Brighton Park
On Rodeo Drive, the economy's booming

Steve Thorne, 54, watched approvingly as his girlfriend tried on a pair of boots at the Jimmy Choo boutique on Rodeo Drive last week. "I can't complain," he said when I asked how the economy's been treating him. With sales of new cars down, Thorne said, his 600-employee replacement-parts business in Philadelphia has had a record year, and he's doing better than ever. "Things are good," he said. "Absolutely." Gas and grocery prices may be more than many working-class families can bear, home foreclosures may be soaring, but life is just fine at the loftiest heights of the economy. At least that's the view from Beverly Hills, where I spent a...