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I’ll let this sign speak for itself, then I’ll speak for it:

I will assume, first off, that this isn’t a joke, even though Pennsylvania Dutch humor can be pretty dry. I took a picture of this sign a few weeks ago, and the “now hiring” portion wasn’t there. I swear. I notice things like that.

Maybe we’ll just have to rework the old saw: A recession is when the neighboring diner can’t sell any chicken pot pie. A depression is when you can’t sell any chicken pot pie.

At any rate, the sign should serve to discourage any efforts at comparing the current US downturn to anything in the past. Nothing is ever like what came before and trying to draw analogies only blinds us to what’s really going on. And that blindness prevents us from coming up with effective solutions that do more than make us feel good for trying.

Although, I suppose it can be just as rewarding to debate whose analogy is more accurate than to fix things.