Imagine you won the first billion dollar lottery jackpot in history. I searched Google for billion dollar lottery and the only thing I found was a charity that was claiming the first billion dollar raffle for philanthropy.
I’m guessing in about ten years we will see the first billion dollar lottery jackpot.
What would you do with the money? Of course you’d quickly do all the expected things: buy a cool new car, pay off your house and/or buy a new one, set aside for your kids’ school.
All those things are predictable and boring.
With a billion dollars, you actually have enough money to be an asshole. And you should.
Here are 6 things I’d do with a billion dollar lottery jackpot.
1. Never Wear a Pair of Socks or Underwear Twice
Think about it. Your socks and underwear are a very important part of your life. If I had a billion dollars, I’d travel the world looking for the best underwear and socks. I’d then strike a deal with the manufacturer to send me 400 pairs each year, never packed in plastic or touched by a bare human hand. They would be immediately washed by my white-gloved laundry staff before wearing, and delivered to my chambers. After wearing them once, I’d donate them to Goodwill or Salvation Army.
2. Start a SuperPAC
I work in politics, but I have been doing it so long that I am as disgusted with Congress as most people. I would start a superpac that would randomly target elected officials I don't like and provide the money and resources to unseat them. One day it might be a US Congressman, the next day it could be some mayor of a small town who forwarded a racist email to his staff. If desired, I could target enough statehouse seats to advance any political idea of my choosing. If a politician did or said something totally stupid or harmful, I’d threaten them with an avalanche of money unless they apologized.
3. Build a Nuclear Bunker
Yes, in addition to building myself a nice ranch out west, I’d dig down pretty far into the earth and build a bomb and blastproof bunker. I’d then stock it with 50 years of food and set it up so my family and I could live underground forever in the event of a nuclear winter or apocalypse scenario. I don’t spend my days worrying about these events, but if I had the resources to prepare for this, I’d want to continue living my awesome billionaire lifestyle, no matter what.
4. Start My Own Country
I’ve always wanted to start my own country. I think this desire goes back to a high school project in government class where we had to create a new political philosophy and lay out its constitution and guiding principles. If I won a billion dollar lottery, I’d sink a large barge or megayacht in international waters and establish my own micronation. I doubt I would do this to live there, but I would allow other wealthy people to purchase citizenship and a passport. Plus I would use the title of King on my business cards and enjoy meeting with other wealthy dignitaries and royalty from other nations.
5. Never Invest in Anything
That’s right. I wouldn’t use a single penny of my money to buy anything as an investment. I might buy a few houses around the world, but they would simply be places for me to sleep when I travel there. I’d buy no stocks, no mutual funds, no equities, and never loan any money to anyone. If a worthy endeavor wanted a low-interest loan and I liked their mission, I’d just give them the money. If I thought a startup had a unique and useful idea and a strong team, I’d just give them money. My time is not worth being spent keeping track of who owes me what. If I like you, you can just have the money.
I can just hear the work-addicted now – “If I won a billion dollars I’d still work. I just have to work. I don’t know what I’d do with myself.” – gross! Not me. I’d tell my boss to go eff himself immediately. And I’d spend a hundred grand ruining his life, but that’s a separate matter. My life would become an endless pursuit of adventure, joy and happiness. I would answer to no bosses, and any project that started to feel like a job would immediately be ended, even if it were making money.
As a kid living in the country, I’d often thumb through the massive JC Penney catalog and imagine the nice things I’d put in my mansion if I were rich. Now that I’m 31, it’s pretty clear that I’ll never be rich, and I’m comfortable with that.
But it is fun to imagine what life would be like if you actually had a billion dollars. As you can see from my list of crazy things I’d do, I already know that an endless supply of money would turn me into a evil, paranoid and vengeful jerk, which is why I prefer to live my middle-class life of leisure. But I also know that I would be super generous to those I love and admire, giving away money to them with no expectation of ever being paid back.