Sir; As well as prophesising the miseries of negative equity (letter, 6 June), George Orwell also predicted another "achievement" of the Major government. In Nineteen Eighty Four (published in 1949) he wrote:
The Lottery, with its weekly pay-out of enormous prizes, was the one public event to which the proles paid serious attention. It was probable that there were some millions of proles for whom the Lottery was the principal, if not the only reason, for remaining alive. It was their delight, their folly, their anodyne, their intellectual stimulant.
The Lottery was aptly run by the Ministry of Plenty.
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