Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson Tells Us Just How Much $1 Trillion Could Buy
by Michael Koretzky
(5/24/11) These days Congress is talking about raising our debt ceiling to accommodate our 14 trillion dollar debt. But just how much is a trillion dollars? You’ll be amazed at just what it could buy.
In the 1960s, a Republican Senator named Everett McKinley Dirksen was rumored to have said about the federal budget, “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking real money!”
Dirksen died in 1969, but he’d be rolling over in his grave if he knew the United States government last week reached its debt ceiling of $14.294 trillion. While Democrats and Republicans are debating now about raising that ceiling and cutting spending, now’s a good time to understand just how much money they’re talking about.
Here’s how Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson explained $1 trillion in a 2009 news story…
- $1 trillion is 2,000 cases of $5 million dollars each!
- It's a million million, or a 1 followed by 12 zeroes.
- It's a dollar-per-second... over 32,000 years!
- $1 trillion would send every high schooler in the United States to college.
- It would pave the entire Interstate Highway System... with 23-karat gold leaf.
- It would double the 700,000 police officers on the beat across America - for 32 years!
- It could build 16 million Habitat for Humanity houses to house more than 50 million people.
- $1 trillion would send every person in America on a lavish vacation to Tahiti.
Here are some other ways to visualize this otherworldly sum…
A trillion dollars would:
- Buy every U.S. household a 73-inch HDTV – and then buy them a second one!
- Pay the rent for every renter in the United States for three years, or the mortgage of every homeowner in the country for 14 months.
- Buy about a 1,000 boxes of Girl Scout cookies for every person in America.
- If you spent $1 million every day, it would take you 3,000 years to reach $1 trillion!
If you want to see what $1 trillion looks like, click here for a computer-generated photo of $100 bills stacked onto industrial-sized pallets.
- A trillion dollar bills laid end to end would reach the sun!
- It would be a stack of $1,000 bills... 67.9 miles high.
- A trillion dollars in one dollar bills would weigh about 1.1 million tons, or 2.2 billion pounds!
- It would take a military jet flying at the speed of sound, reeling out a roll of $1 bills behind it, 14 years before it reeled out one trillion $1 bills!
Now multiply everything you just read above by 14, and you have our (current) national debt ceiling!
Visit Money Talks News: Saving Money with Stacy Johnson.