Who’s the “Loser” Now?

I try real hard not to hate anybody, but CNBC “analyst” Rick Santelli has always represented a trial for me. It not just that his infamous 2009 “rant” is often credited with creating (or at least spurring) the Tea Party Movement; it’s that he so vividly captured the attitude of contempt that “winners” had for “losers” in the midst of an economic catastrophe almost no one had any reason to anticipate. And he hasn’t changed his attitude about what he later called “the best five minutes of my life,” as he indicated in an interview marking the fifth anniversary of the “rant:”

“Don’t feel any differently now. Lots of people, companies and agencies played a role but that day I was focused on the home owners that failed in their personal financial responsibility,” Santelli explained to Business Insider. “It was about contract law and about the government promoting bad behavior.”

Yeah, and about your comfortable self-righteous superiority over people whose lives were going down the drain.

In any event, I experienced some schadenfreude today at a comeuppance experienced by Santelli on his own network, via this report from TPM’s Tom Kludt:

Rick Santelli, the CNBC personality who’s been credited with giving rise to the tea party movement, was told on-air Monday that he’s been wrong about pretty much everything.

The always-wired Santelli, reporting from his perch on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade, was fired up as usual, fulminating about how the Federal Reserve is behind the curve on inflation.

When Santelli asserted that he was right all along, he draw applause from some Chicago traders.

Enter fellow CNBC analyst Steve Liesman, who proceeded to list off Santelli’s litany of errant forecasts.

It’s impossible for you to have been more wrong, Rick. Your call for inflation, the destruction of the dollar, the failure of the US economy to rebound. Rick, it’s impossible for you to have been more wrong. Every single bit of advice you gave would have lost people money, Rick. Lost people money, Rick. Every single bit of advice. There is no piece of advice that you’ve given that’s worked, Rick. There is no piece of advice that you’ve given that’s worked, Rick. Not a single one. Not a single one, Rick. The higher interest rates never came, the inability of the U.S. to sell bonds never happened, the dollar never crashed, Rick. There isn’t a single one that’s worked for you.

Rick Santelli. What a loser.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.