Is the Consumer Society Spinning Out of Control?

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For many Americans, a penny earned is a penny spent--and then some--as they buy themselves into debt at rates that would have shocked their more savings-minded grandparents. Last year, the country's personal savings rate was a negative half-percent, a figure seen only twice before and both times during the depression. For the past 20 years, economists have warned that America's spending habits are out of control. Are credit card companies to blame for making it easier to borrow money? Are there both good debt and bad debt? In a country where barely 50% of families had a retirement account last year, who will pay the bills when some $78 million boomers retire? Sara Terry guest hosts. (An extended version of this program war originally broadcast earlier today on To the Point.)
  • Reporters Notebook: The Death of Renaissance Man Gordon Parks
    Legendary African-American photo-journalist, Hollywood director, memoirist and composer Gordon Parks died yesterday at the age of 93. Ever mindful of a teacher's admonition that black students not to waste parents' money on college because they would only wind up as porters or maids, Parks would dedicate one of his many honorary degrees to her. We hear more about Parks' extraordinary life from friend and photography professor Deborah Willis and museum director Arthur Ollman.
Guest host Sara Terry is an award-winning writer and photographer, Her latest photo-documentary project is Aftermath: Bosnia's Long Road to Peace.

The Coming Generational Storm

Value-added Tax (VAT)

Half Past Autumn, NewsHour transcript of 1998 Parks interview

Parks' American Gothic

Parks' Flavio da Silva



Warren Olney


Frances Anderton