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  • Annmarie Throckmorton, M.A.

Comeuppance Is Better Late Than Never

Recently I was very happy to hear that a couple of years ago Arthur Andersen, LLP was sued into oblivion for its fraudulent practice of destroying records for clients who did not want those records to be revealed court cases; because I clearly recall in the early 1990s working for Arthur Anderson in a roomful of drones where our assignment was to delete blocks of text that contained certain key words, terms, and/or phrases from thousand and thousands of pages for one of Arthur Andersen's clients who was purging that content in order to hide it from a court in which they were being sued. I knew what was going on within the first hours of the first day, so I spoke to my supervisor to make sure. He had me repeat my questions to his supervisor, then they stood in front of me, debating what to do with me. They resolved their problem by firing me on the spot. Apparently I did not look like a whistle-blower so they had no fears in letting me go, and in fact I was too busy scrambling to find another job to pay the rent to have time to figure out to whom and how to report the wrong-doing of corporate behemoth Arthur Andersen.

Compounding that morally reprehensible episode, my Arthur Andersen supervisors decided, while still talking in front of me, that letting me go was a win-win for them because not only did they get rid of troublesome questions from me, but they could now bring in their unemployed friend to work that job until he found something better.

This was the second time in life that I was let go and some young, male supervisor brought in his friend to work my job (the first was also another of those pickup jobs one works to tide things over). Both times my young, male supervisors discussed their plans to replace me in front of me, as you might discuss putting a fat dog on a diet in front of it.

Throughout my life it seems there has been rampant fraud in every direction that I looked, perpetrated all the usual means, and I was powerless to stop it. I just got steamrollered under it like all the other little pebbles.

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* "Arthur Andersen LLP, based in Chicago, was an American holding company. Formerly one of the "Big Five" accounting firms (along with PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, Ernst & Young, and KPMG), the firm had provided auditing, tax, and consulting services to large corporations. By 2001, it had become one of the world's largest multinational companies."


"Arthur Andersen, which traces its history back to 1913, shredded Enron audit documents amid an investigation into covering up billions in losses at the energy firm. The accountant was subsequently found guilty of obstructing justice, effectively putting an end to all its audit activities in 2002.Sep 2, 2014."


Caption: Down The Drain With Fraud

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2019

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