Captain's Blog, stardate 4/4/07
Highlights from the new issue, a proposed FOIA for Microsoft, and tiny bubbles from Hawaii, all courtesy of Fortune's Managing Editor Andy Serwer.
NEW YORK (Fortune) -- YOUR NEW ISSUE OF FORTUNE MAGAZINE: A classic, barnburner of a story by Carol Loomis no less, on Mayor Mike Bloomberg's business. Yes Mike is a force of nature, but his company is the real star indeed. SUCH a great story, because it's all discovery, right? THIS is what FORTUNE does.....And how about Marcia Vickers's story on Citadel and Ken Griffin. A tour de force. Of the three stories on Citadel, two out and one to come, which one do you think is the best? Let me know!! (I have an idea...).....There's also a great "Where are They Now" feature. Check out Linda Wachner and her doggie! Woof woof!
MSFT: Did you see this whole controversy about (former FORTUNE writer and now) Wired contributing editor Fred Vogelstein and Microsoft (Charts)? So MSFT mistakenly sends Fred a secret file about him (and his story)? Pretty far out huh? Well it got me thinking (this is always the dangerous part), so Fred isn't the only journo MSFT has a "file" on, right? What about everyone else? So I say all journalists should demand their files from Microsoft. Sort of like a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) request from the Feds! Or like getting your Stasi file after the fall of the Berlin Wall, (ask me about that one sometime!) So Redmond: Give it up! Schnell!
MARKETS: Kraft (Charts) regaining some lost cheese on an S&P upgrade. That stock has been down!....MSFT is looking strong finally.....Hey why do big time CEOs keep complaining about all this 'onerous regulation' (read SarBox)? This is a very tough row to hoe because, well, FORTUNE 500 companies are mostly all minting money now. Also the market's okay, and so ergo one could argue the regulating has worked, i.e., we don't have any Enrons. Sure there's a cost: More work for YOU! On the other hand, the stock option backdating shows we shouldn't get rid of SarBox. MAYBE....
THANK YOU (FALETTINME BE MICE ELF AGIN): First off a mega-thank you to everyone at Fitzgerald + Co down in Atlanta. Great visiting with you all! You guys do outstanding work and we love working witja! Especially flattered that Dave (you da man) Fitzgerald himself came to our sit-down. .....Another huge thanks to Jay Kriegel (A New York Legend) for sending over that copy of "Siro," by David Ignatius. Supposed to be the best spy book ever...(according to Kate Fleet).
HAWAII: As in James Michener. (This from Wiki: "Michener wrote that he did not know who his parents were or exactly when and where he was born." Strange, huh?) Anyway, I digress. I was just there again on vaca, and of course it is super fab. In Maui at the Grand Wailea and the Westin up in Ka'anapli. GREAT weather. Saw tons (get it) of whales...and many sea turtles. Mama's Fish House (said knock you out!)....Over on the Big Island, the Big news was that Michael Dell's investment company, MSD Capital, completed its purchase of Kona Village Resort. Now they're going to upgrade it. MD also has a house there and I think has interests in a couple of Four Seasons in the Island state. The Four Seasons Kona being the best hotel/resort on the planet!
LOOSE CHANGE: FORTUNE had a super auto dinner last night, starring the two best auto writers on the planet: Alex (three sticks) Taylor and Sue (Vroom!) Callaway. Great to see folks from Beamer, Subaru, Toyota, and Audi. (Howdy Johan!)......So what is your favorite John Carpenter film? I've got two: "Prince of Darkness," which "stars" Alice Cooper and has an unintelligible plot. And "They Live" starring Rowdy Roddy Piper, with the coolest pair of sunglasses on the planet.......Books I read on vaca: "Brotherhoods: The True Story of Two Cops Who Murdered for the Mafia," by Guy Lawson and William Oldham. Great read!!! Nice to see my pal Bettina Schein in there! Fuggetaboutit!.....Also "Blow the House Down," by my favorite (former) Company man, Bob Baer. How many people can say they were played by George Clooney.....Also started up the book on Leroy "Nicky" Barnes "Mr. Untouchable."...Speaking of (alleged) LCN, Nicky's pal Matthew Madonna is out of the joint now what four years, living large and in charge!...Congrats to the Gators! What's with that guy taking the head hoop coach job at Arkansas and then changing his mind? Why do people do that?