Tuesday, February 05th, 2008 | Author:

Bush’s proposed $3.1 trillion budget means nothing to me, because I don’t know what a trillion is. The $400 billion deficit doesn’t mean much more. Maybe my brain is lacking, but I just can’t relate to these numbers. So I’m making an attempt to get a handle on this.

First, I looked numbers up on Wiktionary to see how many zeroes we’re talking about:

ten 10
hundred 100
thousand 1,000
ten thousand 10,000
hundred thousand 100,000
million 1,000,000
ten million 10,000,000
hundred million 100,000,000
billion 1,000,000,000
ten billion 10,000,000,000
hundred billion 100,000,000,000
trillion 1,000,000,000,000

So a trillion has 12 zeroes. About the biggest number that I can really understand is $100,000. For about $100,000 I could buy a 2008 Jaguar XK and a 2008 Honda Accord. So $100,000 equals a dream car and a good car. Let’s do some math.

$1 million = 10 Jaguars and 10 Hondas
$1 billion = 10 thousand Jaguars and 10 thousand Hondas
$400 billion deficit = 4 million Jaguars and 4 million Hondas
$3.1 trillion = 31 million Jaguars and 31 million Hondas

Bush’s budget would buy 62 million cars – more than 7 cars each for every person in New York City. The deficit alone would buy every person in New York City one car. Just imagine the traffic jams – that’s something I can understand!

Category: Bush, libertarian, taxes
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