Trillions and Trillions

If the old saying were coined today, it would be “a few trillion here, and a few trillion there, and pretty soon we are talking about serious money.” Who knows what trillions mean anymore – is the U.S. a $15 trillion economy, or are dollars fluid, and benchmarks meaningless?

Deficits are now counted in trillions of dollars, joining quantities previously ascribed only to global reserves of major commodities, or the annual output of large nations. One trillion. A thousand billion. A million million. Debts and deficits are now routinely counted in trillions with a T. Will requiring counting and auditing CO2 emissions, then taxing and assessing fees on CO2 emissions – and auctioning permits to emit CO2 – become the mechanism for governments to address their exploding debts and deficits, now denominated in trillians, and will such policies best advance the interests of humanity and the earth?

Commodities, along with the value of economic output, or economic capacity, wax and wane in the flux of the global market. If you try to completely regulate all this capitalism, if you try to eliminate all the waxing and waning, you are very likely to create a political economy resembling either fascism or communism. Enforcing a regulatory scheme so comprehensive as to encompass literally all combustion, concerned not merely about clean burning but burning itself, cannot help but require such tyranny.

“A trillion here, and a trillion there, and pretty soon we are talking about serious money.” Is the output of the entire [...] Read More