A fascinating, and depressing, graph popped up in The Economist this week …

It got us thinking. If every Australian over 17 loses an average of $1300 a year on gambling — that’s about $22 billion for the whole country each year — how does this compare with the money we actually spend on tangible things? And how does it compare to the money that we could spend on important or valuable things?

The statisticians describe it as “loss per resident adult”.

Shouldn’t it really be described as “the misguided extravagance of a rich country that needs to get its priorities and moral compass readjusted”?