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Chris Collins should resign.

I have to make this short.

I’m not saying he should resign because he’s Republican. I’m saying that because his insider trading selfishness hurt people.

Short summary: biotech startups are created by scientists. Startup costs, capital investments in equipment etc are very expensive for pharmaceutical R&D. There aren’t as many positions available in pharma R&D since the patent cliff caused Pharmageddon in the last 10 years. That means companies have to scale down their portfolios and put most of their money and staff on one drug. One bad clinical failure or FDA ruling and all that hard work and money is gone. I don’t particularly like this business model but that’s the way out new breed of financiers want it. Scientists take a lot of risks and then they have to deal with vulture capitalists. You know what is a good model for a pharmaceutical company? A midsize private corporate lab. Sorry lefties, but that’s the way things work. But I digress.

If you’re lucky to find one, you’re likely to receive some of your compensation in stock.

A lot of your compensation is in stock. It’s not necessarily to incentivize you.

And you can’t make vulture capitalists stay. It doesn’t matter that they don’t understand that research takes a long time and fails repeatedly before something hits. They do not understand deferred gratification.

So when some asshole congressman reacts to a bad clinical trial by engaging in some insider trading and makes the stock drop by 92%, that hurts. That hurts everyone. It hurts the company, scientists and patients.

There ought to be a law or a better way to finance research. But there ain’t. We do have prosecution for insider trading.

I’ll take it.

And Collins can quit. Now.

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13 Responses

  1. People like Collins are playing a t a different level than the regular people who buy and sell stocks. He had insider information about the company at the outset, and that is why he was telling all his Congressional Republican friends to buy this stock. He also bragged a few months ago that he was making people into millionaires. He was probably giving them all sorts of private information that he learned in his position. And then when he learned that one of his stocks, which would have made him tens of millions of dollars had it hit on their trial, was going to collapse, he tried to sell all of his shares And when he could not because Australian trading rules did not allow it, he told his son and other family members to sell the stock ahead of the public news. And that is what the crooks who think they are superior to ordinary Americans do; they profit off their insider knowledge, and then they leave everyone else holding the bag when they get one wrong.

    Collins is worth $65 million. How much of this is due to insider trading, and other scams? Wilbur Ross has apparently made billions through illegal activity. Tom Price, Scott Pruitt, Betsy Devos. I wish that Democrats would run against Republicans on a slogan of, “They are stealing your money.” Because they are, one way or another. But because Trump, in Goebbels fashion, projected all of this larceny onto some other vague entities, his cult thinks that he is draining the swamp, when actually he is the swamp. I’ll bet that Collins actually wins his race in Florida Republican voters have become so tribal, that they don’t even care that the people they vote for are contemptuously taking their money.

    • William, Collins is a congressman from upstate NY, not Florida.

      Roz in NJ/NYC

      • Thanks, Roz. I did realize that an hour or so later!, but hoped no one would notice my error! So a Democratic governor, but a very red district where I think he’s won by 39% or so.. I guess the Republicans can either try to get him to step aside (unlikely now as he is proclaiming his innocence), or hope that most of the Republican voters will still vote for him, and then if he is found guilty, they will have the opportunity to vote another R in via special election.

  2. I doubt any of you will watch this, but you should.

    • I need life coaching from Niles like I need diction lessons from Elmer Fudd. 😛

    • Another Cletus safari. Whoop dee doo. 🙄

    • OMG, were we ignoring your feefees for 2 seconds?

      Got news for you, we are LOOOONG past caring why you think and behave the way you do. We offered you amnesty, no questions asked. We don’t want to hear your reasons and excuses.

      All we care about this fall is turning out as many voters as we can do that it stops. That’s it. The time for dialogue is past.

      • Yeah, I thought Niles and his tribe were the “Fuck Your Feelings” people.

        Apparently that only applies to the feelings of the rest of us, not to their own feelings. 😈

  3. How much of that 92% drop was due to large insider sell orders, vs the news of the clinical trial having poor results?

    • Well, considering the fact that he sold off a chunk, told his son to sell off a chunk, and his son’s father in law And all of their friends before any news went public, probably enough to alert other investors that something was up.
      I guess someone could read the indictment. But this is one of the reasons I didn’t move to Cambridge MA and start jumping from startup to startup and decided to get out of science altogether. Failure is the norm in pharma. You make progress in tiny increments and then leaps. But you don’t know when the leaps will happen and the organisms don’t always cooperate. It’s some of the most important work on the planet. Financializing it underrates the difficulty and disrespects the dedicated people who do it. Many of those people don’t really start earning a living wage until their over 30 years old. So to fuck up their equity simply because you don’t want to lose money on a company you knew in advance was risky? Bad in so many ways.

      • As one with 30 years plus experience in financial markets (both on Wall Street trading desks and more recently as an independent trader), I don’t doubt that if Collins and friends entered large sell orders they could have broken the price at that instant. But… if a one product biotech company has that product fail decisively in a clinical trial, that stock is going DOWN. If Collins had acted properly, and waited for the public announcement before selling his stock, he would have been one of many who sold when the news hit the wire. Whatever Collins did to the stock price, would have happened sooner or later.

        Now, of course Collins IS a crook. Insider trading is all about stealing from the person who is on the other side of the trade. If I know a company is about to go bust and that news is not yet public, and I sell the stock, I have swindled the mark who buys the stock from me. I know the stock is worthless, while he thinks, possibly after diligent research of all public information sources, that the stock has value. Theft.

        Finally, everyone who had a stake in the company (including, yes, creative and well trained scientists) was going to lose it, no matter what Collins and his cronies did. While I don’t know how we ensure that science gets the support it deserves, I do rue the day that Pfizer closed its labs in New London, CT and in England, and restarted its R&D in China. Someone should hang for that. Treason.

  4. Off topic: Happy International Cat Day! 🙂

    https://imgur.com/gallery/NRACXBg

  5. Collins is not resigning. He wants to run again. These corrupt motherfuckers.

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