Marketplace Off Air

Now, how to put this on the radio…

Kai Ryssdal Oct 8, 2008

Wow. Just wow.

Economist Kevin Nguyen explains the country’s economic woes to his younger sister, using Pokemon as an analogy. Seriously.

The following is an actual conversation I had with my younger sister, Olivia. She likes to draw, play World of Warcraft, and now, she’s the only fourteen-year-old girl who understands the U.S. economic crisis.

Kevin: Have you been following the news?

Olivia: Yeah, I don’t really get it.

Kevin: Imagine that I let you borrow $50, but in exchange for my generosity, you promise to pay me back the $50 with an extra $10 in interest. To make sure you pay me back, I take your Charizard Pokemon card as collateral.

Olivia: Kevin, I don’t play Pokemon anymore.

Kevin: I’m getting to that. Let’s say that the Charizard is worth $50, so in case you decide to not return my money, at least I’ll have something that’s worth what I loaned out.

Olivia: Okay.

Kevin: But one day, people realize that Pokemon is stupid and everyone decides that the cards are overvalued. That’s right–everybody turned twelve on the same day! Now your Charizard is only worth, say, $25.

And it goes on from there.

Via kottke

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