There are so many great shows on NPR that take a complicated subject or topic and break it down in a way that makes it easy to understand for just about anyone. This American Life and RadioLab are two of these shows that come to mind, not to mention Fresh Air, Forum, and All Things Considered.
The great thing about technology now, though, is that you can listen to a lot of these weekly shows when you want with Podcasts. The latest podcast episode of This American Life did a fantastic job of breaking down a complex subject that is extremely important in understanding a topic that is discussed nearly every day in the news — and did a bang-up job explaining it in layman’s terms.
The episode, titled The Giant Pool of Money focused on the housing crisis. It goes into great detail explaining the hows and whys of it all — and what was the exact cause of the situation. If you had asked me a week ago, I would’ve said that it had something to do with mortgages that people couldn’t afford.. but that was it. Now, I feel I have a very good understanding of the problem and just how serious this is for everyone.
The show even concluded comparing the current crisis to what could be as bad as the housing / banking crisis of the 1930’s — but is more likely to be a repeat performance of the economic period just before I was born — the 1970’s.
It’s a great listen and I would encourage everyone who’s been interested in the topic to check it out. It’s actually quite fascinating.