While Julian Assange fights extradition proceedings to Sweden on charges of a ripped condom (note to Jack Baruth: Never get close to a Svenska flicka), the Wikileak cablegate haul is being used to do a hatchet job on a down and out car company that should qualify for a handicapped parking sticker.
Today, Reuters runs a five page “special report” titled “Warren Buffett’s China car deal could backfire.”
The story is about BYD. If you read the story, read it with a cup of strong coffee: you’ll need it to stay awake.
Reuters is a great news organization, and they tried really hard. The story was compiled by Reuters’ correspondents in New York, Detroit, Hong Kong, Beijing and Tokyo and edited by two people. Despite all the work, there are no new revelations. It’s warmed-over material which will be quite familiar to the attentive follower of our on-going BYD coverage. Actually, some of it sounds VERY familiar. But there is a twist:
The story was supposedly triggered by “diplomatic cables revealed by WikiLeaks and provided to Reuters by a third party.” Now that got my attention. But after reading all five pages, I feel more used than the alleged rape victim in Stockholm: That’s it? Where’s the sexy stuff?
We won’t bore you with quoting the wikileaked passages, they aren’t worth the bits. Let’s just say that if you have read Ed Niedermeyer’s “BYD Blasted For Reverse Engineering, Labor Practices, Expansion”, written more than a year ago, you know more dirt on BYD than what is revealed in the Desperate Housewives gossip emanating from a US Consulate in the backwaters of Guangzhou, written in an apparent attempt to break the tedium of denying U.S. “tourist” visas to unmarried Chinese females.
If you absolutely have to read them, there you go. (We hate to lose readers.)
The only thing that is REALLY interesting is the fact that the Guangzhou embassy party gossip was “provided to Reuters by a third party.” It had to be. Reuters had no way of accessing it on their own.
Use the handy Cablesearch tool, put in “BYD”, and ye shall receive:” No matches found for « BYD ».” Put in “Guangzhou” and you find no cable from Guangzhou.
The BYD material is not amongst the many cables already published by Wikileaks. Someone gave Reuters Wikileaks material that is not available. Reuters is not on the prerelease list of Wikileaks. This leak must be intentional.
Now who’s that ominous “third party” that leaked unpublished Wikileaks material, as boring as it may be, to Reuters? I have no idea. All I know is: To leak something to the press, you first need to have access to the material. And most of all, you need to have a motive to do the leaking.
BYD is in horrible shape. The BYD stock had its all-time low of 29.90 honkies (not a racial slur, this is what Hong Kong Dollars are called in China) on February 24. It has since recovered a bit to 36.75 HKD. BYD’s sales were down 15 percent in January when the overall market was up 13.8 percent. In February, their sales were half those of January. Nobody wants their electric cars in China, even with very generous subsidies. But the New York Times kind of likes the F3DM, in a campy kind of way.
But then why the Wikileaks-leak hatchet job? Can’t they let BYD die in peace? Or is someone afraid BYD might actually recover? Shorts getting nervous about a bounce? But since when do shorts have unpublished Wikileak material. Strange.