Jim Cramer, manic host of CNBC’s Mad Money, has something of a cult following, especially among investment bloggers. (Did you know there were investment bloggers? There are many!)

Nancy Franklin, television critic for The New Yorker, pofiled Cramer and Mad Money in last week’s issue. Franklin seems to be more amused by Cramer than anything:

People have very definite opinions of Jim Cramer’s bonkers CNBC show Mad Money, just as they do of professional wrestling, which Cramer’s show resembles, though he’s the only contestant on the screen, shouting, gesticulating, pacing, sweating, and preaching the virtues of the stock market to the point where he’s on the verge of falling on the floor and speaking in tongues. It’s entirely possibly that he has actually done that; I haven’t seen every show.

There are a lot of folks out there willing to offer you investment advice. And often free advice is worth what you pay for it. What sets Cramer apart?

Making the viewers rich — that’s Cramer’s constant refrain on Mad Money. … He is well qualified for the mission: he made a fortune managing a hedge fund in the nineties, and he co-founded the investment-news Web site TheStreet.com.

Cramer is said to be worth between fifty and one hundred million dollars. But don’t take everything he says as gospel. Franklin warns that certain segments of Mad Money should be watched for entertainment, not for stock tips:

A site called CramerWatch.org, which is healthily skeptical and funny about Cramer, pits a monkey called Leonard (really just a picture of a monkey that when you click on it says “Buy” half the time and “Sell” half the time) against Cramer; Leonard and Jimbo come out roughly equal when it comes to the subsequent thirty-day prices of the lightning-round picks. (Other sites have checked the performance of stocks that Cramer recommends during the less game-showy segments of Mad Money, and he fares much better.)

If you want to know more about Jim Cramer, read Franklin’s article. It’s short and entertaining.

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