The Way We Live Now: Always forgetting. We're back into stocks! We're back to buying art! We're...poor! Statistics prove it. But we already forgot. Live it up, for tomorrow you may die of something weird.
"Cautiously, Small Investors Edge Back Into Stocks." Here's some news for you, small investors: you're screwed either way. If you really had balls you would have bought heavy into stocks the whole time they were cratering. If you were incredibly prudent you would have plowed it all into CDs and bonds and been satisfied with slow and steady. But, "Cautiously," you edge out just far enough on the plank to see what's going on in the wild seas, and woops—get pushed right off by all the other suckers crowding on that same plank with you.
I don't really know much about stocks.
Another thing I don't know much about: the art market. What's this we hear about auctioneer Phillips de Pury & Co. adding 18 new sales of contemporary art in the coming year? I would swear it's some sort of hunger-crazed rat burrowing into my ear canal in desperate search of food now that all the edible scraps have been snapped up by unemployed human hobos, but no, it says it right there in the WSJ. And furthermore the head of this alleged auction house is named "Bernd Runge" and he calls himself an "art virgin" and he says he wants to sell this art, including some about "Sex," to people who haven't even bought art before? We have a name for those people: "Suckers," we call them, and their preferred form of "art" is colorful marker drawings of their own name by Chinese men sitting on stools in Times Square, okay. Just forget it, "Bernd." We remember what happened last time a bunch of idiots started bidding and bidding on dumb art: Damien Hirst.
The new census tells us something a little different, you snake oil salesmen. It tells us we won't be buying many stocks or art or anything else from "Bernd," because one in five kids under 18 live in poverty, and our median household national income has fallen to barely over $50k. That's not even enough to buy Damien Hirst's left nut, the one without the diamonds on it.
Never forget that we are all financially illiterate.