Jeff Skilling, former CEO of Enron completed his fourth day of questioning by his own lawyer today. And the excerpts of his testimony as quoted by the NY Times were riveting–in that they showed a man in complete denial of the terrible things he did and the impact they had on thousands of his fellow employees. Let’s start with one of the best, and most deluded of comments:
“There has been a lot of damage to individuals subsequent” to the bankruptcy, he said, “that was not the result of facts or what really happened, but a result of rewriting history to accomplish certain objectives people have that are not consistent with what happened in the company.”
Yeah, there was damage done to individuals after the bankruptcy and Skilling is one of the prime causes. How in heaven’s name can this guy say the damage “was not the result of facts or what really happened?” Of course the damage was caused by the fact of bankruptcy and the fact (hopefully to be determined by this trial) that several individuals, including JK, engaged in deceit and fraud which helped cause the bankruptcy.
Skilling put on a brave face saying he was taking the stand to “stand up” for the company and its former employees. Imagine the effrontery of this:
“Unless someone takes the stand,” former employees who lost their jobs will believe “they were tricked and not part of something good,” he said.
Well, I’d say that the employees DO believe they were part of something good. But they also believe that Skilling turned it bad, which he did.
At another point, he protests anyone who doubts his devotion to the company:
I bled Enron blue.”
Which should read “I bled Enron dry.” Or “I bled Enron red” (as in ink).