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Stewart vs. Cramer: Follow-up

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I have been following-up on the Stewart-Cramer interview (as the title of this post might have led you to believe) and the blogosphere is filled with posts and commentaries. But I have to be honest: the comments readers leave behind are sometimes a lot more interesting that the posts they were left on.

For example:

On blog.indecisionforever.com, the following comments were left:

I don’t see it so much as Jon Stewart vs. Jim Cramer and who won & who lost. Jon Stewart was making sure that Jim Cramer was painfully aware that the it is the American people who have lost & and have been victimized by the greed on Wall Street. I hope for Jim Cramer’s sake that he views his experience on the Daily Show as an opportunity for him (and CNBC) to re-evaluate their role as journalists and serve the people of America – and not as a hype-machine for a bunch of low-life gamblers & scam artists on Wall Street. For it is the people of America who are the real workers, the real moneymakers, the real strength, who will lift the country out of this crisis. by Jack March 14th at 7:49AM

I would go a little further, and hope that when people see this show, they will see it as an opportunity to see what has become of the world today because of the greed of a relatively small number of people.

Another comment the same blog post:

This was the single greatest news media event of the year. I hope people see it for what it is. It’s not Jon taking Cramer or CNBC to task. It’s Jon taking journalism to task. This is just the most powerful in a series of iterations that make the Daily Show, a comedy show, one of mainstream’s only voices I can trust. When Jon emotes, I feel like he is my attorney. I feel like he all but knows my name and that he is at the top of the list of journalists who will tirelessly defend me against those I cannot see or influence. He lets me look under the hood of democracy – and he does it for me. I wish he did a real news show. But I fear that nobody would watch it if it couldn’t be funny. That inconvenient truth is arguably worse that what Cramer et al. have done by posing as journalists. by albert March 14th at 8:14AM

This is a very harsh yet, quite unfortunately, a reality: journalism isn’t anymore about informing the public, but most of the time, it’s about manipulating public perception to the agenda of the news agency in question. While a journalist’s personal point of view will always somehow taint their reports, it is disheartening when journalists are actively seeking to basically brainwash you.

Here is a comment posted on salon.com:

Jon Stewart’s attack on the financial news network earlier this week (no doubt put together by a really swift, well-informed staff) was what set this all in motion. Stewart’s “showdown” with Cramer is just the cherry on the sundae. The financial crisis is yet another case where the media failed to fulfill their watchdog duties, and the TV news media egregiously so. But where too were the newspaper editors? Everybody else (such as Salon)? So many have been asleep at the tiller. You’d have to read the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies’ “Top 10 Underreported Stories” each year to even have a hint of how badly managed the financial sector was. This also happened with Iraq and WMD. Sure, cable news were cheerleaders, but where was print media? Where were the online news sources? They were in on the bullshit as well. And while we’re at it, the Enron scandal… And Pentagon spending coverups… And the stolen 2000 election… And so on. The problem is when news media becomes over-dependent on ratings and flash instead of “interesting the public in the public interest.” The public is partly to blame for lapping it up and not demanding better. But the editors and producers of news are people who actually know better.

And the cherry on the top: look what just landed into my inbox: the opening to the Mad Money episode that aired the morning after the Stewart vs. Cramer episode of The Daily Show, which you can watch here. Makes you wonder just how sorry he really is, doesn’t it?

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