The Powerball lottery jackpot is expected to grow to a record $1.4 billion by the next drawing on Wednesday night. When that estimate grew to $1.3 billion, a lottery meme began circulating on social media claiming that if the jackpot were divided evenly among all Americans, poverty would become nonexistent.
So what’s the problem? Well, the math is completely wrong.
The meme states that $1.3 billion divided among 300 million people would come out to $4.33 million per person. In reality, it would only equal about $4.33 per person. Gizmodo also points out that the population of the United States is closer to 319 million, meaning that everyone would actually only receive around $4.09. And of course, all of those figures don’t even take into account the fact that the payout will be significantly reduced by taxes.
The Facebook post currently has more than 400,000 likes and 813,000 shares, and has even inspired several counter-memes.