Sunday, March 15, 2009

Former Congressman Calls for Investigation of CNBC's Jim Cramer .



I thought something might come out of Cramer's appearance on the Daily Show as Cramer did seem to falter when Stewart pushed him on whether or not he was admitting to have taken part in certain activities or simply giving a "hyperbolic" example when he stated:

“You know, a lot of times when I was short and I was positioned short, meaning I needed it down, I would create a level of activity beforehand that could drive the futures,” Cramer said in the three year-old video. “Similarly, or if I were long, and I would want to make things a little bit rosy, I would go in and take a bunch of stocks and make sure that they’re higher and maybe commit five million in capital to it and I could affect it.”
This prompted this exchange:
Cramer: "I didn't do this."

Stewart: "It sounded like you were taking about that you had done it."

Cramer: "Then I was inarticulate."
Now, Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., once chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, is saying that Cramer is the reason why hedge funds should be considered for more regulation.
“I think he’s become a poster child for why hedge funds need more regulation and transparency,” Davis said.

When asked if what Cramer said was illegal, Davis admitted that it was not, but “should be. He may well have crossed the line.”


Davis suggested the powers that be “ought to be looking at” Cramer’s confessed manipulation from 2006. “I think the tragedy is over the last few years nobody’s been looking at this at all.”
The irony of all of this is that Stewart was never actually going after Cramer specifically, he was going after CNBC's coverage of the markets and Cramer inserted himself into this battle by decrying Stewart as simply "a comedian" with Scarborough correcting him that Stewart was actually "an ideologue."

Anyone who saw the programme will know that Cramer made a huge error taking on "the comedian" as "the comedian" had done his homework and knocked Cramer repeatedly to the floor.

Now there are even Republicans calling for Cramer to be investigated. I feel this is one battle he would have been wiser not to have engaged in.

Click title for full article.

4 comments:

Steel Phoenix said...

I'll be surprised if Cramer has a job much longer. This is exactly the sort of response I expect from American media and politicians. They are just relieved that they have something to talk about and a scapegoat. Most of the analysts will likely be fine. Cramer will be lucky to avoid prison.

I've been writing about this as well (who hasn't?), and I think the problem isn't one that can be solved by rounding up a few analysts. This is a cancer built in to the system. we can't get rid of it with rules or witch hunts. The people who make the rules are the same people who abuse them. The only ways I see to fix this are full transparency and the people regaining the ability to think for themselves. You can't believe everything you see on TV.

Kel said...

The people who make the rules are the same people who abuse them.

Then we should stop allowing those people to make the rules. This is where government comes in. Government should make the rules to protect ALL of our interests.

I'll be surprised if Cramer has a job much longer. This is exactly the sort of response I expect from American media and politicians. They are just relieved that they have something to talk about and a scapegoat. Most of the analysts will likely be fine. Cramer will be lucky to avoid prison.

Amen, SP. I'm with Jon Stewart on this. This was never about Cramer and it's really unfortunate - for him more than anyone else - that he has managed to put himself at the centre of this catastrophe.

He's playing with fire, and it was his ego which led him there.

I was puzzled the first time he spoke on this and made it so personal, as I was never under the impression that Stewart was singling him out. I think he might one day regret what he did as, as you say, people are looking for scapegoats, and he has just attached a bullseye to his forehead.

Steel Phoenix said...

"Then we should stop allowing those people to make the rules"

The House and Senate make the rules. If we suddenly had full transparency to their affairs, how many would avoid legal trouble? A few? It isn't a coincidence. We didn't just happen to elect bad people. If we replaced them with a random sampling of Americans, they would be just as dirty in no time. The system is built to reward bad behavior. Giving these few the right to make the rules makes it certain that the rules will favor them, cover their tracks, and protect their interests over ours. Obama has claimed he wants to improve this. There are only two way to be sure.
Transparency: Without it we have no metric, and they have no fear.
Decentralization of power: Remove their ability to have such a corrupting influence. Give the power back to the states and to the people.

Kel said...

The House and Senate make the rules. If we suddenly had full transparency to their affairs, how many would avoid legal trouble? A few? It isn't a coincidence. We didn't just happen to elect bad people. If we replaced them with a random sampling of Americans, they would be just as dirty in no time. The system is built to reward bad behavior.

SP, I was thinking more of the lobbyists who finance your politician's election campaigns and, therefore, insert themselves, and their narrow definition of what represents the public good, into the lawmaking process.

But I agree that transparency would aid enormously in cleaning up.