CNBC's financial entertainer and guru, Jim Cramer, suffered some serious hits this past week when THE DAILY SHOW with Jon Stewart exposed Cramer as hyping stocks to his viewers as great investments such as Bear Stearns stock which tanked only six days later. Jon Stewart used file footage from Cramer's own program to prove that Cramer led by investors into financial ruin by hyping some stocks so wildly and enthusiastically that were actually sitting right on the verge of ruin. Jon Stewart acted as great consumer advocate this past week, to protect the public interest. He deserves great praise.
Jim Cramer attempted to defend himself on a split screen appearance on NBC's TODAY SHOW, but that appearance also went very badly for Cramer. And then, even worse for Cramer he agreed to come on Stewart's program as a last ditch attempt to salvage his reputation, and this probably went the worst of all as Stewart apparently had as many over 200 film clips available to disprove any of Cramer's points.
Jon Stewart is an amazingly intelligent man and a major force to be reckoned with. And Jim Cramer underestimated this fact during both his TODAY SHOW and DAILY SHOW attempts to defend his hype for bad stocks that no doubt cost many of his listeners a great deal of money. Cramer was no intellectual match for Jon Stewart by any means. Stewart is one of the smartest men on TV, bar none. His show is outstanding news, masquerading as comedy, parody and satire.
Now the big question is what happens next for Jim Cramer? Will his program survive? Will his ratings hold up? Will CNBC figure that Cramer hurts their reputation and ax his show?
Jon Stewart might have taken down a major icon this past week with his lawyerly, yet very entertaining, and very well documented proof of Cramer hyping bad stocks to his viewers and costing some lots of money. This had to be a very rough week for Cramer. And the more he attempted to defend himself, the deeper Stewart was able to bury him with more facts and more proof by the extensive use of film clips using Cramer's own words. Cramer likely became too close, if not too cozy with some companies, chief executives and stocks to be able to view many in an objective light, and Jon Stewart took full advantage of that.
Jon Stewart came out the big winner in all of this, acting as a great consumer advocate, hitting on Cramer's weakness with his reputation as a bit of an erratic screwball, and now a master of bad hype and bad information. All of this leaves Cramer greatly degraded as a marketable entity for CNBC. But likely, just like Rush Limbaugh, who is constantly degraded by facts from his critics, Limbaugh has managed to survive. Cramer does have many loyal fans. However, the management of CNBC will have to really sort this thing out and decide how much of a liability that Cramer has now become for them. Can this network afford such a liability? This no doubt pains CNBC because Cramer has been very popular at CNBC. But the station's credibility is at stake here. Can CNBC afford Cramer's drag on their reputation?
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!