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Tim Cook Might Have Made an Absolutely Devastating Mistake

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Don't reinvent the wheel. Don't get too big for your britches. And remember: you were born on third base; you did not hit a triple so don't turn into that megalomaniac Ron Johnson at JCPenney (JCP - Get Report).

That's what Steve Jobs should have told Tim Cook when he handed off the Apple (AAPL - Get Report) CEO lasso. Granted, he should have given the reins to somebody else in the first place, but what's done is done. Instead of Don't ask what I would do, just do what's right (I still can't believe he said that), Jobs should have read the first paragraph of this article to Cook and his other lieutenants.

Because Tim Cook and, presumably, CFO Peter Oppenheimer and other assorted cooks in the kitchen, have made yet another potentially devastating decision at Apple. Absolutely devastating.

Now I fully realize that I'm an opinion maker, loaded, quite often, with hot sports opinions. Take them for what they're worth, knowing full well that it's how I feel, but I reserve the right to be wrong. With that in mind, I often tap TheStreet's tech geek Chris Ciaccia, ( known as Commodity_Bull on Twitter), for, shall we say, a more measured view of the situation.

In this case, the situation is two major Wall Street firms -- Citi, reported by Ciaccia last week, and Jeffries, which he wrote about Tuesday -- not only lowering estimates on Apple, but predicting there's a chance the company will miss its own guidance next time it reports earnings. Chris! Should we freak out?:
The rumors about Apple's supply chain are increasing, not slowing down, since The Wall Street Journal report that CEO Tim Cook questioned the accuracy of. To me, this suggests that maybe there is some fire there, and that all is not well in Apple world. Perhaps this is just a seasonal slowdown ahead of the iPhone 5S launch, but there's definitely something there. The weakness in the share price suggests something is afoot in Apple, and it's not just hedge funds getting out left and right. There is something to these rumors and estimate cuts, I'm just not sure what yet.

That doesn't make me feel any better. And given the peripheral reason why we're even talking about this, it shouldn't.

Yes, there might be something "wrong" at Apple right now. No doubt about it; personally though, I do not question Apple's present-day dominance. Nor does it bother me much if they "only" come in with $40.45 billion of revenue this quarter (Citi's estimate), not the $41 billion to $43 billion Cook and Oppenheimer guided to. And, yes, Wall Street analysts are quite often little more than bad weathermen. But that aside, this should not be happening.

This should not be happening!

Steve Jobs has to be wondering why in the hell the people he left in charge decided to meddle with something that wasn't broken. Simply put, Cook, Oppenheimer or whoever had the bright idea to stop sandbagging guidance. And look at a.) the position this has put Apple in and b.) the impact it could have if Apple does miss its own estimates.
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