You heard me: The bears got it right. They always do.
Why? Because bears are what ... schmart?
Otherwise, could they even say things like "a short-term rally in a long-term secular bear market"? Not likely. Which is why, with the possible exception of Larry Kudlow, I can barely watch CNBC anymore.
Really. For all of the lip service paid to the cheerleaders on Wall Street, Kudlow may be the only talking head with the guts to stand up for this market in its darkest hour -- like yesterday. If you've seen Larry at work, you know what I mean.
To hear it from the rest of these chumps, the last 50 years have been nothing more than ... you guessed it ... a suckers rally in a long-term secular bear market. It's a wonder working stiffs like us ever made a penny!
Bears have creepy powers
For example, dopes like us see stocks that are up 850% and 1,450%, respectively, since 1995, creating billions in wealth for individual investors. Bears look at long-term charts of Oracle
At the end of 2006, Microsoft
Now, let's be clear: I can't promise you'll make money over the next six months, much less predict what the tech-heavy Nasdaq will do next week. Nobody can. But I do know that stocks as a group head higher in the long term. Now, tell me again why the bears are so smart?
And call me a liar, too!
The bears don't have it right. They never do. That's why I was drawn to David and Tom Gardner when I had the good fortune of helping them launch their Motley Fool Stock Advisor newsletter. In March 2002, they were among the only gurus in the "biz" who were still bullish on America.
That's not to say they were unapologetic new-economy bulls -- though I sure would be richer man if I'd taken their advice years ago and bought Dell
They just don't do bear markets. And good thing, too. Since they launched Stock Advisor back in 2002, their subscribers have earned on average 70% per pick -- and seven out of 10 are in the money. That's tough to keep up, but after five years, I think we're past the lucky streak phase.
Go ahead, call me a
Yeah, I bought stocks all the way through the last bear market. And I'll be buying more during this painful sell off. Of course, I was fortunate to buy more near the bottom last time around. And that's one lesson we can take from the perma-bears: Gorge at lower prices, not higher.
Even better, if you can buy great businesses and steady your nerves, you really can't miss. If that makes me naive, so be it. Because here's my promise to the bears: You had a good day yesterday, but if at any time in the next 20 years, the markets ever hit all-time lows, I'll admit I was wrong.
Meanwhile, if you're not a perma-bear and want to increase your odds of finding stocks that will beat the market, consider a free 30-day trial to Stock Advisor. According to Hulbert Interactive, David and Tom's entire portfolio is up 21.8% annualized over the past five years, compared to just 8.5% for the broad market.
Of course, if Stock Advisor isn't everything I've said it is, you don't have to subscribe. You get the entire service free for a whole month and have nothing to lose, but there is one catch: No bears allowed! To start your free trial, click here.
This article was first published Feb. 8, 2007. It has been updated.
Paul Elliott doesn't own any of the stocks named. You can view all David and Tom's picks instantly with your free trial. Microsoft, Dell, and Intel are Motley Fool Inside Value picks. Amazon.com and Dell are Stock Advisor recommendations. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.