Munger Defends Sokol in FT
Munger tells FT he doesn't think Sokol intended anything wrong. Says it was "optics." Differentiates his purchase of BYD from Sokol's of Lubrizol while saying they were alike in one respect (they both owned stock in a company Berkshire acquired).
> More than gentlemanly of Munger, after Sokol dragged him into the spotlight on CNBC. Nobody would be asking questions about BYD if Sokol hadn't raised it as an issue. BYD is not a valid comparison. Munger bought BYD years earlier; fully disclosed it; recused himself. I thought it was rather low-class of Sokol to make the BYD comparison, even if he was like the drowning guy who pulls anyone he can grab underwater with him.
> Look for more post-blowup damage control after this interview, in the form of support from whichever Buffett friends and any such media as can be found to assist. If past unpleasantnesses are a guide (General Re) only about 1% of the iceberg will be visible on the surface, so I would not jump to a whole lot of conclusions from what anybody says.
> In addition, public opinion is already quite firm. The question being asked is not "What more can Buffett & Co. tell us to convince us they're right?" but rather "When will Buffett reverse gears and do the right thing?" by saying he's reconsidered it and the stock purchases were inappropriate and didn't meet Berkshire's standard of behavior.