05 October 2006

Asked to Disbelieve Your Own Eyes

Two opposing views of record closings of the DJIA; both from the Chicago Tribune via SensibleMom.

From the Chicago Tribune here's a Debbie Downer article about the stock market surge headlined, "As Dow Surges, Many Left Behind." Get your kleenexes ready:

"Joblessness still is low at 4.7 percent. But much has changed about the U.S. economy since the boom and the subsequent bust. Inequality within American society has grown. The budget deficit is looming as a major problem as the Baby Boomers begin to retire. Health-care costs have skyrocketed. The savings rate is negative as people go deeper in debt or use home equity loans to pay for purchases. Energy costs have surged until recent weeks. At the same time, the housing market developed a bubble of its own in the past six years as the Federal Reserve kept interest rates low to prop up the economy. Now, home construction has tumbled, and prices generally have softened. Some fear the end of this bubble could sink the economy. Others disagree. Whatever the case, the economy is slowing down."

I decided to do a Lexis Nexis search of the Chicago Tribune for January 2000 to see if the paper also put a negative spin on the previous stock market surge (remember that surge occurred while Clinton was president). And guess what I found? An article with a very different tone. Starting with the exciting headline titled, "Bull Market Spreading The Wealth In America" and continuing through the many paragraphs touting the growth in wealth and the number of people investing in the stock market the article is remarkably different from today's.

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