Kass: The Emperor's New Clothes?
In other words, fear has been driven from Wall Street.
Nevertheless, in its extreme, today's markets, according to the naysayers (who see subpar and unsteady global growth, vulnerable profit margins, disappointing profits ahead and a general detachment of markets from the real economy), are a fairy tale and are more representative of Hans Christian Andersen's, "The Emperor's New Clothes."
In this short tale, two weavers promise an Emperor a new suit of clothes that is invisible to those unfit for their positions, stupid or incompetent. When the Emperor parades before his subjects in his new clothes, a child cries out, "But he isn't wearing anything at all.
Over history the phrase "emperor's new clothes" has become an idiom about logical fallacies -- namely, pluralistic ignorance, which is defined in Krech and Crutchfield's Theory and Problems of Social Psychology as a situation in which "no one believes, but everyone thinks that everyone believes." In the tale, everyone is ignorant as to whether the Emperor has clothes on or not but believes that everyone else is not ignorant.Sound familiar?
This column originally appeared on Real Money Pro at 7:35 a.m. EDT on June 30.
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