An article in the NY Times magazine caught my eye. All about the clown antics of a certain Booyah Bozo by the name of Jim Cramer. You will be aware of him if you have hours to kill in front of the TV set, and own a set of securities of diminishing value.

In the old days, we used to go down to our broker (most often Merrill Lynch), and waste hours watching the tape go by, with a cup of coffee and a newspaper. And, of course, trade information and rumors. Outright promotion by the broker was a no-no.

So what’s changed?

We still become transfixed by the tape, and allow ourselves to be entertained by a clown who should be doing standup in the boondocks.  He is technically ignorant, doesn’t analyze charts, and won’t suggest shorting when the time is right.  He’s for straight gambling on the long side, and bets on the truthfulness of fundamental valuations, which is a sure way to lose the house, and to the house.  As for broker promotion, that’s been replaced by CNBC promotion.  Opinions?  Well, they’re free, and you know what values attach to free.

It’s best to accept the fact that a stock is worth exactly what it’s selling for, at any given moment. The price contains all known and unknown details, where the devil usually lurks.  To be bullish on anything in a down market, or bearish in an up market requires skill and guts.  It also requires a knowledge of the workings of the market, as portrayed in squiggles on a chart.  You are not an “insider”, but you just might make an educated guess after studying trendlines and classic patterns of tops and bottoms for a roadmap.  Just be aware that the smart money already holds the stock, and needs to unload on to a gullible public.  Mr. Cramer’s job appears to be to set them up.

The game is very serious, and to have fun using other people’s hard earned money is contemptible. And to interview CEOs pretending to reveal inside information while they promote their company’s products has to be for the entertainment of very gullible people.

Stock commentators should be forced to reveal their portfolios, even just a paper portfolio. The record would then speak for itself for all to see.  And they should be registered and conform to Blue Sky laws, like other money managers. And the SEC should come out.  Where are they hiding?