The world’s richest man — until recently, anyway — said the economy “has fallen off a cliff” and he blamed “muddled messages” for the public’s uncertainty. Warren Buffett, in remarks broadcast Monday on CNBC, criticized Republicans and the political process, but his barb has at least grazed the man he helped elect president.

NBC reported that Republicans were passing around Buffett’s comments, while White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said the target was “Washington writ large.”

The billionaire’s investment firm recently posted its worst loss ever.

Boston Globe:

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett said on CNBC that the economy “has fallen off a cliff” and that Obama’s team is sending some mixed signals about its approach, hurting confidence.

“The message has to be very, very clear as to what government will be doing,” said Buffett, an informal adviser to the White House. “And I think we’ve had — and it’s the nature of the political process somewhat — but we’ve had muddled messages and the American public does not know. They feel they don’t know what’s going on, and their reaction then is to absolutely pull back.”

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