Amid all of the momentous events in the Middle East, did anyone notice that the Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed another milestone today? That means the market is back to where it was in the spring of 2008, before the 3000 point drop in the Dow that occurred in September 2008. That means the stock market is up about 50% since President Obama took office in January 2009, when the Dow was at around 8000. (The index hit a low of about 6600 in March of 2009.) Nobody seems to want to celebrate this news the way it should be celebrated. The President's opponents do not want to give him or or his team's economic policies credit for the surging stock market. And there is still so much distrust of Wall Street after the 2008 crash, that nobody is particularly happy to see Wall Street making money again.
But imagine the alternative. Imagine if the market had continued to slide for the two years after President Obama's election. Banks would be closing; taxpayers would have lost hundreds of billions on the bailouts, instead of just about breaking even; millions would still be feeling sick every time they looked at their retirement savings statements, instead of noticing that their savings have been largely restored; unemployment would probably be even higher; and we would be facing, if not already embroiled in another Great Depression.
So I call for at least a little dancing in the streets at the news of the stock market's continued rebound. Take it away, Martha: