Note: Being and Lottery

Have you ever read Badiou’s Being and Event? It’s an awful read and the idea of novelty is lionized to death, but his idea that “events,” moments of true novelty, are what propel us, is valuable. He simply doesn’t see that “events” are happening all the time across a spectrum of human live, instead of happening only occasionally and in a big way, like the advent of Maoism (which he rabidly endorses). Winning the lottery is an event, too – a novelty, and the outcome of an action that carries risk. It’s just the answer to the question “Did I guess the right numbers?” that provides some excitement in a stultifying world. Opiates, meet the masses, with tens of thousands of distractions disguised as events of note.

The value of playing the lottery is in the transition from not-knowing to knowing the outcome of a bet.

The stock market is another mechanism of monetary entertainment.

Author: Mitch Ratcliffe

Mitch Ratcliffe is a veteran entrepreneur, journalist and business model hacker. He operates this site, which is a collection of the blogs he's published over the years, as well as an archive of his professional publishing record. As always, this is a work in progress. Such is life.

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