|About the Book|
Just months after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Americaninvestors came under attack. Two of the nations biggest corporations, Enron andWorldCom, admitted that they had overstated their earnings by billions ofdollars. As those twoMoreJust months after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Americaninvestors came under attack. Two of the nations biggest corporations, Enron andWorldCom, admitted that they had overstated their earnings by billions ofdollars. As those two titans collapsed into bankruptcy, shareholders were stuckwith almost $200 billion in losses.Accounting scams were also exposed at Adelphia and HealthSouth. Tycos boardof directors eventually realized that its earnings needed to be restated, evenas its top two executives were charged with larceny.The people and organizations responsible for protecting investors-Congress,the Securities and Exchange Commission and the big Wall Street banks that lentbillions to these fraudulent enterprises-fell down on their jobs. Worse,Congress actually wrote laws that provided incentives for executives to cheattheir own investors.Throughout the 1990s Congress systematically starved the SEC to the pointwhere the securities cops could barely do their jobs.America Robbed Blind exposes the root causes of the accounting scandals thatwiped out $500 billion worth of investments in U.S. stocks. It explains how aseries of seemingly minor Congressional actions--from a law penalizingcorporations for paying salaries in excess of $1 million to a Senate vote toscuttle a rule calling for the expensing of stock options--created theconditions that led to the accounting abuses that eroded investor confidenceamong the 95 million Americans who own stocks.One of the reasons that ethically challenged corporations were able to foolinvestors for so long is that most Americans dont have the time to sift throughmountains of corporate filings or detailed financial reports laden withaccounting jargon and legalese. In simple, explanatory prose, America RobbedBlind makes it easy to understand the fraud that occurred in recent years andproposes several reforms to ensure that these abuses never occuragain.