Monday, March 16, 2009

Interview: Jon Stewart vs. Jim Cramer

Posted on Entertainment Weekly:

"Jon Stewart takes Jim Cramer apart: getting mad at the 'Mad Money' man"

"What The Daily Show With Jon Stewart billed as "the week-long feud of the century" almost ended in a very funny fizzle: Instead of being his usual feisty self, financial advisor Jim Cramer could not apologize fast enough to Stewart for what he repeatedly called his "shenanigans" as host of CNBC's Mad Money.

Note I said "almost," because something pretty amazing happened. Things got dead-serious as Stewart played 2006 clips of Cramer talking about how to manipulate stocks and create Wall Street rumors during the time he was a hedge-fund manager. You could almost see the blood drain from Cramer's face every time the camera returned to him in the studio with Stewart. Talking about the present-day crisis, Stewart tore into Cramer, saying for doing things like urging his viewers to buy Bear Stearns stock shortly before that investment bank collapsed. "It's not a f------ game," said Stewart, asserting that what Cramer and other financial reporters did could be considered "criminal at worst."'

Right now, there's a lot of blaming and finger pointing going around about the whole financial and economic crisis that we're in. Sure, when times were good - people were happy and were more than willing to take the bank's money. But, now times are bad - people want to blame and be victims of the situation.

While watching this interview, I couldn't help but wonder - this is only one side of the story. The story that is being depicted here is the story of the homeowners and individual workers who have put their financial destiny in someone else's hands. Of course people say, they never knew and no one ever told them the pitfalls of their actions - but who is really to blame? Is it really the financial institutions and the media networks fault for feeding financial information having been alleged to "mislead" the general public? Or, is it the fault of the people themselves who took their advice and/or actions as facts?

Greed and fear are two of the most powerful emotions - they cause people to act/not to act. In this case, people acted out of pure greed and no one person/entity is to blame. This interview only shows one side of the story - the story of the homeowners who are portrayed here as the only victims. It fails to show the other side of the story. How about the people who refinanced their homes and pulled out all their equity to buy more doodads - cars, houses, etc. Didn't they take advantage of the situation as well?

Money is a very powerful force - it controls people. If you let money control you, it will control your life and there will be consequences. It should be the other way around - you should be able to control your money and in turn, you will control your life.

Think most people let money control them - they want to get rich quick. People want the easy route - they want things done for them including putting their finances in someone else's hands.

Knowledge is power - there is a price to pay with ignorance. As long as people continue to live in ignorance and do not put in the time to educate themselves with their finances, there will be those who take advantage of the situation and this type of activity will continue to exist. In this day and age, there are more resources available than ever before to find information and get the knowledge needed to make informed decisions.

Building wealth does not happen overnight - it takes work, hard work, which includes putting in the time to get the knowledge to make it work.

1 comment:

mobile home parts said...

I had watched Jon Stewart for years, and the Daily Show since Craig Kilborn was host.... but this episode was the last. As soon as Stewart said F-U to Cramer, he lost his last bit of credibility. Stewart sensationalizes the popular opinion, even when it's built on faulty logic. The fact that building wealth takes hard work was irrelevant to his rah-rah finger-pointing session.