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Restoring the Honor System



April 06, 2011 – Comments (3) | RELATED TICKERS: RIG , BRK-A , BRK-B

My column today, Restoring the Honor System, deals with the Transocean PR debacle that (eventually) led to the executives doing what they should have done to begin with. The kind of hardened selfishness and complete disregard to what transpired last year that was originally exhibited in deeming 2010 a watershed year in safety for Transocean should NOT be heartening to shareholders. It should only show that these folks are fairly well removed from how anybody else feels or perceives the situation. (Unfortunately, that's not uncommon these days.)

However, the outrage seems to have certainly reminded them that maybe a little more "sensitivity" is in order. At any rate, my piece also delves into the hope that people will remember there are all kinds of choices, and there are ways to make choices that reflect honorable leadership.

That reminds me, I delved into A Key Takeaway from Buffett's Blunder last week -- I can't stand hero worship either, and I thought the whole Sokol deal sounded really sketchy and unethical. That's another reason why we need strong corporate governance at all companies, when even somebody with a reputation like Buffett's has been known to do things that require some critical thinking on the part of shareholders. 

3 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On April 06, 2011 at 8:48 PM, devoish (70.17) wrote:

They don't have to be "sensitive". They need to do their jobs.

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#2) On April 07, 2011 at 11:07 AM, TDRH (96.84) wrote:

I see little difference between Transocean and the leaders of the Financial Sector.   Basically it is a question of accountability.   If the stockholders and courts do not hold the leaders responsible for their actions or inactions then there wil be no change in the status quo.

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#3) On April 12, 2011 at 2:36 PM, TMFLomax (90.05) wrote:


I agree. It is high time folks like this be held way accountable for situations like this one. 


All due respect, but I think some of the most horrible things that have ever gone on probably hinged on somebody saying they were just doing their job without being "sensitive" to the ramifications of their actions on others.

An interesting, and I might venture to say related, piece recently... people say they wouldn't shock others for money, but then they do in an experimental setting. Good times!:

I think it's up to the rest of us to say behavior like that is shockingly horrible (and unethical). 

Anyway, back to the Transocean incident, here is a good piece that also points out that there are many good reasons to question exactly whose best interests management is looking out for (doesn't look like it's employees OR shareholders):

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