If you can get past the profanity, this article from Rolling Stone of all places is a good primer on the present financial meltdown.
Its taking me a long time to get my head around the credit crunch. In my defence, a lot of the abstruse financial instruments involved where invented after I got my MBA so I'd never heard of them until recently. Try Wikipedia on CDS's and CDO's.
I'm staggered that critiques accessible to the layman are so difficult to find. It should be like shooting fish in a barrel. What an indictment of the decline of the left and the third estate over the last twenty or thirty years.