Funny Money: GAAP Is for Sissies

Skilling's sentencing is the end of corporate scandals ... umm, maybe not. Plus, don't cross Jobs.
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Editor's Note: Welcome to "Funny Money," a feature written by New York-based comedian Jeff Kreisler. Lest there be any confusion, please note that this column is a work of satire and intended for entertainment purposes only. Enjoy the weekend.

Oct. 23 was my birthday, and, for a present, Jeffrey Skilling was sentenced to 24 years in prison. Instead of jail, I think we should just blast him into space, maybe stick him inside a mirror like General Zod from

Superman II

. Heck, there are people who'd pay good money to be that thin.

A former Enron employee testified that Skilling "had $1.3 million, and all I have to show for it is two clocks for service rewards." Still, that's better than me. I wrote jokes about Enron for two years, and all I have to show for it is this lousy t-shirt.

Now that he's locked up, no more corporate crime! Quick, fire more

SEC

investigators. They're not needed.

Meanwhile,

Microsoft

will defer $1.5 billion in quarterly earnings to the next quarter because GAAP is for sissies. I mean, now that "Enron's over," there's no reason to be suspicious of anyone at all ever. Nothing to see here. Move along.

Oops ... spoke too soon:

Comverse's

CFO pled guilty in the options investigation against the company. Watch out, he's gonna pull a Fastow, err, fast one!

In other scandalous developments, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight ordered

Fannie Mae

and

Freddie Mac

to keep "complete and accurate" records instead of the "Wonder Twin Powers Activate" accounting method.

Elsewhere,

IBM

filed suit against

Amazon.com

for building its business using several IBM patents. All part of the technology sector's new strategy:

Don't innovate, litigate.

In reaction,

Google

added a new customized search engine whereby you can look for both copyright

and

patent infringement lawyers.

In other courtroom news, The Transportation Department said that

Amtrak

has irresponsibly paid for large, pricey outside attorney and was promptly served with a baseless libel suit from said attorney, in triplicate.

In corporate news this week, the

Wrigley

company named its first non-family CEO. He then appointed a controversial Chief Karma Officer: Steve Bartman.

Kellogg

named a new CEO. According to analysts,

"He's Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrreat!"

Ford

lost a jillion dollars last quarter. The company expects the fourth quarter to be even worse, and suggests women and children head toward the life boats.

Ford has lost $7.24 billion in the first 9 months of this year. Just let that sink in, people. That's like, almost as much as

Exxon Mobil

makes in a week. That's a lot of money.

Let's just scrap the whole thing. So there'll be fewer poorly made cars and oversized SUVs rolling around, big deal. Maybe we'll invest in public transportation and city planning and just save the world. Ah, I'm kidding, let's offer 'em a tax cut and give the execs some sweet severance packages.Goldman Sachs actually upgraded Ford from sell to neutral, I guess because "stall" was unavailable.

In a related story,

AT&T's

profit was up last quarter on increased calls from Ford workers to local unemployment offices.

Meanwhile, Chrysler's troubles are bringing down parent

DaimlerChrysler

. We all rebel against out parents some time. Considering how Germans have traditionally treated those they blame for problems, I'd like to charge the pronunciation of my name to Kreeeezler.

In other automotive news, Americans would use 1 billion fewer gallons of gas if we weighed what we did in 1960. Maybe if these do-nothing engineers just made all roads slope downhill, we wouldn't have this problem. I blame concrete.

On the earnings front,

BP's

profit fell 4% from a year ago. Income was

only

$6.23 billion. Poor things. Somewhere a single tear is rolling down the cheek of a sad oil exec.

I lost my wallet last week and

Coach

reported higher profits. Coincidence? I think so.

Countrywide Financial

is cutting 2,500 jobs, yet earnings increased, and if that isn't a metaphor for the economy, I don't know what is. Maybe if Ownership Incorporated ran over Working Class Industries with a chauffeured SUV it would be less subtle.

Meanwhile, Canadian transport manufacturer

Bombardier

will cut 1,300 jobs and notify employees by dropping explosives and pamphlets all over Montreal.

Whole Foods

is marketing socially conscious meats. Animals are treated humanely just until the moment, they're,

uh, um

slaughtered for human consumption. I guess that's easier than noticing our jaw structures are consistent with herbivores and we can't digest raw meat like nature's other meat eaters.

Elsewhere in corporate do-goodery,

Coca-Cola

announced plans to donate land for a civil rights museum in a song: "I'd like to buy the world a Coke, and bus it to a magnet school."

In corporate no-do goodery,

Halliburton

was cited for massive overhead charges to the government. Um, maybe the U.S. of A. doesn't realize how much it costs to maintain gold-plated coffee machines. Duh.

Meanwhile,

Lockheed Martin

and

Northrop Grumman

both had strong earnings and unlike the President, they would like to continue using the phrase "stay the course."

Maxim

announced plans for a chain of steakhouses, so the balding, misogynistic, and delusional can come together under one roof to get heart diseases.

Thank you, Maxim!

A guy by the name of "DVD Jon" broke iTunes copy protection, after which Steve Jobs arranged to have him "backdated."

If you know what I mean. ...

Apple's

capo di tutti capi

made him an option he cannot refuse.

DVD Jon claims he's just practicing his hacking skills for a "special project" he's contracted for on Nov. 7.

Sony

apologized for its batteries bursting into flames, but blamed the problem on an elaborate magicians' union plot to protect their schtick.

Wal-Mart's

CEO emphasized the need to focus on basic items, rather than higher-end products. "We need to exploit more of the people all of the time, rather than a few people some of the time," he said. "It's simple math."

News Corp.

will offer the premiere of

The O.C.

on MySpace.com and then feast on the brains of undead teenagers around the world.

Oracle

is considering buying

Red Hat

so that ladies of a certain age can predict the future: "Your children will disappoint you."

Carl Icahn took over

ImClone

and will now generate an army of identical super-investors.

AT&T

launched a remote video monitoring product. The fear industry is going great!

Federal regulators approved a new diabetes drug from

Merck

, just in time for Merck's Halloween Eat-Lots-of-Candy Extravaganza.

Finally: $5.4 billion dollars. That's the price Tishman Speyer paid to purchase 110 buildings on Manhattan's East Side. So when they say housing prices are coming down, they're not talking about New York City.

Tishman owns several NYC landmarks, and this purchase will become a monument to an era when people could afford to live in cities and nurture culture. (Farewell "Detour," last great cheap jazz bar in NYC, ironically 2 blocks from Stuyvesant Town ... sniff).

A graduate of Princeton, Virginia Law School, and the fictitious College of Asparagus Lovers, Jeff Kreisler (www.JeffKreisler.com) is an accomplished comedian, writer, producer and person. In the past year, Jeff has worked with Dick Gregory, on Air America and Sirius Radio, and in the 'Comedy Against Evil' tour. He's hosted a dating show, worked on a cooking program, and developed comedies for MTV Networks. Jeff's a regular on Satire for Sanity, and was featured at the Edinburgh Fringe, Freedom Cinema, and San Francisco Comedy Festivals. He lives in New York City with his pet microphone, plays blues saxophone, speaks French and Russian, was a sports broadcaster, taught English in Russia, helped start a non-profit dedicated to at-risk youth, played college football, and is available for birthdays, circumcisions and bachelorette parties. Kreisler appreciates your feedback;

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to send him an email.