Thursday, October 2, 2008

Learn yourself somethin'

Are you wondering why the federal government is giving money to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac instead of paying off your mortgage?

Me too. Sounds like a win-win. Not that I have a mortgage. But they can cover my rent if they want. Or at least a new pair of Danskos and a coat.

But that's besides the point. If you don't understand the "mortgage crisis" (as I didn't), This American Life teamed up with NPR News to produce a sort of Very Brady Bankruptcy Special. Here's the synopsis from the This American Life website:
This American Life producer Alex Blumberg teams up with NPR's Adam Davidson for the entire hour to tell the story—the surprisingly entertaining story—of how the U.S. got itself into a housing crisis. They talk to people who were actually working in the housing, banking, finance and mortgage industries, about what they thought during the boom times, and why the bust happened. And they explain that a lot of it has to do with the giant global pool of money.
Seriously, this is completely engrossing, and when you're done listening to it, you won't have to just nod along when people at parties start talking about mortgage-backed securities. You can either listen to the broadcast online, buy the podcast, or if you live near me, I'll burn it to a CD for you.

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