March 29, 2010. Voluntary payments to the government are generally not thought of as taxes. But states have begun in the last 30 years to obtain significant revenue from lottery sales. Looking at induced lottery purchases as a tax, with very little direct or indirect benefit to the vast majority of purchasers, this analysis confirms conclusions in other studies that it is an extremely regressive tax. By FPI research associate Brent Kramer, published by Tax Analysts in State Tax Notes.