Wednesday, January 23, 2008


i'd read this years ago, but a friend of mine from college sent out this updated version with a politicized twist. i thought it was pretty thought provoking, even though some of the math is a little off. i've listed corrections and a couple other fun facts at the end.

the word "billion" is spouted out so often, its magnitude is lost. just some things to ponder...

A billion seconds ago it was 1959

A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive

A billion hours ago our ancestors were living in the Stone Age

A billion days ago no-one walked on the earth on two feet.

A billion dollars ago was only 8 hours and 20 minutes, at the rate our government is spending it.

While this thought is still fresh in our brain, let's take a look at New Orleans It's amazing what you can learn with some simple division...

Louisiana Senator, Mary Landrieu, is presently asking the Congress for $250 BILLION to rebuild New Orleans. Interesting number, what does it mean?

A. Well, if you are one of 484,674 residents of New Orleans (every man, woman, child), you each get $516,528
B. Or, if you have one of the 188,251 homes in New Orleans , your home gets $1,329,787.
C. Or, if you are a family of four, your family gets $2,066,012.Washington, D.C..

HELLO!!! ... Are all your calculators broken??

List of taxes

Accounts Receivable Tax,
Building Permit Tax,

CDL License Tax,

Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax
Fishing License Tax,

Food License Tax,

Fuel Permit Tax,

Gasoline Tax,

Hunting License Tax,

Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax,

IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax),

IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax),

Liquor Tax,

Luxury Tax,

Marriage License Tax,

Medicare Tax,

Property Tax,

Real Estate Tax,

Service Charge Taxes,

Social Security Tax,

Road Usage Tax,

Sales Taxes,

Recreational Vehicle Tax,

School Tax,

State Income Tax,

State Unemployment Tax,

Telephone Federal Excise Tax,

Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax,

Telephone Federal,
State and Local Surcharge Tax,

Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax,

Telephone Recurring & Non-recurring Charges Tax,

Telephone State & Local Tax,

Telephone Usage Charge Tax,

Utility Tax,

Vehicle License Registration Tax,

Vehicle Sales Tax,

Watercraft Registration Tax,

Well Permit Tax,

Workers Compensation Tax.

Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world. We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom could stay home and raise the kids.
CORRECTIONS: i guess that either these facts were calculated in 1990 or the mathematician forgot a remainder somewhere.
  • a billion seconds is a little over 31 years, which would be 1976.
  • a billion minutes ago would be the year 105 AD, a little after biblical times.
  • most interestingly, we spend a lot more money now, so a billion dollars would be spend by our government in almost a third of the time, about 2 hours and 45 minutes. we spent 2.8 trillion in 2007.
  • 2.8 trillion $1 bills, lain end to end, would circle the globe 1,000 times.
  • 4.5 billion years ago, there was a big bang.


J said...

To take the other side of this very large coin, one billion neurons makes up only 1/100 of a human brain. This reminds me of a quote that I've always liked..."If the human mind were simple enough to understand, we'd be too simple to understand it"

TYLER said...

i like that quote! there's a scene at the end of Amelie i always liked. there's an anonymous guy sitting on a bench reading a magazine as the narrator says he just learned that there's more connections in his brain than there are atoms in the universe. actually, it should have been "known stars" instead of "atoms", but thats still pretty amazing.