“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Wednesday, December 05, 2001

Remora

Inflation is a terrible underminer of value. We mentioned, a post back, that visionary is one of those bizolect terms which has an uncertain meaning, although the tribe seems to go into a happy frenzy whenever it is thrown around. Enron's meltdown has happened so fast that it has caused collateral spin damage. Usually a magazine likes to put some distance between its pumping up of some creature as the Lord's elect and its downgrading same creature as an obvious loser. But compare these two articles from the usually cool Economist -- on November 15, the word about Dynergy's 'visionary" (of course) chief exec, Chuck Watson, was that he was swallowing Enron with all the aplomb of a veteran fakir downing a piddling length of sword; on December 5, it turns out that Dynergy was being treated like Wall Street's beard, second choice for the prom and he betta appreciate it. Poor Chuck Watson, lauded a month ago for being some shrewd hick playin his cards close to his vest (although perhaps there was a hint in the Nov. 15th article, which starts out with an incoherent comparison to Jimmy Carter -- not, darling, a president visionaries like to be compared to) is barely through with the waxing phase of the spin cycle when he's rudely hustled out to the parking lot and hosed off:

"Wall Street thought that it had devised a way to stop the run on Enron, by arranging for it to be bought by Dynegy, which is backed by Chevron, a huge oil firm; and by arranging equity stakes, each worth $250m, for J.P. Morgan Chase and Citigroup. But this merger, as one of the bankers involved puts it, never created the �halo effect� that everybody wanted. Dynegy never gave the impression of being terribly keen on the deal, despite the bullying by bankers."

So it turns out that visionary Chuck is an oil tycoon Charlie Brown. How the mighty are fallen! My God, it makes one wonder whether the mags will start turning on our fearless leader, Bushypoo, and strip off the majesty with which he is now routinely crowned (somewhere, somebody has surely called him a visionary. Perhaps Limited Inc should start a contest? First sight of the Bushy-as-visionary quote?) if things start stinking next quarter. And I think things will, alas, start stinking next quarter.

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