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TobyBartels comments on Lotteries: A Waste of Hope - Less Wrong

28 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 13 April 2007 05:36AM

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Comment author: lymen 16 January 2011 12:39:00AM 4 points [-]

Huh... the thought occurred to me recently.

Just like in the torture versus dust specks post earlier, people might prefer that one person benefits extremely instead of all of them benefiting a small amount. While they might not be the ones to win the lottery, someone else will, and by joining in, they're helping to keep the lottery alive a bit longer.

I admit that I'm relatively new to these concepts so I apologize in advance if my post is a bit scatterbrained or in the wrong post, but it's just a thought.

Just like how people would prefer for 3^^^^3 people to get dust specks in their eyes instead of one person being tortured for 50 years, perhaps they prefer that one person is a millionaire instead of all of them being $1 richer.

Comment author: TobyBartels 16 January 2011 02:21:59AM 0 points [-]

This is rational if utility vs money is concave, which it can easily be for small amounts of money. Tim Tyler touched on that above.

But I'm one who would clearly prefer torture to dust specks, so don't trust me.

Comment author: lymen 16 January 2011 09:39:16PM 1 point [-]

Ooh, right, I didn't see that post, thanks!