This is not a good way to start the week.
NEW YORK (AP) -- The Dow Jones industrial average has fallen below 7,000 Monday for the first time in more than 11 years as investors grow even more pessimistic about the health of banks, and in turn the economy.
...Those worries pushed the blue chips below 7,000 for the first time since Oct. 28, 1997. The credit crisis and recession have now slashed half the average's value since it hit a record high over 14,000 in October 2007.
The Dow is down 225 at 6,837. (12:16 PM US/Eastern)
The Standard & Poor's 500 index is down 26 at 708.46, and the Nasdaq composite index is off 38 at 1,338.
This is awful.
Barack Obama has done absolutely nothing to ease fears. Last Tuesday, when Obama addressed the nation, Dem mouthpieces in the lib media praised Obama's speech.
Ron Fournier, AP's Washington bureau chief, declared:
President Barack Obama gave America the audacity to hope again.
After describing the U.S. economy in nearly apocalyptic terms for weeks, pushing his $787 billion stimulus plan through Congress, the president used his address to Congress on Tuesday night to tap the deep well of American optimism—the never-say-die spirit that every president tries to capture in words. And great presidents embody.
Apparently, a lot of investors didn't get the memo that it's time to hope again.
Investors are looking ahead. They're looking at Obama's vision for America, and it's hostile to capitalists.
Look at the markets. I'm not picking up the "audacity to hope again" vibe.
As the economy tanks and Obama seizes the opportunity to "reform" the country, meaning push panicky Americans to accept socialism, Obama ramps up entertaining at the White House.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The White House is the place to be on Wednesdays.
Since the presidency changed hands less than six weeks ago, a burst of entertaining has taken hold of the iconic, white-columned home of America's head of state. Much of it comes on Wednesdays.
The stately East Room, where portraits of George and Martha Washington adorn the walls, was transformed into a concert hall as President Barack Obama presented Stevie Wonder with the nation's highest award for pop music on Wednesday.
A week before that, the foot-stomping sounds of Sweet Honey in the Rock, a female a cappella group, filled the East Room for a Black History Month program first lady Michelle Obama held for nearly 200 sixth- and seventh-graders from around the city.
Cocktails were sipped during at least three such receptions to date, all held on Wednesdays.
Bookending the midweek activity were a Super Bowl party for select Democratic and Republican lawmakers and a dinner for governors, the new administration's first black-tie affair. It was capped with a performance by the 1970s pop group Earth, Wind and Fire. And a conga line.
The flurry of entertaining is in keeping with the Obamas' promise to make the White House a more open place for everyone.
Obama is keeping his promise "to make the White House a more open place for everyone"?
Darlene Superville, AP writer responsible for this article, has got to be kidding.
I'm seeing our savings and our material wealth disintegrate, and my misery isn't being alleviated by joining a conga line at the White House.
The governors' dinner was "a great kickoff of what we hope will be an atmosphere here in the White House that is welcoming and that reminds everybody that this is the people's house," Obama told the state chief executives after they had dined on Maryland crab, Wagyu beef, Nantucket scallops and citrus salad.
"We are just temporary occupants. This is a place that belongs to the American people and we want to make sure that everybody understands it's open," he said.
At the dinner in the State Dining Room, the Obamas looked comfortable, chatting and smiling with their guests. Afterward, they escorted the governors down the hall to the East Room, which had been arranged with few tables and chairs to encourage dancing to "September," "Boogie Wonderland" and other hits from a musical group Obama listened to growing up.
The conga line formed after the media were escorted out and, apparently, after Obama had called it a night.
"Thank you also for waiting until I had left before you started the conga line," the president told the governors the next morning. "I hear it was quite a spectacle."
Some Obama guests say he immediately puts them at ease. He indulges them and serves cookies, too.
...Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., was among those invited for the Super Bowl. He said Obama, an avid sports fan, joined his guests for most of the game between the Arizona Cardinals and ultimately triumphant Pittsburgh Steelers.
"It wasn't a circumstance where he came in and said 'Hi' and then left," Franks said. "He actually stayed and watched the game."
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn, said Obama was very cordial, and he and the first lady made guests feel comfortable. The president talked to everyone before the game started, she said, including a 12-year-old boy who asked Obama where the bathroom was.
"My favorite part was when he personally served us cookies—oatmeal raisin—when we were watching the game," she said.
No, no, NO.
This is BS.
AP writer Superville can create this image that Obama is the most engaging, down to earth host-in-chief, serving cookies to his guests.
He's not serving cookies to me. He hasn't opened the White House to me.
When do I get my invitation to the White House? When can I have some fun?
I like oatmeal raisin cookies. I want Obama to serve me an oatmeal raisin cookie.
While I await my invitation from Obama, I'll pass the time watching the markets plummet and monitor the fruits of all our hard work, sacrifices, and financial planning evaporate.
Frankly, I don't feel like partying with Obama. All the oatmeal raisin cookies in the world can't give us back what Obama and the Democrats are taking away.
9 minutes ago