We feel the need to make a few comments on the $700 billion subsidy that has been the big financial news in the US last month.

We have a real hard time trying to get our heads around that number, 700 billion. It sure seems like a lot of zeros.

Global beer production last year was reported to be 1.8 billion hectolitres (a hectolitre being 100 litres). So, in 2007, all of the world’s brewers produced 180 billion litres of beer. It sure makes 700 billion seem like a big number.

Now, a bottle of beer is about 23 centimetres tall. So, if you took 700 billion beer bottles and stacked them, one on top of the other, you would have a tower 161 million kilometres tall. This would take you from the Earth to the Sun with about 10 million kilometres to spare.

If you had 700 billion bottles of beer, you would have enough beer so that every person in Canada could have almost 8,000 bottles.

Of course, we don’t want to include kids in that – Canada’s adult population is about 18 million people, so those adults could each have about 39,000 bottles.

If these adults were to be above the legal drinking age for 50 years, then that would be a lifetime supply of beer if you drank 15 beers per week, every week, for every one of those 50 years.

Sorry, no sick time allowed.

We are writing this on the morning that the US defeated this bill. Who knows where it will go from here.

We do know that there is a lot of talk about an upcoming credit crunch in Canada tied in with this whole affair. From our point of view, credit makes the business world go around.

Let’s say that you want to borrow some money to buy more equipment. If the equipment can be used to make a profit for the company, the company will try to borrow that money.

If your profits are 10 per cent of your revenue, then you spent $0.90 for each one of those dimes you made.

That $0.90 you spent to make $0.10 for yourself largely represents people. You hire your own people, but you also buy supplies from companies that hire their own people.

If the company cannot borrow, and does not have the cash lying around, then the good idea will not happen. So, the growth and employment that follows will not happen. None of that will be good.

We have done some growing of our own over the last few years, as have other Yukon companies. We would hate to see that grind to a halt.

This column is courtesy of the Yukon Brewing Company, an organization that believes all things are relative … to beer.