Corporate Greed- A review of recent events and the need for Corporate Ethics (Part III of III)

At Fannie Mae, the career of well-respected CEO Franklin Raines came to an abrupt end when the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight forced a very resistant Fannie Mae Board of Directors to oust Raines. Raines, Fannie Mae's Board, and his supporters insisted that he wasn't culpable for the misuse of obscure accounting standards. But his friend thoughts were rejected and his testimony was not accepted as the full truth by the SEC, the U. S. Congress, or the public.

Raines rose from being a poor kid from Seattle to graduate from Harvard, earned a Rhodes Scholarship, and becoming White House Budget Director, before being tapped to be the CEO of Fannie Mae. Now Raines' lucrative severance package ("early retirement") has become a new issue of contention. There have been well documented cases of massive fraud, mismanagement, and accounting mistakes at Fannie Mae during Raines' tenure as CEO.

While Raines has never been convicted of perpetrating or approving the fraudulent accounting, there was a major uproar over his severance package when the news broke that he had apparently been negligent in overseeing accounting functions at Fannie Mae. Yet somehow amazingly, the then fallen and sacked Franklin Raines (after the US Government took over and bailed out Fannie Mae) became a "financial advisor" to then US Presidential Candidate, US Senator Barrack H. Obama, now US President Obama.

In this post-Enron, post-WorldCom, and post-Tyco world, the rules are being enforced on the playing fields of corporate America. Even one of the largest and most profitable insurance companies in the world, American International Group Inc. (AIG), has had a serious bout with both the Securities & Exchange Commission and the U. S. Justice Department, starting back several years ago.

The financial problems and fraud at AIG really began in 2001 (or maybe even earlier), but took three years for SEC securities regulators to catch it. In 2004, the SEC informed AIG that it was exploring filing securities fraud charges against it for their non arms length relationship with PNC Financial Services Group Inc. and what the SEC call a pattern of helping PNC hide their underperforming loans, starting clear back in at least 2001.

The full impact of the seeds of greed sown earlier this decade and subsequent misdeeds have resulted in the major disaster at AIG, which has now been unveiled in 2008 and 2009. Now, the failing of AIG has resulted in the Federal Government Bailout is costing American's Billions and Billions of Taxpayer Dollars.
The list of the indicted and fallen corporate leaders is long and growing. In August of 2003 it was reported that story of the misdeeds of Adlephia's John Rigas, and two of his sons failed came to light. They were indicted and convicted of defrauding Adlephia Communications Corp. of $2.5 billion.

One of the lessons that these leaders should have learned and lived was basic ethics or morals. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 [H. R. 3763], passed by the United States Congress on January 23, 2003 and immediately signed into law by President George W. Bush.

From a basic moral, maybe even a religious perspective, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act would not have been necessary if corporate executives had just lived the "Ten Commandments," or at least just three of them: "Thou shalt not steal," "Thou shalt not covet," and "Thou shalt not bear false witness."
See Part I and Part II of this three part article on Corporate Greed.

Copyright 2006-2010 ©Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D.

Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D.
Chief Enlightenment Officer
The Leadership Success Institute

Author's Bio: 

Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D.
Professional Keynote & Motivational Speaker, Entrepreneur, Award-Winning Published Book Author, University Professor, Author "Leadership and Adversity: The Shaping of Prominent Leaders" plus a Entrepreneurship and Leadership Academic Scholar


EntrepreneurshipBootCamp.Org is dedicated to be The Resource Center of Entrepreneurship designed to help individuals become successful Entrepreneurs and to support those who are already Entrepreneur be more successful

Entrepreneurship Boot Camp has been created by Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D. is a Successful Entrepreneur, proven Sr. Corporate Executive, a University Graduate Business School Professor

Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D.'s groundbreaking overcoming adversity and leadership research was published as a book in late 2008: "Leadership and Adversity: The Shaping of Prominent Leaders," by VDM Verlag Dr Müller AG & CoKG. This book has received great reviews which can be seen online at Amazon in the US, Canada, UK and Germany.

The 17 prominent leaders and entrepreneurship (including two Self-Made Billionaires) who overcame adversity and even major trauma, that were all personally interviewed by Dr. Haller included: Dr. Tony Bonanzino, Jack Canfield, William Draper III, Mark Victor Hansen, U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch, Monzer Hourani, U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, Jack LaLanne, J. Terrence Lanni, Dr. John Malone, Angelo Mozilo, Larry Pino, Dr. Nido Qubein, U.S. Army Major General Sid Shachnow (Ret.), Dr. John Sperling, Dr. Blenda Wilson, and Zig Ziglar.

Five internationally scholars and best-selling authors peer reviewed and concurred with Dr. Haller's research findings in this groundbreaking overcoming adversity and leadership findings: Dr. Ken Blanchard, Dr. John Kotter, Professor James Kouzes, Dr. Paul Stoltz, and Dr. Meg Wheatley.

Dr. Howard Edward Haller Entrepreneur and also is a award-winning published author: • Keynote and Motivational Speaker to Corporations, Associations and Colleges • He is a Professional Member of NSA • He is a successful Executive Coach & Mentor to Entrepreneurs, Corporate and Non-Profit Senior Executives in the US, Canada, China and Australia • He is Expert on Leadership, and Entrepreneurship • He is a US Presidential National Award and Prize Winning Essayist. • He is an Accomplished Screenwriter, Television writer & Member of the WGAw. • Dr. Haller is a major expert on Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Overcoming Adversity

Dr. Howard Edward Haller is a well-respected academic writer, editor, scholar and major University Trustee, University Graduate Business School Professor, and past President of University Board of Trustees.

Dr. Haller was selected and appointed a member of the Editorial Peer Review Board of the very prestigious academic journal “The International Journal of Servant Leadership” along with world renowned leadership scholars and best-selling authors.