As the Obama Administration continues to push for its Economic Rescue package, the price tag is rather startling. I don’t know about you, but I just can’t get my mind around $825 Billion. I can’t get my mind around 825 billion anything actually. The number is just too astonishingly huge. I will try to find another way to show just how large a number it really is.
The dinosaurs have been extinct for 65 million years. That’s not even a third of the tax cut portion of the package alone. You’d have to travel around the earth 33 million times at the equator to travel 825 billion miles. It would take 2,750 days at 500 MPH. We could travel to the sun and back 4,435 times.
Okay, these numbers are still too staggering. Perhaps I can handle size. The Empire State Building in my hometown of NYC is a really tall building. Can you picture it? If you can picture 660,000 of them stacked on top of each other that would be 825 billion feet. In 2006, 76 million fans went to MLB games. It would take over 10,000 years like that to reach 825 billion fans!
Since the Rescue package is about money, maybe I should stick to that. The most expensive street legal car available on the market today is the Bugatti Veyron at a price of $1,192,057. We could buy 692,000 of them. No we can’t, there aren’t that many of them to buy. In 2004, there were 131,113,969 tax return filed. If we split the $825 Billion among them, they’d each get $6,292! There are 6.75 billion human beings on earth. So if we gave every one of them $122, we would have spent the Rescue package. 852 million people don’t have enough food to eat each day to sustain themselves. We could give every one of them $968.
Well, I’m no closer to fully grasping the magnitude of what our representatives in Washington are about to commit us all to. I also have seen no evidence that makes me believe this commitment will actually create jobs or repair the credit markets or help keep people from losing their homes. I do know that it is a hell of a lot of money being thrown at an economic problem that is so complex economists don’t agree on how to address it. As I write this, the Economic Rescue Package of 2009 is being debated in the US Senate having passed in the US House of Representatives. Even if all 300 million Americans crossed our fingers and toes, we wouldn’t get to 852 billion.