You know what? I just watched Maria Bartiromo slap around one of those "the-end-is-near" monster screamers on CNBC.
I won't call the fellow out, but I just had to pile on with this: "You go, girl!" It's about time somebody stood up to one of these Chicken Littles.
Yes, the market may crash!
Heck, it may have "crashed" before you read this (whatever that means). But I don't care. Honestly, what do we care if investors open the floodgates? Think I've lost my marbles? Well, let me explain ...
I got a finance degree in May 1987. (My mother still can't believe it.) A few months later, the stock market up and "crashed." I was an unabashed bull then, and I've been one ever since. But back to graduation ...
Whether it was to divert attention from her shock that I'd stuck it out, or to better express it, I'll never know. But the day I chucked "Modern Portfolio Theory" for good, my mother handed me a long rectangular plastic case with a worn black rubber handle.
Of course, I had to open it!
So what was inside? I'll tell you. For now, just know that had I sold it instead, I could have dumped the money into Home Depot
I'd look a bit more human buying Hewlett-Packard in 1987. I'd have just $6,000. But if I'd waited a year or so and bought Oracle
OK. That's a little cherry-picking there. So, let's dial it back a bit. What if I'd bought Pfizer
Still too good to be true?
Boy, tough crowd. Let's just assume I pawned my graduation present and dumped the cash into a plain-vanilla S&P 500 index fund -- then ran off to Iowa City to "learn" to write poems and watch Denis Johnson not drink. I'd still be up some 350%. Of course, that's my whole point.
And that's why I work at The Motley Fool. And why those Chicken Littles on TV drive me nuts. They cost you money. That's also why I was thrilled to help out David and Tom Gardner when they launched their Motley Fool Stock Advisor newsletter in the teeth of the last bear market.
After all, Stock Advisor is not just about helping investors like us find stocks that beat the market. It gives the courage to stay in the market and harness the power of its long-term wealth-building power. Through good times and bad -- no matter how scary the future looks day to day.
Give me date ... a date!
That's what I think Maria should say to the next Chicken Little that hits CNBC. "Give me a date." Remember, I left school back in 1987. What's easy to forget is that the decade in which we "borrowed a trillion dollars and threw ourselves a party" wasn't the 2000s -- it was the 1980s.
The 1970s was the decade America "amassed the crippling debt that would bring us to our knees." Sound familiar? So please, perma-bears: Next time you get on TV saying "the sky is falling" or "the U.S. economy is headed for years of contraction if not outright depression" ... give me a date!
As for you, fellow investor, take these dire predictions with a grain of salt. And if you're in your prime savings and investing years, promise me you'll stay invested and keep on investing. This market stinks. We will have another recession. But that was true when I was a boy back in 1979 -- and here we are again.
So what the heck was in the box?
Earlier, I mentioned David and Tom Gardner. I can't speak for them regarding the next few months, but I assure you they're long-term bulls on America and its companies. And according to watchdog Hulbert Financial Digest, they're having no problem digging up great companies that are making folks like us a lot of money.
To the tune of 20.02% annualized, according to Hulbert. If you want to see why their recommendations are up an average 50.2%, consider this: Try Stock Advisor for an entire month on me. You can take 30 days to decide if you like what you see without paying a cent.
Of course, nobody can guarantee that David and Tom will keep up this torrid pace forever, but it's their sworn mission to beat the market year after year. My money's on them. You've got nothing to lose but your fear. To find out more about this special Stock Advisor free trial, click here.
This article was first published July 19, 2007. It has been updated.
Paul Elliott opened the box. It wasn't a Paul Reed Smith. It was a mid-'80s Fender Stratocaster. Made in the U.S. of A. Paul still owns the Strat, as well as Pfizer and Coke -- Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations along with Home Depot. Pfizer is a Motley Fool Income Investor recommendation. You can view the entire Stock Advisor scorecard immediately with your free trial. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.