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Posted: 1/15/2002 12:13:05 PM EDT
Heads are starting to roll but I want to see some heads BEHIND BARS when this is over. [url]www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A49073-2002Jan15.html[/url]
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 12:19:02 PM EDT
I know two of the partners, and worked for one in the past (before he was a partner).
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 12:37:17 PM EDT
I don't think you'er going to find too many critics of Enron here, unfortunately. I mean, after all, the partners only sold about a BILLION dollars worth of stock, pocketing the proceeds...
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 12:47:54 PM EDT
I once worked on a contract project with Arthur Andersen's sister company Andersen Consulting (now called Accenture or some gay-ass name). Anyways, I could have been a whistleblower. I personally witnessed them defraud the government to the tune of $13 million on a contract for some software that not only totally sucked, but was years behind schedule and got shelved immediately after it was finished and never used by the Air Force. That is one of the big reasons I became a libertarian--after that I was so cynical about how our tax dollars are wasted and the kind of incompetence and back-slapping that took place. The project was totally bogus from day one, and only meant to make Andersen a ton of cash in return for shoddy goods. The $500 toilet seat company was small time compared to these goons! The funny thing about AC was that their corporate headquarters was located on an island in the Carribean known for its liberal attitude about banking regulations and so forth. Can't remember the name of it. AC changed names last year or the year before. I wonder what hot water that company was in? If Arthur Andersen is anywhere near as corrupt as what I saw back in '97 with AC, I hope the Air Force conducts a bombing raid. I think they deserve it much more than the Taliban ever will. Our national coffers are continuously robbed by these assholes and that is what is undermining our system of government most of all--the robber barons and their politico buddies. It is far more dangerous than terrorism because while terrorism might affect your life, this certainly does. These are the same idiots who are hopping from place to place in their private jets while recommending national ID cards and the shaking down of the populace. Larry Ellison of Oracle and that snippy assface CEO of Sun (McNealy?) are just out to make billions. Watch out!
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 12:50:46 PM EDT
It's about time. The accounting profession has been unregulated far too long. The concept of peer review is poor at best & obviously does not work as seen in previous AA cases like Waste Mgmt & Sunbeam. We are probably not going to see federal oversight, though because I saw a quote in yesterdays' WSJ by an SEC spokeswoman saying that the oversight is the responsibility of the AICPA. That organization is another very poor example of peer review & management. They still permit the obvious conflict of audit firms doing consulting work for the same clients. I saw, in that same article that about 50% of AA's $52 million in year 2000 fees was from consulting. With all of the money that these CPA/consulting firms make, they will throw every lobbying effort that they can at any potential new regulations. At least Chainsaw Al had to payback $15 million, probably a pittance compared to the cost to the employees who lost their jobs. The incompetent management that runs so many companies is an embarrassment. Where is their common sense?
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 1:09:16 PM EDT
Good [bounce]. I agree that there is a lack of impartially from the company whose job is to audit a company but also selling additional services to them. I never trusted those people over there. How would I say, STUCK UP like the Clintons.
Link Posted: 1/15/2002 10:56:56 PM EDT
Damn! Trickshot, you beat me to it. I've worked on several consulting projects with Andersenites (now Accenture, as you note). They were the biggest pieces of shit ever to splat into suits. The last time, the client company threw them out -- took a while, but the client finally realized that Andersen was putting complete idiots with no training on the project, letting them learn how to write software on the client's dollar, and then rolling the idiots off after 3-6 months, replacing them with new idiots. The previous times all had similar problems with Andersen overbilling, overstaffing, underestimating significant requirements, and otherwise trying their best to screw their clients out of everything they had. Andersen loved to worm their way into a company, bleed it dry, and leave it with completely nonfunctional IT projects when the money ran out. I made a vow many years ago, after the second or third time I saw this happening, that if I ever own a business, and if anyone ever even mentions bringing Andersen in to look at anything, that employee will be out the door so fast that his/her shoe soles will be smoldering. Given the way those sleazeballs behaved on their consulting projects, Andersen's criminal conduct in their "auditing" of Enron, not to mention their obstruction of justice by destroying documents, doesn't surprise me in the least.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 6:14:14 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 71-Hour_Achmed: The last time, the client company threw them out -- took a while, but the client finally realized that Andersen was putting complete idiots with no training on the project, letting them learn how to write software on the client's dollar, and then rolling the idiots off after 3-6 months, replacing them with new idiots.
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This is not unique to Accenture or Arthur Andersen. All the Big 5 and major consulting firms use OJT to train their staff. The newbies are a lot cheaper than the very experienced people and mostly handle the low level stuff.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 7:01:37 AM EDT
In past years I've engaged Andersen as both outside auditors and technical consultants. I found their work to be excellent. Regarding the Enron situation. On a practical level I 'think' I understand the 'why' if not the what. If Andersen is as dirty as most of us believe heads should roll and some very bright and educated people need to be teaching Accounting 101 ...from prison.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 9:31:12 AM EDT
Besides the possibly illegal activities, I guess the thing that fustrates me so much is that, if the allegations are true then this means that no matter how much research you do, no matter how much you study a publicly traded companies financial reports, no matter how much you study the rating agencies, you can never know the true financial position/risk of any company. Because top company officials, in cahoots with their Big 5 Accounting Firm are busy at work cooking the books. And you sure can't listen to the Wall Street Analysis, hell they were saying Enron was a strong buy, they either don't know shit or they were in on the scam too. We all may as well pick stocks by throwing darts at a board [whacko]
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 9:35:33 AM EDT
Originally Posted By ECS: Besides the possibly illegal activities, I guess the thing that fustrates me so much is that, if the allegations are true then this means that no matter how much research you do, no matter how much you study a publicly traded companies financial reports, no matter how much you study the rating agencies, you can never know the true financial position/risk of any company. Because top company officials, in cahoots with their Big 5 Accounting Firm are busy at work cooking the books. And you sure can't listen to the Wall Street Analysis, hell they were saying Enron was a strong buy, they either don't know shit or they were in on the scam too. We all may as well pick stocks by throwing darts at a board [whacko]
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As stated, I do not believe your conclusions are refutable. [smoke]
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 10:06:46 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Houston:
Originally Posted By 71-Hour_Achmed: The last time, the client company threw them out -- took a while, but the client finally realized that Andersen was putting complete idiots with no training on the project, letting them learn how to write software on the client's dollar, and then rolling the idiots off after 3-6 months, replacing them with new idiots.
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This is not unique to Accenture or Arthur Andersen. All the Big 5 and major consulting firms use OJT to train their staff. The newbies are a lot cheaper than the very experienced people and mostly handle the low level stuff.
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There's a difference between "OJT" and "rolling idiots on and off the project every few months". The Andersen kiddies were supposed to be working on a major IT project. Instead, the instant that they became marginally capable to do anything on that project, they were pulled off and replaced by new ones who didn't know what the project was about, didn't know any of the existing code, and pretty much didn't even know how to code in C++ to begin with. This wasn't "cheaper" for the client, it was bleeding the client dry. Andersen knew it, and Andersen got fired for it. Deservedly so. Those people are morons. If you had a good experience with them, then you're the first I've ever heard frrom who had, and I've been doing contract development for twelve years.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 10:29:57 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 71-Hour_Achmed: Deservedly so. Those people are morons. If you had a good experience with them, then you're the first I've ever heard frrom who had, and I've been doing contract development for twelve years.
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Actually, I never worked with Accenture (which is now a totally independent company from AA). 20+ years ago I did work for AA though. I agree that rolling people off the job, just when they are beginning to learn something, is not a good idea. At AA, we learned on the job and stayed with that job for several years. I don't think this incident should be an indictment of the auditing industry as a whole. I see this incident as being the result of a few individuals who were more concerned about their pocketbooks than their integrity.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 11:28:53 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/16/2002 11:30:42 AM EDT by trickshot]
The last time, the client company threw them out -- took a while, but the client finally realized that Andersen was putting complete idiots with no training on the project, letting them learn how to write software on the client's dollar, and then rolling the idiots off after 3-6 months, replacing them with new idiots.
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Wow, this is [b]exactly[/b] what happened on that project. The original "visionary" guy quit when the quitting was good and went to Divinity School (prompting many jokes later by us) and the project got dumped into the lap of a freshly-minted MBA and his team of marginally competent programmers. The contract called for an external review at the end of the project, which is where me and my colleagues came in. Funny thing was, the software wasn't even nearly complete, the money had just run out. My boss was adamant that we had to say nice things in our review even though we couldn't get anything to work right, it was not extensible (the APIs that were part of the contract were impenetrable), and it used technology that had already been superseded. It was a huge pile of shit and the worst thing I ever had to do in my life was write a positive-sounding review of that shit. In the end, I had fun adding little barbs here and there. I doubt anyone ever read what we wrote, it was just part of fulfilling the Air Force contract. All in all, AC absconded with $13million and the Air Force had absolutely nothing to show for it. The funniest part was that AC had an acronym for everything: ACODMESR was the one I remember, some kind of object-design methodology. Hilarious!
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 12:55:16 PM EDT
Originally Posted By trickshot:
The last time, the client company threw them out -- took a while, but the client finally realized that Andersen was putting complete idiots with no training on the project, letting them learn how to write software on the client's dollar, and then rolling the idiots off after 3-6 months, replacing them with new idiots.
View Quote
Wow, this is [b]exactly[/b] what happened on that project. The original "visionary" guy quit when the quitting was good and went to Divinity School (prompting many jokes later by us) and the project got dumped into the lap of a freshly-minted MBA and his team of marginally competent programmers. The contract called for an external review at the end of the project, which is where me and my colleagues came in. Funny thing was, the software wasn't even nearly complete, the money had just run out. My boss was adamant that we had to say nice things in our review even though we couldn't get anything to work right, it was not extensible (the APIs that were part of the contract were impenetrable), and it used technology that had already been superseded. It was a huge pile of shit and the worst thing I ever had to do in my life was write a positive-sounding review of that shit. In the end, I had fun adding little barbs here and there. I doubt anyone ever read what we wrote, it was just part of fulfilling the Air Force contract. All in all, AC absconded with $13million and the Air Force had absolutely nothing to show for it. The funniest part was that AC had an acronym for everything: ACODMESR was the one I remember, some kind of object-design methodology. Hilarious!
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Your description of how an 'external review' is conducted, and the requirement that you write something nice, just confirmed that these reviews cannot achieve their intended purpose.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 1:12:24 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 5subslr5: In past years I've engaged Andersen as both outside auditors and technical consultants. I found their work to be excellent....
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And I am a former EMPLOYEE of Andersen Consulting. I now refer to Accenture as the Borg. They have a lot of first-rate technical people. But the organization as a whole is a big dumb animal. Kind of like a basking shark, sucking in everything it can day and night. They tend to become like parasites in your organization, billing outrageous fees for time and underpaying the people who do the actual work. Most of the partners are real scumbags.
Link Posted: 1/16/2002 1:36:10 PM EDT
I'm currently with Accenture. Check out [url]http://www.indenture.ac[/url] for some really great cartoons about internal goings on. We are really a great corporate model for Dilbert as well.
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