Time appears to be running out on President Obama's attempts to raise the US debt ceiling with experts now working round the clock to find a solution.
"There are very few cranes available and we are hauling the cement in from long distances," said one veteran construction worker who was involved in previous attempts to put a floor under the dollar. "These last three years have been spent underpinning the whole economic recovery. We have very few steel girders left. Moving a debt ceiling is a much bigger job altogether."
However, the US labour force is well known for its willingness to move in search of new jobs and the number of migrant workers has sky-rocketed recently as high commodity prices have encouraged workers to break up their homes and sell the pieces on for scrap.
"On the one hand, there seems to be a feeling of optimism that the worst may be over," said one economist. "On the other hand, there seem to be three fingers missing due to an incident with a rock hammer."
Lawmakers appear to be considering all options to solve the current crisis.
"We are looking at all possible solutions," said one congressman. "Other providers believe they can raise the ceiling in just three days. As long as we pay cash in hand and give them four tonnes of biscuits each."
Whatever the outcome, negotiations are likely to go down to the wire. It's believed to be high tensile steel, six millimetres in diameter and arriving in Washington any time now.