Skip to comments.What does One Trillion Dollars Look Like?
Posted on 07/31/2011 1:04:40 PM PDT by Jerrybob
Thought this might be interesting and helpful:
(Geez, that's a big pile...)
But beware of the link to the “U.S. National Debt in $100 bills”. It opens an annoying pop-up page as well.
That is double stack single pallets such as below which contains one million dollars.
One trillion seconds is about 32,000 years. I billion seconds is about 32 years which is another good analogy.
If you spend it today, you might get a pack of gum. Tomorrow, one stick.
November 2006 .....8.5 Trillion Democrats win over Congress
January 2007 ........8.7 Trillion Democrats in charge of Congress
November 2007 .....9 Trillion
January 2008 .........9.2 Trillion
November 2008 ....10.5 Trillion Democrats & Obama in Control
January 2009 .........10.6 Trillion
January 2010 .........12.3 Trillion
November 2010 .....13.7 Trillion Republicans win over US House
January 2011 .........14 Trillion Republicans control US House
July 2011 ...............14.3 Trillion
congress can pee away these enormous amounts of money because it is not theirs. In fact the more they spend, the more that comes back to them in their ‘commissions’ (campaign contributions, graft, etc.). We ought to have a system that establishes a baseline, say 2008, and for every 100 billion congress spends over that, they lose 10% of their compensation and for every $100 billion they shave off of that, they get a 10% raise.
See if any of it sounds familiar today, only worse than then. Multiply everything by 7 and if you can stay away from the vodka, you are a better man than I am.
One chink in the armor of any democracy is that, when the Plebs discover that they can vote themselves Bread & Circuses, they usually do . . . right up to the day there is neither bread nor circuses. At that point they often start lynching the senators, congressmen, bankers, tax collectors, Jews, grocers, foreigners, any minority-take your choice. For they know that they [themselves] didnt do it. The citizen is sovereign until it comes to accepting blame for his sovereign acts then he demands a scapegoat.
Social Security taxes go into the general fund and are spent. If Social Security were in fact insurance (the basis on which the gimmick was sold to us by FDRs New Deal), the receipts would be segregated and invested and not shown as income . . . OR a competent insurance actuary with staff would calculate the commitment and it would show in the National Public Debt.
The fact that a debt is amortized over the years doesnt stop it from being a debt. It was an amortized mortgage that got me into this racket. The prospect of years and years of future monthly payments spoiled my sleep.
The only way the Government can go on paying Social Security to my generation is by taxing you young people more and more heavily. . . and each year there are more and more old people and fewer and fewer young people. It wont help to run the printing presses faster; that causes food to rise in price, rents to go up, etc. - and people over 65 start putting pressure on Congress... and theres an election coming up. (Theres always an election coming up.)
I use the term Federal Public Debt because what is usually termed the Public Debt is by no means our total public debt. There are also state, county, city, and special-district debts. It is difficult to get accurate figures on these public debts but the total appears to be larger than the Federal Public Debt. I cant make even a wild guess at the Social Security commitment but our total public promises-to-pay have to exceed two trillion dollars.
How much is a trillion? Well, it means that a baby born today owes at least $4,347.83 to the Federal Government alone before his eyes open. (No wonder he yells). It means that the Zero Population Growth family (who was going to save us all-remember?) of father, mother, and 2.1 children owes $17,826 in addition to private debts (mortgage, automobile, college for 2.1 children).
Of course papa wont pay it off; that debt will grow larger. But it will cost him $2000 a year (and rising) just to service his pro-rata; any taxes for which he getsanything at all-even more laws-is on top of that.
A trillion seconds is 31,688 years, 9 months, 5 days, 8 hours, 6 minutes, and 42 seconds - long enough for the precession of the equinoxes to make Vega the Pole Star, swing back again to Polaris, and go on past to Alpha Cephei. Or counting the other way it would take us to 29,708 B.C.. . . or more than 25 thousand years before Creation by Bishop Ushers chronology for creationism.
I dont understand a trillion dollars any better than I do a trillion seconds. I simply know that we had better stop spending money we dont have if we want to avoid that Man on Horseback.
But I dont think we will stop deficit financing, the euphemism that sounds so much better than kiting checks. You may have noticed that 1970 figure for public employees (not my extrapolation for 1980, but the official 1970 figures straight from theUnited States Bureau of the Census).
That figure does not include the Armed Forces. It does not include some special categories. It is easier to learn the number of slaves imported in 1769 (6,736) than it is to find out exactly how many people are on public payrolls in this country. And it is not simply difficult but impossible to determine how many people receive Federal checks for which they perform no services. (Or food stamps. Are food stamps money?) But one thing is certain: the number of people eligible to vote who do receive money from some unit of government (aid to dependent children, Supreme Court justices, not growing wheat, removing garbage, governors of states, whoever) exceeds the number eligible to vote but receiving no pay or subsidy of any sort from any unit of government.
Have you read the Federal Register lately? Have you ever read the Federal Register? Under powers delegated by Congress certain appointed officials can publish a new regulation in the Federal Register and, if Congress does not stop it, after a prescribed waiting time, that regulation has the force of law-it is law, [usually forever,] to you and to me, although a lawyer sees nuances. I have vastly oversimplified this description, but my only purpose is to point out that administrative law reaches into every corner of our lives, and is the major factor in the enormous and strangling invasion of the Federal Government into our private affairs.
I cant see anything in the Constitution that permits the Congress to delegate its power to pass laws.. . but the Supreme Court says its okay and that makes my opinion worthless.
Im stopping. There are endless other gloomy things to discuss-the oil shortage, the power shortage (not the same thing), pollution, population pressure, a projected change in climate that can and probably will turn the problems of population and food into sudden and extreme crisis, crime in the streets and bankrupt cities, our incredible plunge from the most respected nation on Earth to the most despised (but we are nonetheless expected to pick up the tab). Bill Gresham was right but he told only half of it: you not only dont get rich peddling gloom; it isnt any fun.
So now come with me- OVER THE RAINBOW-
Over The Rainbow is a section of the Chapter, The Happy Days Ahead from the Robert Heinlein book, Expanded Universe, which discusses, among other things, predictions made in 1950 and revisited in 1980. Heinlein got a lot wrong, but a few, like the excerpt in this thread, was (is) spot on.
It looks like it'll get spent in a couple months...
OMG the infamous “shirtless” Obama photo that had Michelle so upset that she nixed any such future photos of him sans shirt. Maybe because he looks partly white, LOL???
Yea, people have trouble visualizing the kind of money we’re talking about here. For example you could also do the following with a billion dollars:
1) Buy every household a new car (small one, but new)
2) Buy at least 100 aircraft carriers and the jets to go with them (we have 11 in service now)
3) Pay the energy bill for the United States for 1 year
4) Build 10,000,000 new homes to house the Illegals
5) Tear up every Interstate Highway and rebuild from the dirt up (including the bridges)
6) Pay the cost of everyone driving on the toll roads around Austin for 5 years*
7) Fly 1000 Space Shuttle missions (if it were still flying); 7 times the total number that actually flew
8) Build at least 2000 B-2 Bombers
9) Pay everyone’s mortgage for a year
10) Build 200 nuclear reactors, essentially tripling our count...and having nuclear provide over half of our power.
(*had to take that stab at Perry)
It is very difficult to visualize the kind of money that we’re spending, but don’t have...not to mention our debt. I hope this helps a bit. So look at the list above and then think about what we got when Obama spent his trillion dollar wad.
I bet you meant a TRILLION dollars, right?
I didn’t get one. I guess my pop-up stopper is working.
strangely enough, $1 trillion over 10 years looks amazingly like $100 billion in a single year
even more awe inspiring is the reduction... from $4.5 trillion to $4.4 trillion, with receipts of $2 trillion.
yup... wish i could spend $250k while only making $100k... and expect my debts to go down
By Washington accounting $1 trillion of cuts over 10 years looks like a couple billion the first year or two and then disappears entirely. $1 trillion in spending over 10 years looks like $100 billion the first year, $180 billion the second, a quarter trillion the third, and so on.
It would take 10 Milky Way Galaxies to add up to a trillion stars.
As of June 29, 2011, the total U.S. national debt outstanding has reached $14.46 trillion dollars.
Two years in March, 2009 the U.S. national debt hit $11 trillion dollars.
Below is an image showing what the 2009 U.S. national debt of $11 trillion dollars looks like in $100 dollar bills.
Ten pallets loaded with $100 dollar bills contain $1 billion dollars.
Each layer of pallets in the following image contains 5,000 pallets (50 wide by 100 deep).
As of June 29, 2011, the total U.S. national debt outstanding has reached $14.46 trillion dollars.
That represents about 98.6% of calendar year 2010's annual gross domestic product (GDP) of $14.66 trillion dollars.
To visualize that amount, imagine 7 more layers, each with 5,000 pallets, sitting on top of the pile in the image below.
Image showing what $11 trillion dollars in $100 dollar bills looks like.
Currency paper is about 0.006" thick, A stack of 10,000 one hundred dollar bills would be about sixty inches tall. Break that down into six ten inch stacks and a million dollars worth of one hundred dollar bills would fit in a grocery bag, no fork truck required.
Since the advent of calculators, people have lost the ability to make rational estimates as to magnitude of expected numerical answers.
I only posted the graphics from the linked article from which this thread orginated. If it is in error then the linked article is in error. Glad you took the time to count all that stuff.
Disregard my other post to you. You are correct as I copied the number down incorrectly. I wasn’t paying attention. My bad.
“I bet you meant a TRILLION dollars, right?”
Yes sir!! Daaaaaaaaa!!! I should review what I post, especially when it involves numbers.
Thanks for the correction.
It's my hobby, I torture numbers until they talk to me...
I once added up the tax withheld on my pay stubs and compared it to the W2 statement. I found a difference (apparently a software glitch) between what should have been identical numbers. I then reviewed the previous five years and found the same error except the magnitude was smaller at the start and increased slightly every year. I decided to let things lay and not poke around further as the W2s were actually over stating the tax withheld.
Sometimes it best not to kick that sleeping dog to find out if it bites...
PS It helps that I've seen a million in cash in Vegas at Binion's Horseshoe and I knew it wasn't a pallet load! Actually it was 100 $10,000 bills which are no longer in circulation. You could put the entire stash in a fat wallet but you'd have trouble getting change.