Peggy Noonan Is Out Of Pills!
Thursday, early evening. She turns the key to her Dungeon of Medicines, an isolated pod floating atop the highest vistas of Park Avenue. It is constructed of the finest Metals and can only be reached by rickshaw. Even after all these years, the scent of myrrh lingers. A glass of scotch is poured and she takes to the shelves. Tonight will be a night of barbiturates. Full bottles of Amytal, Nembutal, Seconal, et. al, are downed within seconds. She takes to her camel fur chair -- a special model, in that it is an actual camel -- and waits whilst supping on a bowl of cough syrup. The hour becomes 10, then 11, then 12. Midnight.A new day. But still, nothing. She is able to walk; this should not be physically possible. Time to bring out the typing machinery. She is struck, sober, hands on the keys, sitting on a camel, poised, wrought, a wordsmith to the death, honest. Peggy Noonan has written her headline: "There's No Pill for This Kind of Depression."
Thought gives thought to another thought and a thought is thought:
The sale of antidepressants and antianxiety drugs is widespread. In New York their use became common after 9/11. It continued through and, I hypothesize, may have contributed to, the high-flying, wildly imprudent Wall Street of the '00s. We look for reasons for the crash and there are many, but I wonder if Xanax, Zoloft and Klonopin, when taken by investment bankers, lessened what might have been normal, prudent anxiety, or helped confuse prudent anxiety with baseless, free-floating fear. Maybe Wall Street was high as a kite and didn't notice. Maybe that would explain Bear Stearns, and Merrill, and Citi.
One would not expect Ms. Noonington to understand much about the amateurish layman's drugs, but there is quite a difference between Xanax and Zoloft. And there's an even bigger difference yet between those drugs and cocaine, which is what the bankers actually were taking, as usual, but this time to capitalize on the adventurous and broad profit opportunities offered by that new sign of global perfection, the eschaton fully realized and subsidized by those majestic, endless reserves from the land of China: permanently low long-term interest rates. It was Jesus speaking to the bankers: "The global real estate market, I have done things to it. Go forth, and fuck it raw."
It's a decent column, though, beyond the usual cerebral stuff. Peggington is scared, like everyone, about an impending collapse. No, not this kindergarten version of a downturn we're already experiencing; none of these conventional perceptions of hell that experts "warn" us about like, say, 12% unemployment at the trough, in 2010. Child's play! "COLLAPSE," YOU FOOLS! Balance sheets and asset values actually reflecting the nation's level of organic output, followed by a run on the money markets too massive and disorganized for the Fed to stop with one of its "floods," and an economy evaporated within 90 minutes. Everyone running around the streets like a bunch of jerkoffs.
Peggy's gut fear of a Real Collapse, though, isn't defined by the latest economic news or political responses. It is defined by anecdotes of conversations she had with her rich friends:
They are taking cash out of the bank in preparation for a long-haul bad time. A friend in Florida told me the local bank was out of hundred-dollar bills on Wednesday because a man had come in the day before and withdrawn $90,000. Five weeks ago, when I asked a Wall Street titan what one should do to be safe in the future, he took me aback with the concreteness of his advice, and its bottom-line nature. Everyone should try to own a house, he said, no matter how big or small, but it has to have some land, on which you should learn how to grow things.
Oh come on you Wall Street titan asshole, you can't just go saying things like that to Peggy Noonan! Do you want the poor lady to have a seizure, for Christ's sake? It's just cruel to throw shit like that at Peggy when you know perfectly well how much it'll back up her digestive system.
He also recommended gold coins, such as American Eagles. I went to the U.S. Mint Web site the next day, but there was a six-week wait due to high demand. (I just went on the Web site again: Production of gold Eagle coins "has been temporarily suspended because of unprecedented demand" for bullion.)
OHHHHHH, ha ha ha, right... we see what's going on here. Took a little while though! Kind of embarrassing, but anyway, yeah... Peggy. You're just going to want to ignore this guy, OK. He's part of this Internet group that's really devoted to one Congressman, this doctor from Texas. They fly blimps and dress up like Martha Washington and... well, you get the gist. Pay no mind.