Herald and Journal Herald & Journal, July 6, 1998

What to do with all that money?


There was a lot of excitement a couple of months ago when the Powerball jackpot reached $195 million dollars.

A couple from Illinois won the jackpot and opted for a cash payout, instead of 25 yearly payments. That brought their winnings down to $104.3 million cash. How could you spend that much money?

I don't play the lottery, but I've wondered what I'd do if I won.

First, I'd share it with my kids and grandkids to make their life easier. I'd have to buy a car of course . . . a big Mercedes. Build a big house although I don't know what two old fogeys would do with it. We'd take a bunch of cruises, take a trip around the world, give a lot to the church. But would they accept lottery winnings?

I'd also set up a bunch of scholarships for needy youngsters. And help out families with abused children or spouses.

Now, that'd probably take care of 5 million. What about the other 190 million? It's not very easy to spend that much money. You could invest in the stock market, but the way things are now, you'd just make more money.

You'd have to have a battery of lawyers, accountants, and financial advisors to help fend off the undeserving leeches who'd want a chunk of your money.

I could buy a radio station and hire all my friends from that business. Or even a TV station . . . maybe a newspaper or movie studio.

Much as I'd find winning that much money interesting, I don't really want that much. My dream actually was a nightmare.

Wouldn't it be nicer if 195 individuals got a million dollars a piece?

Is this fair? ­ In prison, you spend most of your life looking through bars from the inside wanting to get out. At work, you spend your time wanting to get out and inside bars.

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