Notes: Pinocchio didn't have a conscience. Thus, external conscience extraordinaire Jiminy Cricket served as his conscience. Corporate America could stand a plague of crickets of the Jiminy type.

WorldCom, ImClone, Enron, Andersen, Global Crossing, Adelphia, Tyco, IBM. These major corporations with problems. It was disclosed last week that WorldCom allegedly inflated its earnings by $3.8 billion. Bad as I am at math, I'm pretty sure I would have caught an error like that. Meanwhile Martha Stewart is being chased by the media over accusations of insider trading around ImClone. And later in the week, IBM disclose an accounting error exceeding $1 billion.

Corporations are created to make money -- greedy beasts by nature. Forget those sentimental golden-lighted corporate commercials. A corporation is without a heart, a soul and most importantly here a conscience. Executives are being paid wild bonuses when company stock performs. One way to make the stock perform even in bad times is to cook the books. Presto chango, the corporation appears profitable, share value goes up, and high-ranking executives rake in their oversized bonuses. Do you want a conscience or do you want $10 million? The answer to that has been clear -- take the money.

My favorite saying of the week was picked up watching the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer. A panel of Wall Street experts was discussing why all the scandals are showing up now. They agree that you discover corporate problems when the markets begins to turn down. A panelist said that you don't see the bones till the tide goes out. To which another replied that she like her version of that saying better which was that you don't see who's swimming naked till the tide goes out. Laughter followed.