When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker gave up on his run for the presidency in September, he framed his decision in unusual terms: “I believe that I am being called to lead by helping to clear the field in this race,” he said, and he urged other Republicans trailing hopelessly to do the same so that a few strong ones could challenge Donald Trump.
|Produced by Ryan Derousseau|
Walker was obviously putting the best face on a failed campaign, but he had a point: Sometimes leadership calls for stepping aside. Today we see two examples of leaders who haven’t figured that out, and one who has.
-Fifa’s suspended president, Sepp Blatter, seems increasingly delusional. When a massive corruption scandal exploded last May, Blatter clearly should have resigned. Instead he said he would not stand for reelection – in February. As the scandal grew, with just four months until the election, Fifa’s board suspended him for three months. He still didn’t get the message and protested even louder that he was innocent and would fight. Now Fifa’s ethics committee has banned him from soccer for eight years. Blatter is 79 years old. Are you getting the message yet, Sepp? Apparently not. He insists even more stridently that he is entirely blameless and will fight the decision. He’s doing it, he says, “for Fifa.” Please. Everyone but him knows the best thing he could do for world soccer is disappear.
–Martin Shkreli, who was arrested by federal authorities last week on charges of securities fraud and wire fraud, and who has since resigned as CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals and fired as CEO of KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, wants you to know he is misunderstood and has been treated unfairly. Asked by the WSJ if he thinks the decision to arrest him was influenced by his decision to raise the price of a life-saving drug by a factor of 50, he replied, “Yeah, absolutely.” Reading his remarks, you wouldn’t guess that the feds informed him last January that he was being investigated, long before the world had ever heard of him. Oh, and his Twitter persona as an obnoxious braggart? Not the real him. It was just “a social experiment.” Martin, no one is buying it.
-Yesterday South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham dropped out of the race for the Republican nomination, having attracted virtually no support in six months of campaigning. He exited with wit and class. Known particularly for expertise in security and the Middle East, he said, “Hillary, if you get to be President, I’ll help you where I can. I hope you’re not. But if you are, I’ll be there to help you win a war we can’t afford to lose.” Asked about regrets, he said, “I regret that I haven’t been a better candidate…. But that’s just about me …. It has been the joy of my life to run for President of the United States.”
Graham understands that being a leader sometimes means stepping aside. If only all leaders understood.
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What We're Reading Today
CDC investigating new E. Coli cases linked to Chipotle
The Center for Disease Control says this could be a separate outbreak from the one linked to Chipotle that started in October, sickening 53 people. The illnesses occurred between Nov. 18 and Nov. 26 in Kansas and Oklahoma. Earlier this month, Chipotle co-CEO Steve Ells announced a series of changes to its food handling process to reduce the potential for contamination. CNN
SEC pares back case against Steve Cohen
The agency has also begun settlement talks with the billionaire founder of hedge fund SAC Capital Advisors. The company pleaded guilty to insider trading in 2013, but the SEC has sued Cohen in an effort to ban him from ever managing other people's money. The partial retreat by the SEC comes after the reversal of a conviction of a senior SAC trader and six analysts. WSJ
Amazon's German warehouse workers strike
The strikes, for better working conditions, will continue until Dec. 24. at four warehouses and for shorter stints at two others. Germany is Amazon's second largest market after the U.S. The strikes come as Jeff Bezos's company tries to fill final holiday orders. An Amazon spokeswoman says they will not affect delivery schedules. Reuters
Martin Shkreli ousted from another pharma company
KaloBios Pharmaceuticals has fired CEO Martin Shkreli following his arrest last week on securities fraud and wire fraud charges connected to hedge funds and a separate biotech firm he founded. Shkreli become CEO of the company when another company he used to run, Turing Pharmaceuticals, took control of KaloBios. USA Today
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SpaceX lands rocket
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Nestle to go cage-free by 2020
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Republican presidential candidate and Texas Senator Ted Cruz turns 45 today. Biography
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