A Few Thoughts on Wall Street Plunges in History

Historically, point drops in Dow Jones Industrial Average are hard to compare. In pure numbers, we’ve had the four biggest point drops in history over the last month, with the biggest happening today, a drop of 2,997 points. But they haven’t been as devastating as, say, Black Friday in 1987, which was only a drop of 508 points. Apples to oranges.

It’s far easier to compare percentages. Black Friday’s percentage drop was 22.61%. Staggering. Nearly a quarter of Wall Street wealth, gone in a day. That was the single biggest percentage drop in history.

Today the Dow plunged 12.93%, making it the second-biggest percentage drop in history. Losses today surpassed any single day in 1929. With three of them in the last week, we’re running just behind the worst three days of 1929 in terms of total percentage losses.

Just for comparison, the worst day of the 2008 crash was a drop of 7.87%.

We need what the banks got in 2008, and what it took the government four years to do during the Great Depression — we need a massive influx of cash to the people. We need government jobs for artists, for masons, for architects, for plumbers, for everybody.

We need the WPA. We need the New Deal.

We’ve done this before. We can do this. But everyone needs to be on the same page. Like in 2008, we’re in an election year. We need a flood of Democrats in federal office. We need to take the Senate and kill the filibuster. We need people in office who don’t buy into the myth of small government.

At the same time, we need to run out price gougers and greedy contractors. We need public oversight of all government contracts, and we need to end lobbyist perks — which means we need public funding of elections. Stop legal bribery.

In short, we need to spend more money on our populace than anyone has ever imagined possible.

We can do this. We’ve done it before. So get ready. And in the meantime, stay home, and wash your hands. We need you.

Actor. Author. Father. Husband. In reverse order. Latest novel: WHAT GIRLS ARE GOOD FOR. www.davidblixt.com.

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