PBS’ news program, Frontline, has always been a leader in delivering true hard hitting investigative journalism. Its most recent program, “Money, Power, and Wall Street” is no exception. It follows the course of events beginning in the early 2000’s that would eventually lead to what would be known as the “Great Recession” at the beginning of Barack Obama’s presidency. This special is especially recommended for anyone who has any interest in economics or politics. While it will be interesting to those who have an affinity for politics, the irony is that it strives to not let itself get muddled in political finger pointing. It manages to stay relatively balanced, making sure to state without stating that the blame for the country’s economic mess goes all the way around, from the banks to the politicians. It’s an in-depth and scathing look at everything that led to what is one of this nation’s worst economic crises ever.
The entire program starts with a group of young JP Morgan Chase employees who came up with an idea as to how to reduce risk in the banking business in the early portion of the 2000’s. It follows the crisis as it gets progressively worse, from issues with predatory lending to the impact of the crisis on the then brand new Obama administration. The crisis forced the new President to make very difficult choices that he perhaps might not have entirely agreed on. To others, those choices might be rather eye opening. But that is the point of this special. It is meant to offer audiences the facts and nothing but. It is an unbiased special that gives every side of the crisis, thus allowing viewers to make their own conclusions and discussions about the direction of the crisis. The discussions in question would be perfect for any college level poly-sci and/or accounting/economics course, or even for those who are in the professional realm. PBS has made things even better with this set, dividing all four hour long segments of the special onto two discs. So whether inside or outside the classroom or even in the halls of government and business, this special can be taken in and discussed at the viewer’s own pace.
“Money, Power, and Wall Street” is available now. It can be ordered online at http://www.shoppbs.org.
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