Short Selling, Miscreants Ball, and Conspiracies… OH MY!


On August 12, 2005, Patrick Byrne, CEO of (NASDAQ: OSTK) had a conference call he said was going to give information about the “August 11 lawsuit.”

The transcript is 17 glorious pages of Byrne rambling about his conspiracy theories. No questions. Just Byrne and conspiracy theories. I read it on Thursday. And I didn’t really know what to do with it. Do I try to summarize all the nonsense? Then what?

Fortunately, a poster on a stock message board has saved me the trouble. Here’s what he calls the Reader’s Digest version of the transcript. If you’re normal, you will get less than 1/4 through it and swear that this person is lying. The transcript of this public conference call sponsored by couldn’t possibly have happened this way. Oh yes, it could. Read the transcript for yourself!

I haven’t jumbled the order, this really is the way Whacky Patty made his rant. Note the lack of facts.
I’m getting out of the business of fighting shorts.
I believe Overstock has been damaged and we sued … I think the trail leads farter.
I’m a value guy and am indifferent to stock price.
CEO’s who obsess about shorts are fools.
I’m going to describe a set of events
BTW someone stopped by yesterday and said this
I’m calling this the Miscreants Ball
Talk about market participation volume
Weave story about it must be due to offshore naked shorting
Bring up Bob O’ Brien
Bob is a used medical equipment salesman but I believed his yarn
He predicted I would be written about, self-fulfilling prophecy after the conference call
Three months later OSTK was on the Reg SHO list
The SEC investigated us, at least someone said they did, so I beleived them so Bob was right but I can’t prove it
Now talk about the Not Neccessarily Miscreants Ball
Hedge by saying he isn’t saying they’ve done anything wrong or illegal, will ignore this part later
Put Leon Black in a box because he is a hedge fund guy. Won’t say anything about him, he is just an example of a hedge fund giu/
Brings up many names, sort of free flow of names
Side session about Jim Caruthers and a PI and a detroit lawyer. Fades off.
Name various other people, stinger missles, unsupported claims about gophers.
Gets into Milberg Weiss who were already under investigation for making kickbacks in shareholder lawsuits
David Rocker knows these people so they must be bad people too
Rant about Herb Greenberg for being evil and writing a lot of articles about Novastar, Novastar proves to be a trainwreck
Cracks gay joke about Herb
Side session into an ex-employee being recruited.
Jumps to Camelback who wrote reports about Overstock prior to Overstock decrapitating
Mentions another unnamed somebody who told him something about Camelback, so know Patrick knows for a fact
Starts talking about David Rocker and Camelback, gets distracted and brings up Herb again
Herb talks to David, this must be bad, reporters shouldn’t talk to people
Says the name Jessie Essinger and then immediately jumps back to Camelback
Turned in Camelback to state regulators, Patrick is a good guy so reporting companies is OK if he does it
Jump to Elizabeth McDonald, says she is fine. Not sure why he brought her up.
Now Carol Remond, mentions that she is French, I guess that is important to Patrick.
Whoops, never mind about Carol, jump to Barrons.
Barrons consists entirely of hedge fund quislings because Patrick says so.
Mentions Einhorn’s ex-wife, thinks they are still married. He’ll get back to her also, is now about 10 deep in the get-back-to-it queue
Says he is going to tell some stories. Wait a minute, he’ll get back to that too.
Has to talk about Elliot Spitzer first. He is a close friend of Jim Cramer, that can’t be a good thing.
Another untold mystery, Patrick knows who Spitzer will be going after next, never comes up again. Maybe it was hookers.
Talk about Kroll, says they have been trying to dig up dirt on him. He knows that for a fact because Jules Kroll knows David Eihorn.
Back to the SEC. And the DOJ. Something about people digging up dirt on companies and telling the government, must be bad.
Says he doesn’t know for a fact but the DOJ looked into him. Somebody told him. Maybe a little birdie.
Says a paper was written tying him to Al Qaeda and terrorism and money laundering. Patrick knows this because someone told him
Remembers he was going to tell some stories, see 7 lines back.
Calls Dave Patch a strange guy because Dave Patch is a strange guy.
Repeats claims of the strange guy that people are watching the strange guy to keep him from telling the world about his strange ideas.
Patrick believes strange guy.
Talks about Mary Helburn and says she is a lovely woman.
Mary has a nephew who was in an accident and she takes care of him.
Patrick says messages were posted by a Mike Helburn. Patrick seems to have made this up.
|Patrick says messages were posted by dead sister of Mary saying “wish you were here. Patrick seems to have made this up.
Starts talking about Bob O’ Brien, says Bob was claiming posters were paid by Cohodes. Bob seems to have made that up.
Finds it interesting that Yahoo deleted Bob’s account for posting someone’s address in violation of the TOS.
Mentions nice apology from Bob, doesn’t mention Bob later trying to justify his actions.
Thinks it interesting that someone immediately knew it was Cohodes address, Patrick should look into Google.
Patrick thinks it strange that article about Bob’s violation of Yahoo TOS didn’t mention entirely different subject of strange man’s claims.
See strange man’s claims 11 lines up. Nobody cares about strange man’s fantasy.
Back to Jesse Essinger, tracking down Bob O’ Brien, no idea why Bob O’ Brien is hiding, must be a strange man also
Sidetracked with story about tape recorders.
Talk about Patrick secretly funding NCANS which was focused on keeping Novastar investors in the dark.
Jump to story about Patrick’s cell phone getting hacked. It went dead and message in Spanish came up.
Story about how Bob O’ Brien’s cell phone records getting stolen at the same time Patrick’s phone goes dead.
Says Jessie was arrested by the police in Las Vegas for trespassing. Patrick made it up.
Says Jessie was cited by the police. Patrick made it up.
Back to Carol Remond, says she was given assignment by hedge fund. Patrick admits it is just a personal opinion.
Patrick says everything above is just an opinion and doesn’t know for certain except for some things.
Doesn’t mention which things.
Back to his stock being destroyed.
Sith Lord. Maybe this is his opinion also.
The end.
Says he isn’t paranoid.
Wait, more about Einhorn and Rocker.
Talks about multiple cell phones and SIM cards used by Einhorn. Doesn’t mention buying dozens of cell phones for
Bob O’ Brien to keep him safe for the evil hedge funds. Maybe theEinhorn story is another opinion.
Says Eihorn is shy and cautious. Probably doesn’t want strange people like Dave Patch around.
Back to Rocker. Never mind, back to the SEC.
Reg SHO.
Just tell us the size of the fails. Says we don’t need anything else, just give us the number.
Later they get the number and Patrick says they need more data because it doesn’t show 10 million naked shorted shares.
Says he is know going to talk about some facts. At last.
Starts talking about numbers of shares, starts guessing, maybe the part about facts was premature.
Talks about taking baths, train of thought back to Carol Remond and gay bathhouses. Mentions she is French again.
Says he wants to go back to talk about Kroll. It’s somewhere up there, don’t know how many lines.
Thought someone was intercepting his communications, his bat sense was tingling.
Starts talking about Channel A and Channel B. Tells one channel he is gay. Tells another he is a coke head.
People start saying Patrick is gay. Patrick says this is proof his communications were intercepted. Does not consider tinfoil hat.
Says he isn’t a coke head. He just sometimes says he is.
Side trip to Stanford about talk with professor.
Says professor was asked if Patrick was a cokehead.
Decides he is going to get to the bottom of the gay cokehead leak and heads over to Kroll (back 7 lines)
Tells Kroll he wants to hire them as a test to see if they are investigating him.
Patrick says he made something up when he talked to Kroll. Patrick makes things up a lot (see above)
Kroll can’t get straight answer from Patrick, so Patrick concludes they are investigating him.
Patrick now knows for a fact that Kroll is investigating him. Or he thinks they are, but it is a fact in his mind.
Says people may think he is nuts.
Talks about how people can get paper certificates to fight the shorts. No mention if this constitutes obsessing about shorts (see fools comment at top)
Didn’t specifically suggest Novastar investors get paper certificates to fight the shorts. Novastar subsequently says it is just about bankrupt.
Long talk about transfer agent to get paper certificates. Must fight shorts or giving up fight, not sure which.
Says there are no shares to cover. Subsequently OSTK drops to single digits and shorts cover.
SEC, regulators and lawyers. Got to fight those shorts or not.
Mentions O’ Quinn.
Calls shorts parasites.
Killing small companies, doesn’t mention any by name, may be referring to CMKX Diamonds or Eagletech.
Refers to himself or Overstock as a nuclear submarine. Probably an opinion though he may know it for a fact.
Mentions another fantasy about fighting off thugs in an alley.
Says this is his last time talking about it. It isn’t his last time talking about it.
Talks about Elgindy.
Side trip into looking at IP addresses at Bob O’Brien’s stock promotion website. Looking at IP addresses is a very important job.
Mentions people from Saudi Arabia reading Bob O’ Brien’s blog. Blog later falls off the radar when Novastar crashes and Bob is exposed as a two-bit grifter.
Back to CEO’s who care about short sellers are generally crooks. Except for Patrick because he is different, really.
Says CEO’s are suppose to lay back and think of England. Huh?
Back to Kroll investigating him and all the other opinions that he knows for a fact.
Says he has a black Irish temper.
Says the Feds are going to bury the Sith Lord under a prison.
Says he is going to enjoy helping. Sith Lord part may be an opinion, or an opinion that he knows for a fact.
The end again, really


4 thoughts on “Short Selling, Miscreants Ball, and Conspiracies… OH MY!

  1. There’s a good generic version of Prozac which Biovail manufactures. It’s called FlashDose(R) and is effective in some cases of obsessive compulsive behavior disorders.

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