Welcome to the latest exciting edition of "God, when will the recession go away?" Today's shit-your-pants economic metric is existing home sales, a key indicator of consumer confidence and hence whether Americans will ever start shoving money around the economy again. And according to the Los Angeles Times, the answer is ... not any damn time soon. After the federal homebuying tax credit expired, existing home sales dropped by an astonishing 27.2 percent nationwide in July. Home sales are now at their lowest point since 1999, or 1995 if you focus exclusive on single family homes. The news has already prompted a plunge in the stock market this morning; so far, the Dow's down by one percent, and the day's just getting started.