Lets face it $700 billion dollars is a lot of money. Even though Congress was unsuccessful passing the bailout package on Monday of this week, they will continue to try to compromise a somewhat similar plan until an agreement is reached. There is just too much pressure for there not to be a bailout at this point in the game unfortunately.
I heard someone yesterday say it best . . . it’s like when you were talking about a lot of money when you were a child. Anything over a million was like a zillion to a little kid. Now, billion has been pervasive in our lexicon for decades, and a trillion will be just another normal number to our kids and grandkids. What number will my little four year old use to express a huge number? Below is an interesting list of some items that $700 billion could be used for instead of a bailout.
- One 5+ year war in a foreign country – Total cost of war in Iraq so far
- Over $5,000 for every American taxpayer – You thought that your $1,800 stimulus check was awesome! How about a $5,000 check?
- Pay off all of American’s student loan debt – Americans currently have approximately $550 billion in outstanding student loans.
- America could rebuild over 1,700 of our ailing bridges
- The Apollo space program in 1969 cost the government $164 billion in today’s dollar. Can $700 billion put a man on Mars? I bet it could.
- In the 1930s, Roosevelt’s New Deal purchased 8,000 parks, 40,000 new public buildings, and 72,000 schools for the equivalent of $312 billion today.
- You could buy 7 million Porsche 911 Carreras or 11.6 million brand new 2009 H2 Hummers.
- The government could purchase 3.3 million homes outright. The median home listing price in America is approximately $212,000.
- Or the government could purchase each one of the approximate 2.5 million homes in America that are currently in some state of foreclosure for an average of $280,000 each.
$700 billion is more than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the following countries:
- Denmark ($314 billion)
- Norway ($381)
- Austria ($377)
- Argentina ($262)
- Venezuela ($228)
GDP is the standard measure of the size of the economy. It is the total production of goods and services of a country. The list above is just a small sample of the countries with GDPs under $700 billion. Out of the 180 countries listed by the World Bank, only 16 had GDPs over the magic number $700 billion.
Sources: Associated Press, the World Bank, Yahoo Autos, AARP, Market Watch, Mortgage Banker’s Association, and Trulia