Yes, I am awaiting with eager anticipation the testimony in the upcoming scheduled May 6th criminal trial of Andersen. It will probably focus on the shredding of documents in Andersen's Houston office and the internal communications within Andersen. Of course, there is always the possibility that there won't be a criminal trial; as a last minute plea is still an option.

I would then have to look forward to a civil trial where I would expect hundreds of e-mails being examined which could provide the exact details of Andersen's Enron engagement. Along with that could be the testimony of various Andersen personnel about meetings that discussed the possible handling of the off-the-books partnerships, Andersen's liability exposure, and the pros and cons of keeping Enron as a client.

Of course, there also might be a settlement here prior to trial as well. So, the public will again be stymied into finding out exactly what went on within a Big Five accounting firm.

Not to worry, because this coming Fall, I guarantee that everything will all flush itself out. We are going to have at least a one-hour television series, probably called The CPA Firm. The story lines will all be based on actual happenings at Big Five firms. Similar to West Wing, current and former Big Fivers will be hired as consultants to provide an insider's view and add the necessary sense of realism to the series. I expect negotiations to begin shortly with the creators of NYPD Blue, Ally McBeal, the Sopranos, and others to see who will actually do the series.

Yes, by September, whether because of a criminal, trial, civil proceeding, or television series, everybody will be familiar with the inner workings of a accounting firm as perception becomes reality.

A final note: You may vote for whom you think should play the dashing, handsome gadfly editorial head of Practical Accounting in The CPA Firm?

  • Brad Pitt
  • Tom Cruise
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger
  • Sponge Bob

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