Breakfast Buffet, Tuesday, April 21

You know it's been a bad year when the word profit sets off waves of cynicism. NPR puts it all in perspective--the known knowns, the known unknowns, and the unknown unknowns.

Recession Nostalgia: Having declared the financial misery of the last two years over, the chairman of London & Oxford Capital Markets lays out all the benefits of the recession we'll miss once it's gone. Lower prices, home-grown veggies, and leisure time make the cut. Mass foreclosures are mysteriously absent...

A Graying Dragon: Remember China's draconian population control measures? Not only did they spell bad news for baby girls, but also for a society that will see the elderly account for 30 percent of the population by 2050. The coming retirement avalanche puts additional weight behind efforts to expand China's social safety net.

Playing Oil Hardball: OPEC leaders are making noise about cutting supply after months of weak prices, accusing consumer countries of stockpiling. That would be the U.S., which is sitting on its biggest inventories since 1990.

It's the Iqtisad, Stupid: Investors are stepping up their efforts to grow sustainable businesses in Iraq. It's too soon to tell how they will fare, but there may be some green shoots to convince Iraqis their lot is better with the factory than the insurgency.