Fixing CNBC One Petition Drive At A Time

A few weeks ago, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee launched their FixCNBC campaign to demand that CNBC engage in "responsible journalism that holds Wall Street accountable" and you guys helped drive the number of signatures on their petition to up over 20,000 (after an initial goal of 5k was smashed several times over.) Since the launch of the campaign, we've actually seen some real change at CNBC.

From Sam Stein:

Since the launch of FixCNBC.com, the network has, in fact, made several programming changes. Former DNC Chair Howard Dean was brought on as a regular commentator, and Huffington Post editor-in-chief Arianna Huffington guest hosted CNBC's morning show Squawk Box last week.

"Too often, groups put up online 'petitions' that aren't tied to any larger campaign," Green said of the FixCNBC.com letter. "We wanted to make sure CNBC truly received the message that people want them to do journalism that holds Wall Street accountable. And now we'll focus the energy of over 20,000 people on electing bold progressives to Congress -- candidates who will hold Wall Street accountable."

In order to ensure the petition campaign actually continues to change CNBC for the better, PCCC delivered the petition 20k+ signatures strong to CNBC's headquarters in New Jersey and you can watch the most entertaining petition delivery video I've literally ever seen below.

If you like the video and what PCCC is doing, pitch in a few bucks to help them recoup the costs of making the video (starving video editors need to eat too...)

Great work, PCCC.

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Finishing What Stewart Started

Stewart closed his smackdown of Jim Cramer last week with a call to action for CNBC.

STEWART: So, maybe [CNBC] could remove the 'financial expert' and the 'in Cramer We Trust' and start getting back to fundamentals on the reporting as well and I can go back to making fart noises and funny faces.

CRAMER: I think we make that deal right here.

Cramer and Stewart shook on it and as much as I'd like to believe it's in CNBC's interest to deliver on that deal, we have to do what we can to hold them to it. That's exactly what PCCC is doing with the backing of an impressive array of progressive economicsts, journalists, bloggers and activists with their latest campaign: FixCNBC.

Sign the open letter to the network:

Dear CNBC --

   "You knew what the banks were doing, and yet were touting it for months and months. The entire network was." -- Jon Stewart

These now-legendary words were a wake-up call. We're asking you to wake up.

Americans need CNBC to do strong, watchdog journalism - asking tough questions to Wall Street, debunking lies, and reporting the truth. Instead, CNBC has done PR for Wall Street. You've been so obsessed with getting "access" to failed CEOs that you willfully passed on misinformation to the public for years, helping to get us into the economic crisis we face today.

You screwed up badly. Don't apologize - fix it!

CNBC should publicly declare that its new overriding mission will be responsible journalism that holds Wall Street accountable. As a down payment, we ask you to hire some new economic voices - people who have a track record of being right about the economic crisis and holding Wall Street executives' feet to the fire.

Please show us that you hear our voices loud and clear.

Once the number of signatures reaches 5,000 they'll deliver it to CNBC. They're already at 3,100 since this morning.

Add your name to the list and help finish what Stewart started.

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ACTION: Thank You Jon Stewart!

I'm sure that many of you reading this have been reveling in Jon Stewart's take-down of banks, speculators, and financial commentators this week on The Daily Show. I have too. I think my favorite part was from last night's floor-wiping spectacular with Jim Cramer.

"Listen, you knew what the banks were doing, yet were touting it for months and months, the entire network was. For now to pretend that this was some sort of crazy, once-in-a-lifetime tsunami that nobody could have seen coming is disingenuous at best and criminal at worst."

Exactly. You go, Jon!

Of course, he's taking a lot of flak about this from various sides - even the New York Times was a bit of a scold in their article today. So we at ACORN are taking a minute to thank Jon Stewart and The Daily Show for actually staying on this story and taking some of the biggest culprits to task.

And we'd like you to join with us and send him a thank you message as well. In a few days, we're going to deliver a big "Thank You" directly to The Daily Show's HQ in New York with all the messages.

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Jim Cramer Contra Mundum

After watching Jon Stewart's take down of CNBC market guru Jim Cramer, my curiosity got the better of me and I opted to read what just what Mr. Cramer's complaints might be. I got 86 words into his rant before deciding that Mr. Cramer isn't interested in a debate on the merits of the President's economic proposals, he is interested in polemics.

After the White House briefing, Rush Limbaugh defended me as a wayward leftist who has seen the light. I am always glad to have any allies and defenders, but I do favor almost all of Obama's agenda, right down to having the rich pay more of their freight in this great country. It's just not the right time. We need to declare a war on unemployment and solve it before we let it get out of hand. We need to stop house-price depreciation. Neither the pork-laden fiscal stimulus . . .

If Mr. Cramer is going to assert that the fiscal stimulus is "pork-laden," then he is not engaging in an economic debate, he is trying to obfuscate and score political points. I realize that bombastic mad money style may play well on a financial entertainment program to a select audience but a serious economic debate of global consequences is not well served by such caustic framing that the President is the one responsible for the financial crisis. Some objectivity is required if you want to be taken seriously.

Both the Dow and the S&P 500 have fallen more than 25 percent this year. The Dow is at its lowest level since the spring of 1997, and the S&P 500 is at its lowest point since the fall of 1996. The Nasdaq, meanwhile, is at a six-year low. The Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 index, which reflects nearly all stocks traded in the country, is down 24.5 percent this year. That represents a loss of $2.7 trillion. It is the steepest decline since the Great Depression. But Mr. Cramer lays it all at the President's doorstep.

Mr. Cramer can bemoan "ad hominem" attacks but the fact of the matter is that when it comes to having calm or spirited rational debate, he is ill-suited. With Mr. Cramer, it's all about screaming how the Obama Administration has put "the Second Great Depression" on the nation's table. That, sir, is a leftover from 30 years of Reaganism. It's the carcass economy.

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The Morals Of A Gnat

     As I watched the rant of CNBC analyst Rick Santelli concerning the proposed housing bailout of the Obama administration I couldn't help but think is this where we have evolved to as a country? Where our chief concern is what's in it for me. Have we gotten to the place where we are taking our moral cues from the same greedy, profit at all cost mentality that got us into this mess? According to this crowd it is now immoral to help those who have become unemployed, sick, or homeless because they have had the misfortune of working for a company that had lay-offs and didn't have golden parachutes. Because these people are still fortunate enough to be employed and have homes then the rest of the world be damned?

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