As you may have heard, last week the United States national debt broke the 16 trillion dollar mark. That, to put it lightly, is a lot of money. As I was thinking about that number, I realized that most people, including myself, have no real sense of just how much money that is. So I decided to look at some crazy things that that amount of money could do.
- At $256,300 a piece, you could buy all 62 million people living in the United Kingdom a brand new Lamborghini Gallardo.
- Donate enough money to the Charity Water project to theoretically give 800 billion people (114 times the world’s population) clean water.
- Give every single person in Virginia, Oregon, and Kentucky (approximately 16 million people) a million dollars.
- Buy every single share of every company on the New York Stock Exchange, and have nearly 2 trillion dollars left. (source)
- Buy the entire company of Walmart, which has a market capitalization of 247.1 billion dollars as of 9/10/2012, 64 times.
- Win 193,636 NBA titles. The total payroll for the 2012 NBA champions, the Miami Heat, was a cool $82,629,170. (source)
- If you stacked 16 trillion dollars worth of hundred dollar bills in a single stack, it would be 57,332,800 feet (or nearly 11,000 miles) high. That is a few thousand miles taller than the earth.
- Give 355 people 45 billion dollars, making them richer than Warren Buffett.
- Build the world’s tallest skyscraper, Burj Khalifa, 10,666 times.
- At its current price of $1731.80 per ounce, you could buy 577,433,883.8 pounds of gold. (According to Coin Week, the total amount of gold mined in the history of human civilization is only 316,000,000 pounds)
- At $3.50 a gallon of gas, you could drive a car getting 30 miles per gallon around the equator (24,901.55 miles) 5,507,402,436 times.
- If you printed out 16 trillion one dollar bills and put them end to end, they would make a chain 1,550,505,050 miles long. That is nearly long enough to go from the Sun to Uranus, or from the Sun to Earth more than 16 times.
- And lastly, with the US national debt, you could buy all (approximately) 7 billion people on this planet 2,285 McDonald’s dollar menu cheeseburgers. We’re all lovin’ it.
Well there you have it, a wide variety of things that the United States national debt could do if it were all put towards one thing. Could you imagine the possibilities if you combined the above (Like giving everyone on the planet clean water through Charity Water, and then a bunch of cheeseburgers)? The possibilities are endless, and it is definitely something to see what this money could do.
Disclaimer: All math for this post was done very late at night (I love when blog post inspiration hits me when I’m trying so very hard to fall asleep), and I do not guarantee its accuracy. The information above is accurate to my knowledge, but it is not guaranteed.