With my persistence, Greenberg signed on. After that hire, I never doubted our success. Who could risk not reading Herb? Our slogan once Herb was hired was "Ignore us at your own risk." People couldn't afford to. We had Herb. We ultimately made it when so many others failed.
With Herb in the stable we became electric, a must-read. And we stayed that way through thick and thin, although the thin, at times, was a little overwhelming. We went through management turmoil at TheStreet -- tons of it -- and after six terrific years, Herb moved on.
But we never lost touch. I read him every day and when he came to CNBC we reunited. One of the amazing joys of going to work at the Englewood Cliffs studio was going over to see Herb as much as possible, not only because he's the best journalist going -- not business journalist, but journalist -- but also because he's one of the finest people in the world. He's a pillar of integrity and friendship. He's as "go-to" in real life as he is in business life.
Since then, I have never missed a Herb segment or a Herb column. He is the only man in the world who so enrages and engages me that I would run on the CNBC set without a mic and no makeup (cardinal sins in the TV biz) just to rebut him. It became a running joke at CNBC, "Here comes Cramer," because Herb had goaded me by red-flagging a stock I liked -- including almost every stock he mentioned today in his re-inaugural column. We have clashed on set too many times for me to count. We have argued, heatedly at times, about stocks I thought were going higher -- including ones that I knew shouldn't -- but I didn't care because money was being made! We would start as enemies but always conclude as friends because both of us knew that the synthesis could only help the investing process.But when Herb challenged one of "my stocks," I never looked at it the same way again, and observers of "Mad Money" always heard me say, "I like it, but Herb has concerns about it, so there's probably a lot more risk to it than I thought." I would say that Herb had red-flagged the stock, so I had probably underestimated the potential for something to go wrong, and I wanted to make clear that Herb's skepticism now trumped my conviction. He makes me -- and everyone else -- more skeptical, which raises everyone's game.