The free enterprise system that made this country second to none on earth is in the cross-hairs of an increasingly out-of-touch Washington, D.C.  Frank, Dodd, Pelosi, Reich, Schrum, and others boldly, arrogantly, and endlessly flog the whole of in particular Wall Street and free-enterprise in general. As they continue, they risk dousing the spirit of risk-taking which drives our economy. If Mr. Obama places himself in the company of Abraham Lincoln he must better understand that the 16th President was a champion for the protection and nurture of the free enterprise energy of this country. In a famous speech in February of 1859, Mr. Lincoln the patent system “secured to the inventor, for a limited time, the exclusive use of his invention; and thereby added the fuel of interest to the fire of genius, in the discovery and production of new and useful things.” Mr. Lincoln observed that the government was not the inventor, the creator, or the risk taker, but rather the protector of the free citizen; protected by this government to take risk in hopes of profit, not vice versa.

Information travels faster than ever now which tends to amplify panics and crises. The natural herd tendency to sell or buy is fanned by the rapid flow of news, often in its raw state. Globally linked computerized exchanges make buying and selling more efficient and faster than ever. What is crystal clear in this time of crisis and uncertainty is that we have no control of the markets (short of shutting them down). They are bigger and more powerful than any government and they will find their equilibriums in all circumstances. Predicting or timing them is all but impossible, especially over full cycles.