June 12, 2004
Lots of Zeroes Here
Check out the weird powers-of-two pattern in the top tier of GDP: the U.S. at 8 trillion, Japan at 4, Germany at 2, France (and more) at 1-ish.
This chart, from 2000, has General Motors as the largest corporation and Wal-Mart as number two, but that’s flipped in the intervening years.
I’m not sure how useful charts like these actually are. What exactly is this showing us? It’s not like this is money in the bank.
And I’m not so sure these figures map particularly well to power or anything else interesting. Wal-Mart is the world’s largest corporation, but I don’t think it’s the most powerful, influential, or important.