I’m proud I didn’t [hit Stewart with a chair]. I controlled myself. But maybe I shouldn’t have. Maybe I should have taken the gloves off. When Stewart talked about how his 75-year-old mother lost money in the market, I could have said: ‘Hey, your brother Larry Leibowitz is one of the heads of the New York Stock Exchange. Why didn’t he give your mom advice? Maybe I should have said that.”
For 15 long minutes, Cramer sat abjectly as Stewart pummeled him, writes Zev Chafets. Stewart accused Cramer of being a snake-oil salesman and suggested that he and his colleagues at CNBC were responsible for cheerleading Wall Street shenanigans.
I should have known this was coming because of how vicious Stewart had been all week, but I really thought it was just going to be a friendly show. As soon as he started, I realized Stewart was on a mission to make me look like a clown. I didn’t defend myself because I wasn’t prepared. What was I supposed to do, talk about how often I had been right? Praise myself? Get mad? I was mad, but I didn’t want to give the audience any blood. The national media said I got crushed, which I did, and made me into a buffoon.
After the interview, people like that, total strangers, would come up to me and say, ‘Jim, I’m sorry.’ That made me feel horrible, people feeling sorry for me. For six months it was on my mind all the time. I hurt so bad. But I don’t really think about it now.