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A Billionaire’s Sears Fiasco Is Finally Nearing Its End (bloomberg.com)
86 points by cohaagen 5 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 105 comments

One of the most amazing "secret" benefits at Sears is their "Shop Your Way" loyalty program with Uber. Basically since last fall, every Uber Ride or Uber Eats purchase gives you $2-$4 cash back to use at Sears/Kmart online no matter the cost if you linked your accounts. Given my average Uber Pool is around $5, I've basically been getting 40% off all my Uber Pools for almost a year.

It will be missed!


I just got a new craftsman table-saw yesterday basically for free. I need to pick it up before they go bankrupt!

Dang. They should have advertised that more. That's a good idea.

"Shop Your Way" has been pretty cool at K-Mart too. Before I moved basically next to one I did I didn't even know K-Marts were still around. Now I get random "Freecash in points" email coupons to spend like $8-$18 without actually buying anything else (sometimes with strange arbitrary limitations on what the free money is good for, sometimes not).

In my experience you never actually get your food with Uber eats. I use uber frequently, but Uber eats is crap.

I've had the complete opposite experience. I've tried almost every food delivery app, and what I've found is that Uber Eats is the most reliable, longest open at night and best value for price food delivery service in my area (SF).

If you're having a service or technical issue, try a customer service team before being negative on the internet.

I have, their customer service also sucks. I really do like 99 percent of the Uber drivers. But Uber eats is a crappy service, Uber as a company simply has consistently shitty customer service.

They need to get their act together of they have any intention of competitors with GrubHub and the other twenty food delivery services.

Their customer service sucks big time. If I order 4 meals and only 3 arrive how do you not fix that immediately? Can’t call anyone so you put a ticket in that sits for 24 hours.

Screw their line item refunds too. If I have to drive somewhere because someone is left out of the meal there was no point in ordering at all.

The onus is not on the customer to perform QA, nice try.

> most famously when he persuaded four men who kidnapped him in January 2003 to let him go after holding him for 30 hours, blindfolded and handcuffed, in a motel bathroom.

Wow, that's pretty badass. It is sad as lot's of people on HN have no idea the monster Sears once was. I still remember as a kid ordering a remote control fire truck from a Sears catalog. It had lights, sirens, full latter control, and even air brak sound effects as it stopped.

I worked at my local hometown Sears after high school selling computers and the original iMac (should have loaded up on Apple stock) as fast as iMac's were selling (Oops).

Let's not forgot Sears employees a great number of people still, and unfortunately they are soon going to be out of a job.

RIP Sears, Roebuck and Company the retail empire of yesterday!

Theodore Houser, a former CEO of Sears wrote a book, "Big Business and Human Values".

The book is really worth reading because the contrast between Houser and Lambert (and most all CEOs now) is striking. I think just the title of his book demonstrates how different capitalism is now in comparison to Houser's day.

"Human Values" is not something we hear CEOs or financial talking heads speak of much anymore. (Has Jim Cramer ever used that phrase?)

I will point out that Arthur Martinez did help bring Sears back to a customer centric business model in the mid-90s but he missed the boat when the internet came into the mix. Sears was perfectly positioned to become what Amazon is now and they did almost nothing to move on it.

Hard to imagine anyone rising up the corporate ranks like Houser did these days. I can't think of a single example that compares to it.

I think it would be interesting to review Sears fall from the top from that perspective because I suspect we'd probably see their decline began when they stopped promoting CEOs from within their own ranks. That changed the focus from their customers to their investors, and that's why they're where they are today.

Jim Cramer was self-admittedly very left-leaning while he was editor of the Crimson in college. His current philosophy is that whatever increases commercial activity is good - so he does comment on company values in terms of how it affects the company's brand and success.

Jim Cramer is also an idiot. To quote Jon Stewart "if you follow Jim Cramers advice you end up with a million dollars if you start with 100 million dollars"

Jon Stewart is incorrect, but Cramer’s picks make money but do not outperform index funds, so they have too high of opportunity cost (not to mention the time spent watching the show.) Some reading: https://www.cxoadvisory.com/4811/individual-gurus/cramer-off...

Cramer himself is not an idiot regardless of the quality of his stock picks. He’s a successful entertainer, like Jon Stewart.

So many of the assets that Sears was known for, their tools, appliance brands, etc. are all siphoned off into Eddie Lampert's hedge funds.

It's almost as though he is "a great vampire squid ... relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money."

I still cannot believe that Lampert’s actions here are legal, or that the board didn’t fire him for the obvious conflict of interest.

This whole saga with Eddie Lambert is a great example of how the rich fail upward.

Opportunity cost is a thing. Eddie Lambert may be a genius hedge fund manager, but is a terrible CEO of a retail company. Sears/Sears Canada accounted for 53% of his hedge fund's portfolio holdings in 2016 [1], and now they have to pick . The S&P 500 was rallying like crazy at the time, so he definitely could have gotten a lot more if he were a regular hedge fund manager.

[1] https://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/030716/top-5...

Interesting.. can you elaborate?

He's the CEO of a failing company, but in it failing, he still makes a ton of money because his hedge fund is in a position to make gains from the company failing.

That would explain why my local Sears location seems to have suffered a perpetual tornado-strike ... empty shelves and product strewn everywhere. Every time I go in. Nothing interesting is ever in stock. How that place is still open amazes me...

They save a ton of money on labor. It's easy for sales to cover salaries if you have no employees to pay.

That's the weird thing, staffing wasn't too bad. There were people around most of the sales posts. Good luck finding someone in the aisles though.

I'm reminded of Buffett's saying:

>When a management with a reputation for brilliance tackles a business with a reputation for bad economics, it is the reputation of the business that remains intact.

It's been quite a saga.

Anyone have numbers around how much Lampert personally put in and how much he personally will get out of Sears?

What are we expecting returns to be here after all the financial engineering and various fees from investors?

How is it a fiasco? He wanted to gut the place and get the real estate.

He gutted the place and got the real estate.

It's a heist, not a fiasco

Maybe he intended it to be a heist, but it surely ended up being a costly fiasco. His fund is in the tank, and his personal fortune most certainly took a huge hit.

its not super clear who is making and losing money in this saga

Somehow both for Lampert

I suspect Lampert the Sears CEO is losing money, Lampert the hedge fund manager is making it via a slo-mo takeover of Sears assets from other Sears shareholders.

I would like to believe that someone is checking that he doesn't short his own stock ;)

Who's going to get caught when you can just split the profits with a trusted friend?

“Surely?” Well, we can always hope. Beware of the interpretation “he” might want you to have.

A fiasco of a heist?

Also, is it schadenfreude to hate hubris?

Only if you’re very spiritual.

If he wanted to gut the place to get the real estate he wouldn't have taken nearly 15 years to do it.

15 years is a long time to pull “modest” amounts of money, fees, self-deals to keep himself net-whole, while pushing all the risk and loss to the hedge fund outside investors.

I wouldn't call that a heist.

If a company can't make money from it's valuable real estate, then maybe it doesn't deserve to be a company, and should stop wasting everyone's time and money pursue goals that will fail.

Eventually you have to learn not to throw good money after bad. If anything, the people who are trying to keep zombie corporations around are the thieves.

Then why systematically dismantle the company in a way that directly benefits your other business(hedge fund) instead of pivoting to a less real-estate focused business model?

Hubris and an unshakable belief in Ayn Rand...


I would not call "setting internal structures to fight against each other" an example of free market.

A company thinking thats a better strategy and failing and going bust is a great one though.

> "setting internal structures to fight against each other"

This could be its own chapter in a book about how to cripple a thriving business. Right after the chapter on leveraged buyouts. Motorola, among others, eventually succumbed to this business-cancer.

The funny thing is that is literally how dictatorships are often run to try not to get ousted.

>an example of free market.

What's the real difference?

For starters, it's not free if you are doing because your boss told you to do it.

So by that logic, is it free if your life depends on it? I'm looking forward to the economic apologies not rooted in reason or fact.

Freedom from the undesired action of men. Nobody is free from nature. Everyone needs sustenance to survive.

>Freedom from the undesired action of men.

How does a free market protect you from this?

There are many out there who praise Ayn Rand, but I often find it illustrative to consider their actions over their words. My reading of Objectivism as described in Atlas Shrugged or The Fountainhead, would value the contributions of an entrepreneur building something of value to society over financial engineering that destroys value. Rand is also often carried as a banner by those with whom I'm not convinced she would agree.

As much as I might disagree with Rand, I certainly agree with your insight. The financial leeches of Lampert's ilk would most certainly be the villain in her novels ("Lampert was the kind always ready to profit from the work of others, without doing any of the work himself..."), and not the hero.

Financial leech? Are you arguing that without Lampert Sears would be a thriving business today?

Not OP, but yes, Sears would be a LOT better off without Lampert's engineering -- starting with his leaving a $billion in the company instead of siphoning it off to his hedge fund [1].

Lampert has done virtually everything to make the company fail, from employer actions that drove away anyone good, to screwing suppliers so that he now has no inventory, to letting the actual stores look like dingy, deserted, wastelands, so no one wants to shop there.

Even in the age of Amazon, many brick&mortar stores are actually learning to thrive, including BestBuy and Walmart. Sears has a corporate history of being Amazon 100 years before Amazon -- they sold everything by its famous catalog, up to and including houses. Of course, much of that institutional memory has faded, but it still arguably could have been leveraged to help it thrive today.

I have zero doubt that if it had been run recently by someone who knows and cares about great merchandising and service, it would be thriving, instead of dying by being run by a financial 'engineer' bent on using it as chop-shop fodder.

[1] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-09-27/lampert-s...

Sears was headed into the toilet long before Amazon became big.

Lambert was the final nail in the coffin.

Agree, it was on a long slide. I'd argue that the right leadership could have reversed it, but Lambert absolutely sealed it's fate.

Following the coffin analogy, I'd say it was sick, but the family wasn't even talking about coffins, but Lambert came in and upended the bed, threw the patient out the window, bought the coffin, put the body in, and nailed it shut all by himself. Now, he's off to bury it.

No, I don't think mikestew is arguing that. But it is also true that Lampert is trying to be a leach on what is left of Sears. (Whether or not he will succeed, the intent is there.)

Also note that the difference between "leech" and "recycler of misplaced assets" is thin to non-existent.

Hedge funds have definitely not helped any of it.

Perhaps my reading was less sophisticated, but it seemed to me that she argued that we are not morally obliged to draw our circle of loyalty, or responsibility to others, any wider than we choose.

Welp I guess if we're talking about Ayn, I'll crack a beer and go start the popcorn now....

Rand's legacy fits how she died: penniless and dependent on the institutions she viewed as failures of the human spirit. What a misguided wreak. Too bad she was influential, because much of the idiots stinking up the planet are her ideological children.

Objectivism really is a vacant and pretty incoherent "philosophy." It's no surprise she presented in in the form of tedious novels with wooden characters rather than engaging with actual philosphers.

I think its popularity is due to the fact that it tells people what they want to hear, and they can think of themselves as John Galt-esque ubermenschen.

> they can think of themselves as John Galt-esque ubermenschen.

Of all the heroes we could encourage people to have, is John Galt really so awful? He's described as bright, hard-working, self-reliant, but also collaborative and supportive of the work of those around him. He's driven and entrepreneurial, but not anti-social. He doesn't come across as anti-government so much as desiring government that isn't kleptocratic or set on regulatory capture. So... is any of that so awful?

There's a spectrum here... those who praise Rand and Objectivism might do so with a bit too much fervor. But,I'm skeptical toward those who turn up their nose with disgust.

The fundamental problem with Rand's ideology is her cartoonish categorization of everyone that isn't Galt-esque or an enthusiastic, hypercompetent support person as evil looters/parasites. Iirc, Galt is basically trying to collapse society for everyone but the former.

When you realize that you can't just write off people because they didn't turn out to be brilliant entrepreneurs or perky worker bees, and that the workings of government and justice are more complicated than Rand would allow, Atlas Shrugged does become pretty repugnant. Granted, she was reacting to her experiences with communism, so I don't totally blame her for going all the way to the other extreme.

But insofar as someone wants to invent great things and do well from them, I don't take issue with that.

Everyone was cartoonish, even the good guys. It was like a small army of glimmering MD PhD's with perfect physiques vs. the lazy bums.

It's a work of fantasy, why does anyone point to it and say "This is what I base my beliefs on."? That would be like using LotR as your moral compass. Except with worse plot holes like gross misrepresentations of how small mountain village economies could possibly function.

Rands work was a direct criticism of communism.

Given that this is the topic that we are discussing, I do not find her ideas to be fantasy at all.

Stalin and Mao killed many millions of people, both intentionally, and through mere neglect. Probably more than the Nazis. So given that this is the topic, her criticism of a collapsing society doesn't seem that ridiculous.

I disagree.

In the book society was already collapsing. Plenty of regular people in the novel realized something was wrong and removed themselves from the looters' economy to roam the country.

Galt simply refused to be the one to prop up the looters failing economy.

Interesting that you see Galt as the one collapsing society. Rand's point was that the looters collapsed society and that they were too ignorant to understand why or how.


Galt and the others that removed themselves from the collapsing society were not the ones that were collapsing society, nor was the collapse their end-goal.

In the story, the looters were causing the collapse, and were taking everything not nailed down in the process. Galt and the others simply decided to leave them to it.

So in the metaphor of the story's title, Atlas, whose shrugging caused the collapse of society, is the looters? Not the successful entrepeneurial giants, Galt et al., who in their collective departure from the world leave it, figuratively speaking, unsupported?

No, Atlas is people like Galt.

The point is that the looters pushed the weight of the world on to them, and that's the failure of their society.

This is a terribly muddled metaphor.

Ayn Rand's characters and storytelling is crappy. The correct response when someone asks, "Who is John Galt?" is always "WHO THE #$%^&* CARES?!" That notwithstanding, Rand understood that one can moralize without limitation in our culture as long as one does it in narrative form, and she used her platform to the extreme.

The message and moral I took from her stories was essentially pro-human, where the archetypal good is that independent man who creates according to their own taste, without any overlords, and without the approval of others. The greater any effort is collectivized, the greater the sin.

Rand's is a hyper-optimistic view of the individual - it feels like an atheist's attempt to replace God with Man and then posit him as the highest virtue. And in the introduction to The Fountainhead, I believe Rand even said her philosophy was a form of worship of Man. It's foolish because life is much too brutal for man to ever truly ascend that way. In any case, her brand of optimism is so rare, and that sells.

It's so interesting to me that your critique went to group politics and identity, though. Rand was consistently negative about groups and big government cronyism. She treated her archetypes as equally noble whether they were breaking rocks in a quarry or engineering some new miracle metal. Do you view the world through such a group identity lens that you couldn't see that in her writing? It's absolutely plain.

The evil archetypes in the Randian universe are any nullifying spirit, destroyer, or parasite. Remember, these are archetypes, no-one in the real world is so black-and-white. It's not a bad characterization of evil, and has parallels in religion and literature.

> It's so interesting to me that your critique went to group politics and identity, though. Rand was consistently negative about groups and big government cronyism. She treated her archetypes as equally noble whether they were breaking rocks in a quarry or engineering some new miracle metal. Do you view the world through such a group identity lens that you couldn't see that in her writing? It's absolutely plain.

I’m not really sure what you’re talking about. I do have thoughts on group and identity politics, but I certainly wasn’t referencing them in my post. Not consciously or in any way that is obvious to me, at least.

Re: her archetypes being treated as “equally noble”, I didn’t suggest they weren’t? Although she certainly presents a hierarchy of value that depends on what a given character is doing / capable of. Rearden is without question the lesser man in Rand's and Dagny Taggart's eyes, compared to Galt.

It was two things you said which gave me some insight into your worldview:

> Galt is basically trying to collapse society for everyone but the former.

There is an interesting feature of the Christian bible where God starts out walking/talking directly with Man, and as the stories progress, God grows more and more distant. Eventually, God can only communicate with mankind via prophets and Jesus. I think the point of this storytelling device was to indicate the increasing sin divide between humanity and God. God, being incompatible with sin, simply could not approach us even though He wanted to.

I believe Rand uses this same 'disgusted separation' device in Atlas Shrugged to remove her heroes further and further away from the fallen world.

That you took Galt's exodus and luring of the most productive people from society as an offensive move to destabilize that society struck me immediately as a "class struggle" thought. You had formed Rand's productive archetypes as some kind of oppressive elite class, or some such.

I wish there was some gray in Rand's writing and thoughts to allow for that. In her philosophy, voluntary denial of one's productive capacity to others could never be considered terrorism.

I clearly see targeted terrorism in Galt's luring of key people out of society, regardless of when and why, because we all need one another, period. But Rand thought Galt was saving those people from an already too-far-gone, collapsing world, there to help rebuild after the old world finally bottomed out.

> When you realize that you can't just write off people because they didn't turn out to be brilliant entrepreneurs or perky worker bees

This felt to me like another oppressor/victim thought you had where the oppressor might be the employed and the victim might be the indigent or jobless. Life is more complicated than that, so those characterizations are only sometimes true (and perhaps not even mostly true in my personal, subjective experience.) Reducing the world down to too generic terms risks missing the truth of things, giving one false rationale for all kinds of mischief.

You make a good point about gradients in Riordan vs Galt. It's been a couple of years since I read AS, but I recall Riordan's "sin" was that he loved the work too much and gave in to the government cronies rather than just shrugging them off. Ugh, that book was a hot mess...

> I wish there was some gray in Rand's writing and thoughts to allow for that. In her philosophy, voluntary denial of one's productive capacity to others could never be considered terrorism.

I said that, forgetting there was terrorism (hero blows up a building) in The Fountainhead. AS is definitely a more pure statement of Rand's philosophy, but I think she rationalized away too much in every case to cleanly make her point.

> it feels like an atheist's attempt to replace God with Man and then posit him as the highest virtue.

So same basic concept as nitschze espoused?

Yeah, she cited Nitschze in the forward to The Fountainhead. I recall she said his ideas were 'underdeveloped', hahaha!

> In any case, her brand of optimism is so rare, and that sells.

You're saying Ayn Rand is popular because of the optimism in her works?

Yes. It's fanciful about the heights to which the human spirit can reach. She's the ultimate optimist, in my opinion. Plenty of hero stories are set in ultra-negative backgrounds, just to set the contrast.

I hope to God Rand's writing isn't gobbled up for its sex scenes, yikers!

It's hard to get more cartoonish than Star Trek's Ferengi, a left-wing caricature of capitalists, going so far as having pointed teeth.

Star Trek is a tv show. Unlike Objectivism, it is not trying to be a philosophy.

Are you sure about that? Most ST episodes have a pretty heavy-handed moral lesson on progressive philosophy.


No one bases their lives around Star Trek moral messages besides a few nerds.

Also, you may want to read what I wrote again. I said "Star Trek is not pretending to be a moral philosophy." Ayn Rand claims that Objectivism is the basis for ethics, epistemology, metaphysics, etc. How on Earth does that compare to the Ferengi being greedy as a parable of capitalism?

> "Star Trek is not pretending to be a moral philosophy."

I gave a link showing it was Roddenberry's directive. Also, what do you think of the Prime Directive? (Which, of course, is routinely violated if the aliens don't conform to progressive ideals.)

> besides a few nerds

I've read progressive newspaper columnists citing Star Trek as a model to emulate.

I was saying her categorizations are cartoonish, as in overly simplistic morally and sociologically.

Agreed. About five years ago I decided to investigate the subject, watched the recent movie and her interviews on the disc. Turns out her more subtle early novels weren't understood, so she increasingly wrote them bonking the reader over the head with the point, ala A.S. The reputation of simplistic paper-thin characters emerges from that. Meh.

Her experience was of the communists taking and breaking everything, one should keep that in mind. She's basically warning about government overreach, something we should all be able to get behind. It's a valid argument until you take it too far and use it as an excuse, like all political arguments.

The interviews I've seen of her directly contradict some of the things I've heard her acolytes, including Leonard Peikoff, comment, especially in the area of foreign conflict. Like any complex person, some of what she said was brilliant and some of it didn't all add up. Thankfully as other complex people we can debate, engage, and take from it that which has merit.

The hero of that book is a woman who inherited a railroad and provides nothing of value to society. Why is she great? Because she is; no explanation is offered.

Even John Galt stands on the shoulders of giants. He had no resources to implement his ideas and stole from his employer. If she had something smart to say about misallocation of capital then Galt might be an interesting character.

The value she provides is running the railroad well, unlike her brother. Are you making the case that a well run railroad does not provide value to society? Perhaps you don't remember the incident in the book of the train running through a tunnel without ventilation and killing all the passengers?

Can you list what Galt stole? I don't remember him stealing anything. He even leaves his greatest invention, his motor, to his old employers as he concedes it wasn't his because they paid for it.

wholeheartedly agree.

I'm not an Ayn Rand sycophant by any means, but there _is_ some merit to her literature that doesn't discredit it entirely.

Rand's works need to be read while knowing the context that it was written in.

Rand grew up in Russia, and her works were a direct criticism of the failures of the Soviet Union and communism.

For someone who was watching their former country being torn apart, by cartoon villians, it makes sense that she would write about the exact problems that she saw happening. IE, cartoon villians looting the country.

Back then people praised the soviet union, they feared their economic prowess. And while even some economists of name woudl say that communism was showing great results she claimed that it would collapse from within. That was a very public bet that she won and should get a lot of credit, to go against the world and standing by her ideas, and she was right.

And enlightened. Better in thought and better in results. For those prone to pride as a motivator, it was a lovely philosophy.

> penniless and dependent on the institutions she viewed as failures of the human spirit.


She died in her Manhattan apartment [1], not some government funded facility. And colleague Leonard Peikoff [2] was heir to her estate, including the copyrights and royalties on her works.

[1] http://www.literarymanhattan.org/place/ayn-rands-apartment-2...

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonard_Peikoff

Rand also paid into social security (and taxes) for her entire life. She did not go out and seek social security, she had to be thoroughly convinced by her lawyers, after much arguing, that she deserved the money because it was essentially hers, and only when her husband became seriously ill. She didn't end up making a decision to take it, she left that choice to her lawyers.

She eventually took $11k over 8 years from social security until she died....which isn't much at all (about $1.3k/yr, hardly a 'living wage' as people on the left like to say).

Quite a big difference from 'depending on the state' or 'capable people leeching off of other hardworking individuals' as she despised. Regardless she lived in the US, not in her idealistic economic system. Expecting her (or anyone) to live perfectly like they would in their fantasy ideal political/economic system is a ridiculous standard and dismissing all of her (flawed) work because of it is a no-true-scotsman-esque fallacy.

I'm sure she would have preferred paying into a private retirement insurance fund and people donating to private retirement security funds for those who weren't capable of investing in insurance themselves (which she most certainly was).

>She died in her Manhattan apartment [1], not some government funded facility.

I believe the parent was referring to government institutions such as social security, which Ayn Rand wound up using after being signed up by a social worker. She spoke out against such programs her whole life. However, she needed it, it was different. A common refrain with such people.

I don't think an economic conservative accepting social security while being against it is a contradiction, any more than an economic liberal using schemes to pay the lowest taxes possible while being in favor of higher taxes.

It seems a little ridiculous for a economic conservative to refuse to accept social security despite being forced to pay into it their whole life. Just as much for an economic liberal to pay the highest taxes possible and give all of their extra income to the Government too.

I think optimizing your current situation given what the rules of your society currently actually are doesn't preclude you from advocating for a different set of rules.

Except that you're cherry picking points out of her positions to make your point. These sorts of simple minded reductionist arguments fail to actually convey any sense of the position of those they seek to caricature. Her action was consistent with her thinking as expressed around decade before her "needing it".

Her actual position, from 1966: https://campus.aynrand.org/works/1966/01/01/the-question-of-...

If someone opposes collective farms in the Soviet Union, must they starve in order to avoid being moral hypocrites?

The thing with Social Security is we're all forced to pay into the system. It's not immoral to accept the paycheck. I'll be accepting those checks, too, despite opposing SS and consistently voting against it.

You insinuate contradiction where none exists.

Disliking being "excessively taxed" your whole life doesn't preclude you from trying to get some of it back. In fact, I dare say you'll try even harder to get it back.

Just because you didn't want to blow the budget on the Christmas party doesn't mean you can't show up.

Fountainhead was about glorifying a designer, to the ignorance of all else. I found the book incoherent and boring in high school, and today I'm still unable to find utility in its themes.

I'm not especially in the anti-Rand brigade. But the thing that especially annoyed me about The Fountainhead was that it put on a pedestal all the annoying features of egotistical architects. Guess what, it's not actually about your vision. There's a client paying the bills.

Now, if you persuade a client to come along for the ride with your vision, good for you. But the idea that a building is all about the architect's vision and no other consideration is egomaniac territory.

Exactly - clients and customers aren't just an evil of capitalism - they're other humans who share the world with us. And they also have a vision of the world they want to live in.

It's fine to go off and do our own thing. But that doesn't mean we'll have any leverage to gain the concern or help of other people. Subsequently calling them out is just rude.

"Rand told her husband, O’Connor, that he would have to vacate their apartment twice a week while she and Mr. Branden had their trysts."


He saw about $240 million worth of stock that he personally purchased evaporate as the shares tumbled. Another $287 million that he received in compensation has all but disappeared.

... so he made $40 million?

How do you get -240 - 287 = 40?

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