Category Archives: Law

Jim Cramer is a dirtbag

Jim Cramer admits to manipulating the market for certain stocks and inventing false rumors which he then spread through the media (including CNBC). He says that this is how hedge fund managers operate normally, and gives the impression that insiders and market manipulators can (and should) use these strategies to earn excess returns.

Let me assure you that he is wrong. The behavior he talks about certainly does happen, but it is not ethical, normal, good, or as pervasive as he implies. Most funds do NOT utilize this strategy. Jim Cramer and any fund managers who use these strategies give the industry a bad name. Worse still, they are the reason that Federal and State regulators must be so intrusive and vigilant. The general public is right to criticize this behavior, but other fund managers should be the loudest critics because he’s part of the reason that our industry is over-regulated.

Somebody should punch him in the nose (or fine the crap out of him and put him in jail).

[UPDATE – 3/23]

The video has been pulled from YouTube by claims of copyright infringement by Jim’s company, Pulling the video doesn’t make him less of a dirtbag. For your information, a detailed account is available here:

Copyleft 101

NewScientist has a very good survey article regarding copyleft. They discuss the legal implications of waiving the exclusivity rights, as well as the philosophical differences in vision regarding the commercialization of intellectual properties.

Online Rights: No "Deep Linking" – Texas

Wired News is reporting on a cease and desist letter sent to an independent news site by Belo, corporate parent of The Dallas Morning News, forbidding links to individual stories within the web site. They claim the author can only link to the web site’s homepage, and attempting to link to stories within the site violates their copyright.

If things move in this direction, the best characteristics of the web will be wasted.

Informatics Used to Manipulate Politics

The Economist is publishing an article describing how information about demographics is leading to an algorythmic method of “redistricting” to enable very meaningful manipulation of state-wide votes.

The article provides examples, and even claims “Weirdly shaped districts… are signs that a crime has been committed. Again, start with Florida. This year, the Republican-controlled legislature has proposed a map with 18 Republican-leaning seats and seven Democratic ones. But as the 2000 presidential vote showed, Florida’s electorate is split perfectly down the middle. The map has been rigged outrageously to favour the Republicans. ”

The Article also discusses the cases of Michigan, Texas, and California.

Connecticut To Store Biometric Information

I just got word that when I renew my driver’s license, I will have to submit to allowing the CT DMV to store biometric information, as well as smile for facial recognition software from Viisage to be able to continue driving. With national law enforcement agencies opening up their databases to each other, survailance systems such as cameras in public places will be able to identify my face and build a general path of the places I’ve been. Recordings of sufficient quality can probably be analyzed to build the path retroactively. Hmmm.