President Obama addressed the S&P — or as he put it, "some agency" — credit downgrade of U.S. sovereign debt, among other things, during a brief White House speech today. He even promised that America, despite everything, will "always be a AAA country." That's sweet of you to say, Dad.

Oh, and then the major stock indices dropped another several percent. The Dow, NASDAQ and S&P are all down another 5-7% total today. What does this have to do with the credit downgrade? It doesn't seem like much, beyond the vague fear-soaked "everything sucks" animal spirits guiding traders today, since Treasury prices are booming like they've rarely boomed before. Most likely, the sell-off based on Eurozone troubles and the marvelously shitty United States economy are proceeding afoot. Also, Bank of America is collapsing.

Would it be better for markets if both parties promised to come back to Washington from recess to offer, say, a payroll tax cut extension, or if they just stayed at home since they'd probably fuck things up even more?

What is to be done?