Ramesh, Jonah: I can’t see much of a problem with state-sponsored lotteries. Yes, it means that government is profiting from a pastime that some consider sinful (personally, I just think gambling is dull), but that’s also what happens with a liquor or a cigarette tax. One difference, of course, is that in the case of state lotteries, government is actively promoting a supposedly wicked form of entertainment. However, as most people are quite sophisticated enough to decide for themselves whether to play the lottery or not, that shouldn’t be a great concern. As for casinos, properly regulated, what’s wrong with them? Come to think of it, a couple in NYC might help the economy along, and we could do with that.