Monday, May 01, 2006

It's Nice to Have Friends

Seems that the Society of American Business Editors and Writers has a friend! It's none other than the anti-naked shorting cult.

Such is the impression I garner from glancing through the "sanitycheck" website and the SABEW blog, which yesterday posted remarks made by some journalists at the SABEW conference on Sunday. Those remarks were first quoted on "sanitycheck" -- a crackpot anti-naked-shorting conspiracy website -- as coming from a "transcript." The "transcript" quoted New York Post biz editor Dan Colarusso as making some blunt and -- in my view -- welcome remarks about the anti-shorting kooks.

However, SABEW tells me that there was no "transcript."

Wasn't that nice of the anti-naked-shorting movement cultists? They went to all the trouble and expense of hiring a private investigator to pose as a journalist, go to Minneapolis, attend the meeting, record the comments and then get someone to transcribe them for posting on the "sanitycheck" website?

This is particularly flattering since "sanitycheck's" main purpose is to attack journalists who antagonize of the anti-shorting movement. As I describe in Wall Street Versus America, the anti-shorting movement is an investor-confusion mechanism, designed by and for pump-and-dump stock swindlers and operators of crappy public companies.

To give you an idea of what I'm talking about here: The anonymous operator of "sanitycheck" recently accused Forbes editor Bill Baldwin of being on the take for speaking up for short-selling. Nutty accusations, pulled out of thin air, are commonplace on the "sanitycheck" site.

All this expensive flattery directed at SABEW makes you wonder who pays the freight for these distinctly low-rent crackpots. Might be a fruitful subject of inquiry by regulators, by the way.

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Wall Street Versus America was published by Penguin USA on April 6.
Click here for its Amazon.com listing and here for more information on the book, from my web site.

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