Mona Charen

The press cannot be asked to stop reporting the story. On the other hand, some large but unquantifiable element in our current mess is simple fear. I feel it myself. My husband and I have both kept our jobs. Our home is not in foreclosure. We've lost money in the stock market of course but we are otherwise pretty secure I hope. And yet, I've been figuring out ways to economize. I've been cutting back on non-essential purchases.

The economy is not as bad as our behavior indicates it should be. Under the circumstances, it makes sense to celebrate the good news that is out there, doesn't it? Let's start with gas prices. Who would have believed six months ago that we would be paying only $1.70 or so? That's good for the economy and good because it denies revenue to Russia and Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.

Here's something else to celebrate: We still live in an age of technical wizardry. My kids have long known how to chat, visually, with their friends on the computer. My generation (my brothers and I) has just gotten it going ourselves. Brother Jeff led the way. Using Skype, which is free on the Internet, we can now talk to one another cyberly face to face on our computer screens though we live hundreds of miles from one another. Yesterday, my brother Walter showed me the Sicilian salad he was preparing for lunch. He held the bowl up to the camera for my delectation. It looked like stag beetle larvae. Turns out it was oranges and red onions. So, okay, the cameras need a little work. But it was fun. And we save on long distance bills.

There is no magic wand to wave away the anxiety that stalks us. But counting our blessings surely cannot hurt.


Mona Charen

Mona Charen is a syndicated columnist, political analyst and author of Do-Gooders: How Liberals Hurt Those They Claim to Help .
 
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