Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Patrick Byrne Wows 'Em in Utah

Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne took time out from defending himself from a formal SEC investigation to weigh in on an upcoming Utah ballot initiative on school vouchers.

Being a childless bachelor. a product of privilege and private schools who has never had to work a day in his life, he has really wowed the good working people of Utah, as you can imagine.

Byrne being Byrne, he immediately has begun his reverse-Dale Carnegie act, making enemies and alienating people. His latest gaffe is smearing opponents of the initiative -- 60% of Utahans, according to recent polls -- as "bigots."

I rank that right up there with the time he almost had a fistfight with a lobbyist, after the Utah state legislature revoked his pet naked short selling bill.

It will be interesting to see if Byrne, who is pouring his ancestral wealth into the voucher jihad, will be able to buy this election. If so, it will give him a possible second career after Overstock collapses. Perhaps he can buy himself a seat on the Salt Lake Board of Education? Stay tuned.

© 2007 Gary Weiss. All rights reserved.

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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, gary-weiss.com.

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