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Don Imus April 11, 2007

Posted by collage9 in Idiocy, insipid, media.
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As I’m sure you’ve all heard, Don Imus, a radio host, made some very racial and sexist remarks directed towards the Rutger’s women’s basketball team recently. He even went as far as to call the girls “hos” and said that they looked more like an NBA team than a girls college basketball team. Imus’ show is aired on CBS Radio and can also be found on TV on MSNBC through NBC Universal. After the recent remarks, CBS and NBC have decided to suspend Imus for two weeks starting next Monday. Imus has apologized for his comments and said that his show is meant to be funny and sometimes they take it too far, and this time, they took it way too far. I’d say so. It makes me wonder if this two week suspension is enough. Many have called for Imus’ firing and want him off the air completely. Although I’m not sure this is the right choice either. Do you think that CBS and NBC did enough in their punishment of Imus? Major corporations like CBS and NBC have to worry about their image and their integrity. If other people think the punishment is not enough as well, will it have a harmful effect on the two stations? I’m curious to see how this situation plays out.

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Beer slogans to explain the rules of the Economy? March 14, 2007

Posted by Jordi in accounting, corporate governance, insipid, SEC.
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Corporate leaders and their network of elites (former SEC Chairmen and Treasury officials) are gearing up to chip away at the post_Enron regulatory structures. I am agnostic about whether that is a good idea. I did note that the “all star”panels that CNN was falling all over itself to gawk at (like the celebs arriving at the Oscars on teh red carpet) was notably absent of the legislators who passed the law, institutional investors who may favor the corporate governance changes, or any critics of corporate governance.

This passage stood out as an example of the way complex regulatory and economic problems can get boiled down to supposedly “common sense” heuristics. Like when someone says “they moved the goal posts.” The role of a beer ad in defining a conundrum of common sense is even tastier (and less filling!)!

Buffett, Greenspan push for new rules – Mar. 13, 2007
But SEC Chairman Christopher Cox said it is difficult to meld both accounting principles and rules.

“This debate about principles versus rules is like ‘Tastes great versus less filling.’ Ideally, you want the best of both,” he said.

The issue here is the melding of a principle of judgment or best information about a company and rules which impose informational discipline (akin to market discipline- it shakes out the chaff and limits the ability of managers to wriggle away form bad news or honest accounting).

Instead of an explanation from the head of the freakin’ SEC as to why this is hard to do, we get the beer metaphor. Does his shoulder shrugging (Gee! I’d like to have my cake and eat it!) make investors feel better?