Dear Mr. Bunting:
I read Scott Voynich's first big speech to CPAs after his becoming chairman [of the American Institute of CPAs] last year, and noted that the main emphasis of the speech was on integrity and ethics. I agreed with every word of that speech.
Now is the time for you to back that speech up with action.
Specifically, I understand that there has been a pattern for many years of enforcing ethics violations against members in smaller firms (as well as those in industry, education and government), but not giving equal enforcement to members of the Big Four firms.
Why were members of the big firms given a free ride?
You have to look at only the last 10 years to see the pattern.
Look at the percentage of allegations of wrongdoing that were found to be substantiated for the smaller group of firms, as compared with the bigger group.
I believe you will find that the percentage of allegations substantiated for the members of the big firms will be so negligible as to be near zero, whereas the percentage for the smaller firms will be quite large.
Why should such a pattern exist? I understand that the cause was, and is, that the AICPA representative who participated in the proceedings in each case insisted that no disciplinary action be taken against a member of a big firm, so that the reputation of those firms would not be "besmirched."
After you review this matter, if you find that my understanding of the facts is incorrect, I will apologize.
On the other hand, if you find that my understanding of the facts is correct, I will expect you to publicly announce that mistakes have been made in the past, and that you will exert your best efforts to see that such mistakes do not happen in the future.
Doug Jackson, CPA (ret.)
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