Friday, October 10, 2008

Understatement of the Decade! Millinium?

President Bush addressed the nation this morning. He had a lot to say about what they've done to stabilize the market. He listed actions taken, policies changed and, of course, the bail out. You know what he said about the bail out?

President Bush said, "$700,000,000,000 is a significant amount of money."

I don't think most people truly understand what $700 billion dollars is. They have significant challenges understanding what a million dollars is, which is significantly less than a billion. How high can you count? I can count as high as I think I want to. When I get tired of counting, I stop. You know what. I've never counted to a million. I don't think many people have. You know why? It is a very high number. A billion is one thousand times greater than a million. The bail out is seven hundred thousand times a million. Would you consider saying that seven hundred thousand times a million is a significant amount to be an understatement?

Although he never actually said it on his PBS television show, the term "Billions and Billions of stars" was attributed to Carl Sagan. Estimates put the number of stars to be around one hundred billion. Yep, estimated number of stars: 10^11. Only one hundred billion. A number so outrageous people could not imagine what it meant.

A couple weeks ago Astronomical numbers were eclipsed by Economical numbers by a significant amount.
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