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Doing the math: $1.47 trillion is worth...


Beach in Bahamas: $1.47 trillion is worth 200 times Bahamas' GDP. (Norwegian Cruise Line)

1.5 times the 10-year cost of the Obama administration's health-care overhaul
18 times Goldman Sachs' market capitalization as of Friday
28 times Bill Gates' net worth
200 times Bahamas' GDP
480 times Fiji's GDP
1,917 times Seychelles' GDP
2,390 times Grenada's GDP
4,027 Powerball jackpots, based on the largest in history of $365 million on February 18, 2006
8,909 Boeing 789 Dreamliners
10,500 Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth fighters
11,988 California state budgets based on the 2010-11 estimate
14,848 Contracts for Lebron James based on the maximum payout for his joining the Miami Heat
8,002,177 American homes based on the median sales price of $183,700
36,750,000 2011 Chevy Volt electric cars at the estimated price of $40,000
43,625,356 years of tuition at Harvard
133,043,714 First class tickets from Washington to the Maldives and back
4,027,397,260 Sponsorships to provide a child in need a year's worth of food, clean water, education and medicine at $1/day
7,386,934,673 Apple iPhone4s (16MB)
8,400,000,000 Lady Gaga concert tickets at face value
402,739,726,027 Tall Starbucks Chocolate Frappuccinos
1,960,000,000,000 Dead-tree editions of The Washington Post

See photo gallery on other ways of calculating $1.47 trillion.

By Ariana Eunjung Cha  |  July 23, 2010; 6:46 PM ET
 
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Next: Week ahead: Lots of economic data out this week, including Q2 GDP

Comments

At age 70 I don't really care how big the federal deficit gets. I won't have to pay any of it. Tomorrow I attend the wedding of one of my grandsons and I will tell him that he needn't worry about the federal debt either. The US can simply default on its debt and file bankruptcy. Let all those who hold U.S. securities take the loss. The Chinese would lose about a trillion dollars but thats what they get for loaning money to a "deadbeat". nation. What are they going to do- repossess one of our aircraft carriers?

Posted by: jimeglrd8 | July 23, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Or 1 war in Iraq.

Posted by: fudador | July 23, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

You want to see crystal clear what utter complete LYING lunatics Republicans, Republlicrtas and the right-wing Media in US are, consider the fact that whenever one talks about making an investment in American people & cities, that is have Universal nationalized health care, Universal education, etc. Republicans cry "Deficits Deficits Deficits..." in opposing such plans, which is utter complete non-sense since Republicans are the KEY behind the massive US deficits, due to too much spending on the wrong things such as unnecessary Wars and a Gargantuan Military and not spending more on the right things which would create high paying Jobs and thus more Tax revenues and thus further reduce the deficits, such as renewable energy, smart grid, high speed trains, etc. etc. which the Germans, Chinese, Japanese, etc. are investing in as a result of which they have MUCH LOWER (real) unemployment rates and lower deficits than US, along with the fact that they also do not waste Trillions of Dollars of their money on unnecessary Wars and a Gargantuan Military.

To be exact:


IF Republicans, Republicrats and the US (right-wing LYING) Media actually gave a SQUAT about the deficits, THEN they would be pushing for ending the Bush Tax cut for the top 2% of the Wealthiest Americans whom have 90%
of the wealth of the country, for this would cut the deficits by about $1Trillion per year. To be exact we are talking about bringing the Taxes for this 2% to what they were during the Clinton area, you know when the country had a surplus rather than a Deficit. Instead not are the Republicans lunatics not pushing for ending the Bush area Tax cuts for the Top 2%, they even want it extended or made permanent.

IF Republicans, Republicrats and the US (right-wing LYING) Media actually gave a SQUAT about the deficits, if Republicans gave a SQUAT about reducing the amount of the money that the US Government has to borrow to operate THEN they
would be for reducing the US Military budget, since it is Gargantuan beyond measure.

More here:
http://RealNewsPost.com?n=ThinkDeep.38199

Posted by: Thinkdeeper | July 23, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

"The US can simply default on its debt and file bankruptcy."

You can't be serious. The consequences of the U.S. defaulting on our debt would be beyond belief. We aren't some small inconsequential "Banana" Republic, you know.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

It's always lovely how partisans try to pin the blame on one party. A couple things to keep in mind:

-The U.S. has not had a balanced budget since 1957. Yes, we didn't have a surplus.

-Both parties and a majority of the American people supported invading Iraq.

-Both parties voted for Bush era tax cuts.

-Both parties(including the Clinton Administration)supported giving funds to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as well as loosening financial regulations.

It's everyone's fault.

Posted by: moebius22 | July 23, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

FOR GOD'S SAKE NOBODY TELL OBOOBMA WHAT COMES AFTER A TRILLION

Posted by: thebump | July 23, 2010 8:19 PM | Report abuse

AND IF SHARED EQUALLY AMONG THE RESIDENTS OF THE US?

More to the point would be to know how much money each man, woman, and child in the country would receive if that money were equally distributed among the population of the United States.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Finally a newspaper that uses a calculator!

Posted by: tonyjm | July 23, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Well, it would be nice if the newspaper could use a calculator, or read a chart: the figure for the California state budget is off by a factor of 1,000. See http://www.ebudget.ca.gov/pdf/BudgetSummary/SummaryCharts.pdf

Posted by: DecFan | July 23, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

$1.47 trillion is worth--Nothing but paper.

Our currency used to be backed by silver and gold.

Now it's “backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government.” The trouble is that no one has much faith in the US government since Obama, Reid, & Pelosi took over.

Posted by: CrystalG | July 23, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

In all my 69 years I have never been so concerned about the fiscal health of the US. It was a big deal in 1960 when Eisenhower's budget hit $100 billion. And in 1964 the GDP was $415 billion.

And again I find that so many people here don't know the facts. According to the IRS, the top 1% of taxpayers account for 41% of the total income tax revenue; the bottom 50% account for 1%. Even if you taxed that top 1% at a 100% rate the extra revenue would finance just one day of Federal expenditures. Then what?

As for the DoD budget it's at its lowest percentage ever of the total budget.

Posted by: Concerned | July 23, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

The prospect of ONE Lady Gaga concert is terrifying. 8.4 billion of them?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Wow very interesting to see what you could get with that much money hah. http://www.keenshoeswomen.net/

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

We've got Bernanke and his printing machine. Who worries?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

This is what bammy has done to us.

Thank you, commies.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

“A trillion here, a trillion there, and before long you’re talking about real money.” Quote, slightly updated, Senator Everett McKinley Dirksen (R-IL)

Posted by: chuck8 | July 23, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

$1.47 trillion dollars? Thanks Obama! Thanks for f---ing over future generations for decades to come!

Posted by: Anonymous | July 23, 2010 10:18 PM | Report abuse

The Republicans have a solution:

1. Cut taxes for the rich.

2. Ignore the resulting deficits.

3. Spend like drunken sailors.

4. Blame the Democrats when the economy collapses.

Posted by: Miss_Fedelm | July 23, 2010 10:32 PM | Report abuse

As a devout Republican, I am thrilled by this news. The idiot electorate is about to restore to power the very GOP responsible for creating this deficit! The genius of our Party is that we know it is impossible to underestimate the intelligence of the American populace. Once we have seized control of the government, we can finally destroy the social safety net under the guise of fiscal conservatism and go back to serving the interests of our true constituents, the top 1/10th of 1 percent who rightfully own America, by making permanent the Bush/Cheney tax cuts and abolishing the estate (death) and capital gains taxes under the guise of stimulating economic growth. The Republican future is getting brighter by the day.

Posted by: senbilboredux | July 23, 2010 10:40 PM | Report abuse

In the year 2000, there was an on budget surplus of $86.4 billion dollars and projected budget surpluses for years to come...
The Republican push and Bush backed tax cuts added about $1.7 trillion in deficits between 2001 and 2008 (politifact)..

The Republicans want to make those tax cuts permanent and add more cuts...The CBO found those cut would increase the Federal deficit by $3.4 trillion dollars from 2001 to 2020 (politifact)..

Tax receipts are down, spending has increased to stimulate the economy, many economist said the spending was necessary to prevent our economy from falling into depression, unemployment is not expected to drop below 8% until late 2012..and we could still find ourselves in a double dip recession...while Congress leaves millions of our unemployed without help while they play a political game...

We do need to reduce our budget deficits, but not now..not until our economy has recovered so that we don't find ourselves in a double dip recession like we did during what is called the Great Depression.

Posted by: barbee2 | July 24, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Let's put this 1.47 trillion in proper context though. It's nothing compared to Ronald Reagan's 2.8 trillion and that's still less than GW Bush's 1.48 trillion.

In fact, the Democratic presidents did far better than the Republicans on this score going back to Carter:

National debt increase under Jimmy Carter: 42%
National debt increase under R. Reagan: 189%
National debt increase under HR Bush: 55%
National debt increase under Bill Clinton: 36%
National debt increase under GW Bush 89%

If the GOP wants to run on this, by all means, be my guest.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 24, 2010 1:01 AM | Report abuse

Let's put this 1.47 trillion in proper context though. It's nothing compared to Ronald Reagan's 2.8 trillion and that's still less than GW Bush's 1.48 trillion.

In fact, the Democratic presidents did far better than the Republicans on this score going back to Carter:

National debt increase under Jimmy Carter: 42%
National debt increase under R. Reagan: 189%
National debt increase under HR Bush: 55%
National debt increase under Bill Clinton: 36%
National debt increase under GW Bush 89%

If the GOP wants to run on this, by all means, be my guest.

Posted by: abigsam | July 24, 2010 1:02 AM | Report abuse

According to the Bureau of Public Debt, the US has been running a structural deficit for the last ten years, not just the last year. Here is a chart of the total amount of federal debt outstanding at the end of each federal fiscal year for the last ten years:

09/30/2009 $ 11,909,829,003,511.75
09/30/2008 $ 10,024,724,896,912.49
09/30/2007 $ 9,007,653,372,262.48
09/30/2006 $ 8,506,973,899,215.23
09/30/2005 $ 7,932,709,661,723.50
09/30/2004 $ 7,379,052,696,330.32
09/30/2003 $ 6,783,231,062,743.62
09/30/2002 $ 6,228,235,965,597.16
09/30/2001 $ 5,807,463,412,200.06
09/30/2000 $ 5,674,178,209,886.86

So is this the Democrat's deficit??? Is Obama's 1.47 trillion really that bad compared to GW Bush's 1.48 trillion or Ronald Reagan's 2.8 trillion???

Do the Republicans REALLY want to run on their fiscal discipline records????

Posted by: abigsam | July 24, 2010 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Does anybody think that Obama wanted to spend money on two wars, a recovery act, bailout, ect? Those were things he had to spend money on because of the straits the country was in at the time. Those were addressing problems he inherited.

What he wanted to spend money on was better education, healthcare, reduction in dependance on fosile fuels, better science, cutting edge technology. You know, nation building, only here at home.

Facing such a massive crisis in which Recovery acts, stimulous, and the like added in to the mix, coming in at 1.47 trillion, less than what Bush spent, AND getting healthcare and financial reform passed is an absolute feat.

I hope the Democrats and our President can convey this in the weeks and months ahead.

Posted by: abigsam | July 24, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse


When you put it that way it ain't squat.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 24, 2010 4:26 AM | Report abuse

18 times Goldman Sachs' market capitalization as of Friday.
28 times Bill Gates' net worth.
When you put it that way it ain't squat.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 24, 2010 4:28 AM | Report abuse

I think the most telling figure is that 41 cents of every dollar the government spends is being borrowed.

How long could you put 41% of all your personal expenses on a credit card without paying it off before you hit financial disaster?

Posted by: afpre42 | July 24, 2010 7:59 AM | Report abuse

You all having fun with the partisan blame game? Well BOTH parties are to blame. But laying blame isn't going to solve the impending financial crisis which if left unchecked will end with the US's fall from its lead position in the world and a substantial decline in standards of living in the US.

Posted by: afpre42 | July 24, 2010 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Well,well,well,thanks WP for telling the truth with the facts. Unfortunately, too many of those commenting can't handle the truth nor the facts. All of the fiscal policy truths are coming home to roost and the Chicken little minds who bother to read the truths are running scared out of sheer willful ignorance. Yes, Dorothy, there is a deficit in both funds and intellect, one is measurable and the other infinite. Please consider the fiscal deficit as potential investment and the intellectual deficit in need of greater investment, with an interest rate greater than what Mel Gibson said, Lady Gaga wore or what Sis Sarah refudiates. Welcome to the first public Economic class of the rest of your lives, and you will need a calculator. Go Dem's and Barack

Posted by: Michael A. | July 24, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

How about this measure: Last time I looked it up there were about 309,000,000 people and 109,000,000 households in the US. 1.47 trillion comes to about $13,486 for each household. That's about half of consumer debt (which includes cars but not mortgages).

Posted by: Anonymous | July 24, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

It is simpler than that, it is just more than we can afford!

Posted by: Anonymous | July 24, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Ff

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

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