I love the "investors writing for investors" concept that fuels Fooldom. We're not some stuffy brokerage house that will simply parrot the market calls of our star analysts. We agree to disagree, between ourselves.

When I introduced the "Dueling Fools" concept in 1996, I didn't think that any website but Fool.com could pull off the pro/con debate. I still feel that way. If you disagree with anything that you read here -- including my own words, of course -- there's probably a fellow Fool out there who agrees with you.

Why the buildup? Well, I did find myself shaking my head at some of the stock calls made by some of my Foolish friends on Friday. I'll tell you why, and I invite them to come back and counter my counter.

Rubio's is not the next Chipotle
I can respect that Tim Hanson feels that Rubio's (NASDAQ:RUBO) is a compelling turnaround story, but there's no way that it's the next Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE:CMG) (NYSE:CMG-B).

Rubio's is a decent concept, credited with introducing fish tacos in California two dozen years ago. So? This doesn't make Rubio's any closer to being the next Chipotle than to being the next Baja Fresh or La Salsa.

Let's start with the bottom line. Chipotle has been a speed demon, obliterating profit targets in each of its first seven quarters as a public company.


Analyst Estimate

% Surprise

Q2 2007




Q1 2007




Q4 2006




Q3 2006




Q2 2006




Q1 2006




Q4 2005




Source: Thomson First Call.

What's the track record at Rubio's like? Not pretty. It has topped expectations in only three of the past 12 quarters. Yes, the company has come on with market-thumping quarters of late, but don't be fooled by the healthy spurts at the store level. Higher prices and upscale remodeling may be inflating comps, but fewer people have walked into the average store through the first half of the year. Transactions at the unit level also dipped for all of 2006. Chipotle's perpetually buoyant unit-level gains are the result of traffic and pricing.

If you want the next Chipotle in quick-service Mexican, there isn't one. The only chain that comes close -- and it's a distant second at that -- is Qdoba, part of the Jack in the Box family.

Disney does belong in Hawaii
Another opinion that had me shaking my head over the weekend was Rimmy Malhotra's article arguing that Disney's (NYSE:DIS) expansion into building a Hawaiian resort is not worth the risk.

Is Disney really out of its element here? This is a company that bought a deserted island, decked it out, and transformed it into the port stop that all Disney cruise passengers look forward to: Castaway Cay. They said that Disney was reaching when it took its family brand into seedy 42nd Street a dozen years ago, and now Disney is dusting off its third Broadway production.

Disney does not need its theme parks to draw a crowd. You see that in existing Disney resorts at Hilton Head and Vero Beach. And now that its cruising fleet will double to four vessels by the time the 800-unit Oahu resort opens, is it too much of a stretch to wonder if one of those four ships will be on a Hawaiian itinerary? How bad will this move look when the kids from High School Musical 6 use the resort as a backdrop?

The company is human. It has made geographical expansion mistakes in the past. However, if Beaches can make a family-friendly resort concept work throughout the Caribbean, what's to stop the leader in family entertainment from doing it even better?

Surf's up, Mickey.

BlackBerry is a sour warhead
I keep waiting for Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) to prove mortal. Its BlackBerry devices continue to get more popular, leading to Anders Bylund gushing over the company's latest quarterly report.

He's right. The BlackBerry has put other smartphone makers to shame. Palm (NASDAQ:PALM) is up against the ropes. Even the introduction of Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) Web-sharp iPhone during the quarter wasn't much of a speed bump.

Give me a few more quarters, though. Research In Motion's greatest gains were overseas, where the iPhone is just hatching its launch plans. The recent $200 iPhone price cut, coupled with the cell-phone industry's migrating process -- which usually takes as long as two years and which will play out as non-iPhone users wiggle out of their contracts -- should stop BlackBerry fans from selling their umbrellas just yet.

Yes, the iPhone and the BlackBerry are completely different critters on the surface, but it's hard to imagine Apple's growth in the cell-phone market -- or even the rumored Google G-phone - won't eventually leave a dent in the BlackBerry market.

In short, I can't say that I agree with three of my fellow Fools right now. The fact that you're actually reading about my dissension is what makes Fooldom so great.

Read the three Friday articles to see where you stand:

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.