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Huge Powerball Payout Inspires “Ingenious” Fiscal Idea

The nearly $600 million payout to the two winners of this week's latest Powerball lottery drawing has inspired what Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner called “an ingenious and painless way out of the government's chronic debt crisis.”

Geithner's “ingenious and painless” plan calls for the Federal Reserve to buy a minimum of $30 billion in Powerball tickets every week. “Over the course of a year this would generate a minimum of $1.5 trillion in lottery winnings,” Geithner calculated. “As the holder of more than 99% of each week's outstanding tickets, the federal government would almost certainly win each week's jackpot. The cumulative weekly winnings would totally cover the annual budget deficits.”

The Secretary congratulated himself for “pioneering a truly innovative solution to government finance. It would completely bypass any need for higher taxes or more borrowing. The whole 'fiscal cliff' thing would be blown away. In fact, if we wanted to provide even more government services than currently contemplated we could boost Fed lottery purchases to $40 billion, $50 billion, or whatever amount we wanted each week. A true 'golden age' of unlimited leisure for nearly every American would be within our grasp.”

President Obama is said to be “peeved” by Geithner's proposal. “While I appreciate Secretary Geithner's enthusiasm I am disappointed that he has lost sight of my number one fiscal priority: raising taxes on the top 2% of earners,” Obama said. “Using lottery winnings to cover deficits ignores our obligation to impose fairness in our nation's income distribution system. Those who's greed has driven them to work hard and now take more than their fair share of the country's wealth have to be made to give back the excess. I won't settle for anything less.”


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