The news that Yahoo founder Jerry Yang is to step down from his CEO role comes too late for the company’s investors or for those who thought that a Microsoft-Yahoo combination offered the best prospect of avoiding a Google lock-in on .

At a healthier time in the economy, Yang famously passed and kissed goodbye to what seemed at the time (and seems even more so now) a generous offer from Steve Ballmer’s gang. Yang thought it undervalued Yahoo’s true value despite the fact that growth was sluggish and a pricey revamp of its underlying search-related advertising system had failed to provide the necessary jump leads.

Yang then turned to Google for a partnership that always seemed unlikely and when that didn’t work was reduced to making coded pleas for Microsoft to step back in.

His exit from the Yahoo leadership role, demands not so much a paean of praise as a few lines of EJ Thribb:

So farewell then Jerry Yang
You guided Yahoo!
Away from Microsoft
Silly you!