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Cramer: Focus on Good Stocks, Not Bad News

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on Real Money on Jan. 2. To see Jim Cramer's latest commentary as it's published, sign up for a free trial of Real Money.

May 2013 be as good as 2012! That's what I find myself thinking as I feel surrounded by people who are already worried about the next big bad thing, this time the debt-ceiling fight.

I like to take a moment to smell the roses, because they smell pretty darned good, and it is easy to go right past them without an ounce of thought.

I am not advocating wearing rose-colored glasses. I am simply saying that there are some roses out there.

My job is to try to help you make money. I may not always be right, but I know there is an opportunistic, optimistic way to make money, embracing skepticism and reality, and there is an unrealistic way to not make money, which is to be continually cynical, offering a corrosive mindset dedicated to the proposition that there are no roses to begin with, just thorns, thorns that are endlessly in your way. Maybe it's because in my spare time I like to garden more than just about any other hobby, but the rose of an S&P 500 that's up 16%, as it was in 2012, a rose that keeps capital gains and dividend taxes lower than I would have ever expected, a rose that allows the middle class to stay ensconced in lower rates until this economy really recovers, must be noticed and, yes celebrated.

I start this year somewhat dazzled by events. A week ago, I was worried that tax rates could go up for everyone, that you would barely be compensated for owning higher-yielding stocks than for owning Treasuries, and that we would have a meat ax put to government spending. Going over the cliff worried me and gave me pause about 2013, as I trust it did for you.

Even yesterday, when I heard that Eric Cantor, the majority leader of the House, was going to try to scuttle a hard-fought deal that was overwhelmingly approved in the House, I took pause about what could happen even this morning.

But Cantor, a sure candidate for the Wall of Shame if that kept up, backed down, and we got a deal that everyone dislikes, which is the essence of what it means to rise above politics.

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