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How Apple Could Become America's Most Hated Company

Stocks in this article: AAPL

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Visit Canada and you'll have an easier time finding BlackBerry (BBRY) devices -- even Playbook tablets -- out in the wild than you will Canadians who have anything nice to say about Rogers Communications (RCI) and BCE, Inc. (BCE) (formerly Bell Canada).

If you think Americans hate cable companies, just talk to Canadians about Rogers and Bell. The duo doesn't just control cable in Canada, they combine to control a bunch of other ubiquitous stuff -- from wireless and landlines to any radio/television stations and programs that matter to the Toronto Maple Leafs, among other major sports teams, venues and more.

Take Comcast (CMCSA), combine it with DIRECTV (DTV), Verizon (VZ), Madison Square Garden (MSG) and Clear Channel and you'll be close to expressing a U.S. version of the loathed Rogers-Bell combo.

Or -- minus cries of monopoly and duopoly -- maybe we only need to look to Facebook (FB). They're building just as evil an empire. And the last thing we should do is suggest Apple (AAPL) do anything that even resembles likewise.

Why would Tim Cook crush the goodwill, trust and loyalty it took so long for Apple to build by becoming, in the eyes of a beyond cynical and beaten down public, like Facebook?

We're living through one of the peaks in a phenomenon that never goes away, but steps up in intensity every time Facebook makes an acquisition.

The tendency for the tech and financial media to go on a four-pronged binge of inanity that floats leaps of illogic:

  • Facebook bought Instagram, WhatsApp and Oculus VR. Google (GOOG) bought YouTube and Nest. Apple hasn't done anything.
  • Apple's stagnating because all of these acquisitions have gone on around them, but they haven't done anything. They missed out.
  • Apple should buy Netflix (NFLX) or Tesla Motors (TSLA) or Disney (DIS) or all three. And Comcast could buy Yahoo! (YHOO) and then Apple could buy that combined company. When all is said and done, Apple would own Netflix, Tesla, Disney, Comcast, Yahoo! and, of course, Time Warner Cable (TWC).
  • Finally, Apple would be doing something.

I'm exaggerating, though not by much.

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