Musings, Thoughts and Creations

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Planet Money

on April 26, 2012

I love this podcast.  It’s a show on NPR, but I never listen to it live.  I subscribe to the podcast. Like a lot of public radio programs, they are informative while still being entertaining. And I need all the help I can get when it comes to understanding matters of finance, money, and the economy.

They provide a look at all things having to do with the economy and explain it in human terms. They tackled the mortgage and banking crises, the global economy, China’s economy, Europe’s issues, and little/fun stuff too, like whatever happened to the dollar coin, or why a NY taxi medallion sold for 1 million dollars.

There have been so, so many podcasts I’ve loved, but I’ve especially loved their recent series on money in politics and a live show they did on how to fix the broken part of America.  The premise of the show was that there are two Americas.  There is one America who is educated and will be fine, they will continue to live The American Dream.  But there is another America, made up of people with a high school diploma or less, that are not going to be fine unless changes are made.  As factory jobs dry up, there is less and less of a demand for an unskilled workforce. So they put forth a three step plan to improve this segment of America, and therefore the country as a whole.

Step 1: Fix our nation’s education system.

Step 2: Fix government finances.

Step 3: Fix our nation’s healthcare system.

Simple right?

No, that all sounds incredibly daunting. These three areas seem broken beyond repair. But what I love about this show is that they put forth three achievable ways to do this. #1 Education – Provide preschool to all children. #2 Finances – Quit the partisan infighting and reduce debt by cutting government spending, raising taxes, and closing loopholes. #3 Healthcare – Pick any other system besides employer based health insurance (single payer where the government provides, a market driven system where we can all buy our own insurance) and costs will decrease dramatically.

Our problems are solvable.  The trouble is, they’re being solved by intelligent people on podcasts, instead of by the people in charge.  But maybe if we start demanding these types of solutions, our elected officials will start providing them.

If you’d like to listen to the show, you can download it or listen to it on the internet here:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2011/08/01/138818388/the-friday-podcast-planet-money-live

They actually did an entire show on why providing preschool would be so beneficial, so if you’d just like to listen to that (it’s basically the same as in the live podcast) here is the link to that show.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2011/06/13/137109349/the-friday-podcast-the-case-for-preschool

Why can’t smart people like this run our country?

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2 responses to “Planet Money

  1. Rob says:

    You can’t fix healthcare unless everyone’s in the pool. It’s either that or refuse care to anyone who can’t afford to pay. I don’t think anyone is heartless enough to recommend that, so looks like we’re going to need either a mandate or a single-payer system. The rest of the world already has this figured out by the way – we’re the only ones hanging on to this crazy system.

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