Some of the fearmongers are saying that if the bailout package isn’t approved by the US House of Representatives on Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average could drop 1000 points. Oh no, scary.
According to this chart, the DJIA was about 1000 points lower in 2004, before the “subprime lending crisis” began. Up until mortgages started causing problems, it climbed about 4000 points in about three years. From 1992 to 2000, the period of the so-called “New Economy,” in which wealth was predicted to increase geometrically until the end of time, the DJIA climbed 8000 points.
This obsession with market indicators is nonsense. People who structure their lives around it are really stupid, and for some reason they expect the rest of us to be just as stupid.
I heard someone on the radio make the remark on Monday or Tuesday, after the 770-some point drop, that a trillion dollars was “lost.” Yet, the very next day, it went up by about 500 points. I guess over half a trillion was “gained” that day.
You know what? Money doesn’t just pop in and out of existence like quantum particles. If some people “lost” a trillion dollars, some other people “gained” a trillion dollars. The economy doesn’t just vaporize when a trillion dollars worth of stocks changes hands.
The only people concerned about this are those who have the money to gamble on the stock market, and the time to waste worrying about the exact amount of their unearned net worth at any given moment. They already have enough money to live on. What they are concerned about is whether they will have enough money in the future so they will never have to worry again.
They want to know that they will have enough provision for the rest of their lives so that they will never again be anxious or scared about their finances; so they will never again argue with their family members about money; so they will never again have to ask the price of something before they buy it; so they will never again have to tell their child she can’t have something she wants; so they will never again be embarrassed in front of the boss by their thrift-store clothes; so they can make the snooty people jealous of their hot car; so they can impress their date by casually buying expensive gifts; and so on, and so on. All they want is security.
It’s a waste of time. If you are paranoid, angry, nervous, abusive, deceitful, cheating, lying, hypocritical, insincere, cowardly, hateful, or hopeless without money, you’ll still be the same with money. The only difference will be that you’ll be able to buy stuff to distract you and buy people to protect you while you use your money to cause a lot more misery than you could possibly do in person.
If you don’t have a secure faith in your future without money, you’ll never have a secure faith in your future with money. Secure faith is based on trusting your own character, trusting your family and friends, trusting your neighbors and acquaintances, trusting your employer and coworkers, trusting your government, and trusting God.
Most of what keeps your life going is not “earned” because of individual economic transactions, but is given to you for free just because of who you are and where you are. In some cases there may be a non-monetary quid pro quo, in which you are expected to return value to the other party, but most of what you have comes to you because of relationships demanding only social transactions. But if you don’t trust yourself or others, or you can’t accept this unearned favor gracefully, then you try to narrow your life down to the minute manipulation of individual transactions and the continual tallying of your personal “value,” usually with money.
People like that think they are living a “prepaid” life, in which they constantly have to monitor the tokens accumulated and buy new tokens in order to keep their access. They don’t know anything about God and they don’t know anything about grace, and this spills over into their dealings with other people, whom they constantly try to manipulate and seduce; fear and desire are constantly in play as part of a push-pull strategy to whipsaw the fools who surround them. The only salvation, they say, is a sweepstakes win, a lucky lottery number, a windfall, an easy mark, or a government bailout.