That's why I was a bit shocked to see your last LBO, where you say that the worst of the crisis may be over. I think that a key difference with previous crises is that, having happened, those were over with. Banks and depositors were made whole, taxpayers picked up the tab, and the show could start over again. The Bubble is still there, bigger than ever. The extent to which this country's Upper Half has become dependent, economically, socially and psychically on The Bubble is mind boggling, and saying that it has no parallel in history is not hyperbole. Tuition going up at 10% a year? No problem, Junior's college found is going up at 30%. Health insurance premiums up 12%? Who cares? We'll all be millionaries before we turn 50 and start needing serious care. And so on.
Paraphrasing you: in the US, phantom, nonexistent paper wealth increasingly takes the place of a civilized welfare state.
Sorry to ramble so. But I am really, really scared.
-- Enrique Diaz-Alvarez Office # (607) 255 5034 Electrical Engineering Home # (607) 272 4808 112 Phillips Hall Fax # (607) 255 4565 Cornell University mailto:enrique at ee.cornell.edu Ithaca, NY 14853 http://peta.ee.cornell.edu/~enrique