Fri, 27 Feb 2009 22:14:43 +0000 – President Obama wants to spend $3.6 trillion next year. But does anybody really understand what that means?
The president's budget team has already broken down that figure in terms of tax revenue and spending allocations to the myriad agencies that compose the federal government.
Here are a few helpful examples, though, to help put so many trillions in a little perspective.
-- If you spent $1 million an hour, non-stop for 24 hours a day, you wouldn't run out of money for 411 years.
-- If you took 3.6 trillion one-dollar bills, and placed them end-to-end, that line of bills would reach from Capitol Hill to the sun and then back to Capitol Hill and then back to the sun -- and then almost all the way back to Capitol Hill again.
-- Or try this: 3.6 trillion seconds ago, our ancestors were using stone tools and Neanderthal men still roamed Europe.
University of Maryland economics Professor Peter Morici has a different way of looking at a $3.6 trillion federal budget:
"That's one out of every four dollars produced in the U.S. It's 25 percent of the GDP," he said.
And that doesn't even include the $700 billion in bank bailout money or the $410 billion spending bill under consideration on the Hill. That's another $1.1 trillion, which is also a ton of money -- actually that's roughly 1 million tons of money.
FOX News' Brian Wilson contributed to this report.
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