Let's have the conventional-wisdom conversation with each other. "You" is the market. Me, is, well, me.

You:

America Online's

(AOL)

buy of

Time Warner

(TWX)

marked the end of the dot-com movement. It is a sign that Pittman and Case have given up. They know they can't grow any more, so they have thrown in the towel. That you don't see that makes you a moron.

Join the discussion on

TSC

Message Boards.

Me:

I wish you wouldn't call me a moron, but by all means don't bet against the merger. I think maybe AOL overpaid, but I still think it is a transforming merger that will give a run to

General Electric

(GE) - Get Report

and

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

some day.

You:

Bonds stink. They are going right to 7%. They never lift. They are a sure sign that things are way too hot and that the

Fed

is going to tighten 50 to 100 basis points.

Me:

No kidding. Tell me something I don't know. These bonds are pricing in at least 75 basis points of tightening and yet the banks aren't going down. In fact the banks are rallying and

Bank One

(ONE) - Get Report

didn't go down after its most recent preannouncement. Three times could be a charm, or we could reach a view which says that maybe the worst is over in the worst bond market tape in history.

You:

Yahoo!

(YHOO)

blew it. They couldn't do the 20-cent whisper. Yahoo! has always marked the top in the Net.

Me:

Oh man, I heard this same argument at 500, 600, 700, 800, 800 and 1000 on the

DOT

. Maybe this time it is different, but I think those are the six most expensive words in the lexicon.

You:

I hate your innate, misplaced optimism. Just you wait. You didn't live through the '70s. You don't know what's out there. You have never seen a terrible bear market. You are a blind cheerleader.

Me:

Oh heck, I was living in my car in the '70s. Sorry I didn't know about the big bad bear market. And I have lived and traded through some pretty miserable markets including 80 to 82, 87, 90 and 94. And my optimism didn't kill me then. Anyway, I have cash and I have

said that the

NDX

is a little too

hard for me to trade. Sorry I can't be more negative, but it just hasn't made me much money to be that negative and I can't decide that empirical logic is wrong.

You:

You better sell your AOL, Yahoo!, NDX, Intel, Microsoft, B2Bs and everything else cause you are going to lose your shirt.

Me:

I am wearing a

Gap

(GPS) - Get Report

T-shirt; I can afford the loss. And anyway, if you hate what I like, short it. You can profit from my financial demise!

But remember, you have to be able to borrow it first!

James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long AOL, Yahoo!, Microsoft, General Electric and Gap. His fund often buys and sells securities that are the subject of his columns, both before and after the columns are published, and the positions that his fund takes may change at any time. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Cramer's writings provide insights into the dynamics of money management and are not a solicitation for transactions. While he cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he invites you to comment on his column at

jjcletters@thestreet.com.