I was a bit surprised to see how many people enjoyed Jon Stewart’s bashing Jim Cramer last week. I understand that people are trying really hard to find a scapegoat for the financial mess we got into, but the choice sounded a bit weird to me at first.
First of all, no one watches CNBC… they have an average of 300 thousand viewers a day. Besides that, Stewart’s criticism of the entertainment aspect of financial news is a bit weird. I mean, very few people saw the crisis coming and that is just the way crisis usually work. But even further, the idea that Cramer was not doing ‘serious journalism’ is really intriguing coming from a comedian. A comedian who, by the way, makes his living in getting involved into politics.
Cramer has a show because he is good at picking stocks. No one is forced to follow his advice and ultimately anyone who puts money in stocks has to know that returns and risks walk together. Cramer is down because the market is down, and to try to make this any more than that is just grandstanding.
But life goes on, and as soon as the economy recovers all will be forgiven and forgotten. Some are starting to see the light even before we are done with this. Look at Obama for instance. He bashed McCain mercilessly for saying that the “economy was fundamentally sound”. But now that his behind is on the line, he is saying exactly the same thing.
When Democrats say that “a crisis cannot be wasted” they know pretty well what that means. Just like any other crisis, this one will be gone soon and no one will remember quite well how we got into trouble or how we got back on track. What matters is what they can do in the meantime. Be it rising taxes or betting up people who are down and posing as a hero of the people.
Soon they go back to be the usual clowns they are.