CNBC has been the only network owned by General Electric that is not totally in the bag for Barack Obama. Remember it was CNBC’s Rick Santelli that lit the fire that resulted in yesterday’s Tea Parties:
Jim Cramer also had a well publicized tussle with the White House. Corporate Owner General Electric and NBC are not too happy that one of their networks is perceived as telling the truth. This resulted in a meeting in the General Electric/NBC woodshed.
The NY Post is reporting:
“It was an intensive, three-hour dinner at 30 Rock which Zucker himself was behind,” a source familiar with the powwow told us. “There was a long discussion about whether CNBC has become too conservative and is beating up on Obama too much. There’s great concern that CNBC is now the anti-Obama network. The whole meeting was really kind of creepy.”
One topic under the microscope, our insider said, was on-air CNBC editor Rick Santelli’s rant two months ago about staging a “Chicago Tea Party” to protest the president’s bailout programs — an idea that spawned tax protest tea parties in other big cities, infuriating the White House. Oddly, Santelli was not at the meeting, while Jim Cramer was, noted our source, who added that no edict was ultimately handed down by the network chieftains.
CNBC flack Brian Steel confirmed the get-together, but insisted: “The dinner was to thank CNBC for a job well done in our in-depth reporting throughout the financial crisis. As far as our coverage is concerned, we are built for balance and we are unabashedly pro-investor.”
The source say that Steel is putting a major Spin on the meeting:
Our source retorted: “That is complete bull[bleep] . . . they didn’t invite a lot of people to [the meeting]. There were many staffers who were working 24/7 during the crisis who weren’t asked to attend, even Santelli, who was a big star for the network during those weeks. Why not?”
In addition, the insider said: “News of the meeting is starting to leak out and people are contacting a number of the on-air people to ask if they’ve been muzzled by GE