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Who Killed Bear Stearns And Then Laughed About It At Denny's? We're Gonna Go With NO ONE

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Bryan Burrough's Vanity Fairarticle on the downfall of Bear Stearns took nearly 16 pages to get to what most would regard as the mother of all ledes, wherein he casually mentions it is believed that a bunch of hedge fund managers "wanted [Bear] to go down, and go down hard," naming Citadel and SAC Capital as suspects. Burrough's then goes on to add that after said managers supposedly spread the rumor that ultimately killed BSC, they "celebrated Bear's collapse at a breakfast that following Sunday and planned a similar assault on Lehman the next week." He leaves it that, presumably because a. he's writing a book that will include actual IM conversations between the interested parties, and will place Griffin, Cohen, et al at the scene of the crime, b. he doesn't have any other details because the breakfast, and the events leading up to it, never actually took place. or c. he's a man after our own heart, and likes to pepper his prose with fanciful fabrications, in which case he should've noted "Stevie-boy was distracted from the meaty conversation by the sheer pleasure of his 3-cheese Denver omelette." In any event, with all deference to Burrough, I call bull shit.
Let's just say they did spread the rumors, which I don't believe they did (and, as an aside: if a company can be brought down by the corporate equivalent of 7th grade girls passing notes in class, perhaps it doesn't deserve to be in existence anyway). There is no way in hell this meal took place. Ken Griffin and Steve Cohen are not stupid enough to go chest bump over egg McMuffins with the rotting corpse of Bear Stearns at their table (that kind of genius is-- or was-- reserved for the upper echelons of BSC management).
When you off someone, you go to a safe house, lay low and count your money. You don't run into the nearest bar with blood on your hands, wave the murder weapon around and go, hey everyone, look what I just did! Drinks for the house, put it on Bear Stearns! (Of course, on the very off-chance that this thing did go down, we want the dirt and we want it now. Waiters, sous chefs, people sitting at neighboring tables-- give us a call.) And confidential to Ken and Steve: unlike a shithouse mouse like Vanity Fair, you will get a fair hearing from the reasoned and conscientious phoney reporters at DealBreaker. If you want to get your side of the story out there, do not hesitate to get in touch. 203-890-2000. I'm a good listener.
Bringing Down Bear [Vanity Fair]


WSJ: 'Twas Kyle Bass That Killed Bear Stearns

Another dark moment of 2008 comes into the light.