Jon Stewart thrashes Jim Cramer

Posted by: Diane Brady on March 12, 2009

What happened to stock pundit Jim Cramer? What I enjoy most about him and his show, Mad Money, is his passion, his insights and his incredible self-confidence. He’s a former hedge fund manager. He can be bombastic, even annoying. Sometimes he’s right. Sometimes he’s wrong.

But I, for one, have never cast him as an investigative journalist. The guy lives and breathes the markets. Most ads for his TV show have a picture of him screaming. He’s an entertainer who talks about his own bets with enthusiasm and, most often, with knowledge.

So why did Cramer feel a need to suddenly assume the role of somber spokesman for CNBC on a comedy show Thursday night? It didn’t make sense.

The “weeklong match of the century” (a.k.a. Brawl Street) finally took place. After days of watching himself and his network CNBC ridiculed by comedian Jon Stewart, Cramer appeared on The Daily Show.

Stewart had started the week with a broad swipe at CNBC and the predictions of its pundits over the past year. “If I had only taken CNBC’s advice,” Stewart said, “I would have a million dollars today—provided I started with $100 million.”

On Thursday, after warming up with a few swipes at Cramer (it didn’t help that Cramer chose to go on Martha Stewart’s show earlier in the day to bake a pie), Stewart brought out the stock pundit.

Stewart clearly blames CNBC for not being more of a watchdog prior to the crisis.

Instead of being “a very powerful tool of illumination,” Stewart told Cramer, “It feels like we are capitalizing your adventure by our pensions … It is a game that you know is going on, but you go on television as a financial network and pretend it isn’t happening.” Added Stewart: “Isn’t there a problem selling snake oil as vitamin tonic?”

At this point, I fully expected Cramer to jump up and shout his point of view: the best calls he made, what his audience wants from him, how easy it is to find 45 damning seconds of tape when you go back through hundreds of hours of footage. He could have debunked Stewart’s conspiracy theory. After all, why would anyone in the hyper-competitive TV news business ever keep quiet if they were aware of wrongdoing or heard rumors that a company was going to collapse? The financial turmoil has been ratings gold for CNBC precisely because viewers can’t tear their eyes away from the crisis as it unfolds. News networks often thrive on bad news.

One thing that was hard to address was damning footage in which Cramer talks about how easy it is for a short seller—someone who bets on a stock’s decline—to push down stock prices. Then again, you couldn’t say that wasn’t an interesting insight into some of the rumored practices that have made short-selling so controversial.

Instead, Cramer looked cowed and said: “I try really hard to make as many good calls as I can … I’m trying.” Then he complained that CEOs lie, while admitting that he made a bad call on whether to buy Bear Stearns stock

Losing money in the stock market is not a game. Day traders discovered that during the dot-com boom. Any of us who have looked at our 401K plans have discovered that now. But I have always looked at Jim Cramer as being on the side of the retail investor, an enthusiastic stock picker who tries to get it right.

Over the past year, he’s made some conspicuous mistakes. But the list of people who haven’t is a startlingly short one. (Even Warren Buffett made bad bets.)

Cramer allowed Stewart to get the upper hand, even letting him characterize the show as an infomercial without much protest.

“I’m a commentator… I’m a guy trying to do an entertainment show about business.”

He also could have said: I’m a guy who has invested his own money over the years with great success. I live this stuff, and I try to educate people as best as I can. On Bear Stearns, I screwed up. You know what? We all screwed up. What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?

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Reader Comments

spriggan1

March 13, 2009 01:39 AM

Well said. Cramer was obviously unfamiliar with the Daily Show. Yeah they are a comedy show, but they are critically acclaimed because they do their homework and backup their claims. There is substance behind their jokes. He should have been prepared for that. But it looked like he went in waving a "white flag of surrender" and was surprised that Stewart didn't hold back.

JON STEWART

March 13, 2009 01:42 AM

Stop making excuses for Cramer. Stewart did a great job and he wasnt talking about getting calls right or wrong...he was talking about claiming yourself to be the know all..in Cramer we trust...while people lose tons on crappy advice.

Andrew P

March 13, 2009 01:57 AM

I saw the episode tonight, and I have to say, I was impressed by Stewart. Clearly his staff does their research, and he himself, after almost a decade on the Daily Show, is a very (underestimated) well-informed person. He did not throw one softball question the whole 20 minutes and there was almost no laughter involved. He had damning questions and footage at his disposal, and I think Cramer could not have expected it all at once. Cramer on his part did not fight back at all. CNBC, his staff, his writers, his colleagues...it seemed as if no one gave him any talking points or rebuttals. Listening to Cramer though, I did feel a bit bad. He constantly said he will try to do better, and recognized that fact that both he and his network should have done better in the past. In the end, however, it came down to Jon Stewart. Watching, you could hear genuine emotion in his voice; he was upset. While the business world and mainstream news most often see him as a laughable satirist, he puts himself out there as the voice for people who don't have a pundit speaking for them alongside the talking heads. He has hit hard before on Crossfire and on some of his other interviews, but after this one, I think many more people will consider him one of the most honest, direct, and sincere talk show hosts...even if he still is a comic.

Matt

March 13, 2009 02:00 AM

I feel this interview was completely justified and that you have missed the mark entirely, Ms. Brady. The news shows and journalists in general have an obligation to the public that consumes their news to dig and get as much of the truth as possible. While, arguably, Mr. Cramer's show is more entertainment than "economic news," he has hosted a great deal of the CEOs who have lead the downhill charge that we are all participating in. And while you could argue the same thing about Mr. Stewart – that he is running a show for entertainment purposes only; when he gets a guest such as Mr. Cramer, Jon Stewart doesn't hesitate to hold their feet to the fire. Unfortunately for Mr. Cramer, his "cowed" attitude only furthered his guilt. Mr Cramer may not have deserved it but unfortunately he was the scape goat for the entire economic press. I can only hope that this continues.

JJ

March 13, 2009 02:00 AM

wow, sounds like someone is trying to do some media massaging for their buddy Cramer!

Don't you think Cramer went quiet for a reason? His career is probably over. Maybe worse, like an investigation.

The point is that these shows and NETWORKS have been a giant stock pump & dump scheme, and they know it, and you know it.

The suckers are the citizens.
They just use the captial of the citizens to leverage in the worlds biggest casino.
When it tanks, they instantly pull out with massive profits, and sell it short. Its the biggest crooked scam on earth.

now they wait until the next cycle, and will do it again.

Joe

March 13, 2009 02:01 AM

Were you listening to the interview? Cramer simply became the poster child for the entire CNBC network. Stewart's problem is CNBC representing itself as a financial network, yet not actually reporting when it knows CEOs lie during an interview, and doesn't make its viewers privy to the underhanded backstage dealings of the financial markets. CNBC simply reports what it's told by corporations so it can assist in puppeteering the general public into buying and selling what the market wants, when it wants.

Steve K.

March 13, 2009 02:03 AM

James Cramer: "You walk away from talking to a CEO and you know he's lying." So my question is, If you know the truth (otherwise how would you know he's lying?), why don't you report THAT and not just be the CEO's stenographer? When I went to journalism school the lesson was, "If they don't want it printed, it's news; if they want it printed, it's propaganda." CNBC needs to decide what it is -- a true news organization or the financial equivalent of ESPN.

Ron Williams

March 13, 2009 02:05 AM

Cramer barely avoided jail during the tech bubble bust. He is dangerous to people who actually think he is giving good advice (which clearly he has not). CNBC needs to clean up its act and stop sucking up to the Wall Street thief clan.

Patrick

March 13, 2009 02:06 AM

The financial industry has been guilty of a series of illegal and unethical practices, from selling unaffordable mortgages, to taking obscene profits from dangerously leveraged derivatives, making risky bets with other peoples money, and some cases outright fraud and theft. It was happening on a large enough scale that some people had to know. -- yet an entire "financial" network failed to report even a glimmer. People lost their life savings while ruthless vermin stole billions and Cramer rang his bell, honked his horn and yelled at the camera. I have no sympathy.

eve

March 13, 2009 02:07 AM

I feel bad for Cramer as he was completely crashed by Stewart. It wasn't personal. But everything Jon Stewart confronted is exactly the problems with the financial market for years. The people at the top who have every power to screw us over did what they did, then have the guts to blame us for listening and believing them. With CNBC, Stewart is simply saying "I don't acclaim that I know everything, so I don't advertise the idea".

Salviati

March 13, 2009 02:07 AM

This article is disgusting. CNBC and Jim Cramer are facilitating the gaming of retail investors. As far as I'm concerned these broadcasts should illegal.

maximus

March 13, 2009 02:09 AM

it doesn't matter what Jon Stewart's investment advisors batting average is....

he's not touted by a major television network which calls him an expert and allows him to makes recomendations, has absolutely no accountability whatsoever when he is wrong and has cost investors billions of dollars....

you should have stuck to the facts in your piece and now shown your biases....

in fact we have NOT all screwed up, some have done tremendously well by seeing this crisis coming and preparing accordingly....and no one has lied or misled more people than Jim Cramer, go watch the clips on youtube, the facts are irrefutable....

Maximus
http://4best4worst.wordpress.com/

Aaron

March 13, 2009 02:09 AM

You missed the entire point of the entire interview.

First, it wasn't that Cramer got calls wrong; it was that he is advertised as being a seer by the network. The key point here is that Stewart isn't upset at Cramer but at the entire network.

Furthermore, Stewart skewered Cramer, rightly, for trade practices that he engaged in while he ran a hedge fund which are also practiced on a wide scale by other hedge fund managers.

Mark

March 13, 2009 02:10 AM

What happened to your hero Cramer? He was dead wrong and got called out on it. When will you people get the clue that the rest of the country has had ENOUGH of your crap and we won't put up with it anymore, Diane. We aren't buying it anymore. I think Stewart put it best when he asked 'when does it EVER make sense to leverage 35 to one?"

Dan Isaacson

March 13, 2009 02:11 AM

Ms. Brady,

With respect, you are missing the point. It isnt that Cramer and other knew of the doom that was coming or that they made some bad calls, it was that CNBC and thier couterparts were so caught up in the animal that they simply didnt want to know.

Of course, NOW that the crisis is underway, everyone would have loved to be the one to crack that story or get that lead. But at the time, no one wanted to go against the grain and ask questions that ran counter to the large profits and "good times" that were being created. That is where CNBC failed. That is where many other did too.

There were plenty of people who went to the FTC, Congress and the press with concerns, but with home values going through the roof and record profits, no one asked the questions that needed to be asked.

Maybe now, right now, we can start asking these companies if there are any investments that are also a 35:1 bet so we can get ahead of the next crisis.

I hope you understand this.

-Dan

peterj

March 13, 2009 02:14 AM

Good points. It's obvious that Jon Stewart needs a new target now that he can't attack Obama, so they trained their targets on CNBC.

I don't get how Jon Stewart can sit there and be so smugly hypocritical by criticizing Cramer on not being an investigative journalist and then he dismisses criticisms of himself by saying he's just entertainment. They're both the same.

In fact, Cramer does go against the grain all the time. He teaches his viewers to not just openly believe what analysts report, and gives background insight on how Wall Street works.

I bet Jon Stewart has never watched CNBC before except for a one or two second clips he uses out of context. Like you said, it's too easy to turn around and scapegoat CNBC for reporting on what is going on. If he actually did watch it, he would have seen the reporters actually asking pretty tough questions, including Mark Haines and Dylan Rattigan.

I think Cramer just wants to be buddy-buddy with Jon Stewart which is a shame, because really Stewart thinks he's the one on the right-side of morality, be it against Bush, or against Wall Street. Who wants to be friends with someone so smug like that, it's too tiresome having to stroke he ego all the time.

WillyK

March 13, 2009 02:15 AM

Nice attempt at the straw man technique. The criticism is not that CNBC was aware of any particular wrongdoing, it was that CNBC's personalities were generally aware that the market was being gamed by the hedge funds and large investment banks at the expense of the little guy. You must surely know that has been Stewart's main premise, and for you to pretend otherwise shows your bias.

Kurt

March 13, 2009 02:16 AM

This article seems to miss the point. It's not that pundits make "bad calls" every now and again it's that they say with certainty "this stock will go up... you are dumb not to buy this stock."

It seems this is just an article by a business news organization trying to defend what little credibility the industry has left.

Blue Sunflower

March 13, 2009 02:18 AM

You're missing the whole point of Jon Stewart's argument: CNBC sucks at its job. Instead of actually investigation, they (and by "they" that includes Cramer) simply took their friends and Wall Street peers' word that "everything is okay." Worse, CNBC then told its audience that the market was fine and they should continue to invest their life savings there.

And now? CNBC is acting all "shocked" because heavens to betsy, their friends and Wall Street advisors lied to them, and the markets aren't fine! I mean, who knew? (And by the way, the answer to that is absolutely everyone EXCEPT it appears CNBC.)

Cramer got what he deserved. The whole CNBC network did.

Tim

March 13, 2009 02:19 AM

"Your so vain..I bet you think this song is about you." You completely miss Stewarts point. Watch the interview again.

Eric

March 13, 2009 02:22 AM

Quite frankly, you sound like someone who is defending a guy and a system who just got reamed on TV.

"Then again, you couldn’t say that wasn’t an interesting insight into some of the rumored practices that have made short-selling so controversial."

Yeah, I'm sure that was D-Bags message -expose short selling for what it is?

Did CNBC or Jim Cramer pay you to write this piece?

Have a f--king backbone and stand up for what's right.

Roach

March 13, 2009 02:24 AM

I wish I was Yawn Stewart. It would be nice to do nothing meaningful, make fun of anyone, set people up and make them look stupid... act high and mightly... oh and get paid for it. Cramer rolled over that is for sure.

Roach

March 13, 2009 02:24 AM

I wish I was Yawn Stewart. It would be nice to do nothing meaningful, make fun of anyone, set people up and make them look stupid... act high and mighty... oh and get paid for it. Cramer rolled over that is for sure.

that1guy

March 13, 2009 02:28 AM

You're missing the point, Diane. Stewart correctly pointed out that the whole investment schema itself has degenerated into a sleazy insider game rife for abuse instead of what it was intended to be: the method to raise seed capital for new industries that will produce wealth and jobs for the entire nation, not just for a few privileged shareholders.

You Wall Street types have completely lost your way, and it's really just been about making yourselves rich for too many years now--and you dare to act surprised as this house of cards you built and sold at bubble prices under the umbrella of Republican chicanery collapses?

Game over, baby. Go get a real job...if you can.

Cay

March 13, 2009 02:29 AM

Wow. Like so many others of your ilk, you refuse to admit there's a fire behind the smoke. I have never read your comments before nor will I do so in the future. It just saddens me not because people like you exist, but rather that people like you do not think before you speak, let alone picture how your narrow-minded words are perceived by others. Enjoy your wealth. We earned it for you.

bill

March 13, 2009 02:30 AM

seems like society values cynical sarcasm above an honest effort. how else do you explain Bill Mahar, Jon Stewart, and Al Franken.

Dave

March 13, 2009 02:31 AM

> We all screwed up. What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?

Not everybody screwed up. I shorted stocks and real estate and invested in gold, and I'm doing great. And believe it or not, there were investment advisors recommending doing just that, but nobody listened to them because they were "downers" and "party poopers" and that doesn't make good TV. Cramer and all those CNBC jackasses are guilty of being blinded by profit and trying to "trade the trend" while ignoring the big picture, and they are getting what they deserve.

Ali

March 13, 2009 02:32 AM

It's embarassing that a basic cable comedian had to point out that one of the top financial news networks failed to fulfill its journalistic duty--to provide people with the information they need to make informed decisions. Cramer did the only respectable thing he could: acknowledge mistakes were made.

Brad Thomas

March 13, 2009 02:35 AM

"You know what? We all screwed up. What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?"

You don't get it. It is not about making the wrong call this one time. It is not about the financial prowess of Jon Stewart or any other individual.The point Stewart is trying to make is that CNBC gets people to watch it because it tells people that it knows what is going on in the financial world, that it is a source that you should trust when it comes to making decisions about your money, when in reality it either didn't really know what was going on or it knew and played along because it meant a gain for themselves somehow. Essentially, they were either too dumb to see it coming and should not have been telling people to trust them, or they were in on it and played us all for fools.

Stewart said it best on the show: this was irresponsible at best or criminal at worst.

jay

March 13, 2009 02:36 AM

Are you kidding me. Jim Cramer is a great success? The guy failed as a hedge fund trader. Why do you think he's on CNBC? He couldn't hack it as a trader. You're embarassingly ill-informed.

Walt

March 13, 2009 02:41 AM

That's right, Diane, your idea of good business reporting is to shill for the big corporations that were ripping us off. Never to ask hard or embarassing questions when given the opportunity but to lead with puffballs to a known fraudster: What's it like to be a billionaire.
Jon Stewart is voicing what most people feel. You people, so called financial reporters, are in on the game as we consumers and tax payers are royally and I mean royally f*cked. As for Cramer, he didn't say the things you should have said, he admitted that he and the others at CNBC are snake oil salesmen.
Was anyone on any channel or newspaper investigating these guys? Over to you, Diane

TonyW

March 13, 2009 02:41 AM

Wouldn't it be nice if NBC News and MSNBC had made these observations 6 months or more ago? They're supposed to be the "real" news networks. Brian Williams could run his own perp walk with the CNBC execs and the various investment bankers who brought down the international economy.

Pete

March 13, 2009 02:42 AM

If your think the point of this interview was to berate Cramer for missing some big stock calls, you really have missed the point. Perhaps you should watch it again.

gavin Ehringer

March 13, 2009 02:44 AM

I think you missed the whole point ... which makes me wonder about your own news analysis. Bottom line: by listening to CEOs instead of doing real reporting, people like Kramer and Santelli lead us down a rosy pathway toward financial ruin. Santelli tried to lay the blame at the feet of home buyers who overextended, but Stewart rightly placed the blame at Wall Street investors who packaged up bad loans and made fast gains. While Kramer may have given good advice, he and others also failed to foresee the risky conditions investors faced. Conditions that were obvious by 2006, had these economic reporters cared to pay attention. They did not, and now, the world suffers.

haha

March 13, 2009 02:48 AM

You are stuck in La La Land. Jon Stewart was more right than you'll ever know in those investor/hedgefund/moneymanager shades you keep wearing.

Jason Dilg

March 13, 2009 02:50 AM

This article is pathetic, and represents the last CPM you'll get from me, "Businessweek. Put down your bon-bons and start doing your f---ing job instead of being an apologist for the loser Jim Cramer is.

Billo

March 13, 2009 02:51 AM

omg its cramer & cramer vs jon

Jason

March 13, 2009 02:53 AM

I dunno; I think Stewart very effectively - if not entirely accurately - made Cramer the scapegoat for an business that is entirely too credulous. Either CNBC is in the business of being financial journalists or stock touts; tonight's show certainly offered a lot of evidence that they've been doing too much of the latter and not enough of the former.

Esme Stein

March 13, 2009 02:53 AM

Cramer is more accountable b'cos lots of ordinary folks actually take his advice, and he along with all the other so called financial experts use their bully pulpit to influence the markets. And to blame the new Prez is plain stupid.

Ken

March 13, 2009 02:57 AM

Jon Stewart rocks.

dood abides

March 13, 2009 03:00 AM

nice. try.

Paul

March 13, 2009 03:00 AM

nice take

Edo Hokandar

March 13, 2009 03:01 AM

Diane,

Great blog! I myself am a retail investor and if it's one thing that we all should learn is to never believe in one source. That's the whole concept of managing your own money, you put it in where you feel comfortable in. Not where people tell you to put it.

If you put in money simply because someone told you to put it. Then you're the same as someone who gets told to jump off the bridge and actually do it.

CNBC consists of one of the most informed audiences in the world. From CEOs, hedge funds, professors and individual investors. We analyze! Not follow!

I read four business prints per week, Business Week, Economist, Fortune & Barrons. I follow CNBC and have active alerts of the Wall Street Journal on my Blackberry. I watch both Fast Money and Mad Money.

Cramer is an entertainer just like Jon Stuart. Although I may not agree with everything Cramer says, I like watching his CEO interviews. It gives me more insight into the companies i'm interested in.

Ellen

March 13, 2009 03:06 AM

Your article asks: "After all, why would anyone in the hyper-competitive TV news business ever keep quiet if they were aware of wrongdoing or heard rumors that a company was going to collapse?"
Ad revenue, that's why. Also, access to CEOs for interviews.
I've been watching CNBC for years and, just like a car salesman, now is always the time to buy. They're cheerleaders for the markets. I wonder how they can speak so confidently about the stock market and hype stocks when they do no investigative journalism at all.

l.a.guy

March 13, 2009 03:13 AM

Personally I've never been a fan of Cramer's due obnoxious delivery, but I almost felt sorry for him watching him get eviscerated by Stewart. Of course Cramer could have left it alone, the original (mostly well deserved) attack was a broadside at CNBC not Cramer, but by taking offense he became the focal point of Stewart's attack and was promptly skewered by the host.

I think Stewart raises some legitimate points about the credibility of CNBC when on the one hand they hold themselves out as a financial news network but at the same time are generally a PR platform for many of the guests who also happen to work for many of their sponsors. I recall that when it was clear Countrywide was going down some of the CNBC talent was clearly in denial about the severity of the problem. (Countrywide was a frequent advertiser on CNBC).

It will be interesting to see how Cramer responds to this. You think he'll do a mea culpa on Mad Money?

SharoneLee

March 13, 2009 03:13 AM

Your article above sounds like the excuses a mother makes when her son drives drunk and kills someone--you want to talk about all the good while ignoring the obvious problem. Jim Cramer went on public airwaves and urgently advised people how to invest in the role of expert and it was extremely poor advice. What I suggest is that we call the Daily Show the real NEWS, because at least it reports what really happen. Then the rest of you are the jesters playing at the game of being entertainers and commercial shills for those who are really the criminals here, the business people who risked the kinds of investment funds that people were counting on to be managed in a sober and lower risk way. Shame on you all.

Ron

March 13, 2009 03:13 AM

I watched the interview. I was amazed. Cramer caved on every issue. Your article implied the question, "Why?"
Cramer had the temerity to challenge Pres. Obama's 'stimulus' expenditure. Actually, to rip the stimulus.
By the time the extreme left finished with GE, NBC, CNBC et al after Cramer's anti-stimulus rant, this interview was his punishment. He, and his handlers at CNBC, knew exactly what was coming. Straying from the Party line is dangerous. The message has been delivered. Stray at your peril. So much for leftist parrot claims, that "dissent is the highest form of patriotism."

Socialist Jew

March 13, 2009 03:14 AM

You're joking, right? The reason Cramer didn't protest is BECAUSE HE KNEW STEWART WAS RIGHT.

And maybe somewhere deep down inside you nkow he is too.

The game is over. It's time to really go back to work.

Murrowboy

March 13, 2009 03:15 AM

Obviously, you too have been deceived by Cramer.

He admitted himself that he is an entertainer, and you (and millions of other suckers) actually took him seriously.

I'm in it for the long haul and know not to pay attention to the everyday noise of the market, and to clowns like Cramer. People like Cramer exploit and prey on people's emotions and fears, as has Wall Street.

N. Cudahy

March 13, 2009 03:20 AM

If you actually bothered to watch the interview, Stewart made it clear to Jim early on that it was never about him in particular. This whole attack was aimed at CNBC in general. Especially Santelli's comments that us homeowners are losers. And Jon kept saying that he knew Cramer was a brilliant guy in regards to the stock market, he just wanted him to take it more seriously. But you know, if you want to cherry pick that interview to make it look like Jon Stewart is an idiot be my guest, I am not the one who has to worry about your credibility.

N. Cudahy

March 13, 2009 03:22 AM

If you actually bothered to watch the interview, Stewart made it clear to Jim early on that it was never about him in particular. This whole attack was aimed at CNBC in general. Especially Santelli's comments that us homeowners are losers. And Jon kept saying that he knew Cramer was a brilliant guy in regards to the stock market, he just wanted him to take it more seriously. And, AND, Jon Stewart repeatedly said that he had no idea what the stock market was going to do, that he was looking at this from the position of the everyman. But apparently you financial experts know better than us average Americans, and if you want to cherry pick that interview to make it look like Jon Stewart is an idiot be my guest, I am not the one who has to worry about your credibility.

news

March 13, 2009 03:29 AM

Same problems Stewart cites of CNBC are very apparent in this article's authorship as well. Stewart rolled a tape of Jim Cramer admitting he broke the law and advising others to do it as well. And news organizations, with 'reporting' and 'commentary' like this, only aid and abet.

Jon Berke

March 13, 2009 03:47 AM

This article is terribly off base. Every point that Jon Stewart made tonight was dead on. In Cramer's defense, I will say that I give him credit for actually going on Stewart's show and facing him, and for taking a licking that is not entirely deserved individually. I agree, Cramer is not responsible for a lot of what has happened, but Stewart wasn't saying that Cramer was responsible. He was pointing out the the media trusted to report on the financial world had become complicit in the "shinanigans," as Cramer so oft put it. Say what you want about Stewart, but you're not fooling anyone. He has inadvertantly become the voice of reason and integrity, and it is becoming hard to ignore. Similar to a Shakespearean jester, cast as a clown he often exhibits more poignancy than many of the players that we are expected to take seriously. To ask what Jon Stewart's investment adviser's batting average is is disingenuous. While I couldn't tell you how he's doing with his investments, I'll tell you that he's batting 1000 in his proclaimed area of expertise.

Yossarian

March 13, 2009 03:54 AM

Cramer is not the point.
What "expert" in the entire financial media stood up against deregulation, cdc's
selling mortgages as investments over and over again?

They didn't see it coming?

I saw it coming and sold my house at the high. I'm certainly no expert but I can see a scam when it's glaring in my face. Stewart is the only one to call them on it. I think it's unfortunate Cramer was the fall guy. I enjoy him and think he's one of the good guys.
Kudlow for instance, is the serious creep.

Timothy Kephart

March 13, 2009 04:17 AM

The impression I got from those tapes of him talking about short selling was that he was giving examples of how people short sell not recommending people do it. It would be no different then a homicide investigator talking about how someone would manipulate a crime scene to try to get away with murder. Doesn't make the investigator a murderer himself.

Cramer's an entertainer and he has good advice about a lot of things but taking pot shots at him for making bad calls during one of the worst market melt downs in history would be like Al Michael being vilified for not correctly predicting who would win the Superbowl...during a strike with scabs suiting up for the season.

I'm glad you made the point about the potential collusion and CNBC or other outlets not reporting on it. If there was a shred of truth to that all the networks would be broadcasting that. It's a ratings hit when some scandal like that breaks. Just take a look at the coverage of Bernie Madoff today. Helicopters following his vehicle traveling to the courthouse. And how many times did we hear "For what will be his last few minutes as a free man." The networks would be all over a story if someone from a financial network was some how in cahoots with and protecting failed businesses.

M. Sales

March 13, 2009 04:36 AM

You are missing the point.Stewart was was attacking back-room corruption and the financial news media's lack of journalistic integrity.He nailed it.

anon

March 13, 2009 04:43 AM

Nice 6th grade summary. The last paragraph made it clear that you completely missed the point.

ES O'Donnell

March 13, 2009 04:57 AM

Your commentary completely misses the point. At the core of the issue is the appearance that the market is so weakly overseen by the government, so ineptly covered by the media, and so easily manipulated by deceitful power that it is being ruined for those--both individuals and firms--trying to invest in good faith.

Choosing to build your entry around the theme of whether Mr. Cramer's role in this amusing sideshow fits his persona is uninformative, and smacks of the same poor quality of coverage that has become the sad norm in our country.

Jeff

March 13, 2009 05:05 AM

Who is the idiotic, idolizer of Jim Cramer who wrote this hair-brained article? Stewart took a serious stance and pointed out the wrong-doings of people like Cramer who have had a part in bringing the stock market to its knees. Stewart said what every other news show is petrified to say, people like Cramer took the average Americans money in order to make themselves richer.

How can you POSSIBLY defend Cramer, especially after Stewart showed VIDEO of Cramer explaining exactly how to do things like short-selling. Cramer was not his "bombastic, yelling" self, he was somber because Stewart showed millions of Americans what kind of person Cramer really is.

daveburt

March 13, 2009 05:09 AM

Jon Stewart got the upper hand because he was right... If you question this logic, just watch this video in Cramer's own words talking about the Short sell, derivatives, hedge funds and manipulation of the marketts..

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/03/11/jim-cramer-shorting-stock_n_173824.html

If this continues to be the attitude of the wealthy (make money at any cost) then this country is in real trouble, and capitalism may very well turn out to be a failed system.

The Billions of dollar that the Banks and Wall street have used over the last 8 years to change the rules in Washington may have been good for the richest Americans, but it creates a failed system.

With all the talk of a "Trickle Down" economy, people seem to forget that there is a "Bubble Up" economy as well and when the masses are more worried about keeping a roof over their heads and food on the table the last thing they are thinhking about is buying products.

There is a natural balance to the system and it seems like alot of folks have forgotten that and are only worried about how much they can keep for themselves.

Why should the wealthiest Americans pay more in taxes? Because they benefit more from what this country has to offer. I drive 1 car, while corporations drive fleets of trucks, I never use the court system, while companies use it for Patents, Copywrites, and other protetions of intellectual properties just to name a few. I was educated using tax dollars, but the wealthiet Americans benefit from this too by haviving a pool of educated people to draw from...

The system needs to be adjusted, but people also need to realize that this country was built by workers, inventors and scientific progress.

Not by schemers, manipulators and paper pushers....

JDW

March 13, 2009 05:33 AM

The point Stewart was trying to make with this public humiliation is that CNBC is a tool of investment banking interests that simultaneously purports to be critical and unbiased while in reality serving as a means of disseminating falsehoods to manipulate the market.

I don't think John made this argument very persuasively, but he did show conclusively that Cramer has in the past admitted to happily fleecing the market for short term gains and can fairly call into question the moral and factual credibility of Cramer's outlandish claims.

Fact is Cramer has made some good calls and some bad ones, on Mad Money and elsewhere, professionally and ethically. I was glad to see his despicable admissions from "Wall Street Confidential" broadcast to a wider viewing audience.

In the end Cramer should have walked away. His viewing audience would have been none the wiser. If he has handlers he should have listened to them. If he listened to them, then he should fire them. Anyone who knew about the "The Street" footage (easily available on Youtube) knew that it was a Damoclesean sword hanging over his head.

I'm not a fan of Jim and after seeing him walk into this obvious trap I have even less respect for him -- very foolish, and very poorly handled. I agree with Diane that he could have greatly improved his showing with his own base by playing the 'well meaning investment adviser' but for anyone who is not enamored with his tv program, the shorting footage is simply too damning for this line of defense to hold.

Cramer could have gotten more mileage out of playing the role of hurt puppy, whimpering when stepped on, helpless, plaintively apologetic...make Stewart look like a bully (people don't laugh with a bully unless they are engaged in the abuse themselves).

The best strategy by far would have been to walk away.

What a maroon.

henst

March 13, 2009 05:35 AM

"But I have always looked at Jim Cramer as being on the side of the retail investor, an enthusiastic stock picker who tries to get it right." Really? Over the past year? In addition to being a vulgar showman whose judgment has been badly flawed--especially in the dotcom bubble, Cramer's background is as a hedge fund manager. A little research is always good before investing or trusting, or writing blogs.
How old are you? Six?

Jacob G. Corbin

March 13, 2009 05:44 AM

Way to miss the point. Jon wasn't raking Cramer over the coals for making bad calls (although "expert" Cramer performed worse than a random sample would have) but for being part of a system that turns the serious business of investment into an overheated, hyperventilating video game.

Cramer wasn't even Jon's real target. CNBC was, and the lax journalistic standards that led them to unquestioningly parrot everything they were told by people who were often their close friends in the business - and Cramer admitted right here that he would have a hard time calling a buddy out on a lie, even when millions of people's money might be riding on it.

And that's why real news outlets have rules about that sort of thing. And that's why CNBC and the other institutions that enabled this madness need to turn inward and fix themselves lest those of us who are sick of the games decide to elect people who will do that for them.

Rob Mahon

March 13, 2009 05:46 AM

Maybe some valid points there, but the damning evidence of Cramer talking about how to screw things up and commenting how the SEC doesn't understand all this, why did it take a 'comedian' to bring this out and hammer him with it? Where's the real reporters doing THEIR jobs?
As Jon says 'you knew what they were doing'. At least a comedy show that follows puppets making crank phone calls has our side in all this.

Greg

March 13, 2009 06:00 AM

You know I am not as smart as you money guys, I only have a masters in engineering and fly jets for the airlines, but you geniuses with MBA's need to be shot. This article is a joke and does not reflect the embarrassment EVERYONE in the stock market should share. Go to comedy central and see the interview and tell me you are not ashamed. Jon Stewart OWNED "Cramer" and he deserved it as did MSNBC Biz. THIS IS NOT A GAME.

George Cavanagh

March 13, 2009 06:13 AM

Sounds to me like Jim Cramer is asking for forgiveness. Let him who is without sin cast the first stone. Jim did the right thing, just enough humility, good show.

Margaret

March 13, 2009 06:36 AM

It sounds like you missed the more important point that Jon Stewart was trying to make.
"After all, why would anyone in the hyper-competitive TV news business ever keep quiet if they were aware of wrongdoing or heard rumors that a company was going to collapse?" Because it's easier to believe and easier to produce (easy as an infomercial). Also, access to power players is glamorous, and there's an incentive to label and treat them your friends (as Cramer mentioned several times in the interview) rather than sources, even for commentators. Cramer said: "Should we all call them liars? I'm a commentator. I'm not Edward R. Murrow. I'm trying to do an entertainment show about business. But it's difficult to have a reporter say, I just came from an interview with Hank Wilson and he lied his darn fool head off. It's difficult, it challenges the boundaries." Really? I don't deny it's difficult to gain access and manage relationships with sources. But if the boundaries off Cramer's show (and most of CNBC) is as he has just described them, then he's withholding his opinion/critical thinking skills in order to promote a feel-good story. And that's not news or commentary, that's PR. There's a market for that. But people who know a lot less about finance than Cramer are already doing that. Long term, he may still technically have more good calls than bad (I don't know enough to say), but knowledge without critical thinking and attempt to place it in context isn't worth more than a pile of memorized index cards. As Stewart said in the interview to Cramer, "This song ain't about you." It's about the value of your work.

Bob Loblaw

March 13, 2009 06:56 AM

It was hard to argue with the video tape. Stewart was right and was saying what a lot of people think. Cramer did not argue because he knows it's true. I agree with both of them that there is criminal activity in the way the market is being run and it's time for the criminals to pay.

Nina

March 13, 2009 07:21 AM

You've managed to miss the whole point of the interview also. Well done. Stewart complemented Cramer on his financial experience and knowledge during that very interview, but I guess you're crying because your favourite got a beating.

Nina

March 13, 2009 07:22 AM

You've managed to miss the whole point of the interview also. Well done. Stewart complemented Cramer on his financial experience and knowledge during that very interview, but I guess you're crying because your favourite got a beating.

Dan

March 13, 2009 07:42 AM

A) Stewart didn't target Cramer, he targeted CNBC. Cramer is just the one who was most vocal in defense.

B) "45 damning seconds of tape" Have you been watching TDS? They could have gone on for hours.

C) Just entertainment? Maybe that's why Stewart's show does so well. Stations like CNBC and FOX News treat news like it's entertainment, and then fail to actually investigate and deliver the news. The Daily Show calls them on it.

D) All of this is lost on Diane Brady.

brianoh

March 13, 2009 07:58 AM

It was extremely strange. It was as if Stewart had become a priest hearing Cramer's confession. There must be more to it.

Ethan

March 13, 2009 08:03 AM

Hi Diane,
I can't figure out whether you are completely clueless or maybe you just lack any sense of humor. You realize, that Jon does not tout himself as a financial adviser, don't you? He doesn't need to have an "investment batting average."
I really hope that your post was written satirically, because just thinking that you are being serious is pretty sad...

Kristi

March 13, 2009 08:04 AM

I thought Jon Stewart was brilliant. I admit he took a populous turn, but he's one of America's most trusted "journalists" because he asks the questions real journalists don't. Remember when journalists were the watchdogs for voters and taxpayers? Now, so few ever ask the hard questions. Why the hell did the meltdown take CNBC by surprise? Why did Jim Cramer, as an insider not see the truth. I used to read Jim's column on Street.com religously. When he lost money, he was notorious for smashing keyboards and having angry fits. Where's his anger on behalf of the millions of people who have lost everything, including their homes. The guys on Wall St. were trusted with our money. And they gambled it away. At least one journalist has given a voice, ad a little comic relief to the rest of us. (Alexandra Penney's doing a pretty good job on Madoff, too).
There was nothing Cramer could say last night. And he knew it.

Peter

March 13, 2009 08:26 AM

Saying that Jon Stewart should not criticize Jim Cramer for his advice because Stewart could not have done any better misses the big point Stewart is trying to make. Jim Cramer goes on TV everyday giving stock advice - Jon Stewart has never claimed to be an expert in anything related to finances. Remember that Jim Cramer's show is advertised with the slogan "In Cramer We Trust" -- nobody is expecting a stock picker to get it right 100% of the time, it's the false advertising makes folks like Stewart and myself mad. Some of us are smart enough to know than an index fund beats any money manager most of the time, and shows like Cramers seemed to be aimed at the majority of folks who don't realize this and assume that listening to a stock picker is going to make them rich. Once Cramer starts advertising his show as "entertainment", which is exactly what it is, Stewart will back off.

Raul Ramos y Sanchez

March 13, 2009 08:30 AM

Jim Cramer is among the most visible manifestation of a seductive trend that is now seeing its denouement. Many Americans have come to believe that wealth is not a result of adding value or providing a useful service. Like those who fell for Bernie Madoff's ponzi scheme, these misguided souls think riches come through the connections and insider knowledge people like Mr. Cramer purvey. Unfortunately, we are all now paying the price.

Jason

March 13, 2009 08:31 AM

This article is intellectually dishonest the way it portrays Jon Stewart's quotes. When using an ellipses in a quote it is standard procedure that the quote is in sequential. In the paragraph that begins "'instead of being a...'" Stewart's argument is mangled and for some reason ends with a statement about snake oil that he began the interview with. I guess the guys at Business Week has the same journalistic talent as the folks at CNBC. If you have any questions about what was said on the Daily Show Thursday, youtube it. It should be mandatory viewing for all Americans.

RF

March 13, 2009 08:33 AM

Cramer did the smart thing. One should never every argue with a Comedian of Stewart's skill. You will never win. Go on the show, take some lumps, get off.

I agree with Stewart's take on things - but Cramer handled it correctly.

Nathan Plamer

March 13, 2009 08:36 AM

I see your points, they are valid. However, like Jon said last night this isn't about Cramer but CNBC. The Daily Show showed a clip of an interview of Stanford where in the interview they say you doing so good when others arent.

Its things like that where CBNC fall short of their potential.

Joan Guenther

March 13, 2009 08:42 AM

I was very impressed with Jon Stewart's interview with Jim Cramer. He located the problem that their 'feud' could become a media diversion from the (to quote Jon) "f***ing" reality of the economic collapse on the ordinary working person. Mr. Stewart did not allow that to happen. He nailed the nudge nudge wink wink duplicity of the "experts" on CNBC who did their damndest to lure the non-expert into a market the "experts" knew was based on fraudulent claims. Cramer was creamed but so what. Both participants agreed that the leadership of the investment banks engaged in practices that should lead to criminal charges. At the end of the program Jon Stewart agreed with his audience that the process of exposing this "s**t" (another quote) remains painful on so many levels for so many real people. The Edward R Morrow award to Jon Stewart for truth in (business) journalism - where's everybody else?

Dave

March 13, 2009 08:44 AM

All the other cable news netword deride John Stewart, but what they don't realize is that he is an incredibly intelligent person that has his finger on the pulse. He knows what the common American feels. As far as I'm concerned he makes O'Reilly, Nancy Grace, and the rest of the idiots look like amateurs. What I would love to see is Dick Fuld or some of these other Wall Street scum on his show. We love you John, keep doin what you do.

Andrew

March 13, 2009 08:46 AM

You, my friend, are goddamn deluded. That 45 seconds of damning tape said EVERYTHING about this crisis. Goddamn pricks like Cramer played the market like it was a game, it blew up in THE ENTIRE WORLD'S FACE and now they make like it wasn't their fault.
Get a grip.

Bobby

March 13, 2009 08:50 AM

You numbskulls at Newsweek can't get your market fried brains around the simple fact that the economically unsophisticated Stewart nailed the story, and Jim Cramer, to the wall (street). The facts are that A) Cramer admitted sins of Wall Street trading in public and B) there is no legitimate or moral basis for those sins. The "elite" financial community is caught, today, with it's pants down, guilty, guilty, guilty.

It is poetic justice, not irony, that Bernard Madoff spent his first night in jail on the day that Stewart spanked not only Cramer but the entire public financal industry in front of the world on a show that young people who are going to inherit the garbage you have helped heap up watch, trust and enjoy.

If you can't be fair and honest, get out of the news business. Sheesh. Newsweek is not fooling anybody but those who still want to be fooled.

John

March 13, 2009 08:54 AM

You seem to be missing the entire point, though. If you label yourself a financial expert, if you're willing to accept the praise for getting it right, you need to accept the criticism for getting it wrong. And in this case, as an industry, you got it VERY wrong.

Jon Stewart is a comedian, not an investment adviser. I expect Jon Stewart to entertain me, I expect you and your colleagues to inform me. One of the points Jon Stewart was trying to make last night was the fact that the financial reporting community seemed to be far too willing to accept the word from Wall Street and CEOs at face value. There was very little investigation. You guys had your suspicions, but instead of digging and investigating (i.e. journalism), you took the easy route. A route that was convenient, and quite profitable, too. Imagine what things would be like if Woodward and Bernstein had accepted the Watergate break-in at face value? In essence, that is what happened here. Jim Cramer, CNBC, Business Week, heck even you could have and should have done more. The signs were there, the rumors and chatter were there, but the financial reporting industry in the US lacked a Woodward and Bernstein. In fact, the industry lacked some basic journalistic standards.

We now have an enormous financial mess to dig ourselves out from under. This mess even threatens our national security. People outside the investment world are rightfully angry and you deserve a portion of the blame. And, from your closing sentence:
"What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?" it is clear that you at least still do not get it. An apology and a promise to do better would have been a good start. Cramer came close to that last night, but you still seem to be far away from that realization.

Ken Wightman

March 13, 2009 08:56 AM

You still don't get it. You write: "But I have always looked at Jim Cramer as being on the side of the retail investor, an enthusiastic stock picker who tries to get it right. - Well, does he "get it right?" Do some research - act like a news organization. Google Cramer, I did. According to the Motley Fool page following Cramer's picks at http://caps.fool.com/player/trackjimcramer.aspx, it appears you could do as well flipping a coin. Cramer's accuracy is according to today's post 46.6%. Like so many of the experts, it appears that Cramer, too, cannot beat a good index portfolio.

Albert

March 13, 2009 08:56 AM

"Stewart clearly blames CNBC for not being more of a watchdog prior to the crisis."

---Yeah, that and for Santelli calling people who lost their homes to this crisis LOSERS.

"Cramer allowed Stewart to get the upper hand..."

---Stewart did not allow anything, Cramer and CNBC put themselves in the defensive with their own questionable actions and choices.


"What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?"

---The guy is a COMEDIAN. Why would Cramer, you or anyone else ask this inane question?

Ms. Brady, some of the people who read stuff online have critical thinking abilities. You may know about business than most of us, but your deficit in logic is astounding.

Jim

March 13, 2009 08:57 AM

stewart seem to understand the financial heart beat of middle america more so than cramer did. Stewart exposed crammer for what he is - a hack. It doesn't matter what Jon investment adviser's average is. His adviser is not putting himself on TV as an authority to trust -- crammer is. Crammer was caught in several lies by stewart. In Cramer's business trust is everything, but when stewart so easily exposes cramer saying he didn't say one thing when on tape it was proven he did, it isn't an acceptable means of trust.

Martha warned cramer that Jon was as fast as lighting....cramer said on her show he isn't a doormat, but he was.

All in all. cramer looked like an idiot. He couldn't defend himself for if he did, he would of probably been caught in another lie. That is what happens when you weave a web of lies you can't keep straight.

I'll never trust cramer again. It is obvious he is looking out for himself and his wall street buddies while pretending he is giving us good advise. Rename his show from "Mad Money" to "Hypocrite Advise for Cash".

Jacob

March 13, 2009 09:03 AM

Nothing in this article is false, but it misses the point of the interview. The heart of the interview was Stewart showing clips of Cramer talking about strategies for artificially deflating the price of stock and other things Cramer admits you can't legally do but "you do...anyway because the SEC doesn't understand it;" things Cramer says he would "never talk about on TV." Stewart then points out that this sort of manipulation "shenanigans" and "Wall Street side bet[ting]" led directly to the collapse of the market. Stewart correctly points out that prior to the collapse, "all the incentives for [Wall Street investing] companies were for short term profit....They burned the f#$&ing house down with our money, and walked away rich as hell." He says CNBC and people like Cramer knew this was going on and did nothing to shed light on it. Stewart didn't take Cramer to task for his "batting average," he took all of CNBC to task for not doing more to let everyday people, whose money is the engine of the market, know about the risks investors were taking with it. Stewart thinks CNBC could have been a check on the behind-closed-doors world of finance during the last decade of deregulation. He challenged Cramer to do more to arm people with knowledge. I tend to think he was right: the public needs people like 2009 Cramer to protect it from people like 2006 Cramer. Stewart did get Cramer to admit this was important and that, in his words, "I'm trying." That was at the heart of the interview.

mort

March 13, 2009 09:05 AM

I think you, like Cramer sometimes did, missed Stewart's point. Stewart's attack on CNN (and it was always an attack on CNN, not Cramer, until Cramer took it personally) began when Santelli called home-owners losers. Stewart's point is that it is disingenuous to blame home-owners or regular investors for exercising bad judgment when it was wall street insiders who took risky financial adventures capitalized by mortgages and 401-Ks. His point is about the glaring division between people who work hard, invest their savings, looking for a long-term, modest return, and the people who take that money and try to make a quick buck from it. CNN and Cramer are on the wrong side of that division. That's his point. So you're last paragraph is irrelevant to the discussion. It's not whether Cramer has been successful or not on the wrong side of that divide; it's that he's on the wrong side of that divide and didn't do anything to address the problem of that divide.

Aaron Layman

March 13, 2009 09:13 AM

Mr. Stewart's investment adviser's record is probably equally poor, but your piece here misses the point entirely. Mr. Stewart was simply placing the appropriate label on the $*@! that is being fed to us in the financial news media, particularly CNBC.

If Cramer is going to claim on his show (and he does!) that he is going to stand up for the "little guy" and bring some transparency to the playing field, then he needs to perform more due-diligence, or at least label his show for what it is. Cramer is obviously playing both sides of the fence, and Stewart was right to call him on it.

It's pretty telling that one of the most informative pieces of financial news reporting so far this year has come from a late-night comedy show host.

JJ

March 13, 2009 09:15 AM

Right: Jim Cramer is not an investigative journalist.

By standing in for CNBC and facing the music, for which Cramer is to be admired (in contrast to Rick Santelli), he became one by proxy. And during the interview he denied that CNBC was in bed with CEOs of financial compainies---only to acknowledge later that his friendship with them impacted his recommendations. So he's been neither a source of unbiased journalism, nor a good source of stock recommendations. (Personally, I figured that out some time ago.)

Another article by a person who is too close to the problem--the very nature of capitalism and incentives, and the corruption and deceit that inevitably follows--to see it.

JJ

March 13, 2009 09:15 AM

Right: Jim Cramer is not an investigative journalist.

By standing in for CNBC and facing the music, for which Cramer is to be admired (in contrast to Rick Santelli), he became one by proxy. And during the interview he denied that CNBC was in bed with CEOs of financial compainies---only to acknowledge later that his friendship with them impacted his recommendations. So he's been neither a source of unbiased journalism, nor a good source of stock recommendations. (Personally, I figured that out some time ago.)

Another article by a person who is too close to the problem--the very nature of capitalism and incentives, and the corruption and deceit that inevitably follows--to see it.

Peter Naylon

March 13, 2009 09:18 AM

Business Week an apologist for Cramer and CNBC? Of course. Would we expect anything more?

Peter Naylon

March 13, 2009 09:18 AM

Business Week an apologist for Cramer and CNBC? Of course. Would we expect anything more?

Thomas Huynh

March 13, 2009 09:19 AM

Diane, thanks for bringing this up because it's been on my mind. Jon Stewart has a wonderful way of presenting something mundane (politics, markets) in a funny, interesting way. Makes things digestible. So does Jim Cramer on the financial side. I like both guys. However the moment Stewart took 15 sec clips of the worst of Cramer and present it like this is Cramer then any civilized person may start to wonder about fairness and decency. It's not comedy anymore. That is all the more true when Stewart uses logic (instead of comedy) to take apart his opponent, quite different from a much more true-to-comedy show like Colbert. The interview doesn't change my mind one bit about Cramer, nor should it for anyone who knows both men. In fact Cramer seems more the wiser side despite his loud reputation versus the sharp-edge Stewart. Cramer's shouts were positive not mean-spirited, unlike the rants of someone divisive, trying to make the other person the fool, you too often see nowadays ... such as in this case at The Daily Show. Thomas

Hea Bea

March 13, 2009 09:22 AM

--He also could have said: I’m a guy who has invested his own money What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon? --

First, Jon Stewart does not advertise itself a place to trust for financial advice. As he said the other night one of his job is turd picking his way through what those who says they are in the business of keeping the public inform and calling them on it when they fall down on that job.

Secondly, Cramer did try to defend himself with similar language last night on the show, and, rightfully, Jon Stewart repeatedly explained that his issue was not just with Cramer but with the way MSNBC touts itself as a network to trust for financial advice when in reality CNBC looking out for the CEO for their own reasons. Maybe it is as someone reported recently CNBC thinks the only way to maintain their access to the CEOs is by asking stupid question like, “is it fun to be a billionaire” than ask the tough questions and follow-up questions when it appears the responses are disingenuous.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/cenk-uygur/the-real-problem-with-cnb_b_173761.html
“CNBC never did any exposés about the enormous risks these financial companies took. They never exposed the insanity of the derivatives market. And they never told their audience that the executives of these companies have been robbing their shareholders blind. Because they didn't see that as their job. They saw their job as doing whatever it took to keep Wall Street happy and playing ball with them.”
That is why Cramer couldn’t defend himself. Because Jon Stewart and others are saying just advertise what you are and not what you pretend to be, “They do fluff pieces on Wall Street. So, if you want to know what the companies are telling the public, check out CNBC. That's also a service. Buyer beware. If you want hard hitting business journalism, look elsewhere.”

Misterben

March 13, 2009 09:24 AM

Oh, come on. I watch Cramer, too, but I watch because it's such a train wreck of a show - so obviously designed to manipulate exurban Americans who want to get even richer by tomorrow, max, and suburban Americans who just want to fantasize about getting rich.

Your hypothetical defense for Cramer ("I’m a guy who has invested his own money over the years with great success...You know what? We all screwed up.") is just way, way out of line. You know very well that isn't AT ALL how he presents himself, how he behaves on the show, or how the show is promoted. This is NOT a show about a humble, successful investor with some guidance to share, as you suggest. This is a show hosted by a bombastic d-bag who thinks screaming = wisdom.

Your defense of Cramer, like the defense mounted by the rest of the bidness media, is plainly rooted in your inability to face a simple reality: for the last 10-15 years, you have been completely wrong about this country's economy. Which means you're either liars, or dumb. Which is it? Obviously you don't want to admit to either, but if you think Americans don't notice you trying to gloss over what you've done, you're wrong.

You people are going to have to work very hard to regain any sort of public confidence. May I suggest you start by getting serious, and giving up on defending clowns like Cramer?

Hea Bea

March 13, 2009 09:25 AM

--He also could have said: I’m a guy who has invested his own money What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon? --

First, Jon Stewart does not advertise his show as place to trust for financial advice. As he said the other night one of his job is turd picking his way through what those who says they are in the business of keeping the public inform say/report and calling them on it when they fall down on that job.

Secondly, Cramer did try to defend himself with similar language last night on the show, and, rightfully, Jon Stewart repeatedly explained that his issue was not just with Cramer but with the way MSNBC touts itself as a network to trust for financial advice when in reality CNBC looking out for the CEO for their own reasons. Maybe it is as someone reported recently CNBC thinks the only way to maintain their access to the CEOs is by asking stupid questions like, “is it fun to be a billionaire” rather than ask the tough questions and follow-up questions when it appears the responses are disingenuous.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/cenk-uygur/the-real-problem-with-cnb_b_173761.html
“CNBC never did any exposés about the enormous risks these financial companies took. They never exposed the insanity of the derivatives market. And they never told their audience that the executives of these companies have been robbing their shareholders blind. Because they didn't see that as their job. They saw their job as doing whatever it took to keep Wall Street happy and playing ball with them.”
That is why Cramer couldn’t defend himself. Because Jon Stewart and others are saying just advertise what you are and not what you pretend to be, “They do fluff pieces on Wall Street. So, if you want to know what the companies are telling the public, check out CNBC. That's also a service. Buyer beware. If you want hard hitting business journalism, look elsewhere.”

Jerome

March 13, 2009 09:28 AM

Jon Stewart was spot on!

And it's nice to see that Cramer has at least some decency and conscience left in him ...

Robert

March 13, 2009 09:34 AM

You are 100% correct. Jon Stewart came across as nasty, shrill and hypocritical, while Cramer made clear from the outset that he was going to employ a Rope-a-Dope strategy and just take it. Cramer is not CNBC's investigative journalist. He is a commentator with an entertainment bent. CBS does not run "60 Minutes" 24 hours a day; NBC does run "Dateline NBC" 24 hours a day. This was the equivalent of Comedy Central taking Steve Carell and chastising him for teh entire NBC Network not uncovering all of the evils of the world.

Stewart played clip after clip of Cramer, demanded Cramer respond time after time about his calls, and then chastisted Cramer from doing so, saying "this ain't all about you." Stewart was prepared to be nasty to Cramer, and Cramer never took that bait. Cramer could have chastised Stewart for engaging in the mastiest, least funny comedy show but decided that trading insults would not further the dialogue.

BW Reader

March 13, 2009 09:37 AM

"After all, why would anyone in the hyper-competitive TV news business ever keep quiet if they were aware of wrongdoing or heard rumors that a company was going to collapse?"

Because their paycheck relies on the very people they are responsible for covering. Be too tough and the advertising goes away. If the advertising goes away, so does your job.

paul

March 13, 2009 09:37 AM

I think you've completely missed the point of The Daily Show's criticism. Jim Cramer (of whom I am a fan) has unfortunately become the face of the criticism of CNBCs business coverage....the real issue is that CNBC sells itself as the be all and end all in business journalism and news when in fact they are nothing but self-hyped cheerleaders for wall street. It's entertainment, that's it. Where were the questions? Where were the exposes on derivatives markets? Did not one journalist at CNBC find the heavily leveraged derivatives market to be the least bit worrying and worthy of a story? Not really. Because they don't do journalism. They do entertainment...and try and convince people it's well researched journalism so that when their viewers retirement savings disappear they can claim "We never saw it coming"....we know you didn't, you weren't looking.

ben

March 13, 2009 09:44 AM

Why are you trying to make excuses for Cramer? Even he acknowledged his mistakes and was appropriately contrite. Cramer does NOT portray himself as just an entertainer--and neither does CNBC. This is completely false advertising, and your defense does not address the very serious criticism leveled by Stewart that these supposedly financial news shows misinformed viewers by fawning over rather than asking serious questions of CEOs. Cramer's "crime" is not that he (like so many others) has a low batting average; it's that he knows what's going on behind the scenes and ADMITTED WITHOUT PROTEST that he engages in false rumors!! By the use of game metaphors and treating this altercation as a mere grudge match, you demonstrate that you obviously don't get it either.

drew

March 13, 2009 09:52 AM

far as i know, stewart's financial adviser is not the one on tv urging people to buy, buy, buy. but seriously, that's your parting shot?

mouse

March 13, 2009 09:54 AM

you seem to be missing what john was implying. he even specificaly states he doesnt expect CNBC to act like a watchdog.
it wasn't about whether CNBC or cramer was successful in there investment advice on an individual basis.
the point that hit home when cramer claimed that it wasnt the networks fault becuse the financial ceo's lied to him, but a news network should dig deep and uncover the trooths not regurgitate what there told
it was about CNBC's apparent need to entertain its audience outweighing its duty to responsible journalism. it has replaced research and informative pieces with 'sound effects and arm flapping'

Tony

March 13, 2009 10:07 AM

Jon Stewart's interview of Cramer was brilliant and hard hitting. It's too bad that CNBC clowns are unable to conduct those kinds of interviews themselves. They never pose really tough questions, and follow up with even tougher questions, or show the lies of Wall St. insiders by replaying clips like Stewart did with Cramer last night. It's a sad commentary on the quality of American TV journalism that we only get a real interview on Comedy Central. CNBC should be ashamed of the quality of their journalism which too often is like that of a circus barkers for the big money.

Jeff

March 13, 2009 10:16 AM

What? *facepalm* This really is a game to you #$*%. You don't get it at all do you, we're all #$%$ because of people who somehow think they're insulated from criticize and you are concerned that a bombastic blowhard who supposedly provides a service gets his @$$ nailed by Jon Stewart? OMG you guys deserve prison, not bonuses.

Brian

March 13, 2009 10:21 AM

If he had followed your script Stewart would have rhetorically gutted him. In the rock paper scissors of PR mockery trumps passion 99% of the time. See Stewart's appearance on Crossfire as an example. CNBC wanted to avoid that kind of train wreck. Cramer clearly had his marching orders when he went on the show and dutifully fell on his sword.

Though I doubt anyone guessed Stewart was about to release that harsh of a critique.

I actually thought Cramer came out of it ok. CNBC's brand on the other hand took a serious hit.

anon

March 13, 2009 10:22 AM

A good conspiracy theorist might find Cramer's demeanor indicative that there is a great deal of wrongdoing in the relationship between financiers and those that report them (and might perhaps theorize that Cramer is scapegoating himself to bring attention to that fact).

A more rational mind would see that Cramer knows that he chose to shine the light on himself by responding to a segment dealing with CNBC in general in a personal manner, and by placing himself in the direct line of fire of a powerful journalistic and entertainment force (TDS) he has put his career in jeopardy and has chosen contriteness as a better alternative in hopes of saving his own reputation. (See Crossfire)

I also love that the point in the interview at which you state that Cramer should jump up and respond doesn't actually exist since you employed the very tactic you seem to vilify Stewart for by taking about 4 different quotes out of context to form a moment of "attack" that never actually occurred.

James Cunningham

March 13, 2009 10:23 AM

Last night Stewart indicted not just Cramer but any member of the press who didn't report on what was really going on on Wall Street. Without major changes will Stewert's constituency ever trust Wall Street again

Stewart indicted any member of the press for not reporting on what was going on on Wall Street. Will Stewart's consituents trust Wall Street again?


.

Diane Brady

March 13, 2009 10:30 AM

Thanks for the interesting debate. I think it's completely fair game to criticize CNBC and, in fact, to criticize Jim Cramer. One of the things I love about The Daily Show is its ability to point out foibles.

What surprised me was that Cramer didn't take a stronger stance to defend himself and the kind of show he does.

Mike

March 13, 2009 10:31 AM

What in the world is wrong with you? Jon stewart was pointing out the fact you shouldn't make suggestions with your head up your own rear end. So I assume because someone declares them self a financial expert we should just leave it at that without criticism or questioning.

The point of media is to report and look at things from an objective stand point. To inform the audience as to what is going on. This is what Jon did in this instance and what you apparently lack at.

I am not a Jon Stewart fan but this was a well put together piece. Perhaps you are just jealous and that is the only guess I can lay to your incoherent diatribe.

Angela Epstein

March 13, 2009 10:34 AM

While I totally, 120%+ agree with Jon Stewart in that in the interest of ratings, the networks have crossed the lines, and decided to make everything entertaining overlooking the possibility of falling into serious ethical problems, and perhaps intellectual fraud; I also agree with your assessment of the whole interview, and how Cramer could have rebounded from some of the punches Stewart brilliantly threw at him. Cramer failed at his own game, he failed at controlling the message in a media he knows well. Or does he?

Maybe it is about time for the media industry to start taking responsibility, and actually ACT responsibly, and ethically about the economic and social impact of their content, and how it is delivered to us; who became simply innocent bystanders in the media war for dollars. So far the media industry has gotten away with murder, and used ethics and responsibility very loosely.

Cynically, the content industry made of ethics and responsibility a replaceable commodity that can be cut and pasted to fit the media industry needs; with zero accountability. I think Cramer is one example, but the responsibility does not lean on him. The ones people like Jon should go after are the same CEOs and Programmers, and EVPs who call the shoots playing with the American public while forgetting that the fundamentals that brought them up, like credibility, can bring them down; all while they seat in their million-dollar overlooking Central Park offices. Or maybe the media has overusing the “self imposed guidelines” maneuvering any type of government interference. Hmm.

bob rosenblum

March 13, 2009 10:44 AM

Stewart's batting average on doing HIS job has been about 800.

Earth to Diane Brady: Stewart isn't supposed to be able to pick stocks. I've never used him as a guide to stocks, have you?

Cramer, on the other hand, is supposedly a stock expert. He pounded away on the viability of Bear Stearns IN SPITE OF voluminous information to the contrary. Cramer's support of Bear Stearns deserves criticism. And this isn't the only major error he's made.

And please, remember, the whole point of the controversy was CNBC, on of whose representatives wagged fingers at poorly educated buyers and called THEM stupid for believing what they were told about housing investments.

Obviously, considering the attention that this controversy has been getting, it was time that the finger pointed in the other direction.

Enrique Perez

March 13, 2009 10:45 AM

"Losing money in the stock market is not a game."

Yes, its not. But the manner in which CNBC (Cramer included) treated the financial markets made it sure seem like a game. You, for one, may not acknowledge it, but there is a population out there that really depends on the insight these financial news agencies provide. The "investment experts" at these companies had the ability, the knowledge, the insight to call bullsh** or at least question some of the shady business practices that have lead to the financial meltdown, but they didn't. Jim Cramer, because of how easy of a target he was, became the unofficial spokesperson for the faults of CNBC and others like them (BusinessWeek included). This, though, does not completely cover Stewart's greater point addressing the failure of these agencies, as your article suggested.

In the future, please review your work before producing another bias article ending in a retort better suited for an elementary school playground than a professional magazine. Thanks

Tito

March 13, 2009 10:46 AM

The only thing that is obvious is that anyone that dares criticize Obama will be creamed. We are no longer a free society where we are free to express an opinion unless you want to become a target...do you want to be the next? Hail Obama!

Argon

March 13, 2009 11:06 AM

Does Cramer perform better than a dartboard? Not really.

Do simple index funds like Vangard and TIAA-CREF with their low maintainence charges produce better overall returns for most investors? Yes.

Ah, but if you'd didn't have people churning their accounts all the time, you wouldn't create as many fees. So that would be bad for the financial management business.

patrick

March 13, 2009 11:13 AM

Throughout the previous comments where anyone says "CSNBC should have", feel free to insert "CSNBC and BUSINESS WEEK should have".
You are employed by a business magazine that gave no clue until the horse was out of the barn. If graft was that wide spread, you either knew about it and held your tongue, or you didn't know about it and are incompetent. Either way, BUSINESS WEEK should change its name to "stock shill week for rubes".

Dan

March 13, 2009 11:20 AM

Thomas Huynh

"However the moment Stewart took 15 sec clips of the worst of Cramer and present it like this is Cramer then any civilized person may start to wonder about fairness and decency."

Really? Even if the 15 second clip in question implicates Cramer of fixing the market my manipulating stock prices??!?!?! Really?! Is THAT what you are saying?

WOW!

Dan

March 13, 2009 11:23 AM

"Tito
March 13, 2009 10:46 AM

The only thing that is obvious is that anyone that dares criticize Obama will be creamed. We are no longer a free society where we are free to express an opinion unless you want to become a target...do you want to be the next? Hail Obama!"

Keep going Tito! I hear California might legalize and tax it!

Gunther

March 13, 2009 11:25 AM

It's funny how everyone now is a financial expert. I read the same tag words in all these comments. It's not just networks that should do their homework, so should we all. Do you believe blindly everything your told? You must if you think Stewart is some savior. It is a TV show. A show. A show fights for ratings. You may say Stewart sounded sincere, maybe he was, but that doesn't make him of higher intellect. Do your own homework; quit blindly following others' advice. Yes the agencies failed, but when the economy is going strong, even when it's under false pretenses, nobody complains-nobody wants to know. But when things turn for the worse everybody else is the problem. Some people got legitimately screwed and that's not good, ever. But you can't blindly support the avarice nature of capitalism without occasionally suffering from the consequences. People lie or fudge information. Do you all evaluate every statement that comes your way on a daily basis? I don't.

Mike

March 13, 2009 11:28 AM

It takes time and effort to find out the truth and you might not like what it says. Its easier to put goofballs in front of a camera that prognosticate nonsense or mere opinion.

The Daily Show (a comedy) apparently is willing to dig for facts and call out the snake oil salesman (and their network).

Edward

March 13, 2009 11:47 AM

From CNBC's website:

"Jim Cramer believes that there is always a bull market somewhere, and he wants to help you find it. "Mad Money" takes viewers inside the mind of one of Wall Street's most respected and successful money managers. Cramer is your personal guide through the confusing jungle of investing, navigating through both opportunities and pitfalls with one goal in mind — to help you make money. "Mad Money" features Cramer's unmatched, fiery opinions and the popular Lightning Round, in which Cramer gives his "Buy," "Sell," and "Hold" opinions on stocks to callers."

If his "one goal in mind" is to entertain, he should state that up front. Reading this post is like listening to the 2 years of denial between 2006-2008, when the GOP was refusing to admit that their free pass on competence was running out. Look how that turned out. Pardon the phrase, Ms. Brady, but time for you and your colleagues to "man up" and stop offering your industry's version of "presidentin' is hard work" sniveling.

AK

March 13, 2009 11:49 AM

Diane Brady, you should not call yourself a journalist.

Business Week editors, you should be ashamed to have such an article posted on your website.

David

March 13, 2009 11:58 AM

Wow! A column on a business news website defending the business news' complicity in the problem.

I am shocked!

League.of.daves

March 13, 2009 12:02 PM

Unfortunately I missed the actual interview. Would love to see Jon Stewart take on these CEOs on his show on a regular basis. Its about time the media started getting some teeth during good times as well as bad. Its easy to point fingers now.

Gregor

March 13, 2009 12:11 PM

Um let's look at the recent successes of the main stream media unearthing misdirection of the American people by The Establishment:

1) WMD in Iraq
2) The War on Terror
3) Financial crisis
4) Mortgage lending fraud
5) DotCom bubble
6) Aliens controlling the President

The list goes on - oh and number 6 is the only one on the list above that the mainstream media would expose as misdirection - which makes me wonder if it's the only one that isn't!

Dinesh C

March 13, 2009 12:12 PM

The basic truth is that investment advice is a scam. Investment advisors would not be rich if they took their own advice because they know that their stock picks do not fare better than a blind folded monkey. Cramer is no different and he is being perfectly honest and correct when he says he is just putting up an entertaining show about business. Period. No more no less. If you want to follow an entertainers advise and invest it's your problem.

Mitch T.

March 13, 2009 12:14 PM

Diane, I respectfully think you missed the point on what Jon S. was saying. He successfully made his point that most financial reporting is as subsceptable to bias as any other form of media.

Just like political reporting, there is a certain line that unfortunately must be maitained. Ask any reporter that has been kicked out of the White House press pool, or sumarily barred from other venues due to their respective reporting. A scandal makes great fodder, but sooner or later it becomes harder to get access if your medium is convinced that you won't hold back. It makes the effort of reporting mch harder. Cramer and his like would not have the C.E.O.'s and Managers coming on his show if they thought her was going to air the dirty laundry.

Wall Street, like politics is all about access, and to report on either you much have access. Stewart's point was that Financial networks & shows have gone to far to kep their 'inside' connections, and they have forgotten what they are there for in the first place.

I admit, I also expected Jim C. to come out with both guns blazing, and I was quite surprized to see the outcome.

Stewart basically was tryign to say that the financial industry has been trying to blame everyone else for it's problem's (Mortgage Holders, Regualtors, eitc..) and he was calling out the fact that financial reporting was taking the side of Wall Street, when in reality Wall Street was as guilty as everyone they were pointing the finger at...

the oracle

March 13, 2009 12:49 PM

Feeling a little dirty today? Nice defensive article. The beauty of this is that Jon Stewart is not just talking about the fools at CNBC. He's talking about the people like you who either completely missed what was going on for ten years or just played along with the game. Your entire industry and all of its players are suspect. It's fitting and fun to watch you squirm!

Dar

March 13, 2009 12:51 PM

Jon Stewart was not particularly brilliant with this interview and was clearly looking for a scapegoat. It is also clear Tito is right that the attack on Obama's programs has brought out the big guns from the left.
The crooks like Madoff duped/bought off a lot of people. The Bear Stearns folks hid away toxic assets. No one found them (apparently) and that makes it unlikely a news organization will. Notice that Stewart is not taking his liberal buddies at places like CBS (60 minutes anyone) to task on missing this either.
Fact of the matter is everyone knew we were spending too much, people taking mortgages knew they could not pay for them, and there were probably crooks in some companies. Of course Stewart could not indict every one of us because that would alienate his audiance. So he picks a target that had already attacked his favorite president.
Cramer always said on his show that "Mad" money was risky, pretty much the financial equivalent of a Casino. And he also hammers home nearly every episode that if you do not personally understand the information, you should not invest. Blaming Cramer is a stand-in for blaming ourselves.

Serpico

March 13, 2009 12:55 PM

Jon Stewart produced one of the greatest television I have ever seen. Extraordinary.

A true Howard Beale moment, not the fake one created by Santelli.

(Tito you need to finish school).

huebdoo

March 13, 2009 12:59 PM

I saw the uncut interview online, as well as the one on the comedy network and I have to say "Thank You" to Jon Stewart and his team for doing homework and putting a light on CNBC - who - lets be honest - were a mouth piece for the financial industry and not investigative or journalist at all.

I have never seen a CEO on CNBC grilled or asked tough questions - have you?

Maybe CNBC can go the way of the WWF and claim that it is rigged and that they are simply entertainment.

Thank you Jon Stewart, and your research team for showing such a strong case last night - I will watch to see how CNBC reacts and if they change.

Bill

March 13, 2009 01:00 PM

Uhh, Diane...We're no longer in the mood for the crap that goes on in the big investment banks. You may be surprised to learn that people actually want truth from you guys not a nonstop infomercial as Stewart correctly called what CNBC does. Meanwhile, shouldn't Cramer start getting ready for jail for his use of "fomenting" (I'm probably not spelling that correctly; the term is new to me). He seemed to know it's illegal but did it anyway. Shouldn't people go to jail for that? This is exactly the kind of crap that people are fed up with. Get with the program...people are seriously pissed at Wall Street and its total disconnect with reality.

Nelson

March 13, 2009 01:02 PM

Diane Brady: Are you serious that you are still residing faith in Cramer and CNBC's ploys even when Cramer disclosed every answer to Stewart's hard hitting questions? You have about every bloggers here against your article. Step down, you are not qualified for this matter.

G

March 13, 2009 01:05 PM

"The financial turmoil has been ratings gold for CNBC precisely because viewers can’t tear their eyes away from the crisis as it unfolds. News networks often thrive on bad news."

This is exactly why CNBC would have kept their mouth shut prior to the financial collapse, which is what Jon lambasted them for. Lazy Journalism on the major networks has reached a pandemic.

M008

March 13, 2009 01:05 PM

It amazes me that people think Jon Stewart had a clue as to what he was talking about. Does he think the people at CNBC wanted the market to crash the way some journalists wanted the US to go into Iraq? There are some ideologues who don't like regulation, but there are legitimate differences of opinion in what the best course is for the economy. He also does not realize that a lot of retail investors ("the little guys") watch CNBC, and especially Jim Cramer. If Stewart watched the network, he would realize that decent, hard working and responsible middle class people lost money and are losing money every day, and there is very little that anyone is doing to help us. Instead, he is taking on the administration's fight against some guy who spoke out against bailing out homeowners who can't pay their mortgages. I understand that they need to be bailed out to save the economy (as does Cramer, ironically - but, anyone who actually watched his show would know this). How about taking on the administration for not helping people who can't lower their student loan interest if they consolidated once 8 years ago (as a caller to one of the shows last night mentioned). How about taking on the New York Fed for not providing better oversight?

Yes, Cramer has made a few bad stock calls - but he tells people to do their own homework, and teaches people how to do this research. He gets a lot of market movements right, too. How grateful are the people who got out when the Dow was above 10,000? I also remember Cramer coming on Morning Joe last summer and saying that no bank stock was safe. The Obama Administration is not full of the best and brightest people to handle this economic crisis, and some of those people who are in the Administration are people who should have seen this crisis coming, and prevented the crisis. Is Stewart taking those people on - or is he truly becoming the Obama Administration's version of Fox News? I can't watch Stewart anymore because he lost his objectivity a little over a year ago (and I speak as someone who started supporting Obama 2 years ago, but not blindly).

Ted (Seattle)

March 13, 2009 01:06 PM

Andrew P hit the nail on the head. Jay Leno, while eulogising Bill Hicks, once said something to the effect that, Comedians have a unique licence to tell the truth, but very few use it to its full extent. Bill Hicks did, and Jon did last night with finesse. I, for one, was blown away.

lol@cramer

March 13, 2009 01:06 PM

No tito, people can still express their opinions, its just that without any reference to the topic at hand, those opinions play out like meaningless partisan sound bites. sound familiar?

PT

March 13, 2009 01:07 PM

Every single retort this article says Cramer "should have" used -- Cramer did... and got creamed. Stewart skillfully dissected every diversionary smokescreen that Cramer (and the industry) used to obfuscate a dereliction of (journalistic) duty.

The irony: the author of this article pretends its business as usual and throws back up every single platitude Stewart already dissected. It's like the Borg. One minion goes down, no problem, a thousand others spring up to take its place and resume its duties. Thanks for coming out, Diane Brady. Enjoy your borg life.

flowers

March 13, 2009 01:08 PM

This article you wrote is a joke. Why would anyone make excuses for Cramer? Snap out of it, this is real life now.

Siobhan

March 13, 2009 01:09 PM

Diane Brady, I can only hope that your BUSINESS analysis is more incisive than your analysis of media culture, because you're completely off the mark here.

On the other hand, perhaps this article is just a further example of how our economy went so wrong: When business journalism is capable of delving only as deep as the white-washed stucco surface, and overlooks the crumbling lath and plaster substrate, it's no wonder we've arrived here.

i was there

March 13, 2009 01:16 PM

wow what a shocker...an online business publication defending their own, and not applauding honest journalism. Mr. Cramer will not have to lick his own wounds, because his networks will do it for him. after being at the show last night however, I do believe that Mr. Cramer does not want his pain alleviated by a motherly pat on the back. If you were their, what you witnessed was a man coming to terms with the fact that he was on the wrong side of the fence during this economic failure (or right side, depending on whether you are a sadist or not). Cramer was nearly in tears of self-realizing guilt and shame. I began to feel bad for the guy only because i truly believe that he feels terrible about what he did. After the show ended, my friends and are were seriously debating whether or not cramer was a presonal threat to his own well being. We also felt that we had witnessed a historical interview, and proud of Jon Stewart. This morning i was disgusted to read the times online, which clearly sided with the monster networks,and cast stewart aside as a comic hack. It was a spcectale to witness, and I strongly urge those of you who have not seen the entire interview to view it on Comedy Central.com .

nick w

March 13, 2009 01:19 PM

Why is it that only a Comedy show is the only MEdia that seems to care about the people and their fate in this financial mess?

Jose Diaz

March 13, 2009 01:35 PM

We all screwed up. What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?

Really? Thats how you end your commentary. That statement is the grade school equivalent of "I know you are but what am I?"

aw

March 13, 2009 01:42 PM

sheesh:

if one would have gone 100% when the dow was 10000, as Cramer YELLED, your portfolio would be 30% higher.

&..the homeowners who lied to get too much with ARMS, hoping to get rich; and homeowners who leveraged their homes with 2nd mortgages to buy cars, pools, etc.. DID CAUSE THIS RECESSION...

& Fannie Freddie helped all the way..

sheesh... you all are definitely little shills for the O-prompter..

lyttleton

March 13, 2009 01:48 PM

This is exactly like the response that Colbert got when he did the White House Correspondent's Dinner. All the media, who were mocked by his speech for being complicit in kowtowing to the Bush Administration's lies, immediately came out and said, "Colbert wasn't very funny." But a week later when the video was everywhere and real people saw it and deemed it to be hilarious (which it was), the media types slowly came out and admitted it was funny. This will be the same. In a few days once the real people (the people who lost money because of the media's inability to point out the financial ledge up ahead) speak out in consensus that this was a brilliant and cathartic interview, the media will begrudgingly admit Jon Stewart's interview had merit.
Until then, just more and more of these articles trying to downplay how powerful an interview it was. Remember Jon Stewart on Crossfire? That ended that show. You can bet someone at CNBC is losing their show/job soon because of this.

DBushik

March 13, 2009 01:50 PM

This article is making a fundametal error in how it views what is happening here that is also being widely made other places. This is not about "gothcha" moments for Cramer. This isn't about Cramer making a good or bad call and 45 seconds of tape showing that.

It's about the culture of short term windfall economic gain for a few at the cost of long term damage to the majority that Cramer and his network are guilty of validating and promoting.

If you just see this as that kind of "gotcha" attack, you are completely missing the point.

Rik

March 13, 2009 01:54 PM

My favorite quotes from this piece:

"He also could have said: I’m a guy who has invested his own money over the years with great success. I live this stuff, and I try to educate people as best as I can. On Bear Stearns, I screwed up. You know what? We all screwed up. What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?"

Uhh...except for the clever quip at the end of this insightful advice...he did say that.

And then there's:

"At this point, I fully expected Cramer to jump up and shout his point of view: the best calls he made, what his audience wants from him, how easy it is to find 45 damning seconds of tape when you go back through hundreds of hours of footage. He could have debunked Stewart’s conspiracy theory."

Yes, Jon Stewart is the ring leader of a conspiracy theorist network who, like most of the ignorant nuts he associates with, speaks from the fringe about paranoid ideas that have no base and no evidence to support them. Sure he's intelligent, eloquent and honest...but for him to be calling about Jim Cramer points to one sad truth - he sleeps in a hyperbolic chamber with tinfoil on his head waiting for ET to take him home.

It is always sad to see the puppets protect the puppet master. Rather than thanking a man who has done what NO ONE ELSE is willing to do...you condemn him...and then have the nerve to think he represents what is wrong with this country. Pathetic.

Diane Brady

March 13, 2009 02:36 PM

Rik, the piece doesn't condemn Stewart. I think he did a masterful job. And he did exactly what I've come to expect (and welcome) the Daily Show to do.

My confusion was over Cramer's behavior. Why did he go on, if not to defend the essence of what he does? I thought he did a poor job of explaining what his show is about and -- more important -- why people tune in to him.

Just as the folks who watch The Daily Show recognize what's satire and what's serious, I think the folks who watch Mad Money understand what Cramer's all about: an investor who loves to riff on the markets. On Bear Stearns, he made a bad call. No question. But I expected a more spirited defense from a man who has had many ups and downs in his portfolio.

meccano

March 13, 2009 02:37 PM

>What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?

WOW! Your write for a business news source and that is your closing line? Amazing.

Jon Stewart is a satirist. That is his job and that is what his show does. That is like asking my Vet for financial advice. Some people might take offense or dislike the role of the satire, or cynical sarcasm as it has been called here, but written history is full of satirist and they provide society with important insight. From Voltaire to Mark Twain to Weird Al, they point the spotlight on their society and ask important questions. Jon Stewart calls his program a fake news show and Jim Cramer makes himself out to be a deity that we should trust (for financial advice if nothing else). Jim Cramer put himself in the position to be asked about his investment batting average, not Jon Stewart. Give me a brake.

jibeaux

March 13, 2009 02:51 PM

"What’s your investment adviser’s batting average these days, Jon?"

Good grief. That is not even in the same solar system as the point. I mean, I've seen enough of that web-only version of the Daily Show (NewsBusted. Consider yourself warned) to realize that right-wingers don't have a highly refined concept of satire or humor, but this episode was as straightforward as they come. Jon Stewart's points really, really should not have eluded you so thoroughly.

Steve

March 13, 2009 02:56 PM

Another "pundit" completely missing the point. How many times does stewart have to say "IT's NOT ABOUT CRAMER!!"

Jim

March 13, 2009 03:05 PM

We should call a spade a spade. The numero uno mission of Mad Money, CNBC, and investment community at-large is to make a profit, while pretending they're rendering useful investment information. Given S&P index fund beats 85% of all mutual funds, it's far easier and less-risky for most equity investors to forgo company-oriented news and just invest in index funds. Of course, doing so will drive a large number of stock-picking entities out of business, and CNBC probably won't be jumping on this story.

Erita

March 13, 2009 03:13 PM

I too, though Stewart was well prepped last night to illuminate 'what really happened' as Wall Street gambled with people's pensions and hard earned retirement funds. Why weren't journalists asking these questions earlier. Our post-hoc knowledge of Enron revealed what the mentality of the trading 'floor' is like as they manipulated the markets to create a non-existent energy crisis that brought the state of California to its knees.

There were a couple of journalists who started to piece that one together before Enron unravelled. What happened this time? The underpinnings (e.g. derivative instruments that created a whole other 'side-bet' market for the Street to play) are not so different from Enron. Banks leveraging debt at 35:1. Why is it that a comedian is the only one asking these tough questions. This time the damage isn't contained to a state, but the entire global financial system that is on its knees.

Yet, some folks here, including the original author, seem to believe that it was 'poor people who lied at took advantage of the nice bankers.' Right. If the problem was only the mortgages made to individuals with low incomes or flimsy credit scores, how big do you think this 'correction' would have been?

Instead the problem ballooned with slicing and dicing mortgages, packaging them up, putting three gold stars on the product and creating exotic derivative instruments that levered the debt at 35:1. The balloon burst when the constant growth assumption used to create these models proved to be a fallacy (which should not have been a surprise to anyone who created these models).

Yet M008, is on a rant about student loan consolidations and Stewart,a comedian, being the Faux News of the Obama Administration. Are you for real? As Stewart pointed out last night: Why isn't CNBC taking on the NY Fed (or the SEC or any other regulator) for NOT creating adequate oversight to a game that was fully illuminated during the Enron investigation. Why are 19th century rules being used to govern 21st century markets? These are not questions that a COMEDY show are responsible for asking - - but when a significant portion of the general public has their retirement funds in the financial markets, somebody should be.

Rafe

March 13, 2009 03:20 PM

If you don't like Stewart of the Daily Show then don't watch. Vote with you button finger.

If you don't like Cramer then don't watch. Vote with your button finger.

If you don't like Wall street then don't put your money there. Vote with your wallet. When you come up with a better mousetrap let the rest of us know.

John

March 13, 2009 03:21 PM

Hey Diane...
I've been reading these comments on your article for 20 minutes now and one thing seems perfectly clear...
YOU'VE BEEN SERVED!!!!!

AlexK

March 13, 2009 03:23 PM

Diane, this is the first time I've read any of your articles and it will be the last. You obviously lack any talent for observation because you missed the entire point of Jon Stewart's interview. Like so many above me have posted, the interview was not an attack on Cramer specifically but an attack at CNBC which clearly ignored the elephant in the room at the expense of the American public.

Lan Phil

March 13, 2009 03:36 PM

Diane,
Did you even try watching the whole Wall Street Confidential clip when Cramer fessed up and even bragged about how he would manipulate the market by planting false rumors and doing illegal things ("its illegal but you do it anyway coz the SEC doesn't know what they're doing")

Watch the WHOLE clip -
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhUKs2wEaEY

anton

March 13, 2009 03:42 PM

The article above completely misses the point Jon was making. Jon's argument is that financials news networks acted as cheerleaders, cheering on a bubble that was clearly unsustainable. His criticism is that people who say they report and investigate, who provide valuable financial advice to their viewers, do nothing of the sort. And in this Jon was right. When was the last time a real journalist picked apart someone the way Jon did with Cramer. Cramer complained in the interview that CEO's lie to him, well then, why not call them out on it! That is journalism.

r€nato

March 13, 2009 03:44 PM

Diane, surely you are bright enough to know better than this.

Which means you are part of the problem and you are right to fear and loathe Jon Stewart and anyone else with a national audience who speaks truth to power.

Greg - Ontario, Canada

March 13, 2009 03:56 PM

Surely this article by Diane Brady must be for a joke website and not actually Business Week? While the sentiment that poor Cramer didn't stand and vigorously defend his (criminal?) statements regarding market manipulation is suspiciously adorably (*nudge* *nudge* 'But I'd never say that on TV!'), this article is devoid of facts or merits.

Firstly, no one should be taking financial information from someone shouting opinion at them. Secondly, Cramer's candid statements regarding market manipulation are not disputable. Stewart bluntly put this forward as he ought to, and of course there is little recourse than to say 'I'm sorry and I'll try to do better.' Anything else and Cramer would have come off worse than he did and Stewart would have dug into his actions deeper.

C'mon Business Week! Give us some better articles than this piece. I could get better information from...CNBC's “Mad Money...”

M0008

March 13, 2009 03:59 PM

Erita,

If you watched CNBC, including Cramer, you would be better informed about the state of the economy. There are financial writers who have been talking about the impending disaster for a few years. Bill Fleckenstein, who writes a column for MSN Money and has been talking about how the housing bubble was going to take down the whole economy for years, has been coming on Fast Money (the show Stewart so glibly put down) for a while now. In fact, I see there is a mention of him being on the show in July 2007 talking about it.

Why doesn't Jon Stewart take on Tim Geithner for relaxing oversight on his buddies at Citibank as they ran up their subprime investments? That's right - he's a comedian who is not accountable for anything he says, even when he gets everything wrong.

I mentioned the woman who was stuck with a 9 percent (or higher) student loan as someone who has a real problem that is not being addressed. She called into On the Money. These are the type of people who watch CNBC where there are shows for the common people. Watching shows like Mad Money and On the Money teaches you to be wary of where you put your money - they do tell you what you need to look out for. But, that's not enough for most people - they just want to be uninformed and blindly trust everyone, and then blame the people who told them to be careful when things don't work out.

I'm glad you all enjoyed having someone at which to direct your anger. Keep laughing with Jon Stewart - but, in my opinion, he has become one nasty, ignorant person.

Chris

March 13, 2009 04:02 PM

With General Electric in the tank, given all their posturing on their candid financial disclosure, CNBC is simply following the corporate mantra. Please don't shoot the messenger.

Frit

March 13, 2009 04:07 PM

Cramer is a blood-sucking leech, and apparently, Diane Brady is as well. Anyone trying that desperately to spin something positive about such a low-life is a low-life herself. CNBC is very responsible, as are all media outlets. The "news" media are all owned by LARGE CORPORATIONS, who are at fault as well at the downfall of the economy. So, please--don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining.

Alberto Castellanos

March 13, 2009 04:09 PM

Ms. Brady, you didn't understand the interview at all. The point is not that Cramer sometimes gets it right and sometimes wrong. The problem is that CNBC purports to be a financial channel and presents Cramer as an expert on finances. Stewart is simply letting everyone know that the emperor has no clothes. It doesn't matter if Jon's investment batting average is low or high; he doesn't present himself as a financial expert but Cramer does.

jack

March 13, 2009 04:24 PM

Look at the bigger picture. The song was not about Cramer.

D.Amino

March 13, 2009 04:31 PM

"Missing the point" seems to be a common theme in these comments.

To the person who has nothing better to do with their life than to post numerous comments to this story under different names and slightly different words: what's your point?

TruthHurts

March 13, 2009 04:32 PM

Looks like the writer feels sorry for her buddy Cramer.
The point of the whole argument is not Cramer but the so called "Pundits" of the fanancial system. Be it banks, traders or business channels. All of them went through this phase of greed where personal wealth accumulation became a higher priority than doing there Jobs.
Shame on the whole Lot for putting the country through this.
The writter says trying to defend Cramer" Over the past year, he’s made some conspicuous mistakes. But the list of people who haven’t is a startlingly short one. (Even Warren Buffett made bad bets.)". So are you saying the odds of making money in te stock market is the same as the odds of making money on a BlackJack Table ?

Bull

March 13, 2009 04:41 PM

First, I don't like Cramer; but Cramer maintains a positive attitude and doesn't run for the hills. That's admirable. What do the other news stations do? They scream apocalypse and recession, which I feel helped push the market much lower. I guess John Stewart is just another typical journalist running with the heard.

Greg - Ontario, Canada

March 13, 2009 04:59 PM

M0008:

It is no defense to say that someone is not guilty because other people are guilty of the same issue as well. It is also no defense to say that its wrong to hold accountable one person or network, because others were doing the same behaviour. Sure there are a lot of individuals and organizations guilty of self-interest at the expense of others. Cramer and his network are the focus atm by Jon Stewart. I hope other people/organizations will be the focus as well in the future, whether by Jon Stewart or people in actual law enforcement.

voice of reason

March 13, 2009 05:23 PM

That's enter-tain-ment!

James Madsen

March 13, 2009 05:30 PM

Ms. Brady your simply an idiot

Michael Russo

March 13, 2009 05:38 PM

Ms. Brady, your analysis of what you saw last night is so completely off the mark, so apologetic of unethical journalism, that I will forever remember your name as someone average Americans simply cannot trust. Stewart asked Cramer where his loyalties were... but that's a question I'll never need to ask you. You exposed yourself.

Laugher

March 13, 2009 06:13 PM

Most unfunny episode of Daily Show ever. John should stick to the fake news or be funny with the real news!

Captain Humboldt

March 13, 2009 06:44 PM

Anybody who thinks these buffoons who cover business all day are even remotely innocent of complicity for this stock crisis is an idiot.

These guys are pimping stocks, no more no less, because they live and die by their access to corporate honchos, and because there is no work at all involved at waving their pom-poms to cheer on the greedy wolves who have just eaten the entire globe's economy and spit it out in disgusting little pieces.

They don't advertise themselves as mere game show hosts who are playing The Price is Right with our money, and who don't give a damn whether they are right or wrong. They make constant claims about the special insight of their stars, and the need for viewers to watch and listen if they care about their retirement funds.

Now that it is clear that this disaster has been brewing for nearly a decade, and most of these guys new what was going on but never said anything, they are just as fraudulent as Bernard Madoff. For them to be distancing themselves from blame is absolutely mind boggling. Criminal chutzpa of the worst kind. They should be hung up by their privates in Times Square and used as pinatas for all the elderly who lost their savings in this debacle to get in a few good swings. Then leave them hanging there for the maggots of nature to finish off the maggots of Wall Street.

David

March 13, 2009 06:47 PM

Why is BusinessWeek paying people to write articles like this? Ms. Brady, as many people have already pointed out, you completely missed John Stewart's point. I almost laughed when you said "Then again, you couldn’t say that wasn’t an interesting insight into some of the rumored practices that have made short-selling so controversial." Don't you understand *why* that clip was played during the show? BusinessWeek and Ms. Brady, I think what many people have expressed in these comments can be summed up as: "This is poor content. You need to do better if you want to remain in business (which I and everyone else who comes here wants)." Clean house.

Wax Threads

March 13, 2009 06:52 PM

If our economy is in the commode because investors listened to a single talking head or a single network of them, then we really need to reconsider this entire "democracy" thing.

To run correctly, Democracies require a citizenry that has a command of critical thinking.

Or instead, you can just canonize Jon Stewart (after all, it took a lot of guts to ridicule Bush for 8 years when NO ONE else was doing it, right?) and talk about how he SCHOOLED Jim Kramer on his show for Gen-X and Y'ers who couldn't stage a decent protest even if they were offered free iPods to do so.

Bush is gone, Cheney is gone...Stewart can't make fun of Obama, so he'll just move on to non-policy makers who hold NO RESPONSIBILITY in the current state of the economy.

Must be that's the mark of a brilliant satirist, eh?

robert evans

March 13, 2009 06:57 PM

Hello.. we just published an incredible book that exposes all the Wall Street scams which includes bringing all these exact things to the forefront including Cramers’ own scams that he talks about in those videos... The book is called Hedge Fund Trading Secrets Revealed by veteran Wall Street trader Robert Dorfman.... It is available at most ebook sales sites including our own pristinepublishing.com and the hard cover will be in stores in a few weeks. So if you enjoy reading about these wall street back stabbers and con artists, and want to learn how the markets really work and then actually learn the strategies to make money, the this book is definately for you.
by robert evans

Abhi

March 13, 2009 07:11 PM

Diane,
What are you talking about? Did you even see the interview? Did you see the Daily Show's episodes for the last week? Obviously not. Stewart and his writer did their homework, you did not.

Stewart was not blaming Cramer alone. He repeatedly said, this was about CNBC and not Cramer.

Stewart has a valid point. Cramer and CNBC analysts knew banks had leveraged at 35 to 1. As financial experts, these people should have called that out. Instead, as Cramer said, I thought the management was honest... I should have questioned them

More I read BW, I think BW is in the same category. Suck up to the corporate world and watch CEOs speak with dreamy eyes.

jono

March 13, 2009 07:30 PM

You are clearly one of the people Stewart was talking about. I respect Cramer for having the honesty, humility and integrity to at least admit that he was wrong, and do so gracefully. This was not a personal attack on Cramer, and even he accepted and understood that. You know, everyone in the country saw this interview too; everyone is entitled to their opinion about it but you have really twisted it up into a pretzel. It has been said that everyone is entitled to their won opinions but not their own facts! I think you sound a little worried because the IDEAS discussed in the interview are a little threatening to you and to the business news industry as a whole. Stewart asked the questions that entities like BusinessWeek should be asking, but are not! That being the case I think you should be ashamed for trying to dismiss it by obviously misrepresenting it. Failing that, perhaps you should wake up to the fact that people have become very cynical, angry and jaded about the media helping to sell us wars and Ponzi schemes over the years. Stewart's anger in this interview is Amerca's anger. He spoke for us. Too bad you weren't listening. It was good.

XRay

March 13, 2009 08:03 PM

It's simple! Cramer is the Rush Limbaugh of "finance."

Once they get a TV show to use their talents (which they DO posess), it is more about THEM than their audience, facts, or often even common sense! It is about ratings!

Thomas Huynh

March 13, 2009 08:07 PM

Some people here have missed Ms. Brady's point, not she missing Mr. Stewart's point. It's written all over this blog entry's title: "Jon Stewart thrashes Jim Cramer." Hardly supportive of Cramer. If you read the blog as an objective reader, she was trying to present the background thoroughly from both sides and concluded this: After all the hype buildup, Cramer inexplicably completely cave in to Stewart and so Stewart proceeded to rip Cramer; why didn't Cramer fight back even a little? This conclusion makes sense to me. I too was surprised that Cramer didn't say much, because in reality the situation isn't as lopsided as this Daily Show interview seem to show -- which was Cramer was 100% wrong and Stewart was 100% right. Anybody who believes that is only fooling him or herself. Cramer is certainly no Madoff. Cramer should have at least fought back if he had any backbone or self-respect, no matter what the argument might have been (as Diane Brady illustrated at the end just as an example). That was the point of the blog entry. Thomas

joe

March 13, 2009 08:11 PM

i was thoroughly entertained by the interview. I agree with a lot of the points that both of them were making and I actually have more respect for both of them as the result of the interview. Cramer certainly wasnt out to get everyone, it seems that his trust for others got the best of him and while he it can be argued that he should have seen the crisis coming, it cannot be argued realistically that he could have stopped it.

Moral of the story. Don't blame Cramer for your losses, and thank you Daily Show for the interesting insights on the financial market.

not bull

March 13, 2009 08:41 PM

Bell, he's not running with the herd, he's at the head of it.

Tomgnh

March 13, 2009 08:54 PM

Now many of you know why a comedy show is a more trusted source of news than the networks.

What other venue would dare even raise the issue?

You probably watched an Emmy-winning news show.

Peter

March 13, 2009 09:23 PM

CNBC and Cramer had it coming. Glad to see him humbled like that. I watch CNBC every day but that is because there is no alternative. Nobody holds these jounalists accountable, glad to see Jon Stewart do it. I remember Cramer repeatedly proclaiming that subprime mortgages are not a problem and will not derail the economy - right into the teeth of the biggest housing crisis ever.

sjfone

March 13, 2009 09:26 PM

Boo-yah!

sjfone

March 13, 2009 09:26 PM

Boo-yah!

matt

March 13, 2009 09:36 PM

Why are we holding Cramer accountable for something he didn't control. Do you honestly think he wanted to keep Bear and AIG afloat by offering bad advice to his viewers??? It doesn't make sense, he gives bad info he loses his reputation and his career. Where's the PERSONAL accountability. If you want to blame CNBC for your poor investing you probably should have never been given money in the first place. This is called a free-market economy, people are going to win and people are going to lose that's what happens in this country. Unfortunately people blindly followed advice (which is all it was, advice) of their "pariahs" and lost. When they should have studied the markets, looked at the advice objectively, invested where they felt was safe and gotten out when things were going down. Bottom line, take accountability, don't make CNBC or anyone else the scapegoat. Oh if you don't think I lost a little money, you're wrong, we all did but I'm not freaking out, just trusting my invesments for the long haul.

hilllsboro burro

March 13, 2009 09:44 PM

When will the facade be torn down? When will all the cronies who destroyed our economy just man up and cut the shady PR tactics and say we messed up?

The whole interview threw a spotlight on the biggest problem with a financial news channel ...they have to run 17 hours of content a day and fill 7 hours with advertisements and guess who buys those seven hours ...financial institutions. Anyone with any sort of knowledge of media knows that your ability to produce content thrives off of advertising, so the assertion that someone with knowledge of an economic downfall at CNBC would break a story as opposed to feeding us talking points about how we should be confident about the market is simply erroneous. They would obviously watch out for their own interest and longevity, all the while leading us down to the river only to snap our paddles as soon as we hit the riverbanks.

The fact that it took the Daily Show to skewer someone on the inside (and I say this in the respect that Cramer is an expert and is supposed to be able to read the market like the back of his hand) doesn't surprise me because they in the loosest definition do not have any stake in the market. Yes, Comedy Central and the parent company are part of the market, but they do not draw their money from the sectors they take on. They are a basic cable channel, watched by millions of Americans (some of which can't even afford to get above the basic cable line now) and they can take the risk of asking hard questions ...and that comment addresses the underlying problem. Many people at CNBC were willing to just sweep the hard news under the floor while feeding us the fluff, which as we all know, leads to a bubble that is bound to burst. The sad part is this time it was a bubble that held the pursuit of happiness of millions and millions of people aloft, only to break and leave us all drowning.

David

March 13, 2009 09:47 PM

You definitely missed the point. This wasn't an attack on Cramer or his stock-picking abilities. Either you're extremely ignorant or not very bright.

matt

March 13, 2009 10:07 PM

Well for an ignorant guy I didn't put faith in CNBC's financial advice and I'm doing alright. We know people with power lie, pee on your shoe and tell you it's raining. That's the way it is, always has been. My only gripe is the blame can't be squarely placed on the shoulders of CEOs. A lot of it can, but there's a certain amount that comes down to personal accountability, which no one wants to talk about. That includes investing educatedly, invest only what you're willing to lose, living within your means. By no means would the economic down-turn have been averted, but it wouldn't hurt as much.

Brad

March 13, 2009 10:12 PM

Anyone familiar with Jon Stewart's appearance on the now-off-the-air CNN show "Crossfire" should have seen this coming. Stewart and his Daily Show staff consistently point out the flawed reporting by media. They aptly go through the news and point out the lack of truly newsworthy reporting going on. They are a media-savvy team that understands how news media is currently failing us.

With CNBC, and Cramer's show, The Daily Show was absolutely correct in pointing out that CNBC (as well as other media outlets) fails to draw a line between reporting and commentating. Stewart made it clear that these were not personal attacks, but rather disappointment in CNBC playing loosely with journalistic integrity.

It's unfortunate to read Diane Brady's post because she seems to have completely missed the point.

Diane

March 13, 2009 10:16 PM

Brad,
You're right. One of the things I love about The Daily Show is that it points out flawed reporting by the media. I didn't take issue with Jon Stewart going after Cramer or CNBC.

My post was on how Cramer responded, and on the nature of his particular show. Thanks for weighing in on the debate.

Jordan

March 13, 2009 10:20 PM

Stewart accurately zeros in on three key issues:

1) CNBC (along with other stations) bills itself as having the financial expertise to assist viewers in guiding investment choices. They do not advertise themselves as an entertainment network. They need to be clear about when they're doing what, and to claim "oh it's just entertainment" after the fact is pretty hollow.

2) CNBC et al don't do their due diligence on the information they report. They shouldn't be taking the answers to softball interviews at face value, they should be comparing what the CEOs tell them to what the financial realities are and report those discrepancies.

3) The financial networks either aim for the public as their audience or the Wall Street insiders. Sacrificing hard questions for the sake of access to big names helps nobody but their advertisers and therefore their own pockets, while letting the theives get away with everything.

Combining 2 and 3, plenty of the people there, Cramer included, knew what kind of manipulations were taking place in the market. They knew and they didn't try to stop this delusional "market will always go up, real estate always goes up" BULL that they were selling the public. We're not just talking about the past year since things really started collapsing, they knew this was not viable in the long-term, they knew 35:1 leveraging was a ticking time bomb, they knew there were breaches of ethics and legal regulations - but they were drinking the Koolaid and wanted another pitcher. They played along, and they played a part in pulling the wool over peoples' eyes even as more and more economists were raising the alarms.

Your bias is showing.

johnny bravo

March 13, 2009 11:15 PM

jesus, how many jon stewart fans! what you people don't get is that CNBC isn't regulator. it doesn't have staff, expertise and knowledge to do all those things. so if SEC and all others regulatory institutions didn't see it coming and if all the academia didn't see it coming how these reporters could have forseen this? don't forget there were only a few voices like roubini and shiller and taleb among thousands of economists and experts. even famous investors were taken by suprise. only john paulson and couple of others saw it rolling. but somehow according to jon stewart it was CNBC that made a huge mistake. its always easy to be a general after the battle.

Not name

March 13, 2009 11:47 PM

Damage control, much?

I saw the interview, and it looks to me like Cramer should be arrested.

John

March 13, 2009 11:59 PM

Why do so many people feel that the financial media are at fault for what has happened in the market over the last year? We seem to live in a generation where nobody wants to accept fault when something bad happens to them. It's so easy to look back over a series of events and blame somebody else. Regardless of what CNBC reported, they are only one source of news, and people should acknowledge this when making investment decisions. Anyone could have attached their beliefs to Roubini or Peter Schiff and others who predicted the market correctly and made a lot of money during this downturn. But because so many people lost so much money in the downturn, it seems to be time to find a scapegoat. People should look at themselves to understand why they didn't see what was coming, as everyone had the option to get out of the market before things truly soured in a big way. Also, if he really was interested in helping his viewers, why didn't Stewart choose to run an interview like this before the market crashed? I guess he didn't see it coming either.

rob

March 14, 2009 12:18 AM

Ms. Brady and many of the commenters on here have completely missed the point. The point is that the Mainstream media, including this paper, does a disservice to the entire population, except those very few who benefit, by failing to report the shady dealings going on. Derivatives, Hedge funds and market manipulation, heck I am just a schmuck with a google search engine but I knew that the bubble was going to burst years ago. Are you trying to tell me the gang at CNBC were caught unaware? What nonsense. Shame on you Ms. Brady and your colleagues for letting comedy central beat you to the punch.

Stewart Sour Grapes

March 14, 2009 01:01 AM

Stewart is no better than Cramer. He feigns a concern for ordinary people to further promote himself and his oversized ego. He is a partisan left winger who is only going after Cramer, Santelli and CNBC because they dared to question the biggest con artists of all. You know, the ones who said that they inherited a financial catastrophe that only they could cure by borrowing from future generations of taxpayers for countless years.

Scott

March 14, 2009 01:12 AM

A psychology major from William & Mary displays more journalistic integrity than a journalism major from Columbia - just further evidence that most members of the mass media are more committed to perpetuating Corporate America's propaganda rather than publishing factual accounts of news-worthy topics.

"Cramer...has invested his own money over the years with great success."? Not quite so difficult when you use your nationally-televised forum to manipulate stock prices.

Bottom-line, Diane: we can all see the stretch marks around your mouth. Hopefully your book sells enough copies for you to give the knee pads back to the mass media outlets.

Stuart Baur

March 14, 2009 01:42 AM

No one could or should claim that Cramer is an investigative journalist. But he's the first to tell his viewers to do their research before investing. One would quite logically and reasonable assume that he would follow the same principle in making his stock recommendations. I thought Cramer handled himself reasonably well, but his repeated protestations of having been lied to rang totally hollow. If I believed what company execs had to say, I'd invest in every company out there. Doing the research involves testing the claims by validating them independantly, and neither Cramer on his show or CNBC in general seem to bother with that part of it. The end result is, as Stewart so perfectly put it - they're both snake oil salesman, but only Stewart has the decency to acknowledge it.

Garth A.

March 14, 2009 02:14 AM

If Stewart is so factually accurate then why is he saying that Rick Santelli and the Chicago Mercantile exchange have received bailout money from the government when it was the NY exchange that got bailout money? Shows what you can get away with saying to the ignorant American people.

jcarls

March 14, 2009 02:42 AM

I've been reading the extraordinary number of comments about this interview at various sites, and am struck by 1) how one-sided the reactions are (Stewart, who does some of the most intelligent and gently tenacious interviews on TV, touched a nerve among people tired of people who game the system) and 2) how the anti-Stewart reactions are almost entirely just name-calling by people who appear to have half-watched the interview, never watch The Daily Show, and get their talking points from the usual Republican propaganda sources. WAKE UP.

Stewart Gets it Wrong

March 14, 2009 07:56 AM

http://piscesproject.wordpress.com/2009/03/13/stewart-gets-it-wrong/

stewart Gets it Wrong

March 14, 2009 07:58 AM

This is the best analysis Stewart's lack of knowledge about the financial mess..

http://piscesproject.wordpress.com/2009/03/13/stewart-gets-it-wrong/

Pisces Project

March 14, 2009 08:00 AM

I love the Daily Show and I love John Stewart but his interview with Jim Cramer of CNBC Fast Money fame showed a simplistic understanding of the markets and a surprising naivete that really take away from the legitimacy of his argument. Stewart’s central argument is sound; financial and business news journalists and networks have a responsibility to actually do analysis and investigative reporting and not allow their media to simply be a PR mouthpiece for large corporations and Wall Street. In many ways, CNBC predates Fox News as the original commentary-news network where news is constantly filtered through the personalities and personal opinions of its “anchors” who are really all just commentators. Thank Stewart for doing what he does best; calling a pig a pig.

However, I really feel that he gets it wrong in some very substantial ways.

Stewart lays the claim that there are two stock markets, the insider’s stock market and the 401kers stock market and that the 401k-types are being told to “buy and hold” while the insider stock market is short-selling and generally screwing the little guy investors. This is not only an over simplification but misses the whole point altogether. There aren’t two markets, there is only one market. The reality is that every individual investor with a day job is participating in a market with professional traders and investors whose whole life is spent figuring out ways to beat the market, to trick the market (legally or otherwise), to cheat the system, or to shave a dollar here and there with the aspiration of making big money. That is a fact that the 401kers have been willfully unaware of, because of the tremendous run-up in the market in the last 10 years. Individual investors needs to appreciate that they are stepping into a world with professionals whenever they put money in their 401K. This is true even if you are investing in bonds! There are professional Treasury-Bill traders who make huge amounts of money speculating (i.e. placing bets on) the short-term movements of T-bills. It is fundamental to how all markets work. The difference is that with a 30-day bond you know that regardless of how the face value changes from day to day, you can redeem your bond in 30 days, so it is “safe.” The stock market has no such guarantee.

In the interview, Stewart basically says that he is angry that the corporations or wall-street types are playing games with “our 401ks” and that we are being told to “buy and hold,” insinuating that the professionals got out of the market in time. The reality is almost everyone got burned. Buying and hold is a good strategy, in the long run…..The long run is not 5-10 years, the long run is 30-50 years. People who are retiring now got a bad bit of luck but whoever was managing their money failed them. No one retiring in a 1-2 years should be in 100% equities. It should be like 10-20% equities. People invested 100% equity because they were greedy and neglected the potential downside. They wanted to participate in the bull market and not miss-out on the opportunity. That is human nature. We all did that and we all lost our shirts. This market collapse will end-up being a valuable lesson in risk appreciation. The country invested as if there were no risks! That is the bottom line. It happened all the way from the CEOs of Bear Stearns down to the grandma pension fund investor. The reason why is simple: it is inherent in the basic psychology of a bubble. The longer and bigger the bubble the less the apprecation of risk and the greater the focus on returns. A great read on this subject is “Manias, Panics, and Crashes: A History of Financial Crisis.”

At one point, Stewart says to Cramer “we are capitalizing your adventure.” The reality is more like, “we are participating in an adventure that we don’t fully appreciate or comprehend with big players who can wipe us out with their own incompetence.” It is true that the banking system burnt down the house with “our money.” That they were doing this with very smart people, in the pursuit of self-interested profit, speaks to the importance of external checks and regulations on the free market. It is human nature that emotion will frequently overpower reason. The euphoria of limitless profit potential overpowers the rationale part of the brain that considers risks and downsides. For this very reason, we will always need disinterested parties (i.e. those with no skin in the game) to provide that reasonable function when euphoria gets the best of all of us. We call these people regulators. They failed us.

This market collapse was a combination failure of regulation and a combination failure of delusion caused by a prolonged asset-class bubble. We rolled our dot-com bubble right into the real-estate market and never really skipped a beat. It has been essentially an 8 year bubble that sucked-in the smartest minds in the country and it finally burst. The parallels to Japan in the 1990s are very real, as they also had regulatory failure combined with a prolonged real-estate bubble. The difference this time, however, is that in addition to the mania, we had new financial tools never before seen or conceived of. In fact, it was in the fires of this prolonged bubble that people forged these highly leveraged financial tools to squeeze out even more profit and capture more return without a real estimation of the risks involved. Our mania combined with the sophisticated financial tools that comptuers and the Internet made possible, led us down this path. It is almost as if our greed built these tools. The government failed in its primary role of maintaing order and watching for the public’s welfare.

Art V

March 14, 2009 09:59 AM

What would the investment world look like without CNBC? I watch Cramer and get good commentary about investment direction, potential pitfalls and 'color' commentary....I invest....CNBC does not invest for me.....Jon Stewart is a little late to the game after the game is already over.....
Art

Art V

March 14, 2009 09:59 AM

What would the investment world look like without CNBC? I watch Cramer and get good commentary about investment direction, potential pitfalls and 'color' commentary....I invest....CNBC does not invest for me.....Jon Stewart is a little late to the game after the game is already over.....
Art

Kanak Shah

March 14, 2009 01:21 PM

It is CNBC; Jim Cramer just was willing to appear on the show.Even now while the country and the world is bracing thru very difficult times CNBC is talking down every effort by a new government facing enormous challenges.It seems Wall Street and their sponsors CNBC want trillions given or guaranteed to fix the banks.Health Care, energy should all wait until the banks and economy get fixed."They are socialistic enterprises" There is interconnectedness both domestically among different sectors of the economy and internationally as well and one expects CNBC to give balanced coverage rather than tout the same drumbeat of free market unbridled capitalism and that private sector will fix everything better than the Government.I don't see any balance-will Rick
Santelli read this comment? Ken

Kanak Shah

March 14, 2009 01:21 PM

It is CNBC; Jim Cramer just was willing to appear on the show.Even now while the country and the world is bracing thru very difficult times CNBC is talking down every effort by a new government facing enormous challenges.It seems Wall Street and their sponsors CNBC want trillions given or guaranteed to fix the banks.Health Care, energy should all wait until the banks and economy get fixed."They are socialistic enterprises" There is interconnectedness both domestically among different sectors of the economy and internationally as well and one expects CNBC to give balanced coverage rather than tout the same drumbeat of free market unbridled capitalism and that private sector will fix everything better than the Government.I don't see any balance-will Rick
Santelli read this comment? Ken

razta

March 14, 2009 05:28 PM

Why didn't Stewart credit Cramer for the brave shout heard round the world? "The Fed is asleep...they know nothing." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOVXh4xM-Ww
As I listened to the interview, I couldn't help but think Stewart a complete lemming regarding stocks. He bought hook, line, and sinker that one buys and holds for the long term? That's as naive as owning that home prices always go up. Stewart employed pathetic ambush journalism. He excerpted damning phrases of a clip of Cramer shining light on hedge fund techniques. There are no guarantees or sure things. "I can't reconcile the brilliance and intricacies you have of the market..." So what's Stewart's gripe again? His inability to reconcile? "It's not just you. It's larger forces at work..." Well, duh. The Lehman Bros. CEO lied to Cramer? Is Stewart a 100% effective lie detector? Of course not. Then why should a rational person expect the supernatural of Cramer? Stewart admitted that his interview of Cramer [or his show] is "not fair" and that "it [being fair] is not our job." I'll say! What is so sad the little concern most seem to have for the importance of fair play and honest reporting. Stewart finally confessed, like a self-exposed character of a Poe story, the plight of his 75 year old mother. I knew there was likely a deeply personal subject source for Stewart's misplaced [the System and regulators, not commentators like Cramer, Johnny Boy] rage. It's always the case. Stewart's mother "bought in to the idea that long term investing is the way to go." The concepts of cavaet emptor, responsibility, and risk vs reward are to be thrown out with the bath water? Can anyone honestly examine the degrees of separation here and hold Cramer more accountable than Stewart's mother or Stewart himself for her financial misfortune? I think a reasonable analysis would lay blame at the feet of Mrs. Stewart and her son John [for not protecting her if she is incompetent or painfully naive] before blaming Cramer. Of course a good public hanging or witch burning of innocents has always been very popular sport. Please see the disclaimer below. This disclaimer should be unnecessary. Anyone with a whit of intelligence would know as much about a television program. In my opinion, Cramer was being overly gentlemanly in an attempt to rope-a-dope diffuse Stewart's rage. I think it worked as Stewart's f-word flecked fusillade trended into the apologetic and then final conciliatory handshake.

MAD MONEY DISCLAIMER

The content of this website is published in the United States of America and persons who access it agree to do so in accordance with applicable U.S. law.

All opinions expressed by Jim Cramer on this website and on the show are solely Cramer’s opinions and do not reflect the opinions of CNBC, NBC UNIVERSAL or their parent company or affiliates, and may have been previously disseminated by Cramer on television, radio, internet or another medium. You should not treat any opinion expressed by Cramer as a specific inducement to make a particular investment or follow a particular strategy, but only as an expression of his opinion...

A.S

March 14, 2009 11:59 PM

I was very impressed with Stewart, it was very refreshing to be able to watch someone stick it to the jackasses of the world. Why did Cramer look so squirmy and uncomfortable? Because he knew he messed up (as part of the network) and it looked so bad that he had nothing to say. He kept repeating himself. Ha ha. I was pleased and I hope this will encourage others to put the pressure on!

Lauren

March 15, 2009 09:17 AM

Diane, Why didn't Cramer fight back? He didn't fight back because he knew he was in over his head. He knew that no matter what he said, Jon was going to make his point. I think Cramer underestimated the Daily's Show ability to do research. I also genuinely think that Cramer is realizing that he did things that were wrong, and that he could not defend them.

The purpose of the media is to be the eyes and ears for the public. It is their purpose to ask the tough questions and do RESEARCH for the public. Somehow over the years, this definition of the media has disintegrated. Thank you Jon Stewart and Daily Show staff for fulfilling your duties as true journalists.

Austrian

March 15, 2009 12:50 PM

Come on! Cramer is an easy target, he's more sound bites and showmanship than serious economics.

Lets see Mr. Stewart take on one of the Austrian Economists, Peter Schiff or some other would be appropriate. The truth is that at least one school of economics saw this coming and was very loud in warning us of the problem. We laughed at them then, perhaps we should stop laughing and listen now.

fenreer

March 15, 2009 11:27 PM

In response to 'bill:'

NO, we value our 401K's and our SAVINGS which disappeared thanks to the likes of Cramer. We're GLEEFUL to see Jon Stewart rip people like Cramer to shreds for knowingly deceiving the masses and cheating us out of our hard-earned money. We want this corporate-owned network exposed for what it is, which is precisely what Jon Steward did.

How DARE you make a two-line crack about this. You need to WATCH the part of the interview where Jon Stewart says "you can draw a straight line from those shenanigans to..." referring to Cramer's self-incriminating statements about abusing his financial knowledge and spreading rumors to spur changes in stock prices.

I'm not going to tell you to open your eyes because I don't buy for one second that they were ever closed. Your shallow idiotic statements paint a crystal clear picture of how truly marginal your intellect actually is.

As for the author of this piece, I've little to say other than I hope it is your true belief which spurred the words above to emanate from your fingertips. I truly hope that you are as simpleminded as you appear to be from the words you wrote, for if not it can only mean that you are intelligent and that you are also sinister.

You simply cannot miss the primary point of a lengthy interview and go on to defend the crook who was clearly exposed, along with the network he works for, unless you are a total buffoon or you are actively participating in this insidious game.

That is all.

Quote:

"bill
March 13, 2009 02:30 AM

seems like society values cynical sarcasm above an honest effort. how else do you explain Bill Mahar, Jon Stewart, and Al Franken."

razta

March 15, 2009 11:47 PM

Stewart is a talking monkey jester to Cramer's Renaissance Man:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/05_44/b3957001.htm

(excerpt)

...Cramer has been there and done that. He paid his dues in the '80s as a Goldman, Sachs & Co. (GS ) broker, followed by 14 years at Cramer Berkowitz, his $450 million hedge fund, where he earned an average return of 24% a year after fees. There, he had enough mega-paydays to kiss the Street hustle goodbye forever. With a net worth he says is between $50 million and $100 million, you might think Cramer would be out bronzing in St. Barts with daiquiri in hand...(Cramer trades stocks for a charitable trust; he no longer owns any stocks personally, other than his 15.4% stake in TheStreet.com, which he co-founded, worth about $15 million.)...

After a catastrophic 1998 that nearly sank Cramer Berkowitz, the fund netted clients 47% in 1999 and 28% in 2000. "I was killing the market when everyone else was doing badly, and yet I was more miserable than ever," he says...

Jakk Kim

March 16, 2009 05:10 AM

I read that some people think that Jim Cramers career is over. I don't really understand why they think this way. *shrugs* No really I can't comment back, because I need more info.

I also read that some people think Cramer underestimated the research that Stewarts team does. I agree, but I don't really think that Cramer was expecting Stewart to bring out the big guns.

It's like if person A called out person B to play a friendly game of football, then person A showing up with cleats, and full protection.

=)

Joan B

March 16, 2009 04:24 PM

Appears that Stewart lost some money, perhaps in the Madoff Scandal? Perhaps Stewart should read Democrat New YOrk Times of Sept 30. 1999 and read where ALL of this crisis orignated from. As well the subsequent efforts by the Bush Whitehouse and McCain, John in 2004, 2005, and 2007 who introduced legislation to stop the fiasco that was forthcoming; and those Laws were blocked by Democrats = Barney Frank, Schumer and Dodd. All three of the aforementined stating "all was just fine" as late as July and August of 2008. Get the facts correct.

Jimbo

March 16, 2009 08:47 PM

Do not criticize the messiah or the wrath of Obama will be upon you. Now Cramer knows what its like to be a Republican.

Andre

March 17, 2009 05:14 AM

I was said earlier but it should be iterated: This article is completely on target.

Paritosh

March 17, 2009 08:23 AM

This is not about good calls and bad calls...everyone makes a mistake.

This is about knowing that CEOs lie on the show and you don't call that out...

It is about knowing how hedge funds work, but not calling their unethical practices out...

You know why Cramer was silent? You know why a seasoned hedge fund manager and Mad Money entertainer was silent? Because he knew he was wrong...there was no way he could defend his actions...it was there for everyone to see...

As Jon rightly said, this is not a f****** game...

I am sure Jon's financial advisor depends on CNBC as much as other small investors for knowledge...and they now know that its being held back or being ignored. That, dear Diane, is the whole point...

I follow this blog quite regularly, but seeing you defend Cramer makes me doubt your advice as well... I am disappointed...

Mr Pink

March 17, 2009 09:32 PM

Since when has mass media ever informed the public correctly?? "If it bleeds it leads" if you have ever have watched Jim’s program you would know that there is disclaimers almost after every segment. Now don't get me wrong I am not defending him I think john Stewart made very valid points. But seriously who really takes advice from a TV show? Markets are dynamic and people should not believe everything they see on TV. Anyone can short a stock BTW not just financial professionals. I love the lack of personal responsibility it's your money shouldn't you know what to do with it? Most people don't even know what there 401k portfolio is holding then wonder why it's value is down more than 50%. People wonder why financial professionals are greedy and shady while holding there wallets wide open! makes no sense.

Mr Pink

March 17, 2009 09:32 PM

Since when has mass media ever informed the public correctly?? "If it bleeds it leads" if you have ever have watched Jim’s program you would know that there is disclaimers almost after every segment. Now don't get me wrong I am not defending him I think john Stewart made very valid points. But seriously who really takes advice from a TV show? Markets are dynamic and people should not believe everything they see on TV. Anyone can short a stock BTW not just financial professionals. I love the lack of personal responsibility it's your money shouldn't you know what to do with it? Most people don't even know what there 401k portfolio is holding then wonder why it's value is down more than 50%. People wonder why financial professionals are greedy and shady while holding there wallets wide open! makes no sense.

Active Trader

March 18, 2009 01:47 PM

What I learned from this interview and this economic crisis is how little the average American understands about Capitalism. I've been investing for about 25 years and actively trading stocks for about 13 and I find Cramer useful. He can help explain how a pro trader thinks and what they are looking at when they trade. Capitalism actually IS a game and if you don't know how to play you should probably invest in CDs or T-Bills. The video where Cramer talks about stock manipulation was never shown on TV before, it's from "The Street" and Cramer was simply explaining various ways large operators try to move stocks. It wasn't a "how to" guide, just a pro telling you what really can happen behind the scenes so you can be more prepared to react when you are trading yourself. As far as I can tell Cramer has done nothing illegal or even immoral. The question you "average Americans" need to ask is why your mutual fund managers in your 401k account didn't protect your investment. If these guys are watching CNBC for ideas I think you have the wrong funds in your account.

Mike

March 18, 2009 09:18 PM

Matt,

Hate to break it to you my little naive friend, but no such obligation exists between the news outlets and their patrons. If you want the truth, here goes...

You can't believe everything you see on TV and believe it or not, some people don't have your best interests at heart. Try taking responsibility for your actions and do a little research before investing your money. Don't feel bad for those that have lost money in the stock market, because they knew their was risk before they jumped into investments that clearly state that they are not FDIC insured.

Matt, the moral of the story is, you want zero risk, bury your money in the desert and call it a day. Otherwise, you can throw some loot into the fiscal roulette wheel that is wall street...but no crying if YOU make a bad decision and your money disappears!

Sidious

March 19, 2009 03:48 PM

Cramer is a joker. I pick 100 stocks in a year even I am bound to get almost 50% of them right when the market is going up. Look at his sorry picks for crying out loud. He picked NYX as the best stock for 2008 at the end of 2007 when it was at $100. His pridiction was that it was going to trump $250 by the end of the year. It never made it a dollar past $108 and is sitting at $18 something today. This guy should not be financial TV any more than anyone of us on this forum.

Milad

March 26, 2009 03:18 AM

This is not about Cramer. Yeah, he was burnt but Jon mentioned it twice that he was aiming at CNBC as an allegedly responsible TV network that addresses many citizens out there who can't research and/or decide for themselves.
Well whether Cramer deserves it or not, it shouldn't stop Jon to fight for the people who have been misled.

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John

December 22, 2009 06:29 PM

The rational of this article is often used, as it is good for replication, because the claims can be alleged in any context. Quite formidable is the stance of plausible deniability- “it was an isolated incident,” “I was unaware of this activity,” “I was lied to,” “I do not recall.” However, context is denials master. Only context can label ones denial plausible or clandestine.

The article questions why Jim Cramer doesn’t rail against John Stewart, as if to suggest it is because of his better judgment and maturity shining through. I can not answer why Jim Cramer went on the Daily show, but I can answer why he chose to be placid. He was placid because he knew he had intentionally done wrong. He was trying to apologize and patch his image.

The major failing of Jim Cramer’s performance on the Daily show is where this article hits the bull’s-eye. Because of some regret on the part of Jim Cramer or because of an unwillingness to subject himself to embarrassment, by touting statements that could be refuted by simple rational, Jim Cramer failed to defend himself against John Stewarts orchestrated criticism. However, this article exploits the fact that many people will believe dubious statements that Jim Cramer chose not to make because THEY(the reader) have no idea or care for the context of this situation, but instead cling to ideological dogma that “never” fails

But hey everyone makes mistakes!

Ashish

December 26, 2009 04:41 AM

This article seems like a candy to the crying baby called Jim Cramer. Jon Stewart is the voice of people and a true journalist. A job we would expect from news organizations like CNN, Fox, CNBC to perform but they have failed the commom man.

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How can you manage smarter? BusinessWeek writers Nanette Byrnes, Patricia O’Connell, Emily Thornton, Matthew Boyle, Michelle Conlin and Diane Brady synthesize insights from the brightest business thinkers, critique the latest management trends, and comment on leaders in the news.

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