One Year Later: Even celebrities face lowered expectations

The massive downturn of the last year have been a great leveler, demonstrating that, regardless of one's position or address, the effects of an economic crisis spread across all sectors of society. As the miseries of Madoff-victim Kevin Bacon and mortgage sufferer Ed McMahon show, while fame and fortune can form a hedge against poverty, they can't insulate celebrities from having to make the same sorts of difficult decisions that are playing out in kitchens and over dinner tables across the country.

Perhaps more importantly, celebrity financial woes demonstrate two classic reactions that are available to the economy's victims. On one end of the spectrum, many consumers are trying to adapt to the new realities of the economy by changing their lifestyles to live within their now-decreased means. On the other end, some have yet to acknowledge the scope and cruelty of the economic shift, and are attempting to live as they did before. The stories of Annie Leibovitz and John McAfee nicely illustrate the point