Sunday, March 08, 2009

the best reporting yet on the pathetic state of financial and business reporting

It doesn't pay to "bail out" of an appearance on the Daily Show. Watch this clip, and enjoy it. The first two-plus minutes are Jon Stewart skewering Rick Santelli over his little rant on the floor of the NYSE recently - and for backing out of an appearance.

The rest of the clip is a funny but sobering compilation of things CNBC has gotten wrong over the past couple of years about things like whether AIG would require federal assistance (CNBC said no), about their hardball interview with scam artist "Sir" Allen Stanford (question: is it fun to be a billionaire), about whether Bear Sterns was in trouble (they said no; it collapsed six days later), about whether Lehman Brothers risked the same fate as Bear (CNBC said no; it collapsed three months later), about whether Merril Lynch needed to raise more capital (CNBC said no, they were wrong, and Merril Lynch is no more).

You can hear the audience as the Daily Show intersperses Jim Cramer's boosterish "buy buy buy" advice and softball interviews by lame CNBC personalities with plain graphics pointing out how utterly wrong they were. The audience kinda laughs, but it's a pained groan of a laugh. They get it, that our allegedly top business and financial network was completely in the pockets of the people they purported to be covering. Who were, of course, often the people buying advertising on CNBC and thereby paying the salaries of Maria Bartiromi, Jim Cramer, Larry Kudlow and the rest.

So is it any surprise they failed so completely? Nope. They couldn't afford to succeed. It's as if the sports pages of the New York Times had to rely exclusively on advertising revenues from the Dallas Cowboys, New York Yankees, and Roger Clemens.

So watch, and groan. Once again, the Daily Show is providing the best reporting on top stories for the day. And it's supposed to be the one doing fake news. The others just fake doing the news.

(That embed thing may not be right. Try this link.)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is amazing how smart the guys on the "joke" show are. More times than not they friggin nail the truth.

That goes for Stewart and Colbert.

8:41 PM  

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