Ezra Klein says read Moe Tkacik's big takedown of CNBC, so I read it. And it's worth it. I'm not sure the piece has a tight theory for why the network is so profoundly annoying to watch, but it's full of grating television anecdotes. And some of that makes me wonder if CNBC -- tedious cheerleader for the stock market -- need to have a little more faith in it.
On CNBC, information is still an "asset," and CNBC would not be unloading all these assets on you if they were not, to use the network's most cherished term, "actionable." CNBC would not be waking up at 5 a.m. to check the Nikkei and taking calls on four separate cell phones at every commercial break and elbowing its way through the trading pit to catch the 5 p.m. shuttle to Washington if it had any doubts as to the sincerity of your intention to take action.
CNBC can't really believe this, can it? Information you hear on CNBC should not be the basis for making an investment, any more than information you read in the Wall Street Journal or BusinessWeek should be the basis for an investment. Yes, the efficient markets theorem has fallen on hard times. But if you think that CNBC really loves the market -- if it really thinks market prices are accurate reflections of publicly available information -- then don't bother investing with any information from CNBC.