Common Sense

Back to the Future

Speaking of things media, I want to read you some more headlines.

"Markets Tumble, Experts Say No End in Sight."

"Frenzied Trading Leads to Fears of Recession."

"Business Leaders Say it Gets Worse."

And finally, "Why It Could Be 1929 All Over Again."

What do you think?

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No, I'm not reading from headlines October 2002, but from October 1987. Specifically, October 20, 1987 -- the day after the big 508-point crash of October 19. Back then we had never seen anything like it. The Dow tumbling 508 points, close to a quarter of its value in one grisly bear of a day.

What's amazing, looking back at it, is how wrong so many were.

Market prognosticators who were saying a ten-year bear market was just starting -- they were wrong.

Experts who said it would take years to recoup those losses -- it took only months.

That the world would spin into a depression -- it did not.

That the market tumult would doom then Vice President Bush's bid to succeed Ronald Reagan -- he won easily.

My only point in rehashing history is to get some perspective. I covered that crash and talked to those experts. The same ones preaching doom and gloom and saying it was 1929 all over again. It wasn't then. It isn't now.

I'm confident enough to know we've been through worse. Experts didn't tell me that, history did.

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