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TheStreet Open House

Syria: The War Dog That Did Not Bark

Stocks in this article: LMT NOC HAL

Now that we've given our consent to the killing continuing, I personally think it would be in our interest to put lots of boots on the ground, on the land of Syria's neighbors. Boots carrying food, water, shelter and medicine. I think that would do more for America's image right now than 1,000 cruise missiles.

Morici warns that inaction will harden Assad's resolve, that the Russians can't be trusted, and that American credibility has been damaged. Maybe the crisis is not yet over.

But economically, this is a big win for the markets. Fear keeps oil prices high, and high oil prices are now a huge benefit to us. Thanks to shale oil, and shale gas, and the cheapest form of renewable energy, which is efficiency, the U.S. economy is accelerating on its own, for the first time this decade, and there is money to be made.

Greed is a big winner in this crisis. The S&P 500 is up almost 18% so far this year. The Dow is up 16%. The Russell 2000 is up 24%. Travel is up, car sales are up, house prices are up and unemployment is down.

Even the defense stocks are up. Lockheed Martin (LMT) is up 35% so far this year. Northrup Grumman (NOC) is up 40%. Halliburton (HAL) is up 44%. (Cha-ching, Dick Cheney.)

If this is failure, I suggest we make the most of it. In the wake of this crisis, President Bush's advice for Americans facing the Iraq war comes to mind.

Let's go shopping.

At the time of publication, the author no shares in companies mentioned in this article. But he's long America.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

Dana Blankenhorn has been a business journalist since 1978, and a tech reporter since 1982. His specialty has been getting to the future ahead of the crowd, then leaving before success arrived. That meant covering the Internet in 1985, e-commerce in 1994, the Internet of Things in 2005, open source in 2005 and, since 2010, renewable energy. He has written for every medium from newspapers and magazines to Web sites, from books to blogs. He still seeks tomorrow from his Craftsman home in Atlanta.
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