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Friday, October 10, 2008

Don't Cry For Berlusconi Or Yourselves, Folks

I wouldn't get too freaked out about today's collapse on opening and the following upswing. Berlusconi had made a statement saying that market closings were being considered (the big boys would all have to do this in tandem), and that provoked a stampede to sell. He has since been turned over to the Dominicans, forced to publicly recant, and is now tied to a chair listening to the Vatican's bible reading and being treated with Valium.

I wouldn't worry too much about the real economy, either. Sit and watch oil prices drop and giggle instead. This is going to do more to support the real economy than all the wild proposals being offered.

A while back, I was getting heat from rightish folks who claimed that all the talk about a risky economy was hate speech by Dems. At the time I said (fairly enough) that maybe I was a gloomy cuss for the moment, but a time would come when I was about the only optimistic person out there.

For the first time, I feel some optimism. Cautious optimism, but optimism. My buying fingers are twitching and my stomach's settling, my toes are wiggling, and I'm grinning ear from ear.

Casey Serins and some investment bankers (the types that consult astrologists and spend a lot of time worrying about health fads) are about to get really poor, but the Rob Dawgs and Melissa Clouthiers of the world are going to get a chance at a very comfortable future. Manhattan has contracted a case of the shivers, but a bunch of small-town bankers are beginning to emerge from their bunkers.

I know it seems counter-intuitive, but for once the cards are being stacked on the side of the realists and future wealth. Yeah, yeah, if you look at your portfolio you look poorer, but that was always funny money and was never really there. We're very close to the ability to earn real money, the type that's there for you in the future.

Dated Brent Spot below $75, no, below $74. Wholesale heating oil $2.26, wholesale gas $1.86.

If you're not feeling the sparks of optimism, just ask yourself "In which world are the sales clerk, the waitress, the plumber, the truck driver, the secretary, the mechanic, store owner, small businessman, the car salesman and the computer tech going to do better?"
You guessed it! World B. World A only helped a few very rich people, among them persons with a huge stake in natural gas and politicians who wanted to save the world by starving poor people. World B is better for everyone else, including Wall Street stalwarts who did not spend the last few years consulting astrologists.

Nymex crude futures below $80. Any moment now Nancy Pelosi is going to figure out that natural gas is a fossil fuel, and then the face of American politics will be changed.

I fear Berlusconi giving up on free markets will provide helpful cover for massive re-regulation in the Obama Administration.
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