "In South Carolina, households with the same income levels in predominantly black neighborhoods generally spent more money than people in predominantly white neighborhoods."
    Doesn't this imply that the lottery is a scheme that tricks uneducated people, regardless of race, into "paying for the college education of smart, middle-class white kids"?

     
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"Snipet" (pronounced: snipe - it) is not a word.It is a derivative of two words: "Snipe" and "Snippet".


Miriam Webster defines Snipe as: to aim a carping or snide attack, or: to shoot at exposed individuals (as of an enemy's forces) from a usually concealed point of vantage.


Miriam Webster defines Snippet as: : a small part, piece, or thing; especially : a brief quotable passage.


In short, "Snipets" are brief, snide shots at exposed situations from a concealed vantage point.

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