29 September 2008

Dancing with the DOW

After cooking up some tasty dinner for my wife and myself, we end up watching Dancing with the Stars.  Frankly, I don't have much interest in the show.  But, after watching Brooke Burke dance, the show had my attention.  Unfortunately, after watching Kim Kardashian dance, the show utterly lost my attention.

It's been quite a day with the big bailout bill going down in defeat in the House of Representatives, dragging the stock market down the toilet with it.  Like many people, I took a significant hit in my portfolio today, but I believe I'm still young enough to just ride it out, so I didn't sell anything.  In fact, I picked up some stocks, including one component of the Dow, hoping today's startling bad news and the abrupt reaction in the stock market represented a buying opportunity, with hopes that the market will climb back up at some point in the coming weeks or months.

Sarah Palin is most certainly taking some heat in the media and I think it will drive more Americans to watch this Thursday evening's vice presidential debate than last Friday evening's first presidential debate.  I doubt either Palin or Biden will let slip any devastating gaffes, but I think people do want to see how Palin handles the gargantuan pressure that will be on her shoulders.  Biden has the lower bar to jump as he is known for gaffes.  Palin has the much higher bar to get over, given her awful interview with Katie Couric last week and now a new bewildering interview with Couric, with McCain himself sitting next to Palin, like her chaperoning father.

I suspect the financial market will get much worse before it gets better, but ultimately, I am optimistic that Americans will find a way to survive and even thrive in a down economy.  I tend to agree with how interdependent the economy is between banks and the various supply chains and jobs and such, and I do think there is risk for a fast moving domino effect.  However, Americans won't just sit still and take the hit without a response.  Corporations and vertical markets and regional markets will innovate and adjust.

The supposedly ancient Chinese proverb and curse (Wikipedia indicates it may be an early 20th century British invention or misinterpretation), "May you live in interesting times" comes to mind.  

I think we are so fatigued from hurricanes, political campaigns, stock market crashes, suicide bombings, superhero movies, prematurely melting glaciers, reality TV, tiger/bear/shark attacks, forest fires, and Howie Mandel, that a gigantic asteroid could knock the moon out of orbit in a spectacular sky shimmering explosion and no one would blink an eye.

Let's hope for the bet.