Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Rupert Murdoch's Big Opportunity

If you need to see the size of the opportunity that now awaits Rupert Murdoch and his new acquisition, the Wall Street Journal, look no further than this afternoon's Fed meeting watch on CNBC.

Here we are, amidst a turbulent credit market that is spooking the equity markets. There's a tension between bailing out institutions that made bad decisions in credit markets, and holding the lid on inflation.

So, who does CNBC have on their Fed watch segment? John Rutledge? Larry Kudlow? Mike Holland? Any of the former Fed Governors who appear from time to time?


They have the Marx Brothers of finance- Jim(my) Cramer, Steve Leisman, and Ron Insana.

Cramer is, as I wrote here recently, an unabashed shill for his trading desk friends on the Street. Leisman is the networks uncredentialed, nonsensical, self-impressed 'senior economics reporter.' He is regularly bested by their Chicago on-air correspondent, the excitable but wise Rick Santelli.

Finally, we have Ron Insana. A former CNBC correspondent and anchor of no particular talent who managed to lose at least one prime-time afternoon slot due to his lack of presence and knowledge. Now, we are told, he is a guest commentator, and managing partner of Insana Capital Partners.

Oh. How impressive.

Does anybody else but CNBC know this guy at all?

So, for one of the most anticipated Fed meetings in memory, we have three clowns moderated by the earnest, but underappreciated Erin Burnett. More farce than analysis or sense.

For Murdoch, constructing a network to put CNBC out of business should be like shooting fish in a barrel.

Recruit the better anchors away- Kernen, Quick, and Burnett. Use the Wall Street Journal to fuel content. And add distinguished guest commentators, making sure they are available for breaking news events, like today.

Simple enough. And it should help send GE's stock further down under Immelt's lackluster stewardship, as even the media group loses yet another opportunity.

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