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Just Too Damned Big

John W. Pinkerton


Folks, things are just too damned big in the United States.

Every time we drive into Houston, I am struck by the size and multitude of buildings.  I don't know how many buildings are within the confines of Houston, but there are almost too many to count…too many to count.

When we drive through more rural areas, I have the feeling I understand what is going on.  I can count the total number of buildings in a few moments.  These communities are in the range which can easily be comprehended by regular humans.

In 1930 the US government spent 3.3 billion dollars.  In 1945 we peaked for a while at 92.7 billion. In 2022 it looks as though we spent about 6011 billion.

We had some difficulty in 1930 wrapping our heads around 3.3 billion dollars. 

Can you picture in your little mind a billion anything?  Nope.  How about a million?  Nope.  I think when we imagine numbers below a million we begin to get some kind of an understanding although it's still fuzzy.

Personally I can imagine what a thousand little bunnies might look like or a thousand bottles of beer or a thousand birds on an electrical wire.  Well, the truth is that I truly can see the first hundred, but beyond that the bunnies and beers go in boxes of 100.

So…in other words, we're living in a governmental budgetary world which we cannot possibly understand on a human level. 

It seems to me that we should strive to make our federal budget resemble our small towns rather than Gotham.