America. The land of opportunities. Hundreds and thousands of people flock to the American shores every year to get a taste of The American Dream. And why shouldn’t they? This great land has something for everyone. So, on its 240th anniversary as an independent nation, it’s only fair we see what makes America the superpower that it has always been.
Happy 4th of July, people and today, at How Big Are They, we will find the answer to a very interesting question: How Big Is America?
It is easy to underestimate, in terms of the actual size, just how big America is. It may not be the largest country in the world (which is Russia by a mile… or a few million miles) and it may not even be the second largest but still, it is absolutely huge. How big, you wonder?
For starters, it is a massive 40 times bigger than the whole of United Kingdom. Yep, that’s right, 40 times! In fact, it is more than FIVE times the size of Germany, Spain, France and Italy put together. As a matter of fact, the United States (3,796,742 square miles) is only slightly smaller than the whole of Europe (3,930,000 square miles)! If you are still having doubts, take this: America can fit the total area of huge countries like India, South Africa, and Mexico within itself and still have room to accommodate another India.
Let alone the entire country, the city of California is bigger than countries like Japan and New Zealand. Texas is bigger than France and Alaska, the biggest state of the United States, is bigger than all but 17 countries. In fact, you can fit the entire world population in Texas and still have room for more!
Speaking of American states, not only are they big in terms of size, they are also big in terms of their economy. For instance, New York’s GDP is as much as the total GDP of Canada. What’s interesting is that New York requires only half the number of workers compared to Canada to match its economy. Talk about efficiency! This is further highlighted by the fact that Texas and Brazil have comparable economies yet Brazil needed 80 million more workers to get there.
Now, Russia might be the largest country in the world but when it comes to money, it trails American states like Texas, New York, and California. Speaking of California, it is the SIXTH largest economy in the world, ahead of countries like France and India. Oh and yes, much like its relatives, California scores high on efficiency too. I say this because France (25 million workers) required almost 32% more workers than California (19 million) to achieve the same economic output.
Even the mega-rich nations like Saudi Arabia ($653 billion) has a GDP less than American states like Pennsylvania ($689 billion) and Illinois ($775 billion).
To sum it up, California, Texas and New York are the 6th, 10th and 11th largest economies in the world respectively. No wonder the United States of America is the biggest is the world!
And no wonder America is home to some of the biggest brands in the world. Actually, not some but most of the biggest brands in the world. So here’s a question:
Apple, Google, Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Facebook, IBM, Disney, McDonalds and General Electric. What do these brands have in common? Actually, there are two things. Number 1, they are 9 of the 10 biggest brands in the world. And number 2, they are all American! In fact, the only non-American brand in this list is Toyota, which is Japanese. Teach us your ways, Japan!
And while we are on the topic of top 10s, 8 of the 10 richest people in the world are also Americans. Living the American Dream, aren’t they?
But, as they say, the bigger they are, the harder they fall. Well, this might not be true for the United States at least. One of the biggest reasons for this is their incredible military strength. With more than 3.2 million personnel, the US Armed Forces are not only the biggest armed forces in the world, they are also the biggest employer in the world. People’s Liberation Army of China is way behind with more than 2.3 million people.
If the US Armed Forces created their own city, it’d be the 10th largest in the United States in terms of population.
Having a military as big as this requires a lot of funds. And the US government never fails at providing such funds to its defense units. The total budget for the US Armed Forces in 2016 is estimated to be around $585 billion. That’s 25 times more than the total defense budget of Australia.
But to really put it into perspective, this allocation of funds is as much as the total defense budget of countries like China ($145.8 B), Saudi Arabia ($81.8 B), United Kingdom ($56.2 B), India ($51.2 B), France ($46.8 B) Russia ($42.8 B), Japan ($41.4 B), Germany ($36.6 B), South Korea ($33.4 B), and Brazil ($24.2 B) combined. These are also the next 11 countries with the highest military budgets in the entire world.
With such a huge and dangerous military, you would think that the United States is a huge threat to the world. While I will leave that for you to decide, there is no denying that America also leads the line as the most helpful nation in the world.
Data from the Global Humanitarian Assistance Organization shows that the United States is by far the biggest donor in the world. In 2014, the US donated more than $4.7 billion to other nations in need. The next closest was the United Kingdom at “just” $1.8 billion.
In fact, US donated more money to humanitarian causes than the UK ($1.8 B), Germany ($1.2 B), Sweden ($785 M) and Canada ($747 M) combined! Safe to say, they are putting their money, or at least a good part of it, to a very good cause.
I always knew America is one of the biggest nations in the world but I never imagined it to be as big as it is. And that’s when we didn’t even touch aspects like its travel industry, sports or media either. This is incredible really!
If you’re an American, what is it about the United States that makes you feel proud about being an American? If you’re not an American, tell me where you come from in the comments section below and I will tell you one fact about your country that’ll make you proud!
Be sure to share this with your friends and show them just how big the land of opportunities really is!
As always, thank you for reading and I will catch you in the next one!
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