07 April 2007

Catching Up With Jim Cramer

Jim Cramer is scary. Personally, I'd rather watch an investment/finance television program hosted by Boris Karloff.

Cramer throws things, he shouts the world's most pointless catch-phrases (and his "boo-yah" sounds a lot like my burping, so I find the possibility that he actually means to emit that sound especially freaky) and there's a vein on his forehead that always seems about to burst.

Still, Cramer's personal story is fascinating. He's a "Citizen Cramer" figure, likely to end up alone in a mansion mouthing the name of a favorite childhood toy as he expires. So I keep coming back, if not to Cramer's show, at least to thoughts about Cramer as a symptom of ... whatever is it in the contemporary world that has made him a public figure.

For those who didn't follow the "Pisanis of the world" scandal last month, I'm loathe to review it. Here's a link to bring you up to speed, though.


After all, pop culture obsessions whiz by so quickly these days we never know if we're all on the same page. What is the gossip about over your cubicle wall? Who has the best voice, or the worst voice, or the oddest hair, on American Idol? Do you debate about who'll get the estate of Anna Nicole? Or are you more concerned about the dancing talents of the soon-to-be-ex-wife of a Beatle? The intercontinental adoptions of street urchins by Hollywood starlets?

For a little while last month, the story of Jim Cramer and his indiscretions seemed to be in that elite company. This month, he has confirmed the comparison. Because, like so many such scandals, this one has just blown over, without consequence. Maybe there's another shoe yet to drop, but probably not.

If he really has survived it, then here's a boo-yah for him.

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Knowledge is warranted belief -- it is the body of belief that we build up because, while living in this world, we've developed good reasons for believing it. What we know, then, is what works -- and it is, necessarily, what has worked for us, each of us individually, as a first approximation. For my other blog, on the struggles for control in the corporate suites, see www.proxypartisans.blogspot.com.