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April 19, 2010 / jadettman

Are you listening to 'This American Life'?

I enjoy listening to This American Life on NPR. I realize that, just like A Prairie Home Companion or Wait Wait . . . Don’t Tell Me! (both of which I also enjoy), that This American Life isn’t interesting to everyone.

Some episodes of the show are just so informative, though, that I feel like everyone should be listening to them. Specifically:

The Giant Pool of Money

Return To The Giant Pool of Money

and Inside Job

Inside Job is from a couple of weeks ago and the two Giant Pool of Money episodes are from 2008 and 2009. Clearly, I think that they are damn interesting.

If you aren’t interested in the reasons for the financial crisis of the last couple years, you will likely find them less so.



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  1. Ben / Apr 19 2010 8:16 am

    Hi, I’m Ira Glass. Today on This American Life, three people whose lives really suck, and how there’s nothing they can do about it.

    I enjoy the program, but it’s so depressing.

  2. J.A. Dettman / Apr 21 2010 9:14 am

    Is it? I guess I haven’t noticed that so much, Ben.

    I really just remember the funny and/or interesting ones.

  3. Britt / Apr 21 2010 1:35 pm

    If there are people in the world who don’t like TAL, I don’t want to know them.

  4. Ben / Apr 21 2010 4:23 pm

    The babysitting one was pretty funny. But by and large I notice it being like “and here’s this person who has ended up in this awful situation, through no fault of their own, and now can’t get out.” Like the people who got totally screwed by their absentee landlord and now are stuck owning basically their entire condo building.

  5. Dan / Apr 29 2010 5:08 pm

    I’ve met the guys who do the Planet Money podcasts (well, Adam Davidson and David Kestenbaum), and they’re even cooler in person than on the air.

    I guess there are a lot of people out there who don’t find capital requirements and credit spreads to be interesting… But really, risk aggregation is awesome. And I’m actually not being sarcastic. I totally understand why people think finance is cool and I am constantly frustrated by how little most people (including almost all politicians) seem to know or care about it.
    The Planet Money/TAL collaborations should be required listening for anyone before they form any kind of opinion on the financial crisis.

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