Friday, March 13, 2009

Jon Stewart and Jim Cramer: The Extended Interview

Jim Cramer and Jon Stewart went toe-to-toe last night. But you didn't see everything. Much of the interview had to be cut for time. But this is the internet, where all we have is time. So, here now, is the complete interview.


Follow the links and watch the whole thing. Perhaps it's his outsider "non-reporter" status, but Jon Stewart gets to the heart of issues more thoroughly than most "real" news reporters. He's not Tim Russert, but sometimes I wonder whether, in terms of confronting hypocrisy anyway, he isn't the closest thing we have we have right now. "Roll the tape."

Memeorandum has links to the 3 part series of videos, and to many other posted reports and opinions.



read more | digg story

11 comments:

Deranged Leftwing Baker said...

I saw the clips on Albany Project this morning. I've only watched the first one so far. Cramer was pretty contrite, as well he should be. CNBC needs to come with a disclaimer, "For Entertainment Purposes Only," or something.

I have the link at my blog, but I'm not into whoring today. I have a headache.

Anonymous said...

With Bush out of office Stewart has to find new meat to keep his show going. What I find funny is that both Stewart and Cramer are liberal, and both have reportadly voted for Obama. Kind of funny seeing people eat their own shit.

repsac3 said...

I don't see what you see, anon, but I'm glad you're amused, regardless...

Jack said...

Anyone who has read cramers' books and watches his show knows that he does not advise buying any stock let alone ones that he recomends without doing their "Homework" first. This is a common phrase on the show/books that entails an investor to average at least 3hrs a week of research per stock they have in their portfolio. Cramer constantly preaches that if a person is not willing to put in the time to do their "HW" then they should not be investing on their own, and instead choose a reputatable investment firm/money manager.

If people invested on the whim with out doing their HW just because cramer said, "Buy, BUy, BUy". Then they got what they deserved.

Futhermore, there is a disclaimer that is read and shown (in text) several times through out the airing of "Mad Money" Here it is"


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. Cramer’s opinions are based upon information he considers reliable, but neither CNBC nor its affiliates and/or subsidiaries warrant its completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such. Cramer, CNBC, its affiliates and/or subsidiaries are not under any obligation to update or correct any information provided on this website. Cramer’s statements and opinions are subject to change without notice. No part of Cramer’s compensation from CNBC is related to the specific opinions he expresses.


Past performance is not indicative of future results. Neither Cramer nor CNBC guarantees any specific outcome or profit. You should be aware of the real risk of loss in following any strategy or investment discussed on this website or on the show. Strategies or investments discussed may fluctuate in price or value. Investors may get back less than invested. Investments or strategies mentioned on this website or on the show may not be suitable for you. This material does not take into account your particular investment objectives, financial situation or needs and is not intended as recommendations appropriate for you. You must make an independent decision regarding investments or strategies mentioned on this website or on the show. Before acting on information on this website or on the show, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and strongly consider seeking advice from your own financial or investment adviser.

Did Stewart mention anyone of this? NO of course not. What stewart did was he showed videos of cramer discussing Hedge fund strategies (which I agree use tactics that are legally grey as defined by current S.E.C. laws and regulation) and used it against his show "Mad Money", which are two very different things.

repsac3 said...

"Did Stewart mention anyone of this? NO of course not."

I'm pretty certain Stewart didn't mention any of it because none of it has anything to do with what Stewart was actually talking about, which was whether the financial news media has a responsibility to investigate and report news that helps the individual investor, rather than (or "along with," at least) the companies and CEOs.


"What stewart did was he showed videos of cramer discussing Hedge fund strategies (which I agree use tactics that are legally grey as defined by current S.E.C. laws and regulation) and used it against his show "Mad Money", which are two very different things."

I don't know that I agree with you, Jack. That's like defending a doctor who kills people in his spare time, using his medical knowledge, by explaining what a professional demeanor and great bedside manner he has when he's in the office.

If you're "legally grey" over there, it affects what you do over here. That's the same principle we tend to use with politicians who cheat on their wives. One really has nothing to do with the other... ...but it affects how we see them, anyway, and can affect whether they get reelected.

Jon Stewart was saying that, there or here, Jim Cramer has a responsibility to help and defend us against legally grey (or worse) practices, by shining a light on the things a relatively small number of individuals and firms are doing to increase their wealth at our expense.

Jack said...

"Jon Stewart was saying that, there or here, Jim Cramer has a responsibility to help and defend us against legally grey (or worse) practices, by shining a light on the things a relatively small number of individuals and firms are doing to increase their wealth at our expense."

It is not his responsibility to defend "us" againts these tactics. It's the Federal regulators and Congress (both GOP and DEM)job to do this.

Cramer retired from his hedge fund in 2001 and is one of the most honest personalities on CNBC or any other finicial news network.

Stewart only painted the one sided story he wanted. How come he did not mention how Cramer protected folks against Enron before they sunk by questioning their practices, he has constantly blasted the Federal Reserve and Ben Bennake of how "They Know Nothing", or how about last OCT. 2008 Cramer told people to get out of the market (if followed would have saved a person 30%). None of this was mentioned by Stewart, how come?

Futhermore,its not only fincial experts who have their hand in the pot. Politicians from both sides have their hands in the pot. Check out this fiasco: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=7110145&page=1
SHould be interesting to see if they return any of the donations

repsac3 said...

It is not his responsibility to defend "us" againts these tactics. It's the Federal regulators and Congress (both GOP and DEM)job to do this.

I guess I hold our news media to a higher standard than you do. I expect them to discover and tell the truth, and tell us who is and isn't being dishonest, in addition to entertaining.

Stewart only painted the one sided story he wanted. How come he did not mention how Cramer protected folks against Enron before they sunk by questioning their practices, he has constantly blasted the Federal Reserve and Ben Bennake of how "They Know Nothing", or how about last OCT. 2008 Cramer told people to get out of the market (if followed would have saved a person 30%). None of this was mentioned by Stewart, how come?

I don't know... I guess people don't get the attention and recognition they should when they do their job properly. When they don't, however, that's a story... Stewart was upset about a specific circumstance, that by the way was and is bigger than Jim Cramer... (Stewart said so several times, actually.) He wasn't blaming Jim Cramer for the whole situation, but he was saying that at times, Cramer was a part of the problem. Where neceassary, he showed examples... Stewart wasn't doing a retrospective of Cramer's whole life, and I fail to understand why you think he should've been...

My question is, why didn't Cramer tell that side of the story? Why has even he left it to you to save his honor?

Futhermore,its not only fincial experts who have their hand in the pot. Politicians from both sides have their hands in the pot. Check out this fiasco: ABC News: Will Obama, McCain, Dodd Return Contributions From AIG Employees?
Should be interesting to see if they return any of the donations


At first I wholeheartedly agreed with you, but then I read the article:
------------

AIG employees kept doling out donations to politicians, including presidential candidate Barack Obama, after getting bailed out with federal funds last year, raising the question of whether those politicians will now return the money.

AIG executives gave more than $630,000 during the 2008 political cycle even as the company was falling apart


If it was an AIG PAC, or bundled donations, I'd agree, but to the extent that we're talking about individual doners who all happen to work for a particular company, I'm less sure that there's anything nefarious there...

If I'm a mid-level manager at AT&T, and decided to chuck a good portion of my savings into a candidate's campaign, the way this ABC report is looking at this, my donation would count as having been from AT&T, and representative of their interests, rather than my own donation, made with my own money, and representative of no one's interests except my own... And yet, if a few AT&T executives were subsequently caught stealing funds, or asking for bailout money, my personal donation, made as an individual, would be touted in some news report as one of many "AT&T donations." It's kinda bullshit, Jack...

This raises two key questions: Was any bailout money used to make political contributions? And will the politicians who received AIG cash give the money back?

Again, there's a difference between AIG money, and AIG employee money. Before we go answering these two key questions, I'd like a more detailed report of who at AIG gave what money... If it was the top 50 AIG bigwigs, most of whom got these bonuses, and all of whom gave the maximum (as did their wives, husbands, children, pets, ..., that's a very different story than if it was 500 middle managers at AIG each giving $200 - $500, on their own.

AIG's CEO Edward Liddy said he imposed new rules when he took over the struggling insurance giant six months ago, banning further lobbying of politicians and ending political donations from AIG's two political action committees.

I would say that this (and the paragraph that follows) are the most significant parts of the story...

Records indicate that AIG's PACs stopped making donations, but contributions from AIG executives continued right up to the presidential election.

When ABC or some other news organization is ready and willing to flesh this out--more clearly explaining who these executives were in the company, whether or not they received bonuses, how many of them there were, and how much they each gave--then I might be ready to join with you in being outraged... ...or maybe not.

If they do give back the donations, I think they should probably take the suggestion in the article.:

One suggestion: Perhaps the money could be paid back not to AIG but to the U.S. Treasury.

I'd be in favor of that...

Here's the list of top AIG recipients for the 2008 campaign:

1. Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., $103,100
2. Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., $101,332
3. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., $59,499
4. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., $35,965
5. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., $24,750
6. Former Gov. Mitt Romney, (R) Pres $20,850
7. Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., $19,975
8. Rep. John Larson, D-Conn, $19,750
9. Sen. John Sununu, R-N.H., $18,500
10. Former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani (R) Pres $13,200
11. Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., $12,000
12. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., $11,000

---------

Jack said...

Why would mid-level managers contribute their own money on behalf of AIG? Wouldn't they make their own personal contribution so they could reep the tax write-off?

"Stewart wasn't doing a retrospective of Cramer's whole life, and I fail to understand why you think he should've been..."

Since you hold news media to a higher standard then me, wouldn't you want Stewart to give a fair and balanced objective report? Instead he opted for a "shock and awe" approach. Perhaps he was catering to his diverse audience where some say he's a commedian doing a comedy show, and others say he gives the only real news program. Seems to me Stewart likes to play both roles; Mr. Witty Commedian, and Mr. Noble Newsman. But at what costs?

repsac3 said...

Why would mid-level managers contribute their own money on behalf of AIG? Wouldn't they make their own personal contribution so they could reep the tax write-off?

That's the point, Jack. Whoever these employees were, they likely didn't donate money on behalf of AIG. It likely was their own money. But where it says "employer" and "occupation" on the donation form (or if you prefer, donation form)--which all campaigns are required by law to obtain for any donation over $200.00/calendar year--they filled it out honestly, saying they worked for AIG. And now (assuming I am correct, anyway), some ABC reporter is (correctly, and yet inaccurately) saying these were AIG contributions, rather than the contributions of individuals who worked for AIG.

That's why, before I get all excited about "AIG political contributions," I want more details, which I laid out in my previous comment.

And by the way, also from the Barack Obama website: "Your contribution is not tax-deductible as a charitable contribution for Federal income tax purposes. Federal Election law requires political committees to report the name, mailing address, occupation and name of employer for each individual whose contributions aggregate in excess of $200 in a calendar year." (and yes, there's a message very similar to that on the bottom of John McCain's site, too. It's federal law.

Since you hold news media to a higher standard then me, wouldn't you want Stewart to give a fair and balanced objective report?

No... Jon Stewart isn't a part of the "news media," though alot of people get their news from him, at least in part. (In fact, there's a study from early in the decade, that found that Jon Stewart's audience was more informed about current events than the consumers of any of the cable news outlets. Just to be clear, that doesn't mean they are getting that info from Jon Stewart, but it does mean that somewhere in the course of their day, they are reading/watching/listening to enough diverse news media to correctly answer questions about what's going on in the world... ...and to understand the jokes on Jon Stewart's show, which are only funny if you already know what he's talking about.)

This is the same difficulty Tucker Carlson had years ago (& apparently still has) with The Daily Show and Jon Stewart. Jon Stewart isn't a reporter. He never claimed to be a reporter. He's under no obligation to be objective or fair on his program or off. He's not even a news commentator, like O'Reilly or Olbermann (who, by the way, are also under no obligation to be objective or fair, and also aren't). It is a comedy show, running on a comedy network.

That isn't to say he doesn't sometimes play the role of a news reporter, asking questions that the legit news media seem unwilling or unable to ask. But even his doing that doesn't make him a member of the news media, which should be asking these questions.

Instead he opted for a "shock and awe" approach. Perhaps he was catering to his diverse audience where some say he's a commedian doing a comedy show, and others say he gives the only real news program. Seems to me Stewart likes to play both roles; Mr. Witty Commedian, and Mr. Noble Newsman. But at what costs?

First off, where have you seen anyone say he's doing a real news program? (Or do you mean that people say he's the only one who delivers "real" news or at least asks the questions a "real" news reporter should ask, occasionally, which is closer to the truth?) If you offer up a few links in support of what you're claiming, I'll be glad to respond to what you've read... ...but I have the feeling there are precious few who think he's doing a real news program. It's a comedy show, about the news.

That said, yes, there are things he cares about, and yes, when it came to the financial news media (and to some of the punditry shows, back when he was a guest on Crossfire and hurt poor Tucker Carlson's feelings), he does seriously think they are doing a poor job of giving people the information they need to know. On those two occasions (and at least a few others), he has very seriously spoken his mind, and seriously ruffled a few feathers. Comedian or not, he is allowed to be serious and to care about real issues, occasionally. He's even allowed to talk about them, in public (including on his own show, apparently. Comedy Central doesn't seem to have any problem with his not being funny for those 15-20 minutes last week.)

In my opinion anyway, he isn't playing "Mr. Noble Newsman," but Mr. News Media Critic. Perhaps we all ought to do that more often.

Jack said...

Reason why comedy central does not have a problem with his show is because of the ratings and renvue he brings in, same about cramer on CNBC.

"First off, where have you seen anyone say he's doing a real news program? (Or do you mean that people say he's the only one who delivers "real" news or at least asks the questions a "real" news reporter should ask, occasionally, which is closer to the truth?)"

The latter part of this statement is what I meant. I agree his show only makes sense if aware of the news already. I also agree that people should get their news from multiple sources, and those that do understand where stewart is coming from.

My Big problem with stewart is when he does decide to play "Mr. News Media Critic" he is often one sided, as in the case with cramer. And as in this case it made national news, and for people who are not familar with Stewarts' show, they got a one sided version of Stewart vs. Cramer.

Maybe my beef is with the ill-informed people who don't get their news from multiple sources and multiple opinions.

"That isn't to say he doesn't sometimes play the role of a news reporter, asking questions that the legit news media seem unwilling or unable to ask. But even his doing that doesn't make him a member of the news media, which should be asking these questions."

Sounds like a nice job. He can play the role of news reporter at times, but he could also play the role of commedian at times. Nothing wrong with having a cameleon persona, hey what ever brings home the bucks. But when he dicides to play "Mr. News Media Crictic" and ask questions that the real news media should be asking, doesn't that make him obligated (at least by news reporting standards) to give a fair and balanced interview.

repsac3 said...

Reason why comedy central does not have a problem with his show is because of the ratings and renvue he brings in, same about cramer on CNBC.

I wouldn't be surprised if these occasional bouts of seriousness bring in more ratings than if he was just straight funny. But there is a danger in having too much serious on a comedy channel. (If you ask me, however, that's nothing compared to the damage of having too much comedy on a news channel... Think Red Eye, or that real FoxNews failure that lasted a few weeks, and that I can't even recall the name of just now...)

It's one thing to bring in the ratings... But if CNBC decided to get rid of all the old guys and have naked hot babes deliver the financial news of the day, they wouldn't be taken seriously... ...though their ratings would go through the roof. The news isn't supposed to garner ratings, or even entertain; it's supposed to inform the public.

My Big problem with stewart is when he does decide to play "Mr. News Media Critic" he is often one sided, as in the case with cramer. And as in this case it made national news, and for people who are not familar with Stewarts' show, they got a one sided version of Stewart vs. Cramer.

I'd take it further than that, and say he's almost always one sided... ...but as I keep saying, there's no reason to expect him to be anything else. He's not Brit Hume; he's Dennis Miller.

Maybe my beef is with the ill-informed people who don't get their news from multiple sources and multiple opinions.

I think that's possible. I know I get frustrated with 'em, sometimes...

But when he dicides to play "Mr. News Media Crictic" and ask questions that the real news media should be asking, doesn't that make him obligated (at least by news reporting standards) to give a fair and balanced interview.

No.

(I guess I shouldn't leave it at that, though I'm tempted...)

Critics are seldom fair, balanced, or objective, and comedians are even less so. Whether they're doing it to make a point, get a laugh, or both, their job is to express their opinion about the thing, and persuade you to look at it that way, too. Whether it's food, movies, media, music, popular culture, or books, it isn't about being fair to all sides. It's about saying "This is what I think of it, and this is why..."

If you really listen to 'em, almost every comedian expresses their opinions about the world. They're all critics of somethin'... That's why so many of 'em end up being radio/tv pundits (Janine Garafalo, Dennis Miller, Al Franken, Jackie Mason, ...)

Someone else who made the same connection: Pundit Fight - The Political Arena: Pundits and Comedians - Louis CK, Jackie Mason and Eugene Mirman

So no. Even when Jon Stewart decides to play "Mr. News Media Critic" and/or ask the questions that the real news media should be asking, that doesn't make him obligated (by news reporting standards, or anything else) to give a fair and balanced interview. On those all too rare occasions hen he slips into full critic mode, his only obligation is to express his opinion, and to try to convince you that he's right, just like any other pundit or opinioneer. If he thinks the soup was too salty, the acting was awful, or the reporter ought to do more to inform, his most pressing obligation is to say so.