Jon Stewart, media watchdog
America has just witnessed “a real cultural moment,” said Andrew Sullivan in The Atlantic. Jon Stewart went from comedian to accidental activist with his angry ambush of CNBC "Mad Money" huckster Jim Cramer on “The Daily Show.” (watch Stewart’s introduction, and part 1 of the interview) The cable TV clowns who treated financial high-jinks like a game—while grandpa’s retirement money disappeared—will be held to “a modicum of ethical and moral accountability.”
“It’s hard to knock Stewart” for his attack on Cramer and CNBC, said Alex Koppelman in Salon. But Stewart "did come across a little naive, especially for someone who works in television." Grandpas aren't watching CNBC 24 hours a day—traders are. And they're looking for hot tips—not the hard-hitting reporting Stewart demanded. But at least Stewart got Cramer to promise to do better. (watch Cramer's response to Stewart)
This episode "demonstrated once again why so many rely on Stewart for their news," said Mark A. Perigard in the Boston Herald. In one "astounding half-hour" of television, Stewart viewers saw "more trenchant talk of the financial crisis and the responsibility of the networks than you'd find on any news channel, all the more surprising in that it aired on Comedy Central."