Mixed message on gambling

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

There's plenty to keep your attention this week if you like playing the odds.

First, there's the Billion Dollar Bracket Challenge, in which you could win a billion dollars if you pick out all the winners in the NCAA basketball bracket. That's only the tip of the iceberg; numerous other brackets are floating around the Internet and American offices, costing employers millions of dollars in lost productivity.

Then there's the Mega Millions jackpot, which Nebraskans have been playing since 2010.

Nobody has won Mega Millions since January, so today's drawing is worth $400 million if you take a 29-year annuity, or $224.8 million if you take the cash.

That's the third biggest jackpot ever, and the biggest since March 2012, when three winners in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland, split $656 million.

Don't lose any sleep if you don't get around to filling out a bracket or buying a Mega Millions ticket; your chances of winning increase only an infinitesimal amount by doing so.

What are your chances?

In the Billion Dollar Bracket challenge, your chances of winning are one in 9.2 quintillion. That's a 1 in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 chance.

Your chances are better of winning the Mega Millions are 1 in 258.9 million, if by "better" you mean nearly nonexistent.

The chances are very good, however, that gambling will be a problem for a Kearney city councilman.

Off-duty police felt compelled to issue a gambling citation to the councilman, Randy Buschkoetter, 49, and his daughter, Danielle, 21, after they saw them exchanging money with a number of other people at the state basketball tournament, and writing names and numbers in a book.

Buschkoetter apologized and felt bad for his daughter, who he said "was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time."

The irony is, bettors who played with Buschkoetter had a much better chance of winning than those who participate in the officially-sanctioned gambling opportunities.

For this he's facing a fine and public disgrace?

Forgive us for seeing a little hypocrisy in the situation ...

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  • From what I have read elsewhere it was a total score pool that cost $1.00 to enter. The same type that many businesses, offices and bars have at any given time.

    Thank goodness the police were there to protect an arena full of citizens from the evil doers all throwing a dollar into the pot for fun.

    I do not for one minute believe there were any complaints. An off duty officer happened to spot it and decided to flex his authority.

    -- Posted by Diatheke on Wed, Mar 19, 2014, at 1:23 PM
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