What the Heck Is Happening With Robert Mercer

Caricature by DonkeyHotey flic.kr/p/Ct4G4K https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

 

Robert Mercer, as you might know, is a deep pocket donor who runs Renaissance Technologies, aka RenTech, hedge fund and gives generously to various right-of-center politicians and causes. He is a Trump supporter and he was up to his eyebrows in Brexit. And he had a big stake in Breitbart.

So, this just happened.

Interesting.

First, he distances himself from Steve Bannon. Second, he says his experimenting with Milo’s trolling expedition is a mistake because Milo is, well, Milo. Third, he says he’s selling his Breitbart stake, thereby completing the divorce.

That was followed by him stepping down from his leadership position at Renaissance Technologies:

Robert Mercer, a billionaire investor who is a big financial backer of many conservative causes and a patron of the former White House adviser Stephen K. Bannon, is stepping down as co-chief executive of Renaissance Technologies, the giant hedge fund.

Mr. Mercer sent a letter to investors and pension advisers on Thursday morning in which he said he would step down. A copy of the letter was reviewed by The New York Times.

In the letter, Mr. Mercer said he would leave his post on Jan. 1, 2018, and would also leave the hedge fund’s board. He said he would remain active on the research side of the fund, which makes trades using complex mathematical equations.

The one-paragraph letter to investors did not give a reason for Mr. Mercer’s decision. His involvement in conservative politics became a lightning rod for criticism during and after the presidential election.

How are these tied together? I don’t know. The IRS is after RenTech for $7 billion in back taxes but that is an occupational hazard in hedge funds. ThinkProgress and BuzzFeed have claimed Mercer is feeding “white nationalist” groups but all that means is that it was a day ending in “y” in progressive media. So none of the known issues with Mercer seem to merit his public distancing himself from Breitbart and all its works at the same time he leaves the fund he founded.

There is another shoe waiting to drop…