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Former Senator Appeals To Youth On Deficit Reduction

Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin explains Alan Simpson's musical contribution to the debt and deficit crisis.

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Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The recent budget negotiations in Washington have involved a lot of gangs.

(SOUNDBITE OF NEWS CLIPS)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: The group of senators known as the Gang of Six...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #1: The Gang of Six...

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: The Gang of Six...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #2: The Gang of Six...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #3: That Gang of Six that you may have heard about in the past...

MARTIN: Then...

(SOUNDBITE OF NEWS CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #4: The Gang of Six is now a Gang of Eight.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GANGNAM STYLE")

MARTIN: And now there's a different gang in Washington.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GANGNAM STYLE")

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #3: Gangnam Style.

PSY: (Rapping) Oppan Gangnam Style, Gangnam Style...

MARTIN: OK. Let's back up for a second. That, of course, is the biggest song of the year, "Gangnam Style" by Psy. I mean, this song is so huge a group of Washington policy wonks are using it. I'm talking about the Campaign to Fix the Debt which includes one half of Washington's anti-deficit-duo; that would be former Senator Alan Simpson. He's 81 years old and he has a message for all the youngsters out there.

ALAN SIMPSON: Stop Instagramming your breakfast and tweeting your First World problems, and getting on YouTube so you can see "Gangnam Style".

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GANGNAM STYLE")

PSY: (Rapping), Gangnam Style, op, op, op...

MARTIN: In his YouTube video, Senator Simpson was trying to appeal to younger Americans to use social media to promote deficit reduction. The Can Kicks Back is the name of his latest initiative - as in, no more kicking the can down the road. And this guy is so serious about the budget, he's willing to do almost anything, even dance Gangnam Style dance.

SIMPSON: The Lasso again and then the Horseback. The horse, horse, get on the way the cowboys ride. The cowboys ride...

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GANGNAM STYLE"])

PSY: (Rapping), Gangnam Style. Hey, sexy lady. Op, op, op, op. Oppan Gangnam Style. Hey, sexy lady. Op, op, op. Hey, twi nun nom gu wi ye na nun nom...

MARTIN: And you're listening to NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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