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The Spirit of Accounting

POOP: It's time to bring GAAP into the 21st century

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Seven years ago, we published several columns that challenged the accounting profession and regulatory community to get started on updating and otherwise improving the quality of information in financial statements prepared in accordance with GAAP. We labeled current practices with terms that we had produced several years before. The first was Politically Expedient Accounting Principles (PEAP) that are deficient because they're shaped by political pressures and compromises, instead of serving the objective of getting useful information in financial statements. The second was Whatever You Want Accounting Principles (WYWAP) that don't get the job done because they embrace divergent but equally acceptable alternatives, such as FIFO and LIFO. Comparability cannot possibly be achieved with this much diversity, and, without comparability, the information cannot be useful.

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