Richard Lustig claims to be the world's only 7-time lottery grand prize winner. He published a book that helps you increase your chances of winning the lottery, which spent months at the top the bestseller’s list of self-help books. He has also been on Good Morning America and had his picture posted in the Ripley’s Believe it or Not Museum.
He began winning the Florida Lottery back in 1993. He says that he developed a method that has helped him repeatedly win the games, which he still plays daily. It took him years of trial and error and a lot of losses to get to the point where he could play the game so there was a lot less losses and a lot more winners. Lustig has been to the Florida Lottery Office 23 times to claim prizes of more than $600 since he began playing the lottery.
The odds are always against you when you play the lottery, but Lustig believes you can increase those odds by playing smart. He says that if you are going to play scratch tickets, you should buy 10 tickets in a row of the same game. He says this method works better than picking tickets randomly, because it allows you to eliminate the losing tickets faster and increases the odds that you will get winning tickets. He says getting repeated losing tickets is a sign that a player will eventually get a winner. Lustig also recommends players to check out lottery websites and specific scratch tickets which have the best odds, which are usually on the higher-priced tickets.
Many of the reviews on Lustig's book are very negative, with many of them stating that it is very short and contains only basic common sense. One reviewer on Walmart.com, claimed they spent $40 on the book was very disappointed. It makes you wonder about someone willing to spend $40 on book about winning the lottery. His total winnings amount to barely over $1 million, and readers say that he wins the lottery often because he plays lotteries with smaller odds.
Joan Ginther first won the lottery for $5.4 million. Then a decade later, she won again for $2 million. Then two years later she won again for $3 million. Then, in 2010, she hit a $10 million jackpot. The odds of this have been calculated at 1-in-18 septillion.
Harper's Magazine reporter Nathanial Rich wrote an article which questioned the validity of Ginther's "luck". He pointed out that Ginther is a former math professor with a PhD from Stanford University specializing in statistics. A professor at the Institute for the Study of Gambling & Commercial Gaming at the University of Nevada, Reno, told Rich that when something this unlikely happens in a casino, you would arrest them first and ask questions later.
Rich detailed the various ways in which Ginther could have gamed the system - including the fact that she may have figured out the algorithm that determines the placement of winning scratch tickets. With knowledge of the algorithm, it wouldn’t be difficult to determine where the tickets would be shipped since there were a few sources she could have found it out from. It should be pointed out that three of her wins, all in two-year intervals, were by scratch tickets that were bought at the same mini-mart in the town of Bishop.
Although Ginther now lives in Las Vegas, she won all four of her lotteries in Texas. According to a Forbes article, the residents of Bishop, Texas, seem to believe God was behind it all. The Texas Lottery Commission told Mr. Rich that Ginther was lucky star, and that they don’t suspect foul play.
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