George W Bush - Monty Python TV - Herbert J Muller - Charles Lyell - Jackie Mason - Arthur Levitt - Paul Foot - The Tax Free Tour TV - Small Time Crooks 2000 - Buffet Froid 1979 - The Spider’s Web: Britain’s Second Empire TV - Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room 2005 - Frontline TV - Marta Anderson - Paulu van Buitenen - The Accountant 2016 - Lock, Stock ... And Two Sips TV - The Big Four Accountancy Firms Under Scrutiny -
In the corporate world sometimes things aren’t exactly black and white when it comes to accounting procedures. George W Bush
So please give generously to this address: The League for Fighting Chartered Accountancy, 55 Lincoln House, Basil Street, London SW3. Monty Python’s Flying Circus s1e10, Untitled, BBC 1969
It’s fun to charter an accountant
And sail the wide accountant-sea.
To find, explore the funds off shore
And scourge the shoals of bankruptcy.
It can be manly insurance
We’re up your premiums semi-annually.
It’s all tax-deductible and fairly incorruptible
Sailing on the wide accountant-sea … Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life 1983 starring Graham Chapman & John Cleese & Terry Gilliam & Eric Idle & Terry Jones & Michael Palin & Carol Cleveland & Patricia Quinn & Judy Loe & Simon Jones & Matt Frewer & Jane Leeves et al, director Terry Jones
Few have heard of Fra Luca Pacioli, the inventor of double-entry bookkeeping; but he has probably had much more influence on human life than has Dante or Michelangelo. Herbert J Muller
Never call an accountant a credit to his profession; a good accountant is a debit to his profession. Charles Lyell
Did you ever hear of a kid playing accountant – even if they wanted to be one? Jackie Mason
Enron’s accounting firm Arthur Anderson had begun destroying its Enron files. On October 23rd Anderson shredded more than one ton of paper. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, written McLean & Elkind & Gibney, 2005
The very foundation of the market – the numbers that represented the sanctity of the market, the reliability of the market – were becoming unreliable because the accountants had violated the trust government had placed in them. Arthur Levitt, Securities & Exchange Commission chairman 1993-2001
This is more than can be said for Geoffrey Robinson, Blair’s first Paymaster General, who has now been found to have been a beneficiary of the generous crook Robert Maxwell – to the tune of £200,000, no less, the cheque which Robinson just cannot find. Robinson’s connections with the accountants Arthur Andersen, which raised funds for New Labour, have been exposed in a recent book by Tom Bower, just in time for the Enron scandal. Enron went bust last year in a spectacular bankruptcy caused by various imaginative accounting devices dreamed up by Andersen. From 1994 to 1996 Andersen’s sister company employed Patricia Hewitt, a rising star in New Labour, and cooperated generously with New Labour before and after the 1997 election. Its main aim in life – to remove the ban on it imposed by the former Tory government because of its dishonesty over the DeLorean scandal – was achieved within seven months of New Labour coming to office. Paul Foot, Corruption: Dirty Business
Imagine a world in which there are no taxes. Where laws and regulations can be adjusted according to your own wishes. The Tax Free Tour, 2012
Welcome on board the tax-free tour. ibid.
Apple: well they park about $2.2 billion of royalties offshore … they paid about 1.9% tax, corporate tax, in the United States. ibid.
A world that for most of us is hidden from view. A world in which the capital flows of multinationals are structured and sometimes make a quick stopover in the Cayman Islands, or Cyprus and Amsterdam … a world in which no taxes are paid. ibid.
Apple is considered a pioneer on this tax route which is commonly known as Double Irish with a Dutch Sandwich. ibid.
‘The rich countries of the world are supposed to be the most responsible … are running this shell game for the world.’ ibid. expert
‘Something like eleven trillion Euros is routed through the Netherlands each year.’ ibid. tax detective
How can this offshore world exist? Who maintains it? Who keeps it all running and makes sure the inhabitants get the best advice? Who builds the financial structure and monitors the capital flows? ibid.
You’ll find all the familiar names of banks … consistently the same accountants, banks, consistently the same banks, and always lawyers to support them. ibid.
‘There is nobody who judges the accountants.’ ibid. expert
This stuff is backed by the European Union. ibid.
Your accountants are in Venezuela. Small Time Crooks 2000 starring Woody Allen & Tracey Ullman & Elaine May & Elaine Stritch & Hugh Grant & Michael Rapaport & Tony Darrow & Jon Lovitz & Brian Markinson & George Grizzard & Kristine Nielson et al, director Woody Allen
I think you look like an accountant. Buffet Froid 1979 starring Gerard Depardieu & Bernard Blier & Jean Carmet & Liliane Rovere & Carole Bouquet & Denise Gence & Marco Perrin & Jean Benguigui & Jean Rougerie & Bernard Crombey et al, director Bertrand Blier, Alphonse to bloke on tube platform
Accountants form the backbone of the offshore system; they administer the structures that allow individuals and corporations to shift their money offshore and evade taxes. The Spider’s Web: Britain’s Second Empire ***** 2017, Youtube 1.18.01
Who was responsible for the downfall of Enron? Only a few years ago Enron was the nation’s seventh largest corporation. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, written McLean & Elkind & Gibney, 2005
Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling had built their own plush state rooms. They were known as the smartest guys in the room. Captains of a ship too powerful to go down. ibid.
News of shredding at Enron raised more questions. ibid.
20,000 employees had lost their jobs. ibid.
In Washington Lay became part of a new crusade to liberate businessmen from the rules and regulations of government. ibid.
George Bush senior helped secure billions in government subsidies for Enron International. ibid.
In 1987 two oil traders made bets for Enron on whether the price of oil would rise or fall ... Enron Oil always seemed to win. ibid.
At the board meeting the auditors told Lay that [Louis] Borget and his traders were manipulating earnings, destroying daily trading records and probably gambling way beyond their limits. ibid.
Lay encouraged his traders to gamble more. ibid.
Enron would become a kind of stock market for natural gas ... Transfom energy into financial instruments that could be traded like stocks and bonds. ibid.
Market to market accounting allowed Enron to book future potential profits on the very day the deal was signed. ibid.
‘The insiders had sold off a billion dollars of their stock in the preceding several months.’ ibid. Bill Lerach, attorney for shareholders
Though Lou Pai flew away from Enron with $250 million, the divisions he left behind lost a total of nearly $1 billion but Enron managed to disguise that fact. ibid.
Enron mounted a campaign to capture the hearts and minds of stock analysts. ibid.
The game was called Pump and Dump. Top execs would push the stock price up and then cash in their multi-million dollar options. ibid.
Enron had vast natural gas operations all over the world. They had cost billions to build and most were performing terribly. ibid.
The analysts weren’t analysing at all; they were willing to believe virtually anything Enron told them. ibid.
‘Enron has created the market to buy and sell bandwidth like a commodity. Ask why.’ ibid. Enron advert
Enron’s stock soared 34% in two days. ibid.
When Enron announced its latest plan to trade weather, people wondered whether it was good science or science fiction. ibid.
[Andrew] Fastow had to figure out a way to keep the stock price up by hiding the fact that Enron was thirty billion dollars in debt. ibid.
Traders soon discovered that by shutting down power plants they could create artificial shortages that would push prices even higher. ibid.
The year-long energy crisis would cost the state of California thirty billion dollars. ibid.
Ken Lay did have easy access to the Bush administration. ibid.
Jeff Skilling abruptly resigns. ibid.
The SEC launched an investigation when the Wall Street Journal published articles revealing Fastow’s murky deals. Enron announced massive financial restatements. ibid.