Game of Shadows

Barry Bonds broke the all-time Major League career homerun record to jubilant pandemonium at his home track, Pacific Bell Park, I mean SBC Park, I mean AT&T Park, I mean Maurie's Wig's Park on August 7, 2007.

Had Barry not sat out untold times throughout this season to "rest his legs" (or maybe the more accurate summary: to guarantee that his record* would not get overshadowed by empty syringes and supersized cardboard Barry Heads being thrown at him from hostile fans on national t.v.), he might have broken the record several weeks before. Oh, let's just throw a random date out there...perhaps July 19, 2007 at Wrigley Field versus the Cubs.

Had it been this day, both Barry & the Dow Jones Industrial Average would have had to share the limelight as the Dow broke its all-time record by closing above 14,000 to jubilant pandemonium by the usual CNBC Cheerleaders, including Mad Money's Jim Cramer who continued to prophesize "15000 By Year End".

Today we know that bookies across Cramerica would be willing to take that bet. That is, if he were able to borrow money from Action Alerts Plus (his charitable trust ya know).

The Market, like Barry, has been inflated and pumped-up by financial steroids. Those securitized mortgage-backed debt bundles were given the green light for credit worthiness (wink-wink, nod-nod) from all the major credit rating agencies. This allowed banks and hedge funds to then borrow against the underlying value many times over to buy ever more securitized debt. Which in turn, created more money that needed to be invested in more and more profitable debt deals. Wall Street was awash in cash, and it fueled the M&A mania, private equity and hedge fund deals that sent the market ever higher and higher.

It was even rumored that Pet's.com was using an old warehouse as collateral to get back in the game.

Small problem. These ratings companies and the models they used to value debt did not ever account for the real-estate market plummeting. Or they did factor it in, and they chose to ignore the perils hoping for Greenspan's young-grasshopper to once again save their asses.

Forget Helicopter, "Doctor Jekyll Ben" who was on one day worried about inflation and not worried at all about sub-prime contagion, the very next day lowered the discount rate, which is likely a precursor to a future Fed Funds Rate decrease.

Only time will tell what will happen to this crazy market. But Barry's got one thing on the Dow; his record can never go back down.

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