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  1. dwman's Avatar
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       #1  
    Ah, the irony...a guy who cost 17,000 people their jobs and life savings dies of a heart attack. Who knew he even had one. Isn't karma a biatch?

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13715925/

    HOUSTON - Enron Corp. founder Kenneth Lay, who was convicted of helping perpetuate one of the most sprawling business frauds in U.S. history, died Wednesday in Aspen, Colo. He was 64.
  2. swagner's Avatar
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    #2  
    Nah. He paid someone to look like him, get their fingerprints and teeth fixed. Now he lives on an island with Hoffa and Elvis.
  3. #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by swagner
    Nah. He paid someone to look like him, get their fingerprints and teeth fixed. Now he lives on an island with Hoffa and Elvis.
    I see a 'made-for-tv' movie being produced right now.
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  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by t2gungho
    I see a 'made-for-tv' movie being produced right now.
    mmm they allready did.. it is called prison break, but over there he is the brother of the vice president
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  5. #5  
    Whether or not you think he did anything wrong, you must realize two things: he lost more than anyone else in the collapse (in dollar, and life terms), and having a business of yours fail is not a crime.

    I'm not saying he's an innocent man robbed of his life and livelihood by a set of unfortunate circumstances; I don't know enough to make that judgement. But I am saying that some kind of morbid Wizard-of-Oz "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" celebration is not only mis-guided wrong, but reflects a population prone to over-simplification.
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    Whether or not you think he did anything wrong, you must realize two things: he lost more than anyone else in the collapse (in dollar, and life terms), and having a business of yours fail is not a crime.

    I'm not saying he's an innocent man robbed of his life and livelihood by a set of unfortunate circumstances; I don't know enough to make that judgement. But I am saying that some kind of morbid Wizard-of-Oz "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" celebration is not only mis-guided wrong, but reflects a population prone to over-simplification.
    99% if not all of what he and the company did was within our current laws of accounting

    when calls were made to update our accounting standards to prevent this in the future, those in the government who did not want limits put on corporations moved quickly to make an example of him

    sort of a sacrificial lamb of corporate greed, his blood washed away their sins
  7. dwman's Avatar
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       #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    Whether or not you think he did anything wrong, you must realize two things: he lost more than anyone else in the collapse (in dollar, and life terms), and having a business of yours fail is not a crime.

    I'm not saying he's an innocent man robbed of his life and livelihood by a set of unfortunate circumstances; I don't know enough to make that judgement. But I am saying that some kind of morbid Wizard-of-Oz "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" celebration is not only mis-guided wrong, but reflects a population prone to over-simplification.
    I wholeheartedly disagree that he lost the most. Yes, dollar wise he may have lost a bundle, but there's a pretty good chance he had plenty more stashed elsewhere. I seriously doubt the 17,000 plus people he put out of work had that same luxury.

    True, having a business fail is not a crime, but explicitly covering it up to inflate shareholder value and your own bank account is.

    I'm just stating the facts as they are, not as I see them; otherwise, it's just my opinion. The facts are he was convicted of covering up a massive scandal that put thousands of people out of work and made their retirement pensions worthless. That's a bit more then just "having your business fail". He may not have been the sole party responsible, but he was the CEO. Hard to believe he had zero knowledge of what was going on.

    And yes, it is only my opinion that you reap what you sew. Hence, his death due to an apparent heart attacks. As far as over-simplification is concerned, it's for the sake of this forum. I have no desire to write a lengthy diatribe about corporate abuses and injustices. Just posting some facts and my 2 cents
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by dwman
    The facts are he was convicted of covering up a massive scandal that put thousands of people out of work and made their retirement pensions worthless. That's a bit more then just "having your business fail".
    If having optimistic CEOs is a crime, the courts are going to be clogged for a long time to come. There are hundreds of companies facing problems today that CEOs gloss over when talking about the prospects of their companies -- it's almost part of the job description. Unfortunately for Mr. Lay, his company was falling out from under him -- yes, potentially because of actions he took / authorized -- but in the end, he was convicted because his company failed. Had Enron succeeded, he would not have been convicted. And that is wrong. In fact it should scare everyone who believes chance plays a roll in life.

    I'm not going to sit here and say Mr. Lay was a perfect man, nor am I going to say he was even an above average man. I am simply saying that he got convicted for the wrong reasons and just like Joe Bean, there's a real chance he was "hanged for a shootin that he never did."
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by dwman
    I wholeheartedly disagree that he lost the most. Yes, dollar wise he may have lost a bundle, but there's a pretty good chance he had plenty more stashed elsewhere.
    It was a very narrow point. Read carefully: he lost more money than anyone else in dollar terms (not percentage) and the downfall hastened his death. That's it. I'm not claiming he was eating canned beans for the last 5 years.
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by theBlaze74
    when calls were made to update our accounting standards to prevent this in the future, those in the government who did not want limits put on corporations moved quickly to make an example of him
    Look at the laws and associated regulations put in place in 2002-2003. I think plenty of limits on corporations were put in place. Perhaps not as many as some would like, granted, but actions were taken.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by dwman
    As far as over-simplification is concerned, it's for the sake of this forum. I have no desire to write a lengthy diatribe about corporate abuses and injustices. Just posting some facts and my 2 cents
    Thanks for not posting a lengthy diatribe . Unfortunately a lot of people get their news from headlines, and to be frank about it, today's NY Post front page sickens me.
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    Thanks for not posting a lengthy diatribe . Unfortunately a lot of people get their news from headlines, and to be frank about it, today's NY Post front page sickens me.
    agreed
  13. #13  
    Are we talking about the same Enron that used California's deregulation of energy to systematically shut down energy plants to skyrocket energy prices and lead to California's rolling blackouts crisis of 2001?

    If you haven't seen it, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005) is a pretty good documentary about that and more about the company's downward spiral. It's still available at most torrent sites if you can't find it in your neighborhood video store.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    Whether or not you think he did anything wrong, you must realize two things: he lost more than anyone else in the collapse (in dollar, and life terms), and having a business of yours fail is not a crime.
    So you suggest it is possible that he didn't do anything illegal?

    Lay, 64, faced the prospect of the rest of his life in prison after his conviction May 25 of fraud and conspiracy in one of the biggest debacles in American corporate history. ...

    Along with fraud and conspiracy charges, Lay also was convicted in a separate federal trial of bank fraud and making false statements to banks. Those charges related to his personal finances.

    During the trial Lay had been expected to charm jurors, but instead came across as irritable and combative.

    Lay defended his personal spending, including a $200,000 yacht for Linda Lay’s birthday party in early 2001, despite $100 million in personal debt. He told jurors it was “difficult to turn off that lifestyle like a spigot.”

    Lay also defended how he borrowed more than $70 million from Enron in 2001 — even as the company was spiraling — and repaid most of those loans with company stock.
    Of course having your company fail is not illegal, but according to his convictions there was quite a lot of illegal and also highly unfair activity involved. Just because it was white collar crime and he lost a lot of (illegal...) money doesn't make it better.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  15. Micael's Avatar
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    #15  
    You don't go to prison for highly unfair activity, otherwise Bill Gates would be a lifer.
    The Law of Logical Argument: Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by g-funkster
    Are we talking about the same Enron that used California's deregulation of energy to systematically shut down energy plants to skyrocket energy prices and lead to California's rolling blackouts crisis of 2001?

    If you haven't seen it, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005) is a pretty good documentary about that and more about the company's downward spiral. It's still available at most torrent sites if you can't find it in your neighborhood video store.

    The movie "The Smartest Guys in the Room" is excellent. Very enlightening, and entertaining. I thought it would be a boring documentary, but the movie kept me at the edge of my seat wondering what the evil-doers will do next! The movie is now available at video stores.

    As for having a heart attack death, this may be more humane than being in jail for decades, especially at his old age.
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  17. #17  
    Funny how he was supposed to be financially broke, but when he died he was at his vacation home in Aspen. If I could only be so financially broke.
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  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    So you suggest it is possible that he didn't do anything illegal?
    Yes, I absolutely suggest that. What they convicted him of was not anything accounting related (I'll have to defer to the accountants that signed off on the numbers), but rather for saying things like "Enron is in great shape" when it clearly wasn't. People gloss over ugly truths all the time (labor negotiations, sports teams, political campaigns, etc), often times because they sincerely believe it. Punishing confident ignorance is not a path I want to see our country go down. I will agree that if he were trying to cash out his own stock while convincing others that they should buy (taking advantage of inside information that the company was failing), that would indicate a harmful intent which should be punished. But from what I've seen, all this actions in the last days of Enron were consistent with a man who honestly thought his company was going to pull through it all and that his best course of action was to hold as much of the company as possible.

    Additionally, if he was engaging in inside transactions to enrich himself at the expense of shareholders (ahem, Mr. Fastow), or if he were aware of such transactions, that is likewise wrong and punishable. But on this count, I'm not convinced, if only because of lack of evidence (he very well may be guilty of this).

    So many people will see a qualified defense of aspects of the Enron trials as a wholehearted endorsement of massive fraud and theft, but that is wrong. Just like pointing out the civil rights of an admitted murderer, we must be able to analyze different aspects of issues without being pigeon-holed.
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by heberman
    Funny how he was supposed to be financially broke, but when he died he was at his vacation home in Aspen. If I could only be so financially broke.
    If you owned a $5 million home but were facing an $80 million judgement, you too could be broke and own a nice house. FWIW, I think he was renting the particular house in question.
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    Yes, I absolutely suggest that. What they convicted him of was not anything accounting related (I'll have to defer to the accountants that signed off on the numbers), but rather for saying things like "Enron is in great shape" when it clearly wasn't.
    It's innocent until found guilty. He was convicted of fraud, conspiracy (Enron related), fraud again, and making false statements (both private). 16 of his former executives pleaded guilty. There are limits to the level of ignorance about what is going on in ones company - a highly corrupt company, according to those who pleaded guilty.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
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