Is the rally of the last few days for real – is the market bottom in place – do stocks rise from here – is the Bear dead?  Earnings drive stock prices in the long run and those reported so far this quarter suggest substantial improvement.  Nokia, for instance, said that they saw earnings stabilize in the second quarter and now believe by third quarter results that the turnaround is for real.  IBM reported an earnings increase of over 10% in a very difficult information technology-spending environment.  UnitedHealthcare said its earnings rose over 53% on cost-cutting and increased premiums.  Numerous others today and the preceding several days have beaten their earnings goals.