Sad. To The Extent Marty Actually Believes His Wealth Is “Increasing”, He Misunderstands These TWO Suits.

Overnight, Marty posted what is becoming a series of increasingly unhinged blog posts. In this latest one, entire words and phrases are missing, from some of his sentences [typos are to be expected, but in this case, it is not clear he even read it over before sending it (likely by email) to his “friend”/surrogate blog curator].

It is… sad really, as he boasts of using his “vastly increasing” (but in truth, mostly non-existent, as we explain below) wealth to (among other things) destroy future Democratic political candidates and incumbents who “ran on…” bashing him. Uh-huh.

As I said in the last post, since he is locked away, he cannot fully sense how much things have changed in the more than a year, since he was removed from society. In his mind, he still lives in late 2016 — a time when Turing / Vyera was… profitable. It is no longer so.

I’ve personally seen this “frozen mind-set” phenomenon so many times — in even wildly intelligent long term incarcerated felons. Because all he hears about (excepting prison-related matters) comes via paper mail and telephone and email. He doesn’t brush into average, honest working people on the street in Murray Hill any longer, as he gets his McD’s — or stops by a bodega. He only hears what his “friends” tell him on the phone — which is only what they think he “wants to hear”. Confirmation bias, that. And it is powerful. He thinks most people still believe 45’s robber baron approach will bring the ordinary Joe prosperity.The mid-terms (now a blue tsunami) belie that notion.

But I digress. The minor point here is that Marty feverishly claimed his wealth was increasing, by the day. Whatever it is, it now primarily consists of his interest in privately held Turing (the subject of repeated renames).

A recent SDNY court opinion would suggest his wealth there “stored” (in his mind) is… actually vanishing, by the day. [The parties, post this latest opinion, have called off the judicial conference — presumably to conclude settled damages agreements, now — and avoid the considerable cost of appeals.]

In the Impax v. Turing matter (background here), the able US District Court judge just confirmed last week that Turing (now called Vyera or Phoenixus depending on whom you believe) owes payments to Impax, into the high dozens of millions of dollars, since early 2016 — and now accreting. [Impax owes Turing some rebate payments, on Daraprim — via Medicare, as well — but the net liability far and away falls to Turing / Vyera /Phoenixus. Here is the able Judge Ramos’ original opinion finding against Turing and Marty, from 2017.]

This outcome — when coupled a year or two from now, to the personal liability Marty has in the Tiopronin antitrust suit — and his myriad legal bills, for his criminal appeals, and ongoing civil securities fraud matters (even before the Retrophin arbitration — likely $70 million in liability, to him, personally)… all point to a negative net worth for Mr. Shkreli. The liabilities are unliquidated and contingent at this point — but they are coming. Just like a freight train, on a cold rural Pennsylvania (near FCI Ft. Dix) night… the whir is building to a roar — as that night train draws nearer the prison gates, running along side it thunderously, as it passes.

Yes, Marty is broke, He cannot see it yet — or he (and his surrogates) are deceiving themselves. So even if his meager political notions held any intellectual currency (and they do not, after 2018 mid-term results)… he has no real fiat currency to expend on promoting them.

Again — sadly — the upshot is… he has faded into irrelevancy.

In passing, I’ll note that his business take on generics… is likewise riddled with errors due to his “pre-2016 frozen” mindset. It is true, were he free, he could no longer increase a generic’s price by 5,000 per cent in the US. But as Mr. Buffet well knows (and Marty acknowledges), generics are a very solid, stable (if decidedly unsexy) cash cow — in a US and global environment driven by cost containment. That is the new world — not runaway drug price inflation. And generic companies will make solid returns for investors. Not 5,000 per cent — but in the teens, over time — to a near certainty.

[He may be (inadvertently) right about Moderna, though. It may be a short — not because it is a bad company — but because so many of these promising new IO / bio-science discovery plays… flame out in real world clinical trials. I will do a little more looking at that — on my other property — since Merck is/was an early round Moderna believer.]

Onward.

Marty — On “Companies Like Mine” — A Decidedly False Premise Problem.

I will probably regret posting this, because… who cares, really?

Marty’s view is now so marginalized — as to be meaningless, on the post 2018 mid-terms US drug pricing landscape. [That often happens (on a vast array of topics, in truth), when prison walls isolate one from the pulse of the hard-working, wage earning “people on the street” in Manhattan, Chicago, LA, and even Nashville — and on and on. I’ve seen it time, and again.]

So Marty’s rhetoric (on display below) is quite… stale. It is 2016 vintage Trumpian in its (now failed) approach. Which is to say… it is no longer the considered view, of the would-be masters of the universeTM.

Even so — I must point out that his use of the term “companies like mine” refers not to pharma companies, not to life science companies and not to most responsible R&D efforts. It refers to a vanishingly small universe of about three US companies that choose price gouging as a core strategy.

Their days are numbered — and so Inmate 87850 053’s “pontifications from prison” are… entirely… precious:

“…This isn’t a paper, just drivel the NEJM allowed published for some self-destructive reason. States can’t “regulate” drug prices. Countries that have ONE payor, that country’s government health body, cannot “regulate” drug prices, either. What happened when Greece couldn’t pay for Roche’s cancer drugs? Do you think Roche let Greece give them IOUs? No. They cut of supplies of life-saving medicines to a country that chose not to pay due to financial difficulty. The writer of the article seems to propose states should have the option to do the same. What this poor fellow confuses is regulation and access. Firms have a choice as to what they’ll supply at what price. If Maryland’s ill-fated attempt (reversed by Circuit Court) for drug price regulation were to somehow be found legal again, companies like mine would just stop selling to Maryland.

Maybe they can ask Greece for advice?….”

What Marty here misses is that any government is absolutely capable of bringing its boot down on the neck of guys like him. [Some might even say his status at FCI Ft. Dix is proof of the vitality of this notion.]

Marty also forgets that very powerful, well connected lawyers are arguing that his entirely former business model is a violation of the Sherman and Clayton Acts. What he also forgets is that the newly bluish Congress, with a bill, may choose to allow the federal payors (Medicare, Medicaid, the VA and Tri-Care) to negotiate directly on price. If that occurs, Marty’s closed distribution/rare disease model for gouging is… kaput. [Insurers would promptly fall in line, and refuse these Marty advances on price, if Medicare can negotiate on price.]

Though in truth, when his former company loses to Winston & Strawn (in the suit at right), on the antitrust claims — it will be over anyway — even without an Act of Congress. [I should note that W&S ALSO represents many health insurers, and so, this is a potential “double win” — for its client base… dropping reimbursed prices — for its core set of clients.]

Finally, in candor — to this day, there are many large US pharma players who still sell to Greece, and allow for 700 plus day collection periods. Abbott, Baxter, Amgen, Pfizer, Merck and Lilly among them. These companies recognize both a responsibility to provide life saving medicines to the people of Greece — and the enlightened self-interest, in allowing liberal collection terms — ones that generate large (if slow) cash-flow sales cycles.

So, Marty’s view is… just one more embittered felon/convict whining about “how things were in the… [BAD] old days.”

Go back to betting on NFL and NBA games, Marty — as your life path ahead leads only there (or worse), if you cannot find a voice for treating the world’s most needy — with life-saving medicine (in a humanitarian fashion).

नमस्ते

I Would Suggest A Re-Read — Of the last few posts’ comments…

I find myself thinking this late afternoon about the manifold twisted, tangled, complex and often conflicting forces — that cumulatively come to explain any person’s life, really — once they reach into their 30s, or beyond.

On that score, Jane and I had a nice discussion in comments below — about whether Martin’s well-documented childhood difficulties explain his behavior, after three decades have now passed. I leave that as an open question.

But lest anyone misunderstand, I do see him as a human — though like all of us, a flawed, frail human.

That’s all. I have nothing else to offer, here. [And as we had earlier explained, Ms. Smythe now has the Retrophin SEC 10-Q which discloses a firm date — the $70 million arbitration is scheduled to occur in early April 2019.] Now you know.

Namaste.

I Actually Think “DEAN Martin”-Shkreli Would Have Been… Um, Funnier. Trivial Nonsense Filler Material

I saw this on Ms. Smythe’s stream — it is from a Vulture article on a Brooklyn club’s Halloween comedy mash-up sets. [“Woke” Andrew Dice Clay might have been the best of them.] It is — in truth — meaningless filler. Bubble gum, for the eyes — barely engages the hippocampus….

In any event, “Demetri” Martin Shkreli was… (as Ms. Smythe said) pretty predictable — imagine, instead, a stumble-drunk Dean Martin doing the same set: funnier, or not so? Your call:

Onward, and namaste — meanwhile, over on Twitter, a pair of young Shkreli fans have confessed to the below Halloween caper. So it goes. I doubt Marty had input on it.

[U] This. Is. Wrong. Never Mind That Amendment One Likely Protects It…

UPDATED @ NYSE Closing Bell: well… it seems that either (i) the account was scrubbed of its graphics, or (ii) Jack @ Twitter has… suspended it.

In sum — it is gone — but these (above, and right) are accurate screen caps (I won’t post full, unedited screen cap images, as they come pretty close to identifying me, by twitter handle). But I am gratified it is… all gone.

Have a… spooky night! End, update.

This is simply a jaw-slackingly immoral and ill-considered stunt. I am given to understand that a woman, or women, actually have the keys to this pseudo Martin Shkreli Twitter feed.

I won’t link it. [You all know how to search for names on Twitter.] It is, to my eye, 100 per cent reprehensible, now — for this supposed “Halloween costume” choice. Some horrific “jokes” cannot be… untold. This is a cretin’s move.

The faux romantic script-text says “until death do us part…” Those are easily identifiable images of the esteemed journalist Mr. Shkreli threatened to rape, after being convicted of two felonies.

This is disgusting. And if BoP has any recorded evidence that Inmate 87850-053 in any way approved or authorized it, he has violated his terms of sentencing.

He may be headed into the SHU for a bit, if that’s the case. I’m sure you are proud of your “joke” here ladies — but it will likely cost Marty, dearly.

The first amendment tolerates even vicious idiocy. But we should not. Go denounce them.

No, these women cannot be prior restrained, in a court of law for the stunt — but they may be jamming Marty, and badly here. And “false light” libel may be possible (if a bit of a stretch, legally).

I guess that is some form of… ironic justice.

[U] One Of The Worst Aspects Of Incarceration — For Up To Seven Years…

…is the smallish freedoms lost. Taken for granted out here in the real world is the ability to go visit a friend over a root beer, on any given evening.

Or ring them up. Or have them pop up unannounced, just to say “hi,” at your joint. None of that is possible (as he obliquely mentions, in his latest blog-post), inside FCI Fort Dix:

“…End of the year is approaching! [Completely delusional (redacted) number of reported] months until home. Everything is mostly good here. My bestie is leaving for prison camp….”

Note that it is only the end of October, but he already wants it to be year end. [He desperately wishes to hurry the years along.] Note also that one of his best friends is being moved off-site. They can still write each other paper mail, but that’s about it.

Based on many long, soul searching talks with people in life sentence situations, I can reliably report this is one of the hardest things about incarceration: losing friends, one by one — even ones behind bars, doing time with you. [Equally hard is the inevitable, eventual trailing off of contact from outside friends too.]

In the free world there is much we can do to influence these events — and reverse them. In prison? Not so.

It is the enforced loneliness, and tedium, that will bother someone with Marty’s large brain-pan the most. He has precious few peers behind bars. Few to talk freely with. So it goes.

I write this simply to express compassion for his plight. But make no mistake: it was all his choice.

UPDATED: 9 PM EDT — Over at the Forbes Healthcare Summit (and Halloween party, apparently!) an entity known as “Elizabeth Shkreli” — clearly referencing both of our favorite crooks, here — has made a spectral spectacle of herself (image at right derived from a pair of tweets, courtesy of Matt at Forbes). Perhaps his name, as a meme, at least — isn’t all dead, yet. Only “mostly dead (all day)….”