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The Rise of the Rogue Executive: How Good Companies Go Bad and How to Stop the Destruction by Cynthia J. Smith, Leonard R. Sayles

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Chapter 5. The Shocking Destruction of Arthur Andersen, Auditing’s Gold Standard

Accountants often joke that theirs is “the second oldest profession.” They’re wrong. Accounting is older than prostitution. Documenting economic events on cave walls and incised stones goes back tens of thousands of years. The Sumerians used double-entry accounting 5,000 years ago; Babylonians were still at it a thousand years later. Egyptians were exceptional accountants, as were the Incans, and many others. Rooms full of 2,500-year-old clay tablets written in cuneiform were found at Persepolis, capital of the ancient Persian Empire.

The Persepolis Tablets[1] are the largest cache of ancient accounting records to be uncovered and give a picture of the day-to-day running ...

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