We don’t know whether Ken Lay will rest in peace. Just like we’ll never know whether he really believed that he wasn’t defrauding Enron shareholders, including thousands of his own employees who put their faith in his word.
We do know that the company was selling snake oil, and that’s why it went broke.
We know that Enron’s financial chief, Andy Fastow, was cooking the books. But was Enron always an empty vessel?
For me, I was never sure of what Enron actually did. I met Ken Lay years before the scandal broke at a meeting on Latin America. He seemed like a decent guy. But a Mexican businessman at the table leaned over to me and whispered: “David, you think Mexican companies are corrupt? You should see what goes on at Enron!” At the time, I put it down as a Mexican trying to deflect attention away from Mexican corruption. But who knows?
Were Enron and Ken Lay corrupt from the beginning? Was the whole thing just a huge pyramid scheme that played on the ignorance of folks like me, who couldn’t figure out what it did but liked the stock movement? Questions, lots of questions.
Some of which Ken Lay may be answering right now. For now, we just pray that Ken Lay will rest in peace.
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David Asman is the host of "Forbes on FOX" which airs on the FOX News Channel, Saturdays at 11 a.m. ET.
David Asman joined FOX News Channel (FNC) in 1997 and currently serves as host of "Forbes on FOX," a weekend half-hour program that offers an informative look at the business week (Saturday from 11:00-11:30 AM/ET). Asman is also an anchor on FOX Business Network, where he co-hosts "After the Bell" (4-5 PM/ET) with anchor Liz Claman. Click here for more information on David Asman.