Today’s Improbable Math Exercise is about national security, whatever that is. The Newser web site reports:
A whopping 4.2 million people have access to classified government information, according to a new government report. That’s a far cry from the 2.4 million estimate the Government Accountability Office came up with just two years ago, and, the Washington Post points out, it’s just over a million shy of the total population of the greater Washington, DC, area.
We have bolded the numbers in that report. Your task, should you accept it, is to:
- estimate the yearly rate of increase in the number of U.S.A. security clearances; then
- look up the current population of the U.S.A.; then
- look up estimates of the rate of population growth
- Using your favorite calculation technique, estimate how soon the citizens of the U.S.A. will have all—every one of them—have security clearances