Chapter 1 - Solution Manual

Conclusion the evolution of the current fasb

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Conclusion. The evolution of the current FASB certainly does represent "increasing politicization of accounting standard setting." Many of the efforts extended by the AICPA can be directly attributed to the desire to satisfy the interests of many groups within our society. The FASB represents, perhaps, just another step in this evolutionary process. b. Arguments for politicization of the accounting rule-making process: 1. Accounting depends in large part on public confidence for its success. Consequently, the critical issues are not solely technical, so all those having a bona fide interest in the output of accounting should have some influence on that output. 2. There are numerous conflicts between the various interest groups. In the face of this, compromise is necessary, particularly since the critical issues in accounting are value judgments, not the type which are solvable, as we have traditionally assumed, using deterministic models. Only in this way (reasonable compromise) will the financial community have confidence in the fairness and objectivity of accounting rule making. 3. Over the years, accountants have been unable to establish, on the basis of technical accounting elements, rules, which would bring about the desired uniformity and acceptability. This inability itself indicates rule setting is primarily consensual in nature. 4. The public accounting profession, through bodies such as the Accounting Principles Board, made rules which business enterprises and individuals "had" to follow. For many years, these businesses and individuals had little say as to what the rules would be, in spite of the fact that their economic well being was influenced to a substantial degree by those rules. It is only natural that they would try to influence or control the factors that determine their economic well being. c. Arguments against the politicization of the accounting rule-making process: 1. Many accountants feel that accounting is primarily technical in nature. Consequently, they feel that substantive, basic research by objective, independent and fair-minded researchers ultimately will result in the best solutions to critical issues, such as the concepts of income and capital, even if it is accepted that there isn't necessarily a single "right" solution. 2. Even if it is accepted that there are no "absolute truths" as far as critical issues are concerned, many feel that professional accountants, taking into account the diverse interests of the various groups using accounting information, are in the best position, because of their independence, education, training, and objectivity, to decide what generally accepted accounting principles ought to be. 3. The complex situations that arise in the business world require that trained accountants develop the appropriate accounting principles.
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