What follows is a piece that I am plagiarizing in it’s entirety. It says more, much more succinctly than I can. So here goes…. and thank you to PageTutor.com for your brilliant work.


What does one TRILLION dollars look like?

All this talk about “stimulus packages” and “bailouts”…
A billion dollars…
A hundred billion dollars…
Eight hundred billion dollars…
One TRILLION dollars…

What does that look like? I mean, these various numbers are tossed around like so many doggie treats, so I thought I’d take Google Sketchup out for a test drive and try to get a sense of what exactly a trillion dollars looks like.

We’ll start with a $100 dollar bill. Currently the largest U.S. denomination in general circulation. Most everyone has seen them, slightly fewer have owned them. Guaranteed to make friends wherever they go.

One hundred dollars

A packet of one hundred $100 bills is less than 1/2″ thick and contains $10,000. Fits in your pocket easily and is more than enough for week or two of shamefully decadent fun.

Ten thousand dollars

Believe it or not, this next little pile is $1 million dollars (100 packets of $10,000). You could stuff that into a grocery bag and walk around with it.

One million dollars

While a measly $1 million looked a little unimpressive, $100 million is a little more respectable. It fits neatly on a standard pallet…

One hundred million dollars

And $1 BILLION dollars… now we’re really getting somewhere…

One billion dollars

Next we’ll look at ONE TRILLION dollars. This is that number we’ve been hearing so much about. What is a trillion dollars? Well, it’s a million million. It’s a thousand billion. It’s a one followed by 12 zeros.

You ready for this?
It’s pretty surprising.

Ladies and gentlemen… I give you $1 trillion dollars…

One trillion dollars

(Oh, did you notice those pallets are double stacked!)

So the next time you hear someone toss around the phrase “trillion dollars”… that’s what they’re talking about.

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