The economy explained

October 8th, 2008

So if you’re like me, you’ve only recently become interested in economics – but that interest is no less intense for all its novelty. However, if you’re like me, your head also starts spinning anytime you encounter numbers in any form or words that sound even vaguely finance- or business-related. You desperately want to feel smart and informed and thus responsible and patriotic, but your talents lie in syntactical gymnastics and wordplay rather than in anything that feels currently useful. What to do?

Enter This American Life, one of my all-time favorite shows of any genre. TAL has produced two episodes that explain the housing crisis and its relationship to the current Wall Street tornadoes (and to the imminent financial ruin that we hear awaits us all). To hear them, check out the following:

The Giant Pool of Money

Another Frightening Show About the Economy

Enjoy…


2 Responses to “The economy explained”

  1. Kelly on October 9, 2008 3:02 pm

    I loved these. I actually had Jason listen to the Giant Pool of Money several weeks ago because he actually DOES know a lot about the economy and I wanted his opinion on the show. He’s also a fiscal conservative, and I didn’t think that this particular episode was very bleeding heart, but I wanted his take. He said it was a very fair look at what really happened.

    Which, when you think about what is said in the show, is kind of scary.

  2. Joanne on October 10, 2008 2:41 pm

    Good links Sylvia! Yes, I think these represent a fair view. Throughout this whole thing I have not been too overly concerned. Informed, yes. Worried, no. Maybe I should be? It’s manifesting itself in a new way (housing market) but the boil-down is that this is a fairly predictable economic pattern for pre-election times.
    We went through something similar to this (worse actually…we were definitively in a recession) when Clinton was on his way out and Bush Jr. was on his way in. We’re not quite at recession yet (economists have not slapped the official “recession” stamp on yet – they’re still deliberating). So, I think once the election is over with, and one of the two new-bees is finally sworn into office, either way it will look up.
    Great job for keeping on top of it!

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