VAULT DWELLERS SERVED

Friday, October 10, 2008

The Debt Clock Runs Out of Digits

I sat on a bucket in 1989 across the street from the National Debt Clock and ate a bowl of Chili from Wendy's and watched for the entire day as they constructed it in pieces using a crane. I didn't know much about economics at the time but I gathered it represented something that was out of control.

It ran out of space to hold the figure. Nobody foresaw that in 1989. The man who paid to erect it was Seymour Durst, who I met when he visited the offices of Street News where I worked throughout 1990 in New York City. He was a nice man and very generous, providing the newspaper with free office space in the building. From my office window I could look out and see the debt clock lit up day and night, it's numbers always climbing upward in a mad countdown to doom. I knew it was something bad but at that time I didn't know what it all really represented.

Seymour Durst passed away in 1995. He never lived to see the day the clock would no longer even be capable of representing U.S. debt to the Federal Reserve.

How odd what humans can grow to accept as normal. Until the consequences arrive and you realize it was all anything but "normal."

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

SUBJECT: REQUEST FOR URGENT BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP

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YOURS FAITHFULLY MINISTER OF TREASURY PAULSON

Anonymous said...

America lives on credit. That in itself is a recipe for disaster when one day the credit runs out. It's not something most Americans seem to understand, or maybe they just don't want to. Too bad for them the credit just ran out.

Have a look at Iceland to see what the consequences are for making living on the dole the norm. They are now getting bailed out by the Russians. Don't think anyone is going to bail out the USA.

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