Sam Antar Blog | Thanks to Marc Cohodes, We’re Back to the Bad Old Days at Overstock.com | Talkmarkets - Page 3
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Sam Antar is a convicted felon and a former CPA. As the CFO of Crazy Eddie, Mr. Antar helped mastermind one of the largest securities frauds uncovered during the 1980s.

Today, Sam Antar is a forensic accountant. His primary work focuses on identifying and investigating public companies ... more

Thanks to Marc Cohodes, We’re Back to the Bad Old Days at Overstock.com

Date: Wednesday, December 20, 2017 12:18 PM EST


I wasn’t the only Overstock skeptic Cohodes has tried to bully and intimidate behind the scenes. His tactics have made people who knew him before Overstock concerned about the man.

One silencing effort that I became personally aware of, because he directly involved me, was an effort by Cohodes to bully investigative journalist Gary Weiss, a longtime critic of Overstock. It came after an exchange of tweets in October, initiated by Cohodes, on his embrace of Byrne. It was a perfectly civil difference of opinion, but it was unbearable to Cohodes.

Cohodes copied me and two journalists, Roddy Boyd and Bill Alpert, on a bizarre, bullying, creepy email that he sent Gary on Oct. 15, chiding him for the “shit” he was giving him.

By copying the three of us on his tantrum, Cohodes put myself, Roddy and Bill in an uncomfortable position, but particularly the two reporters. Cohodes is a major contributor to Roddy’s Southern Investigative Reporting Foundation (SIRF), one of the largest if not the largest donor in 2017. He should respect Roddy’s independence and not get him involved in anything having to do with his private squabbles or his portfolio interests. Bill had just written a brief article describing how Cohodes was now bullish on Overstock, and Cohodes showed little class in trying to get him involved.

Apparently, he felt that I and these two fine journalists would act as his tools and bring Gary to heel. But that didn’t happen and his crude intimidation effort was a flop. I’ve not posted the email and Gary’s response out of respect for the three journalists involved, but will do so if Cohodes lies about it.

Cohodes’s email used the same phony guilt-trip tactics that he later used on me. He made it seem as if Gary didn’t use his keyboard without calling Cohodes for his help and advice. Gary tells me that was a crock, that he has never met Cohodes and spoken to him only twice in his life, once five years ago and the other time in mid-2017 (the latter occasion being a complete waste of time). He was stunned that a person he barely knew would attempt to manufacture a relationship out of thin air to pressure him to act as he wanted on a stock promotion. It was, he said, some of the strangest behavior he has encountered in his many years of writing about the markets.

Cohodes doubles down on the smears

In recent weeks Cohodes has ratcheted up his embrace of Patrick Byrne’s smear tactics.

Some background: I first became interested in Overstock because Byrne used a technique that was unavailable to me when I was running the stock fraud at Crazy Eddie in the 1980s. Beginning around 2005, he deployed on his behalf a coterie of anonymous Internet trolls who swallowed his “naked short selling” conspiracy theory, and stalked and attacked critics of Overstock and other stocks that were being hyped at the time. Among their targets were members of the press, analysts and short-sellers.

At the time, women and Jewish journalists were subjected to misogyny and anti-Semitism by trolls on the Internet, mostly but not entirely anonymous. There were outright attacks on Jews by the likes of former Stratton Oakmont cold-caller Darren Saunders, and innuendo from Byrne. In 2005, blogger/money manager Jeffrey Matthews exposed what he recently described as “Byrne’s creepy, Bannon-like, anti-Semitic comments” in blog posts which can be found here and here. It should be noted that Matthews now is bullish on Overstock.

The widely followed blog The Stalwart observed at the time, referring to a Byrne missive discussed by Matthews, that “it's not a stretch to read an anti-Semitic tone into the letter.”

In his recent tweet, Matthews said that he hoped Byrne had “disowned” his comments. He hasn’t. He stands by everything he has said—including his anti-Semitic dog whistles.

As Byrne did back then, Cohodes uses a handful of Internet trolls as proxies. He retweets and likes their tweets and sometimes he is even photographed with them, so as to reward them for their “loyalty” by building up their following. But Cohodes has done worse than promote anonymous internet trolls.

Cohodes disseminates the thoughts of Ed Manfredonia

The most interesting Cohodes ally to emerge on Twitter in recent weeks is a resident of Queens named Edward Manfredonia.

I’ll let Manfredonia speak for himself. Here is a sampling of the literally thousands of posts and tweets that he has put out over the Internet. I’ve removed most names to not repeat the defamation:

Robert Morgenthau, New York County District Attorney, and [redacted] made certain that [the latter’s husband] could molest women. [Note: this is the most recent post on his blog, and has been on its front page for weeks.]

[redacted] publisher of [redacted], still sucking blood out of Medgar Evers College [headline]

[redacted--wife of publisher] has engaged in immigration fraud

In 2009 [redacted] entered into a sham marriage with [redacted], Publisher of [redacted] . . [redacted] refused to give in. [redacted] demanded her orifices.

Judge [redacted], an Orthodox Jew, permitted this perjury because [redacted] is Jewish and I am a Catholic.Thus, [the judge] believes that I am not quite a human being because I am not Jewish.

I stated that [a judge]’s many lies were due to the fact that [the judge] and [redacted] were Jewish

Robert “Tzaddick’ Morgenthau, who according to Sydney Schanberg does not indict his friends

[redacted] has willfully and intentionally lied to protect Russian killers of Americans because these killers were Jews.

[redacted] laundered money via a Jewish billionaire,

The [redacted---prominent publishers] covered up rape, money laundering and narcotics smuggling because [redacted], former chairman of the Amex and [redacted] wanted it covered up

[redacted] permitted 1,400 Americans, including children and pregnant women, to be murdered because he smeared my name.

Like [redacted,] [redacted, a prominent editor] regards Italian-Americans to be subhuman and will even falsely attribute two murders to the Italian Mafia to cover up the crimes of Russian Jews

He is known to anyone who has followed Overstock for any period of time. And if you haven’t, a glance at his Twitter feed speaks for itself. (No, I’m not going to link to that pile of dung.)

Cohodes began his rendezvous with Manfredonia by liking and retweeting a vicious personal attack on Gary Weiss on Nov. 11. (Click on image to enlarge.)


Cohodes later took down his retweet of that garbage, after, I understand, he was warned to do so by a colleague.

A few weeks later Cohodes was back to promoting Manfredonia with a vengeance, starting with this (click on image to enlarge):
 


A couple of days later he retweeted a lurid Manfredonia fabrication about Gary Weiss. Then he really hit bottom.

Aping his pal Byrne, a nutcase who has had no compunction about attacking the families of his critics, Cohodes “liked” a cowardly, disgusting attack not on Weiss but on Weiss’s long-deceased father, comparing this career U.S. Navy employee unfavorably with his own dad, whom he claimed was a war hero. (Click on image to enlarge.)
 


Cohodes also liked two other Manfredonia tweets attacking Gary’s wife. The fact that Cohodes would retweet Manfredonia’s filth and approve of his vile attacks on family members shows the depths to which he has sunk, and how he has adopted Patrick Byrne’s gutter morality.

Roddy Boyd, himself a victim of slurs and smears from Byrne and many other fraudsters that he has exposed, expressed outrage. (Click on image to enlarge.)
 


He had this to say about Manfredonia after the latter began to infect his Twitter feed (click on image to enlarge):
 


Cohodes cannot plead ignorance about Ed Manfredonia. Ed has been an outspoken Byrne fan since Deep Capture, which quoted and supported him, and a quick glance at his Twitter feed and blog would have made it clear to Cohodes the character of the person whose “work” he was disseminating.

At this point I have to interject that Manfredonia insists, over and over again, that he is not anti-Semitic. He repeatedly cites a 2007 letter that he solicited from the ADL. The letter is the lead illustration on his Twitter page. He says that the letter exonerates him from charges of anti-Semitism. Patrick Byrne and his henchman Judd Bagley agree. In a Deep Capture post on Feb. 9, 2008, Byrne enthusiastically endorsed Manfredonia and, citing that same ADL letter, insisted that he was not anti-Semitic. His henchman Bagley called him a “good and principled man.”

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