The BuzzFlash Mailbag
January 16, 2002
Subj: Enron's CFO won award from Andersen for "remarkably innovative financing"
In 1999, Arthur Andersen and CFO magazine gave ANDREW S. FASTOW of ENRON CORP. a CFO Excellence Award for CAPITAL STRUCTURE MANAGEMENT.
On the surface, what Fastow accomplished really was too good to be true. He raised huge amounts of cheap capital without downgrading the company's credit rating or diluting shareholder value (Until recently, that is).
As CFO magazine pointed out, "Despite the traditional rules of financing, Fastow reduced the balance-sheet debt, maintained the credit rating, and reduced the cost of capital while simultaneously growing the balance sheet." (Of course, concealing losses goes a long way towards growing the balance sheet.)
In fact, CFO, Andersen and Lehman Brothers can't seem to find enough superlatives to describe Fastow's "ability to think outside the box":
energy stock analysts look for paradigm companies to vaunt, they point
resolutely in the direction of Houston-based Enron, with $31 billion in
revenues last year. And when they seek to explain how Enron has remade
itself so completely, they point to "remarkably innovative financing."
Says Ted A. Izatt, senior vice president at Lehman Brothers Inc. in New
York: "Thanks to Andy Fastow, Enron has been able to develop all
expert balancing act, in fact, has earned him this year's CFO Excellence
Award for Capital Structure Management. "We needed someone to rethink
the entire financing structure at Enron from soup to nuts," says
Jeffrey K. Skilling, Enron president and chief operating officer. "We
didn't want someone stuck in the past, since the industry of yesterday
is no longer. Andy has the intelligence and the youthful exuberance to
I'm sure some of Enron's ex-employees and shareholders would like to toss a few things Andy's way.
Neither of the two stories I've seen thus far mention that recently fired Arthur Andersen exec D. Stephen "The Shredder" Goddard jr. was a Bush Pioneer. Is there something we as Internet-savvy Americans can do to get the mainstream media to mention this guy's intimate connection to the Boy King? I like the ring of "Bush Fundraiser accused of Shredding Documents" on the front page tomorrow.
[BuzzFlash Note: Yes, email the every news organization you can and let them know what you know. The more people who spread the truth, the greater the possibility that it will rise above the swamp of misinformation and lies.]
In " . . . Especially From Republicans" [Wash. Post - Jan. 15], George F. Will used the terms "narcissistic" and "solipsistic" to describe Washington. I cannot think of two better words to describe George W. Bush.
Yes, that's our president. It only matters (to him) if it affects him.
Concerning the Enron collapse and subsequent loss of employment, pensions and investments of countless thousands of Americans, George W. Bush's aides knew better than to tell him anything, in a timely way, that would have meant he had to do something about it. Such as try to save the pensions and 401k plans, at least, of thousands of Enron employees. No, Bush's handlers knew better than to tell him about it, so he could have that prized political commodity: "deniability."
Yes, it was more important to Bush's aides to shield him from potential criticism that it was to protect thousands of American from the sordid antics of Enron's chieftains.
Oh, one other definition of "narcissism": An arresting of development at, or regression to, the infantile stage of development in which one's own body is the object of erotic interest.
it's more important for GWBush to spend time body-building than it is
for him to spend time doing the peoples' business, which should include
protecting the powerless from the scoundrels.
Your recent articles got me thinking about this and I just wanted to pass this along for your research and review.
D. Stephen Goddard, managing partner of Arthur Andersen's Houston Office (who was fired today as a result of Enron's audits and destroyed documents http://www.nytimes.com/2002/01/15/business/15CND-ENRON.html) is a Bush "pioneer" who raised over $100,000 for the 2000 campaign:
three members of Venson & Elkins- Enron's law firm that Ken Lay asked
And of course so was Ken Lay of Enron:
Maybe Mr. Bush did not faint over a pretzel...
Please feel free to e-mail if you have any questions.
Subj: Enron execs...where are they now...
and where were they then?
I just read the article about Enron's subsidiaries in the Cayman Islands. It comes as no surprise to me. But, in addition to hiding corporate funds, it is rumored that the execs also are hiding their own ill-gotten gains.
We live in a suburb of Houston that is home to many Enron employees. About two weeks before Christmas, friends related this story:
They had been to a holiday party--in between Thanksgiving and Christmas, before the big collapse. At that time, Enron was still talking the "good game"--we're going to pull this out, etc. This, naturally, became a topic of conversation amongst the party-goers. The prevailing sentiment was that, based on Enron's track record, it was a good bet that they would turn things around. At this point, one of the guests--an employee in Enron's Human Resources' Department--said, "From what I know and have seen, don't count on it." Others expressed disbelief. The Enron employee silenced them all by telling them that the "powers that be" had cashed out and "were in the Caribbean."
While the "peons" of the company were left to twist in the wind, george II's buddies were busy ensuring that their futures would include financial security.
Fall 2000 -- David Duncan, managing partner at Andersen, is appointed a Director of the American Council for Capital Formation. He was just fired as being the person who ordered destruction of documents AFTER the government requested them. One of the other fired partners was D. Stephen Goddard, Jr., a Bush Pioneer and fund-raiser
Also noted in article: A Director since 1997 was Andrew Card, Bush's chief of staff.
On their current masthead as a Director -- none other than Ken Lay.
Hmmmm. I'm sure there's much more here.... I think I'll have a pretzel!
the Washington Post
To the Editor:
Two columns filling half a page won't convince me that Enron's is a non-Washington scandal. Your writers want Bush to scold Enron. When will they ask him to obey the law and reveal what went on at the Enron-attended meetings where his energy policy was created?
Sure, Enron ripped off its employees, but first it ripped off millions of consumers, something it could not have done without deregulation, an energy "crisis," and a president who was bought and paid for. Our system of legalized bribery is the root cause of Enron's crimes.
Hey all at BuzzFlash,
Fwd: Anderson Payouts in Texas -- Fiscal Year 2000
I came across this tidbit. The full link to the page is below. Seems like a large chunk of change to pay Anderson consulting in Texas when DUBYA was governor. :)
Cheers, a Buzzflash ADDICT :) -
*Total assumes "DB" stands for debit.
I haven't seen anyone mention yet the similarities between the Enron debacle and Dumb-ya's own ethically-suspect maneuver when he was in the oil business.
I picked this up from W' bio in the Famous Texans site I linked to for the Karl Rove bio.
On June 22, 1990, George Jr. sold two-thirds of his Harken stock for $848,560-a cool 200 percent profit. The move was well-timed. One week after Junior sold his stock, Harken announced a $23.2 million loss in quarterly earnings and Harken stock dropped sharply, losing 60 percent of its value over the next six months. On August 2, 1990, Iraqi troops moved into Kuwait and 541,000 U.S. forces were deployed to the Gulf.
"There is substantial evidence to suggest that Bush knew Harken was in dire straits in the weeks before he sold the $848,560 of Harken stock," asserted U.S. News & World Report. The magazine noted Harken appointed Junior to a 'fairness committee' to study possible economic restructuring of the company. Junior worked closely with financial advisers from Smith Barney, Harris Upham & Company, who concluded "only drastic action could save Harken."
Before the recent Enron reports, I remember reading several stories about the current Administration hiring the Anderson Accounting Company just a few weeks ago????? I haven't heard anything in the news about and would like to know if they are still working for our Government????
I just want to know one thing: Was Dubya drunk?
I mean, picture the scene: The Pez-eye-dent is all alone in a room, munching on pretzels, gets one perpendicular in his throat, and keels over right on his mug. Sounds to me like what used to happen back in the old college beer blast days when you'd have 5 or 10 too many and wander off some place to be found sometime later in some woeful and completely unexplainable physical position, best described as a pretzel. Sometimes there would be bruises, torn pants, lost shoes that, try as you might, you just couldn't remember where or how it happened, and you find your addled brain concocting a Bunyanesque tale to explain all.
Dubya could have been drunk. Who would tell the truth, after all? And,
if he was drunk, in the inimitable words of Chris Rock (from OJ did it
skit) "I understand". I mean, the Pez-eye-dent does have quite
much to worry about these days. Kenny Boy won't be sending that pack of
barbecued steer nuts anymore, everyday the idea of Homeland Defense is
More and more, Enron looks like a major scandal for Bush, especially since he tried to pass off Kenny Boy Lay as an Ann Richards supporter. I suppose the rigorous pursuit of truth only applies if you're looking to lynch someone opposed to the Right Wing agenda.
Which brings me to the point that the deeper Bush sinks into his own swamp, the more his Rabid Right apologists cry Whitewater. Therefore, I propose a special name for the Bush/Enron disaster: Bushwater. May it stick like glue and may he wear it with shame.
After looking at the diagrams of the pretzel attack, I believe that there had to be a second pretzel involved.
it worry you that we have a President who can't watch TV and chew pretzels
at the same time?
[BuzzFlash Note: Yes.]
There is a man making the CNN and Faux news rounds for interviews. He says that he is a former Enron employee who lost $1,000,000 dollars of his retirement fund. The interviewers always ask him if he blames the Bu$h administration and he says, no--that he blames the Enron executives. He also admits that he should have diversified. He has white hair and wears glasses and looks to be about 70. He has a very southern, Texas accent.
The first time I saw him on TV, I thought that I had seen this man before. I believe that I saw him during the Clinton administration discussing the Troopergate and Paula Jones controversies. Has anyone else had this same feeling. I am going to watch for him and try to get his name. Maybe I can do a search and find some old articles. I know this man has been on TV during the Clinton administration. If anyone else remembers him--let me know. I think that he is a GOP propaganda tool.
otherwise noted, all original