A reader writes:

In response to Robert Reich's comments you wrote:

"But I do think it's worth noting that very few people expected a Dow 10,000 any time soon last January. Obama has done the critical - and largely overlooked - thing. He has restored confidence in the markets and the economy after what came close to a total panic and meltdown. That is not easy. It is not sufficient, but it was necessary. And he did it."

So he did it, did he? 

Last time I checked, he wasn't in office until January 2009, 3 months after the real panic took place (following the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy and the TED spread crisis.)  I do remember Herny Paulson's face on the cover Time magazine for a reason.  You wouldn't want to give a Bushie credit though.  We get it.  But I digress...

Am I supposed to be happy we are at 10,000 on the Dow, a number we were at the beginning of this decade?  It's people like you who put economic power (and credit for outcomes) in the hands of politicians, giving one man credit for restoring confidence to a multi-trillion dollar stock market.  What kind of effing "conservative of doubt" are you?

Ouch. My point is that confidence matters in a recession like the last one. Inspiring confidence is not easy; and Obama deserves some credit for helping restore it. It's not over yet. But it's something essential for economic recovery. I'm not sure McCain-Palin would have given the same reassurance.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.