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May 8, 2014
CLICK 'Pod' icon above left to listen to the interview
In June 2011, KGNU's Claudia Cragg spoke with the New York Times' Gretchen Morgenson about her then just published book, 'Reckless Endangerment'. More than 5 years on since the world financial catastrophe of 2008, nothing much has changed and many consider 'endangerment' not only persists but may now be even more prevalent.
In Reckless Endangerment, Gretchen Morgenson exposes how the watchdogs who were supposed to protect the country from financial harm were actually complicit in the actions that finally blew up the American economy. Drawing on previously untapped sources and building on original research from coauthor Joshua Rosner—who himself raised early warnings with the public and investors, and kept detailed records—Morgenson connects the dots that led to this fiasco.
Morgenson and Rosner draw back the curtain on Fannie Mae, the mortgage-finance giant that grew, with the support of the Clinton administration, through the 1990s, becoming a major opponent of government oversight even as it was benefiting from public subsidies. They expose the role played not only by Fannie Mae executives but also by enablers at Countrywide Financial, Goldman Sachs, the Federal Reserve, HUD, Congress, and the biggest players on Wall Street, to show how greed, aggression, and fear led countless officials to ignore warning signs of an imminent disaster.