Now there’s a headline. Here’s the bottom line: An engineer for a contractor working on nuclear plants for the TVA falsified safety (think injury) data at the sites. He lied, as the court concluded based on both e-mail evidence (the engineer’s own words condemned him) and interviews with employees who said that they were denied or received delayed medical treatment in order to keep the number of injuries down. The Barimeter envisions the engineer saying, “Just go sit over there and be quiet until we submit the quarterly safety numbers. Then we will get you some treatment.”
Stone & Webster (a subsidiary of Shaw) had a contract with TVA for maintenance and modification (more…)
By his own website, Nick Leeson calls himself “the original rogue trader,” and indeed he was. Mr. Leeson was the trader at Barings Bank who bet wrong on Japan and lost $1.3 billion. Today, given the $6 to $8 billion that Chase lost to the London Whale’s trading activities, it seems like small potatoes. Nonetheless, Barings was sold to a Dutch banking company for one pound. Mr. Leeson’s new job is with GDP Partnership and involves helping borrowers renegotiate their mortgage loans with lenders. Out of prison since 1999 (after serving about one-half of his 6.5 years), Mr. Leeson has been working as the bookkeeper for Galway United Football Club, an Irish soccer team. Mr. Leeson secured that job in 2005, and has been working to rebuild his life. We wish him well, but hope for the sale of this financial firm and his clients that his self-proclaimed reform is real. When we have to mete out disciplinary actions, whether through terminations at work or criminal charges for conduct engaged in at work, we hope the individuals punished do indeed learn through their periods of confinement and then restructuring their lives. We want to forgive, but the question is, “Did this guy forget about doing what he did or is that still within him?” We may not know until the temptation causes the rogue to yield to temptation.
An e-mail from a DLA Piper lawyer to colleagues about the firm’s billing pactices for Adam Victor’s Trans Gas Developmnet Systems. Mr. Victor has filed suit against the firm for overbilling. Rightfully so.
Ben Gilroy, living in an underwater mortgage property, who has not made a mortgage payment in two years. That’ll keep the social norm going! Has this man no money? Could he pay a little? Does he feel no obligation to pay? His glib description sums up our new world of, “Contract? What contract?”
Pope Francis. The quote holds all the more meaning when you realize it comes from a man who wears his old black walking shoes instead of the red papal shoes and called himself to cancel his newspaper back in Argentina, beginning the conversation with, “This is Jorge.” Oh, if we could get this kind of humility in business executives. What leaders they could be then.
Former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford on announcing that he is throwing his hat into the ring in order to win back the seat he once held in the House of Representatives. Yes, but if your plumber left the job he was working on at your house to have a fling even as he billed you for the work, you would want a little space before you trusted him again. Mr. Sanford disappeared while he was governor for an alleged Appalachian Trail retreat (more…)
The Barometer was strolling through the home section of a major department store. Tempted by Christmas potholders at 50% off, the Barometer stopped and soon planted feet firm to continue listening as three employees of this fine establishment conversed about their futures. The ring leader was explaining to the novice employees that after the new year begins, most of them would be going to part-time status because of slow sales, the economy, health care issues, etc. The two employees seemed crestfallen. But, their mentor would have none of it. “Don’t do it!” said he. “Get yourself fired because the money you make on unemployment will be better than part-time work here and you can get 99 weeks of unemployment. Plus, you are eligible for medical care through the government because you are unemployed. It’s a better deal. It is so not worth it to keep working.” This fine consigliore (more…)
Even the well seasoned Dillard’s manager was taken aback by this one. A customer brought in a pair of moderately expensive dress shoes, expressing a desire to return them because they just weren’t quite right. As the manager processed the order she checked inside the box to be sure that the shoes in the box were the shoes the matched the box – past experience dictated that follow-up on returns. The shoes were the correct ones for the box, but the customer had another issue. The shoes had masking tape on the bottom – masking tape that was dirty. When the manager returned to the customer (more…)
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