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May 07, 2010 – Comments (3)

... Clown noses! For my corporate governance piece today on Fool.com, I took a look at John and Lewis Gilbert, who were corporate gadflies ahead of their time, paving the way for many of the corporate governance pushes today. (Thanks to TMF Brich for the tip on these guys and their interesting legacy.)

I know it's hard to tear away from the events of recent days. I think it's been shocking even for those of us more bearish types who thought the euphoria of Bizarro Rally was outsized for far too long given all the problems that remain swirling around in the economic landscape. But something about a 1000-point drop in minutes is... well, it was emotionally a little shocking, and I've found it pretty distracting for the last couple days. You can think a correction's overdue, but wow, that was sort of beyond the pale of what anybody would expect to see, and historical regardless of whether it was a "glitch" or anything else. (In an aside, the term "fat finger trade" is getting old already, as far as I'm concerned.)

Anyway, though, I like gadflies. (Maybe it's because sometimes I think I'm a little "annoying" myself... hmm, I'll ponder that later.) And in case anybody wanted a little bit of distraction from all this other clear-and-present danger-drama, I thought I'd throw this commentary out there.

I hope all Fools have a great weekend after this interesting, historical, and kind of exhausting week.  

3 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On May 07, 2010 at 5:31 PM, binve (< 20) wrote:

Hey TMFLomax,

Very nice article. While not exciting, corporate governance is a big deal. People want to talk about the fundamentals of a stock or an industry. And that's good and important. But topics like corportate governance, the polictical landscape that affects how companies operate (the repeal of Glass-Steagall comes to mind), monetary policy and macroeconomics, while nowhere near as sexy, are just as if not more important. Thanks!.

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#2) On May 07, 2010 at 6:41 PM, TMFLomax (47.99) wrote:

binve

Thank you! I totally agree. And yeah it's not a sexy topic and usually a lot of investors don't get too fired up about it... but as I see it, it is important to point out things that are going wrong with the kinds of checks and balances that should be in place. I'm not huge into regulations (as a lot of folks know) but the truth is, if too many people are too apathetic for too long everything goes down the drain and that's kind of the bottom line. And I am hoping more shareholders will simply make their voices heard and pressure boards to stop the back-slapping stuff and actually do what they're charged to do. I think we've seen some of this back-slapping stuff without enough reasonable discussion/pushback about long-term concerns has NOT gone well at all.

Have a great weekend! And btw, I noticed from your post the other day, yeah a few of us have pulled out of beanie territory. ;)

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#3) On May 07, 2010 at 8:41 PM, binve (< 20) wrote:

>>Have a great weekend! And btw, I noticed from your post the other day, yeah a few of us have pulled out of beanie territory. ;)

Thanks! You too! And lol we have Caps again! :)

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