A New Look at Poverty and Debt

A woman walks by a man sleeping on the sidewalk on September 14, 2011 in New York City.

"Poverty." "Debt." We think we know what these words mean. But this week, with David Brancaccio filling in for Tess Vigeland, Marketplace Money took a second look, and found stories you wouldn't expect.

The Census is releasing new numbers that give a more nuanced measurement of poverty; But what does this mean for Denise Chapman in Trenton, New Jersey?

Debts are things you have to pay, right? Not according to David Graeber, author of Debt: The First 5,000 Years.

Speaking of debt, a debt-fueled bubble got us into this recession, so perhaps we could rely on debt to get us out. It's tempting, but a mistake, according to Austan Goolsbee, former chair of President Obama's Council of Economic Advisers.

Also in the show:

You can listen to the whole show here.

About the author

Stan Alcorn is a multimedia journalist in New York City. He has reported for NPR and WNYC, where he has focused on business and the New York tech scene.

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