Friday, March 04, 2005


The Bush Defense

Bernard Ebbers, as CEO of WorldCom built that company from humble beginnings to one worth $150 billion dollars at its peak. Now on trial for massive fraud that covered up the company’s weak finances and ruined countless investors, "Bernie" Ebbers, the "former Mississippi gym teacher, milkman and bouncer," is trying to convince the jury that the fraud was all the doing of his numbers man, Chief Financial Officer Scott Sullivan. The essence of Ebbers’ defense, in his own words: "I don’t know about technology, and I don’t know about finance and accounting." He’s too unsophisticated to have masterminded the complex financial fraud.

Whatever truth there is to that claim, there is no doubt the Ebbers was the consummate salesman and at least made a persuasive front for a company that duped sophisticated financial analysts and institutional investors. And there is a surface plausibility to a story in which the president of an enterprise lacks the intellectual wherewithal to understand the complex decisions he presides over. Such an "ignorance" defense was successfully mounted in the court of public opinion by President Reagan concerning the Iran-Contra scandal.

The Bush presidency is a grand ignorance defense. When it’s politically expedient, Bush Administration spokesmen and media flacks vigorously assert that Bush is a highly intelligent, well-informed, hands on master of all administration policy, taking great offense at suggestions that he isn’t intellectually up to that job. But, when convenient, Bush’s supporters will play the "Bush is a nice guy" card, which is code for not smart enough to be on top of everything – like the "don’t ask, don’t tell" policies emanating from Rumsfeld that led directly to the Abu Ghraib torture scandal.

Even if Ebbers didn’t have the smarts to cook the books himself, that doesn’t absolve him of responsibility. It’s enough to tell the numbers guy, "just make it happen." That’s why you have smart people working for you. To make it happen, and then to blame them if things go bad.


Hey Blogger,

Your blog "The Bush Defense", leads me to believe you will find my information on our Best Career Wages site to be very beneficial.

Some of the not so common searches that found our extensive wages site included ...

Accountants Wages
Auditors Wages
Artists & Performers Agents Wages
Athletes Business Managers Wages
Real Estate Appraisers Wages
Real Estate Assessors Wages
Budget Analysts Wages.

We have many hundreds of "essential to read" articles on wages and career topics in addition to many other popular subjects in our Average Career Wages site.

Best Wishes
Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]