Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Criticism of U.S. Accounting Changes Mounts
Wall Street lobbyists and U.S. politicians are damaging the credibility of corporate reporting and hurting the interests of investors around the world by pulling-back on fair value accounting, a top international accountant said. The comments from Tom Jones, vice-chair of the International Accounting Standards Board, come after U.S. standard-setters unilaterally decided to dilute the controversial accounting rule earlier this month. In an interview with the Financial Post, Mr. Jones warned of "a loss of credibility" and said the rationale for watering down fair value is "crazy." He also cited concerns about political interference that could undermine the independence of accounting rule setters, a fear that was echoed by other senior accountants Monday.
Fertility expert: 'I can clone a human being'
A controversial fertility doctor claimed yesterday to have cloned 14 human embryos and transferred 11 of them into the wombs of four women who had been prepared to give birth to cloned babies. The cloning was recorded by an independent documentary film-maker who has testified to The Independent that the cloning had taken place and that the women were genuinely hoping to become pregnant with the first cloned embryos specifically created for the purposes of human reproduction.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Author Who Predicted Crisis Sees Inflation Ahead
Phillips assigns much of the blame to former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, but perhaps even more on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, who he calls a "disaster," and his predecessor, Alan Greenspan. Phillips calls Paulson a Wall Street insider who was looking out for his own, and Bernanke an academic misguidedly trying to refight the 1930s Great Depression. Together they formed the wrong team at the wrong time whose ad hoc approach threw away hundreds of billions of dollars and more than doubled the Fed's balance sheet, he says. "What you're seeing Bernanke do is he's trying to create a bailout reflationary bubble, which he can't describe as a bubble, just as Greenspan couldn't describe the housing mortgage bubble as a bubble. What we're seeing by Bernanke is a covert attempt to rebubble," Phillips told Reuters. Moreover, a commodities cycle probably started early in this decade and is only being masked now by recession, Phillips says, presaging a repeat 1970s style inflation, he said.