Thursday, March 12, 2009

Jim Cramer = FAIL

There I was, toggling my attention back and forth between my slow YouTube connection and the Big East tourney game on ESPN when suddenly I looked up and saw that it was 11:00.

11:00 in my house means one thing: The Daily Show.

I watch this show as often as I possibly can and tonight's entertainment was as splendid as I have ever witnessed.

Tonight, Jon Stewart went all in on Jim Cramer, the host of CNBC's "Mad Money" for the entirety of the show and the only word your intrepid author could really muster while watching it was "Damn!"

Above:The combatants at the weigh-in.

I'm a big Jon Stewart fan and have been since he took over for Craig Kilborn on the "Daily Show" a few years back. Although he delivers with the caveat that the "Daily Show" is not a serious news program, Stewart manages to convey topical news with an intelligent yet comedic slant that often leaves me feeling like he's inside my head.(Along with the other voices.)

While I've turned past CNBC many times and seen Jim Cramer yelling, screaming, hitting various noise buttons while doling financial advice on a fairly reputable news channel, I've only ever found it mildly entertaining at best. Having worked in the financial industry in the past and having hated my overall experience, I've never felt inclined to commit to watching the show in its entirety.

Stewart and Cramer have been staging a media "feud" if you will for about a week prior to Cramer's appearance on Stewart's show and watching the the culmination of that feud brought to my mind a single word which Wiktionary defines as "any act that removes power from a person (particularly a man)or entity..." and Webster's defines as "to render impotent or deprive of vitality especially by psychological means."


Above:A visual representation of the Stewart / Cramer interview.

If you didn't see it, you need to.

Stewart started off congenial but the tone turned decidedly more confrontational over the course of the interview as he took Cramer to task for being callous and disingenous with the fiscal advice he offers to the average person who would watch his show as opposed to his industry cohorts. Cramer initially attempted to refute Stewart's claims but the video evidence that Stewart had of Cramer in regards to his advice to laypeople as opposed to industry insiders was damning to say the least. Cramer squirmed and fidgeted. His voice cracked and his posture conveyed a "What? I'm on YOUR side!" kind of attitude.

He's not.

The best part is that Jon recognized this and instead of letting him off the hook, he turned the heat up on his guest to "char."

Stewart likened Cramer's attitude to the attitude big business has to the average consumer. Stewart at one point said, and I'm paraphrasing here "...It's not a f_king joke."

He's right.

It's not.

Anytime these financial asshats and charlatans are made to sweat and squirm, my soul sings a happy song. I loathe these types with a passion that scares me. It's part of the reason I got out of that industry in the first place.

It doesn't happen very often in life, but every so often justice is served.

Last night on the Daily Show, it was served up to an unwitting Jim Cramer.

Hats off to you Jon. Keep making these smug bastards as uncomfortable as possible.

I'll keep cheering you on.