In the past six months, the United States has seen the lowest Dow closing in over a decade, the worst job market in almost a century, and a recession that some contend may actually be a depression. Sadly, there have been two cultural icons missing from the American milieu which have the power to recharge the global economy: American Idol and Tiger Woods. Luckily, they're both back.

While the recent stimulus plan aims to bolster the foundation of the economy, these two money-making allstars are just now returning from extended breaks brought on by knee surgery (Woods) and the rerun season (Idol).

Assuming they can adapt to the brave new post-Bush world they left behind, these global phenomena that have generated over $1 billion in revenue between them could be the financial salve the world needs.

As if kneeling before the Second Coming, Nike has produced a million-dollar TV commercial saluting Tiger’s return. American Idol’s ratings are down roughly 10% so far, but it’s still maintaining its place as television’s reigning juggernaut. Even embattled car manufacturer Ford is keeping its multi-million American Idol endorsement.

This is change we can believe in. And besides, if the most dominant forces in sports and television can’t help resuscitate the economy, at least we’ll have some fun distractions to keep us occupied in the meantime.