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Enron: A Powerful Blow to Market Fundamentalists

By Robert Kuttner

The deepening Enron Corp. (ENE ) scandal should hose away an entire world view about how capitalism is supposed to work. But will the right lessons be drawn? As a political scandal, Enron threatens the Bush Administration. No corporation was closer to the Bush family and its Republican allies. No corporation was more political in gaming the system to get the rules written in its favor. The White House damage-control machinery contends that if the President did not try to rescue Enron on the way down, his hands are clean. The real scandal, of course, is how the GOP and its broader world view helped Enron rig the rules on the way up.