If one thinks the financial reporting is awful, just sample the health and science reporting. Everyone knows a little bit about money because we all use it every day, but most people know little about how their bodies work, how they get sick, and how they recover from said sicknesses. Most just trust their doctors which isn't always a good thing. We trusted our money to the experts in the investment banks and look how well that turned out. We defer to doctors with nary a question as to alternative therapies, drug adverse side effects, or where to go for information on our conditions, and our bodies are much more important than our money. Doctors give us antibiotics when they know we don't need them such as when we have bronchitis or sinusitis. While I may seem foolish for being ignorant about stock trades, CDS, and other financial instruments of wealth creation and destruction, I'd take that ignorance any day rather than be ignorant about my health and physical well being. That said, keep in mind that we humans are still pretty ignorant of the Universe around us. We know more about what we don't know than what we do know. After all, modern science is at most 500 years old (Galileo) - 400 if you consider that Newton and his peers started physics, modern medicine, and math. (Funny that we remember Galileo by his given name, and Newton, Einstein, da Vinci, etc. by their surnames.) Accounting dates back to the first writings, so basic finance is as old as Mesopotamia. I wonder if accounting fraud dates to Mesopotamia as well.
Labels: reporters and ignorance