In case you haven't noticed, I don't run
. I don't go to the newsroom. And I don't have any control over it. That is frustrating to me, but I am a hedge fund manager and it is necessary to maintain a Chinese wall, even if that means some of my ideas don't leap immediately to life.
But I am not deterred. I love
too much to give up on my ideas, and like a really good politician, I am willing to appeal directly to the people. I am going to offer a template to
so the people there can see what
Truth Serum, one of my favorite ideas, would be like.
Today would be the perfect day for Truth Serum. You pick up
and turn to the Inside Wall Street section, and what do you see?
, where "the takeover buzz is running high."
This time it is
, a money manager frequently quoted by
Dan Dorfman in his heyday at
, touting the stock. Marquez says there are "several potential buyers intently looking at Cabletron," including "Italy's
OK, let's start with the obvious. We could call Cabletron. I am sure the company doesn't comment on rumors. Big deal. In this story, it's the bait, not the fish.
Normally, fish don't talk. But sure enough, perhaps unbeknownst to Gene Marcial, who puts his name on this column, Siemens
just point-blank denied
this exact rumor after Dorfman broke this "news" just a few weeks ago. (It also ran the stock, but I guess not everyone got out of this one in time between the Dorfing and the denying!) For the record, this ran on
on June 10: "'There is nothing to that,' the
Siemens spokesman said about the Cabletron rumor. 'We can deny that.'"
Of course, Siemens could have changed its mind in the last few weeks, but I wouldn't bet that way.
How about Italy's Alcatel? I don't know. I would certainly feel more confident if the article said France's Alcatel. Don't know Italy's Alcatel. I could see how people would mix up Finland's
, but if you are going to rumor effectively, I think you can't mix up Italy and France.
Northern Tel? I don't know. I am long the stock. They bought
, so they could be an acquirer. But so could
. So could
. So could
. Heck, so could
In fact, I suggest that after this rumor dies down -- but before everybody else can unload their positions -- every one of these companies will be rumored as a suitor. What kind of value-added info is that? You want a list of great combos? If that makes you money, I will give you one. But I only like to write about what has made me money, and making up stuff like this has
made me money. I can't do it to you. I just can't.
Because it is too corrupt
How has Marcial done on getting these things right in this column?
used to keep records of this stuff. Dust the records off. How has Marquez done? Let's get a databank going on that. A quick Net search as well as a
check could tell us something. Let's keep a batting average for both.
And if there is no Cabletron deal, let's reduce the batting average of both guys in two weeks. Next time we see either one making a rumor or quoted as rumoring, let's trot out that batting average.
editor-in-chief, believes this is a great idea, and I'm sure we'll see Truth Serum sooner rather than later on the site.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long Cisco, Lucent, Northern Telecom and Tellabs. His fund often buys and sells securities that are the subject of his columns, both before and after the columns are published, and the positions that his fund takes may change at any time. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Cramer's writings provide insights into the dynamics of money management and are not a solicitation for transactions. While he cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he invites you to comment on his column at