President Obama walks at the White House with presidential debt commission co-chairs Erskine Bowles (left) and Alan Simpson. Alex Wong/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Alex Wong/Getty Images

Heeding Wake-Up Call Could Mitigate Debt Crisis

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/131677581/131687835" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The co-chairs of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, Erskine Bowles (left) and Alan Simpson (right), listen to President Obama deliver a speech in the Rose Garden of the White House. The commission will release its report on how to reduce the nation's debt this week. Alex Wong/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Alex Wong/Getty Images

Solving Federal Debt Crisis Hinges On Compromises

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/131673417/131675656" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

President Johnson (center) signs the Medicare Act in 1965 as former President Harry Truman (right) looks on. Now the cost of Medicare threatens to crush the federal budget. LBJ Library/National Archives hide caption

toggle caption LBJ Library/National Archives

Counting The Reasons Why Deficits Keep Growing

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/131611695/131660881" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Where Our Debt Came From; Where Money Could Go

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/131644597/131644581" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript