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Dow Plunges More Than 500 Points

Gosh, I guess it's a good thing Boehner "got 98% of what he wanted", right? Those Republican policies sure are doing so much to increase economic stability. Listen to these guys trying to rationalize this. Stocks tanked Thursday over

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Gosh, I guess it's a good thing Boehner "got 98% of what he wanted", right? Those Republican policies sure are doing so much to increase economic stability. Listen to these guys trying to rationalize this.

Stocks tanked Thursday over concerns about the country's fragile economy, and Wall Street
could be in for another slide when the latest job numbers are released Friday.

The stock market nose-dived more than 500 points, erasing all the gains for this year.

It's the worst drop since October 2008.

Traders blame the sluggish economy and high unemployment.

But traders don’t expect to see much of change when the Labor Department releases its monthly job report Friday. The last two reports have seen the nation’s unemployment numbers rise to 9.2 percent. That has many investors worried the U.S. may head back into a recession.

Stocks have dropped for nine of the past 10 trading sessions.

Traders had hoped Wall Street would be more upbeat once Washington agreed to raise the debt ceiling.

Well, forgive me for being blunt, but if you thought that anything would be upbeat after that fiasco of a debt ceiling negotiation, you weren't paying attention. Congress did nothing--other than the debt ceiling raise--to contribute to economic optimism. If anything, they made things less stable, since we all know that harsh cuts--when we need them the least--are coming.

But rather than be a Nervous Nellie and playing further into fears, let me offerthis tempering comment from Greg Sargent's The Plum Blog:

I’m sure liberals are convinced that today’s plunge was the result of Washington’s bipartisan embrace of austerity, while centrist deficit hawks will swear it was because the debt limit deal wasn’t big enough. My suggestion? Ignore all of it.

Ignore, too, claims about what it all means for 2012. Of course, the economy is very important to those elections, but a bad day for the Dow, or even a terrible month for the Dow, doesn’t mean much this far in advance of the election. What you want to look at instead are broad measures of the economy, especially hints of how it’s going to be doing next spring and summer. There’s probably no way to avoid the fact that the political world will obsess about highly visible episodes well in advance of the election, but they just don’t tell us anything significant or long term about politics or policy.

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