Preferences often get damaged during the major Mac OS updates. Try recreating the preference file as the first step here.
com.adobe.PhotoshopElements.plist - in user/Library/Preferences
com.adobe.PhotoshopElements.plist - in Macintosh HD/Library/Preferences
put Originals to trash and started Elements 9.
It did not work.
Effects are still not listed....
now I zapped Prefs by holding option+command+shift during start of Elements9.
...... the same - no effects in the box ....
It is possible other files were damaged. The next most likely option would be the media database (which tracks the available effects). Try closing Photoshop Elements, navigate to MACINTOSH HD\Library\Application Support\Adobe\Photoshop Elements\9.0\Locale\en-US\ and delete the file MediaDatabase.db3. When you next launch Photoshop Elements, you will get a progress bar that this is being recreated, which will take several minutes as it reads through your available effects.
If this still does not work, try uninstalling and reinstalling Photoshop Elements.
Thank you Brett,
deleting the file MediaDatabase.db3
solves the problem.