Papa v. Papa
: In week three of the Papa John’s saga, Papa John is suing Papa John’s, the restaurant he founded, says CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, NBC News and The Hill.

A couple of weeks ago, you may recall, John Schnatter, founder of Papa John’s, said a thing on a conference call, a racial slur, reported by Forbes. He immediately owned it, said the report was accurate, and stepped down as chairman of the board of Papa John’s and from his role on the board of the University of Louisville.

Which seemed like the right thing to do.

But then last week, he kind of changed his mind about that, saying it was a “mistake.”

And then this week, he’s suing for documents related to his resignation. The complaint says:

Mr. Schnatter is entitled to determine whether his fellow directors have been grossly negligent or are acting in bad faith, or both.

Instead of standing behind the founder and working with news media to explain what actually occurred, the Company followed its usual, and flawed, manner of dealing with false and mistaken reporting as to comments made by Mr. Schnatter.

Papa John’s spokesman Peter Collins told CNBC:

We are saddened and disappointed that John Schnatter has filed a needless and wasteful lawsuit in an attempt to distract from his own words and actions. We will not let his numerous misstatements in the complaint and elsewhere distract us from the important work we are doing to move the business forward for our 120,000 corporate and franchise team members, and our franchisees, customers and stakeholders.

Reuters and Bloomberg say Mr. Schnatter is also speaking out against his successor, Steve Ritchie.

Said Mr. Schnatter:

Steve Ritchie would be a great executive for another company. I just don’t think he’s the right fit for Papa John’s at this time.

In my view, things are getting worse, not better. That is why the board needs to take action and shareholders may need to take action in regards to the board.

I think they agree with you on that, but maybe not on who’s responsible for the “worse, not better.”

On Sunday, The New York Times reported Papa John’s board adopted a “poison pill” strategy to prevent anyone from taking over the company by buying a controlling share, in this case, Mr. Schnatter, who currently owns 29 percent.

As the fallout continues, Forbes takes a look at what it calls “Papa John’s brand devastation.” The brand has taken several hits starting with the remarks Mr. Schnatter made regarding the NFL player protests. Consumer happiness dropped significantly, but started to rebound. At least until a couple of weeks ago. Now the concern is those customers might be gone permanently.

And Bloomberg reports franchises are taking it on the chin the hardest. Stifel analyst Chris O’Cull said the company is in a “precarious position” and consumer sentiment is “extremely negative.”

Said Mr. O’Cull:

Given the franchiser’s actions have put the franchisees in this unhealthy financial condition, we expect the company may need to provide some royalty relief or other financial assistance to keep franchisees from closing restaurants.

Meanwhile, USA Today reports pizza delivery drivers are suing their employers, claiming lack of reimbursement from the use of their own vehicles for delivery, thus driving their pay below minimum wage. Two of those drivers are suing Papa John’s franchises in Middlesboro and Paducah, Ky. Those suits could be filed as potential class actions to benefit other drivers.

Rand Paul | Courtesy of Lexington Herald-Leader

Ap-Paul-ed: Senator Rand Paul said President Donald Trump should revoke the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan, says CNN and The Hill. Mr. Brennan and other retired members of the intelligence community were critical of the president’s performance with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Helsinki summit a couple of weeks back.

Just got out of WH meeting with @realDonaldTrump. I restated to him what I have said in public: John Brennan and others partisans should have their security clearances revoked.

The White House took that ball and ran with it, says the Los Angeles Times, and added several more names to the potential list, including former Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper and former National Security Advisor Susan Rice, Michael Hayden, National Security Agency and then CIA director under President George W. Bush, and the FBI’s James B. Comey and Andrew McCabe.

Neither Mr. Comey or Mr. McCabe are said to still have their security clearances. Mr. Clapper responded on CNN:

On Tuesday, Sen. Paul doubled down, saying:

This is happening to the most powerful man in the world, the president. What do you think happens to ordinary people? What if it happens to one of you that your government turns on you and decides to use the apparatus that can listen to every phone call, record every text message, look into every email? You stop these individuals who have gone rogue.

That’s conflating the two. Disagreeing with foreign policy, particularly in the light of recent reports, is not going rogue. Running around the Capitol with a portable copy machine as a political stunt might be:

The New York Times is equally puzzled. This morning they wrote: “Once a Trump Antagonist, Rand Paul Emerges as His Russia Wingman.”

Their assessment: He’s mostly anti-intelligence or at the very least in favor of seeing their abilities greatly reduced and this could be good old-fashioned political opportunism. In 2013, Sen. Paul famously filibustered the nomination of Mr. Brennan for 13 hours.

So it may just be a case of aligned stars is all in this particular instance.

Con Artist: Artnet News reports Jennifer Lawrence is up for the role of art scammer Anna Delvey with TV mega writer/producer Shonda Rhimes. Margot Robbie is also rumored; the Lawrence/Robbie either/or seems to be the latest casting trend.

Ms. Rhimes will be taking her services from ABC to Netflix, because Netflix now has all the money. All of it.

For those who may have missed it, Anna Delvey is currently at Riker’s Island for allegedly being a big art weasel (she was not charged with being a weasel but with grand larceny). The 27-year-old Russian claimed to be a German heiress, conning the art world into bankrolling an imaginary “dynamic visual arts center.”

I work in the arts and I have no idea what that really means. I don’t know what the “dynamic” does, outside of being an exciting buzzword, I guess is what I’m saying. Maybe the paintings jump out at you as you pass.

I don’t know.

But people bought it and bought it a lot. Ms. Delvey, for her part, says she was truly trying to build everything she said she was, only she might have misrepresented her German fortune on account of not being German and not having a fortune. And not having the capital of a German fortune to legitimately borrow from and pay her bills.

She did snooker a lot of people, though. There was big deal trainer Kacy Duke, big deal art collector Michael Xufu Huang, big deal creep of all creeps, Martin Shkreli, and big deal child star Macaulay Culkin. When reached for comment, Mr. Culkin had this to say:

So you have this Delvey/Sorkin thing. You have your NRA Russian lady spy thing. The Trump/Putin presser from a couple weeks back. Maybe it’s nobody’s fault. We just can’t help but be a little unconsciously smitten with Russians, maybe. It’s the accent, probably. Even when they’re pretending to be German.

Her Instagram lists her as a “Retired Intern,” which is not at all my understanding of retirement or interns. She’s not seeing visitors, but if you want to write her, you can:

One commenter offered a simple, “I’ll be writing you occasionally.” So that’s nice. Not overly committal. But you know, once in a blue moon you might get a little ping from a valet from Atlanta. Just wants to say “hi.” See how prison’s treating you and let you know he just made supervisor. He’s also 27 with no kids and good credit, so you never know.

Also, here she is in simpler times, just last year at the height of the whole thing:

Just because you’re allegedly running a huge heist — listen, you’re still going to need to show a little whimsy with a good leopard filter now and again.

Speaking of art, by the way, Vogue follows up last week’s article about Ms. Lawrence’s shoes with this week’s claim: “Jennifer Lawrence Turns the T-Shirt-and-Jeans Pairing Into an Art Form.” Really, it’s not so much different from anyone else’s shirt and jeans or the way anyone else would wear them; it’s just that she’s really attractive and famous is all. And it’s a $100 T-shirt.

See you next week.