Here is a link (subscription required) to an article by Gary Rivlin in the "News in Review" section of yesterday's New York Times. It is entitled "In Silicon Valley, the Crash Seems Like Just Yesterday". Here are a few quotes from the article which I found interesting.
"...[T]he digerati of Silicon Valley endured the 1990's dot-com bubble, and since then have lived with the psychic shock of its ignoble end."
"The average valley entrepreneur tends to spot bubbles everywhere, much the way granddad [scarred by the Great Depression] feared financial ruin every time a grandchild carelessly scraped leftover food into the trash."
In the article, Paul Kedrosky, an expert on entrepreneurism and technology advancement at the University of California at San Diego, observes, "There is such a heightened sense of bubble awareness in Silicon Valley that people confuse any expression of enthusiasm for a bubble. ....[Now people in the valley are so hyperaware of bubbles] that if they even hear what they think is a lit fuse, they're scurrying for the exits, yelling, 'Bubble,bubble, bubble' ".
Rivlin summarizes his observations on the psychic state of Silicon Valley thus: "Life is good. Money is pouring in. But almost everyone is anxious".
I think Rivlin's observations apply much more widely. I think the crash of 2000-2002 scarred a whole generation of investors, not just those those who rode the tech bubble up and then all the way down again. That is why nowadays investors seem to see bubbles everwhere: in US stock prices, in China, in the housing market, etc.
The implication of this psychological state seems clear, at least to me. (See this post too.) We are not going to see another episode like the 2000-2002 crash for a generation. The long term trend in US stock prices will be steadily higher until then.