Shoppers came back in force for the holidays, right to the end. After two dreary years, Christmas 2010 will go down as the holiday Americans rediscovered how much they like to shop.
Never mind that real unemployment is over 20% and largely structural now. Never mind that home prices will have to drop by another 23% or so to revert to their historical mean. Never mind any of that. It's time to party like it was 1999, when American civilization was probably at its apogee. Maybe Americans deserve one final blowoff before the economy heads back down into the gutter. Everyone needs some kind of Golden Age they can refer to in their memories.