National Debt Clock

national debt clock

The National Debt Clock was erected in New York City’s Times Square in 1989, when the national debt was just $2.7 trillion.  In 2004, the National Debt Clock was moved from its original location on 42nd Street to its current location on Sixth Avenue (Avenue of the Americas), about a block away.

The National Debt Clock keeps a running total of the total federal government debt, and also calculates each American family’s share of the national debt.  The National Debt Clock was the brainchild of New York real estate developer Seymour Durst, who wanted to highlight the rising national debt.  As mentioned above, when the National Debt Clock was first installed in 1989, the total federal government debt was only $2.7 trillion.  That seemed like an enormous amount of government debt at the time, but today’s national debt is almost 5 times that much.

As the national debt approached $10 trillion in 2008, it became obvious that the National Debt Clock didn’t have enough digits to accommodate a national debt of $10 trillion or more, so there was concern that the National Debt Clock would have to be taken out of service.  But when the national debt reached $10 trillion, the digital dollar sign on the National Debt Clock was changed to a “1″, and a new “manual” dollar sign was pasted in front of the “1″, thus allowing the National Debt Clock to keep functioning.

Today we are running annual federal budget deficits in excess of $1 trillion, which means that our national debt is growing by more than a trillion dollars each year.  Projections by the White House Office of Management and Budget show that the national debt will increase to over $16 trillion by the end of President Obama’s first term.  This is a level of federal government debt that was simply unthinkable when the National Debt Clock was placed in service in 1989.  By the year 2020, the national debt is projected to be well over $25 trillion.

These levels of federal government debt are simply unsustainable, and if we don’t take immediate action to change course, America is headed for an economic collapse of unthinkable proportions.  Do your part by letting your U.S. Congressman and Senators know that you are opposed to these reckless budget deficits and government debt.

Thank you for visiting this site and reading this article on the National Debt Clock.  Your interest in the national debt and related topics is very much appreciated, and you are invited to read other articles on this site.