Here is a good place to start thinking about economics, a running clock of the population of the world: http://www.ibiblio.org/lunarbin/worldpop. The world population just surpassed 6 billion. Whenever someone mentions a budget or dollar figure in the billions of dollars, do some quick math and divide the number by 6 to come up with approximately how much money that represents for each person on earth. Bill Gates is said to be worth about $50 billion, so just to put that in perspective it represents about $8 per person.
Here is a US census population clock: http://www.census.gov/cgi-bin/popclock. The US population is approaching 300 million, again do some quick math and it represents about $3 per person for every billion dollars, so old Bill could give us each about $150. Also, according to this clock the net population growth in the US is one person every 10 seconds, or 8640 per day. Therefore we should reach a population of 300 million in approximately 677 days, or around July 8, 2006.
Here's a fun one: http://www.kowaldesign.com/budget/comments.html. Explore the US budget, make up your own!
There are some great facts here, they are not all economic facts, but they are helpful and help keep things in perspective: http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/ brought to you by none other than the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States of America!
Hmmm, looks like some good data here, not sure what to make of it, but it comes from the World Bank: http://www.worldbank.org/data/countrydata/countrydata.html
Now this is pretty interesting, shows where the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and such are putting their money: http://www.brainyatlas.com/fields/2064.html Note that this data is prefaced with the comment, "This entry, which is subject to major problems of definition and statistical coverage..."
From the Economist: http://www.economist.com/countries/USA/profile.cfm?folder=Profile%2DEconomic%20Data Public debt 62% of GDP, hmmm.
Good list of economic resources on the web: http://www.library.ewu.edu/textonly/economicstats.html
Another good list of economic resources on the web: http://lib.mansfield.edu/ecostats.html
This one's great, from the Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.econdata.net/
Boy there are numbers all over the place, another good one: http://www.bea.doc.gov/
If ya really want to OD, try this: http://www.fedstats.gov/
Nice name, Economagic, http://www.economagic.com/
Regional data: http://www.econdata.net/
Is any of this true? http://www.cdharris.net/text/taxcuts.html
Yikes: It has been calculated that if Man were to dig the Grand Canyon on his own, using conventional excavation equipment and methods, the cost of the project (at today's prices) would exceed the combined gross national product of every nation on Earth accumulated from the beginning of recorded history. Big job. Kind of makes killing the national debt look like weenie work.http://www.h2oustonswims.org/articles/moving_mountains.html
There may be more to economics than just money, how about the quality of life! Here is a good place to start to see how the quliaty of life measures up: http://www.calvert-henderson.com/about.htm
Another QOL site: http://www.cgu.edu/qlrc/about.htm This is the (Peter) Drucker Graduate School of Management at Claremont University.
Nice ranking of QOL by city: http://www.mercerhr.com/pressrelease/details.jhtml/dynamic/idContent/1128760
The Democratic Leadership Council on the quality of life: http://www.ndol.org/ndol_ka.cfm?kaid=141
May be a little much but this one addresses inequality of economic distribution: http://www.nber.org/papers/w9765
Another look at how QOL numbers are interpreted: http://www.brown.edu/Administration/News_Bureau/1996-97/96-009i.html
This quality of life thing is sort of like the weather, we are spending a lot of time measuring it, but nobody is doing anything about it: http://www.globalideasbank.org/site/bank/idea.php?ideaId=2101
The genuine progress indicator: http://www.dieoff.com/page11.htm
Hazel Henderson's site: http://www.hazelhenderson.com/Calvert%20Press%20Briefing%20tlk%20pnts.htm
It's not how much you make, it's how much you keep, shop smart! Phone plan comparison site: http://www.myrateplan.com
Hmmm, a shopping portal: http://www.pricingcentral.com/index.html
If you look on the navigation bar of this website, you will see a button on learning; here is a site that focuses on the economics of learning/education: http://www.worldbank.org/education/economicsed/
CIA Factbook comparison site http://www.nationmaster.com/
What is the economist.com (and Economist Magazine) all about, who are these people? Turns out they are free trade, free market, centerist, socially somewhat liberal. http://www.economist.com/help/DisplayHelp.cfm?folder=663377#About_The_Economist