I've written before about the evolution of Mad Money, how we've gone from mostly recommending stocks to spending much more time explaining the state of the market, educating people about investing, and talking about really key issues like the Paulson/Invest in America Plan. For those who still insist that Mad Money is purely a stock-picking show, that's simply not true anymore.
And now I've got some numbers to back up that claim. In 2005, for the show's first year, we might spend as many 14 segments a week recommending individual stocks. This week, we devoted only two segments to stock recommendations, one on McCormick and one on Masco, with one very prescient segment about the need to buy gold as insurance on Monday. If you want to nit-pick, Jim did recommend both Ethan Allen and CSX after interviewing their CEOs, but that still takes us up to four segments only devoted to stock picks, and those interviews were not purely about Ethan Allen and CSX. At the same time, we devoted seven full segments to talking about different aspects of the plan, making the case for why it's so necessary.
We have been ahead of the curve, nailing every aspect of the mortgage apocalypse story, and while Mad Money is an editorial show, I've had it up to here with people questioning Jim's journalism bona fides. His sources on the Street are the reason why that rant on Stop Trading! in August of 2007 looks so prescient. They're the reason, along with homework, why he's been so reliably correct about the financials.
In the interest of being balanced, it's true we've gotten plenty of things wrong lately. Most of the "new tech" stocks we stressed over the summer have turned out to be real losers thanks to the worldwide slowdown. But I think we've been more right than wrong. And again, this ain't no stock-picking show.
P.S.: If you missed it, Jim's cover story in this week's New York magazine is one of the best explanations of the crisis I've seen anywhere (I'd say it was the best, I think it is, but then everyone would just accuse me of sucking up).
Cliff Mason is the Senior Writer of CNBC's Mad Money w/Jim Cramer, and has been that program's primary writer, in cooperation with and under the supervision of Jim Cramer, since he began at CNBC as an intern during the summer of 2005. Mason was the author of a column at TheStreet.com during 2007, which he describes as "hilarious, if short-lived." He graduated from Harvard College in 2007. It was at Harvard that Mason learned to multi-task, mastering the art of seeming to pay attention to professors while writing scripts for Mad Money. Mason has co-written two books with Jim Cramer: Jim Cramer's Mad Money: Watch TV, Get Richand Stay Mad For Life: Get Rich, Stay Rich (Make Your Kids Even Richer). He is 100% responsible for any parts of either book that you did not like.
Mason has also had a fruitful relationship with Jim Cramer as his nephew for the last 23 years and will hopefully continue to hold that position for many more as long as he doesn't do anything to get himself kicked out of the family.
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