I used to have to study astronomy to hear a number like 12,000,000,000,000.
This morning I heard it from guy with a cardboard sign in the street.
On my way into my mid-town Manhattan office this morning, I found this tattered Uncle Sam, asking passersby for $1 trillion at a time to help pay off the national debt.
What better place for this high-level panhandling than the Avenue of Americas?
The guy in the clown suit was Justin Wilson, a 29-year-old analyst with the Employment Policies Institute in Washington D.C. He was one of 17 “homeless Uncle Sams” that the organization stationed across New York City as part of a multimillion-dollar campain that says, gee, $12 trillion is a lot of money. (For more details on this position see DefeatTheDebt.com)
Wilson said most passersby in New York pay him no mind. “It’s New York,” he said.
In Washington D.C., where he’s done the same street theatrics, he gets a different response.
“In D.C., people would say ‘Maybe tomorrow.’ … That’s what they’ve been saying about the debt for a long time.”