I am of two minds about "cartograms", which are world maps in which the area of each country is made proportional to some measurement such as population, wealth, consumption and so on. I have liked them since young and they typically make spectacular effects but then it's distortion wilfully introduced.
Perhaps the saving grace is that there exists such extreme disparity in our world. Because of these vast differences, the distortion does not distract us from perceiving the meaning of these maps.
Thanks to Eric C. for alerting me to this set of cartograms, including this one on military spending. I'm surprised by the size of Europe as compared to the former Soviet Union.