Common Sense

Needed: Some Perspective on Today's Economy

I hate to sound like your dad when you were a kid but people, we need to get some perspective here. And so does the media.

I mean all these doom-and-gloom reports on the economy. Again, when I was a kid, we'd die for this kind of doom and gloom. If a five percent unemployment rate is horrible, does anyone recall 10 percent?

I do, when Jimmy Carter was president. A prime rate at 7.25 percent and we're whining — I can remember when it was at 21 percent.

Mortgages at six percent? I can remember my wife and me doing a jig when we got a first mortgage for 13.5 percent and thought we were geniuses.

Job growth for more than 50 months straight? I can remember losing all those jobs we gained in little more than 18 months straight.

Christmas sales up in a slowdown? I can remember them tumbling in a recession.

Look, things are not perfect but they're far from pathetic.

I'm not trying to be a Pollyanna, but if we're bitching about five percent of Americans not working or five percent of mortgages running late, can you imagine our handling double that unemployment or triple that tardiness?

I knew those times. I lived through those times. And I'm not really that old.

My late mom and dad survived a depression, when things were a lot worse than that.

All I'm saying is if we're having trouble handling these kinds of numbers, how the heck would we handle really bad numbers?

Not well, I suspect.

I guess it's a testament to our times "this" is considered awful.

Pity we forget times when "this" could be considered anything but. — Pretty soon, we'd stop taking our kids to expensive restaurants. But that's just me...

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