Monday, September 29, 2008

How much is $700 billion?

The House is scheduled to vote on the $700 billion bailout today. We've been hearing various reports and opinions for nearly a week, so by now you've formed your own opinion. But have you given thought to just how much money this is? Well some bloggers and news media have and here's what they found:

techPresident provides a long list of dollar comparisons such as:
--It is nine times the amount spent on education in 2007.
--It could pay for 2,000 McDonalds apple pies for every single American.
--It is more than $100 for every person in the world. (According to the world population clock current world population is 6,726,763,400.)

USA Today ran a graphic last week that showed a visual comparison. Here are some of the stats without the graphic:

Past Bailouts (adjusted to 2008 dollars):
1975 New York City = $9.4 billion
1989 Savings & Loan = $294 billion
2001 Airline Industry = $19 billion

2009 Government budget requests
Education = $59.2 billion
Social Security = $644 billion

Iraq War to date = $644 billion

And finally, Grey Matters has fun with pennies and reminds us that the figure is equal to 70 trillion pennies, but getting that many pennies would be impossible since the U.S. has mints have only put out an estimated 300 billion pennies since 1787. Which makes me wonder about another topic I read recently about the issue of paying for stuff with change. Maybe the Gov should give the bailout in the form of change, just on principle to show that no one is really happy about the whole thing. Hmmm.

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