The 2009 budget proposed this week by President Bush weighs in at 3.1 trillion dollars. But just how big is a trillion, anyway?
One trillion is 1,000,000,000,000 -- 10 to the 12th power, or a thousand thousand thousand thousand. To put things in perspective, current estimates put the number of stars in the Milky Way as somewhere between 100 and 400 billion. The U.S. population is slightly over 303 million, and the world population is around 6.6 billion.
One trillion dollars would be enough to buy about a thousand boxes of Girl Scout cookies for every person in the United States. A trillion barrels of oil would (at current consumption levels) fuel the world for about 33 years. We'll talk about other ways to visualize the number 'one trillion.' Is it possible for the human mind to really comprehend?
Produced by Charles Bergquist, Director and Contributing Producer