Apple Crashing, Gundlach's a Legend, Board Should Look at Cook

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Back in early November I agreed with market legend Jeff Gundlach's long-term concern vis a vis Apple ( AAPL). It's all here -- and timestamped -- in black and white: Apple Selloff About a Year Too Soon

That said, I did chide Gundlach for speaking too soon and, as I put it in If All We Can Do is Predict Apple's Demise, We Suck As a Society:
I can't speak for Gundlach, but, if I had to guess, I think my neighbor (though I live on the other side of the Santa Monica tracks from him) just wants to be the guy known for calling Apple's demise. And, if he's wrong, so be it -- he's still a billionaire. His audience will not remember. And he doesn't really give a rat's ear if they do.

I do not regret calling for moderation on Apple but, obviously, I misfired second-guessing Gundlach. The guy nailed it. I just did not agree with his timing. I was wrong.

With that said, I explored something this morning that few people, particularly those inside Apple and AAPL bulls, care to discuss: Has Tim Cook Become a Liability at Apple?

Apple sits at a classic psychological crossroads. Most of us, at some point or another, find ourselves stuck in the same type of conundrum.

Over the weekend, Bleacher Report founder Bryan Goldberg (who will join us in April, live from New York, on TheBeach Meets TheStreet slam-dunked a series of riffs on this phenomenon with respect to the changed world of journalism (via Pando Daily):
A lot of journalists view the Bleacher Report business with contempt. That's their prerogative. But their attitude is a disservice to their field, and their refusal to evolve will dig them into a deeper hole.

I saw the same thing take place in radio. An industry starts to change rapidly. The old guard disagrees with this change, it resists and, subsequently, gets left behind. Lots of otherwise fantastic people lose jobs and livelihoods because they cannot get over themselves and view the bigger picture. Stand up to and challenge the elephant in their room.

Something similar is going on at Apple right now.

Steve Jobs is gone. Yes. One of his final decisions might end up being one of his biggest mistakes -- leaving the CEO gig to Tim Cook. (Others, including the folks at MacDaily News, will say Jobs erred most in the way he handled his cancer treatment. Maybe so, but I just can't bring myself to go there.)

In any event, sticking with the decision to make Cook the guy and bring a decidedly different style to the Apple Oval Office is, in many ways, akin to old-guard journalists and radio people clawing and fighting to preserve a dead-and-gone model.

For as much as Jobs did not manage to the stock price, he managed to the stock price precisely because he controlled the conversation. He owned the public discourse in a powerful, yet usually subtle way.

Tim Cook has completely lost control of the narrative. Guys like Jeff Gundlach and David Einhorn dictate the pace. That's unheard of at Apple. The blame begins and ends with Tim Cook.

Apple must act. It must act to regain control of the situation. If it's not prepared to do that with new and exciting products, it needs to point the reality distortion field away from itself and back at everybody else ... Now!

-- Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.
Rocco Pendola is TheStreet's Director of Social Media. Pendola's daily contributions to TheStreet frequently appear on CNBC and at various top online properties, such as Forbes.

If you liked this article you might like

There Are Many Signs Investors Have Totally Forgotten About S&P 500 Correction

There Are Many Signs Investors Have Totally Forgotten About S&P 500 Correction

Quick Tips: Now What Should Investors Do?

Quick Tips: Now What Should Investors Do?

7 Inexpensive ETFs for Small-Cap and Micro-Cap Exposure

7 Inexpensive ETFs for Small-Cap and Micro-Cap Exposure

Buy Stocks That Are Right for You: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 2/16/18)

Buy Stocks That Are Right for You: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 2/16/18)

Shorts Trampled In Bull Market Rally; UPS Share Structure Examined -- ICYMI

Shorts Trampled In Bull Market Rally; UPS Share Structure Examined -- ICYMI