Stewart v. Kramer (Ouch!)


Kramer wishes he'd taken the water-boarding

I missed the live broadcast of the Daily Show Friday night but watched it Saturday afternoon via Huffpo.

Fist, kudos to Kramer for showing up.  Jon Stewart was clearly vexed by comments Kramer had made on Joe Blow Scarborough’s (and other) shows and a Stewart scorned is a force to be reckoned with.  I fondly recall his appearance years ago on CNN’s long-defunct “Crossfire” program, in which Tucker Carlson was reduced to a simpering twit (not a reach, granted). The point was, Stewart was right.

The chronic vitriol that passes as political analysis is a lowdown dirty shame–and at the time, “Crossfire” led the pack.  At times it was little more than a WWE meets Washington, DC “smack down” minus the bodily contact.  I forced myself to watch, but predictably, wound up turning it off.

As I watch these parrots, I’m reminded of Lou Dobbs on his old CNN program “Moneyline.” Leading up to the debacle, Lou routinely paid homage to Enron, as was the custom among financial pundits before Enron’s fall.

I recall a “Moneyline” broadcast a night or several before Enron’s bankruptcy.  Dobbs, ever reassuring, reported that while waters had indeed become choppy, Enron was coming about.  Confidence was high.  Ultimately, the wizards at its helm would steer their vessel safely into calmer waters. The dark clouds would part, the sun would break through and again warm the faces of Enron’s shareholders. (Wish I could find the clip or a transcript).

Having lost big on Enron, I’ve never since been able to look at, let alone listen to the flatulence faux populist Dobbs emits as opinion.  In a business dominated by douchebags, Dobbs shares the top of the scrap heap with the likes of Hannity, O’Reilly, Roundmouth Beck, Man Coulter, Laura Ingram, Michelle Malkin and the entire spectrum of right-wing “pound-its,” from Alzarin to Vermilion, whose noxious gas we lesser humans somehow decode as political commentary.  But I digress.

Jim Kramer is a man of considerable pedigree, who long ago found it more fun and profitable to sell out than to operate ethically.  An insider, he found ways to manipulate funds to his advantage.  But wealth apparently wasn’t enough. He also sought fame.  He became an entertainer, a financial “Pied Piper” who infused his program with personality, sight gags, sound effects and props. “Mad Money” became anything but your father’s business report…it was stock picks with a whoopee cushion and viewers consumed it like opiated tea.

The problem is, Kramer and his employer, CNBC promoted themselves as serious business experts and the network as the place for “BIN-NESS.”  At the same time, they derived sublime pleasure from burying their faces as deeply in the rectums of big business as anatomy would allow.

Big business talking points dominate daily reports.  Celebrity appearances by reigning royalty from the very companies their programs promote paint pictures of markets without ceilings…gilded, sumptuous bungalows buoyed by billowing, fluffy clouds, the sweet sound of financial freedom echoing through every chamber as “anchors”carefully cradle each guest “prophet’s” velvet-encrusted nut sack in their pale, trembling hands.

I found the Stewart interview initially hard to watch–again, mad props to Kramer for showing up as well as MAINTAINING his composure.  Stewart uses actual footage to demonstrate the overarching hypocrisy not only of Kramer but of his employer, CNBC.  It’s an indictment of our current corporate monarchy and a media so fundamentally out of touch with its true purpose that both demonstrate a profound need for long, painful enemas, followed by repeated electro-shock treatments.

Here’s today’s Huffpo report with others chiming in.

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