International Journal of Applied Philosophy 13 (2):223-238 (1999)
Despite worries about the fairness of lotteries or the sources of the human psyche’s strong attraction to them, Americans have made lotteries a part of their civic lives. The popularity of gaming does not, however, gainsay the unease many Americans feel about state sponsorship of lotteries. The debates that surrounded the introduction of lotteries remain to this day, but the arguments are tired and the camps deadlocked. One camp argues that a lottery is simply a properly randomized drawing that determines who among a freely chosen group of participants shall be awarded all or some of the monetary contributions of the group. These proponents suggest that the randomness of the drawing and the autonomy of the participants render the lottery fair and sponsorship by the state unobjectionable. Opponents of state-supported gambling argue, by contrast, that states market lotteries by making inappropriate emotional appeals and by supplying information of dubious veracity. Consequently, so this group argues, lotteries must be judged as unfair gaming devices and state support viewed as improper. I shall show that both camps have fundamentally misunderstood the problem. Evaluating whether state lotteries are sales or swindles relies neither on an analysis of subjective attitudes nor on an examination of purely procedural aspects of play. Correct analysis depends on a determination of what lotteries are. That is, there is a difference between claiming what a lottery does and what it claims to be, between how it works and what it is. If a lottery is claimed to be something that it is not, then regardless of what one gets for one’s money, one has been swindled. I will show that performing an ontological examination of the state-supported lottery reveals it to be a swindle. I conclude by suggesting that some of the confusion regarding the legitimacy of the state-sponsored lottery stems from misunderstandings of several tenets of liberalism. It is these misunderstandings that at times are employed to justify lotteries
|Keywords||Applied Philosophy General Interest|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
The Ethics of Lottery Advertising: Issues and Evidence. [REVIEW]James M. Stearns & Shaheen Borna - 1995 - Journal of Business Ethics 14 (1):43 - 51.
Philosophy of Probability: Foundations, Epistemology, and Computation.Sylvia Wenmackers - 2011 - Dissertation, University of Groningen
Lotteries, Knowledge, and Practical Reasoning.Rachel McKinnon - 2011 - Logos and Episteme 2 (2):225-231.
Money Does Not Induce Risk Neutral Behavior, but Binary Lotteries Do Even Worse.Reinhard Selten, Abdolkarim Sadrieh & Klaus Abbink - 1999 - Theory and Decision 46 (3):213-252.
Does Lottery Advertising Exploit Disadvantaged and Vulnerable Markets?Harriet A. Stranahan - 2005 - Business Ethics Quarterly 15 (1):23-35.
Lotteries, Quasi-Lotteries, and Scepticism.Eugene Mills - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (2):335 - 352.
Playing Dice with Morality: Weighted Lotteries and the Number Problem.Mathieu Doucet - 2013 - Utilitas 25 (2):161-181.
The Lottery Paradox, Epistemic Justification and Permissibility.Thomas Kroedel - 2012 - Analysis 72 (1):57-60.
Luck and the Domain of Distributive Justice.Daniel Schwartz - 2010 - European Journal of Philosophy 18 (2):244-261.
Stochastic Choice and Consistency in Decision Making Under Risk: An Experimental Study.Barry Sopher & J. Mattison Narramore - 2000 - Theory and Decision 48 (4):323-349.
Added to index2011-01-09
Total downloads3 ( #700,617 of 2,172,023 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #325,967 of 2,172,023 )
How can I increase my downloads?