The potential privatization of the Hoosier Lottery could raise an immediate $1 billion for higher education and tens of millions more each year, but that may not be enough to win over skeptical lawmakers.

Kip Peterson, president of the Thorsborg Institute, a Georgia-based lottery consultant, said he thinks Indiana should be leery of outsourcing a division of government that generates hundreds of millions in revenue each year.

Philosophically, I’m a proponent of turning areas of government over to the private sector to run. When I think efficiency in running a program, oddly enough, big government doesn’t jump to the head of my list. Not that big, bureaucratic companies do either, but if we’re talking find a way to expand a pie and make the most profit from it, the private sector does come to mind.

Philosophically, I also opposed the lottery when it was first brought up. My thinking was that if you allow the lottery, they you say yes to all gambling. You couldn’t allow the lottery and then cry slippery slope later. The lottery is not in some special category separate from other forms of gambling. I don’t care if it’s just a dollar in a lottery game or you lose all of your money in these paypal casinos.

Philosophically, I am all about lower taxes and don’t kid yourselves, the lottery is basically a tax, voluntary though it may be, on the poor and the desperate. It’s not like the rich go “how can I best invest my money? I know, if I sink $10,000 into Lotto tickets, my money is sure to pay off.” Basic math tells you the odds of winning. It’s like praying to be struck by lightning.

Philosophically, I’m about to go buy me another lottery ticket. Half the time I don’t even check to see if I won: if I don’t check, then I get to cling to that special hope that I may actually be a millionaire. However, I only buy tickets when the lottery is large, that’s the only time it’s worth playing. A man has to think about his retirement plan. It’s either that or count on Social Security being there when I retire. Talk about long odds.