My father once mischievously predicted that his company's stock was going to split, and sure enough several days later it split.
I have no idea why he did this, except he tended to be a jokster.... or maybe because his business sense told him it might happen.
But I do know he was not in the upper escutcheons of his company, so did not have insider information.
However, the rumor he started was widespread before the stock split.
So anyone trying to get an "inside trading" conviction would find a dozen people who said they "had been told" this information. Proof of "insider trading". You know: Like why Martha Stewart went to jail after someone told her and some other people about a company's plan.
But of course, it wasn't an insider illegally giving out information to insiders. There was one source, my joking father.
This story came to mind when the NYTimes had a breathless story about Trump wanting to fire Muller.
here is the headline:
Trump Ordered Mueller Fired, but Backed Off When White House Counsel Threatened to Quit
but was this true?
Newspapers might use anonymous sources (but without telling their readers, you have to trust them these sources have no political agenda to lie or spin).
And using one source, especially one anonymous source, without a second witness to confirm the story, is not exactly good journalistic practice.
But the NYT insists they had "four sources". Implying four witnesses. Again, anonymous witnesses, but hey, they wouldn't lie to the NYTimes would they?
Except they aren't four witnesses.
If you bother to read the article, the exact source of the claim is:
according to four people told of the matter...so, not four witnesses, but four anonymous people who were "told" about it. So probably only one actual source, who is also anonymous.
In other words, one anonymous witness started the rumor.
and this supposedly happened in June. So why is this article being released now as if it is news?
I am sure Trump has angrily said he wanted to fire Muller for months, but the point is HE DID NOT.
and if I, an isolated great grandmother in the rural Philippines has figured this out, it makes me wonder: Why is this seven month old story being released now? Maybe to counter the good economic news?
and ironically, the NYTimes article lists the many reasons why any logical independent observer might also want Muller to be fired, including hiring politicized lawyers and conflict of interest.
Also ironically, the article denies these things should make the President worry, because Muller would never push a conviction without good evidence.
Dr. Bruce Ivins, call your office.