Let me just start by saying I’m on the same side as Mr. Hempton on his NuSkin trade. For the life of me, however, I have no idea how he so “matter of factly” concludes that NuSkin is garbage (true) yet opines that Herbalife is the best thing since sliced bread (false).
Mr. Ackman’s comment that Matt Stewart was a genius during his last presentation on Herbalife was as dead on as it gets. For proof of that, look no further than Stewie’s last article on Herbalife, out tonight and already right where it belongs:
If you haven’t read Stewie’s piece, here’s a link. It’s number one on Seeking Alpha for a reason.
In his piece, Stewart decimates John Hempton’s absurd arguments and I find out that I’m not the only person Mr. Hempton has called a racist for being short Herbalife. What racism has to do with being short Herbalife, I’m not sure. I’m pretty sure part of the short case involves sticking up for a massive group of Latinos that are getting bilked out of their money faster than the time your aunt bought all of those stupid Precious Moments figurines to stock her China cabinet with.
I’m a white guy living in a town that is, according to the 2013 U.S. Census, 76% black, 16% white, and 5% Latino. And I’ll give you a hint, I don’t just walk around ignoring people all day.
Those that know me know I’m the furthest thing from a racist. But, my point isn’t to defend myself against these asinine attacks, it’s to pose the question of “what the hell, exactly, is going on in Mr. Hempton’s head?”
Here’s the absurd argumentum ad hominem that led to Hempton calling me a racist:
But, my call with Stewart this afternoon pretty much summed things up.
When you scale back from the big picture, Mr. Ackman and Mr. Icahn are titans. If they want to duke it out in the ring together, that’s fine. They’re “boxing each other’s weight”. When Mr. Hempton and Mr. Chapman take shots at Mr. Ackman, it’s like that one guy in Palestine throwing a rock to try and stop an Isreali tank – talk about two different worlds, jeez.
Regardless, we got another 13/D from Mr. Icahn today and one more day has passed with him being mum on Herbalife. Rumors were abound on Twitter this morning, none of which I’m at liberty to repeat (mostly because I think they’re BS), but I’m steadfastly keeping to the plan of rolling over a constant put position as the months march on.
I’m more jazzed on the position now because the one killer that no one is thinking about right now is, “what happens if Herbalife misses earnings again?” If distributor confidence has failed internally and they miss, it could start a snowball effect that could potentially force the regulators to act. This would be like if there was a run on Madoff for redemptions while he was under investigation. At some point, when does Michael O. Johnson just turn himself in?
I’d bet you anything – neither Johnson, Walsh, nor Mr. Hempton are at home feeding their infant children this shit like distributors are encouraging others to do.
But, we’re not there just yet.
Resolution is coming for one end of the argument. If things don’t go my way, I’ll concede to Hempton and the likes of him. If action occurs that eventually decimates the company, I’m already requesting that the movie version of this story has the following cast:
Bill Ackman – Anderson Cooper
Michael O. Johnson – Alan Thicke
Des Walsh – Steve Buscemi
Michelle Celarier – Blythe Danner
Matt Stewart – Genial Smart Guy with an Apple
John Hempton – Al Franken
Robert Chapman – Stone Cold Steve Austin
Carl Icahn – C. Montgomery Burns
…and naturally I’ll be played by Brad Pitt.
As someone once said, “may the best analyst win.”
Speaking of not being a racist, here’s an incredible picture of Seema Mody: