Enron by Lucy Prebble

Act 1

Scene 1: Mark-To-Market Party, 1992

A party in a small office at Enron. Present are: Employees drinking champagne; Claudia Roe, a very attractive blonde woman of forty in a short skirt. She sticks close to the most powerful man in the room – Ken Lay, an easy, convivial man in his sixties, greeting and acknowledging every employee with practised southern hospitality; Andy Fastow, a nervy, lupine guy in his thirties, is circling with an unsettling grin.
Fastow is on the outskirts of the group of Employees, trying to ingratiate himself.
Lay and Roe glide by this group, despite Fastow's outstretched hand.
Lay magnanimously greets another couple of starstruck employees. He's like an avuncular politician.
Outside the party, Skilling straightens his suit, his hair. He looks like a bespectacled, overweight, balding accountant. He takes a deep breath.
He enters the party and finds himself a drink for confidence.
Roe goes over to collect Skilling.
Fastow strides over to introduce himself to Lay.
Skilling 'Hi, how are you.'
Roe drags Skilling over to Lay.
Lay slaps Skilling on the back.
Skilling I believe I may have seen her in Vogue.
Skilling I'm surprised you find the time.
Skilling Most powerful women?
Skilling I remember. There was a great bit on Oprah and her dogs.
Skilling I think one of her dogs was at number twelve.
Skilling Thanks. Are you –
Skilling You're not familiar with mark-to-market?
Skilling We're an energy company. When you say 'gas and oil' people think … trapped wind and Arabs.
Skilling Seriously?
Skilling There are people at this party who don't understand the idea?
Skilling / I know. A group of people have worked their asses off to get the SEC to understand and approve this –
Skilling Everyone gets mark-to-market here, right?
Fastow exhales and glances at the group of employees who had teased him.
Skilling I've got slides I can bring down.
Skilling It doesn't kill you? Everyone standing around celebrating their ignorance –
Skilling These people are getting paid.
He takes it upon himself to clink his glass to get everyone's attention. It's a surprise. Any speech would be deemed to be Lay's job.
Skilling Hi. Hi. Everybody. For those who don't know, I'm the reason you're here. I said I would only join this company if we started to use mark-to-market. What does that mean? Anybody? Well, it's a way for us to realise the profits we're gonna make now. If you have an idea, if you sign a deal, say that we're gonna provide someone with a supply of champagne for the next few years at a set price, every month whatever – Then that definite future income can be valued, at market prices today, and written down as earnings the moment the deal is signed. We don't have to wait for the grapes to be grown and squashedand … however the hell you make champagne. The market will recognise your idea and your profit in that moment. And the company will pay you for it. If you come up with something brilliant – you know, life is so short. If you have a moment of genius, that will be rewarded now. No one should be able to kick back in your job years from now and take all the credit for the idea you had.
Skilling Right. This guy gets it. Any questions? Anyone not understand? OK, well. Have a party.
Skilling turns and walks back to Lay, Roe and Fastow.
Skilling downs his drink.
Skilling I should have brought the fucking slides.
We see projections of the joys and stability of the 1990s.
Bill Clinton, the break-up of the Soviet Union, Microsoft, the Internet and the rise of the home computer and Intel, Friends, Nelson Mandela's election, images of Arnie in Terminator 2.
An Employee comes forward to speak to us.

Scene 2: Afterparty

In a corporate boardroom, high up, Skilling and Roe finish having clothed, quick sex.
Skilling That's … concerning.
He is doing his trousers up. Roe is pulling down her skirt and straightening herself.
Skilling No. The market is. You want to have this argument now?
Skilling Right. But you're wrong.
Skilling What?
Beat.
Skilling Not … really.
Skilling I wasn't bullied! I got things quicker. When you get things quicker, you begin to resent people who don't.
Skilling No, hey, I was drunk when I told you that stuff … I don't want to get on the couch about it.
Skilling You know what, we accept that some people are prettier than other people and their lives are probably easier, and we accept that some people are funnier – but if you're smarter, you're supposed to walk around like you're shamed by it. Like everyone's viewpoint is equally valid. Well, it's not, some people are fucking idiots.
Skilling No, not here. Exactly.
They look out of a window over Houston.
Skilling I love a workplace at night. No banality.
Beat.
Skilling We need to talk about a thing.
Beat.
Skilling (lying) Yeah.
Skilling / What did he say to you?
Skilling Wait, Rich is leaving?!
Skilling You're getting President?
Skilling No!
Skilling I was gonna say Susan and I have separated.
Beat.
Skilling Rich is leaving Enron?
Skilling Has Lay offered you the job?
Skilling I can't believe he's going.
Skilling Rich is leaving (!) And it's four times.
Skilling That is wrong, but –
Skilling / You forgot the plane.
Beat.
Skilling Sex. Penetration.
Skilling That's penetration! I was penetrating your –
Skilling I don't want to throw anything in (!) It doesn't matter, nothing will be penetrated any more.
Skilling Has he offered you the job?
Skilling I left. She left. But I – left.
Skilling You are entirely irrelevant.
Beat.
Skilling Will I have to call you Madam President?
Skilling I'm forty-two.
Skilling Oh God.
Skilling It's not that.I just, don't think this is the world I want to live in.
Skilling I don't mean …I've just been thinking. Waking up at night with all these ideas.Ideas for here.You know, maybe every extraordinary thing that's ever happened was conceived by a man alone in a room at four in the morning.
Skilling He doesn't get me. I didn't grow up on a farm.
Roe smiles.
Skilling I'd like to be the other thing. Be nice.
Skilling shakes his head.
Skilling I'm going back to work.
She eyes him.
Skilling Wow.
Skilling gets a tissue out of his pocket. Roe takes it and gently wipes all the way up her inner leg, wiping off the ejaculate that has run down her thigh.
She tosses the Kleenex away deliberately casually and confidently strides from the office.

Scene 3: Ken Lay's Office, 1996

In another office, Ken Lay sits with Roe and Skilling sitting before him.
Skilling Sure, that would be –
Skilling Yes.
Skilling 'Macho'. That's subtle.
Pause. Lay leans back.
The competitors look at each other.
Beat.
Skilling I want to build a trading floor –
Skilling / A different sort of company. Hire the best graduates, if they're not top two per cent we don't want 'em. Make Wall Street look like Sesame Street.
Skilling What client?
Skilling I have no idea who that is.
Roe makes a 'see?' gesture
Skilling You're a politician, Claud. I've never claimed to be.
Skilling Yes sir.
Skilling Ask me what I want to trade.
Skilling (spits it) That's a parochial vision.
Skilling Fuck you.Beat.Ask me. What. I would trade.
Skilling Energy.
Skilling Sure, we make it. We transport it. We sell it. Why don't we trade it? You gotta pull back and look at this thing from above. Why do we even have to deliver the gas at all?
Skilling If we got a customer wants a steady supply of natural gas and we don't have a pipeline near them, what do we do?
Skilling So let's always do that. Buy from someone, sell it on. In. Out. Without ever having to deliver the gas or maintain the pipeline. We're just dealing in the numbers.
Skilling God, if you could hear yourself. 'Build more fucking powerplants.' No imagination, go crazy – What about wind farms or hydro …?!
Skilling We don't need the hard stuff.
Skilling That will take years! You really want to pay for people to go build pipelines along disputed borders, tribes with AK47s? You want that fucking mess – ?
Skilling Scratching around in the dirt. I'm not talking about pushing on an industry already in place. I'm trying to tell you … Ken, you've seen some changes in business since you started.
Skilling Well, it's time to evolve again. We have to. America doesn't have the natural resources any more. Not really. And that's good, that's fine. We have intellectual capital, and the best of it in the world. Look at the societies that do have the raw materials, how modern do they feel, really? Then take a landlocked, barren country like Switzerland. What do they do? They invent banking.We should be coming up with new ideas. About everything. Employ the smartest people we can find. And have 'em free to look at whatever they want, free from the old assumptions about what this company is.
Skilling I'm not gonna patronise you by pretending you believe what you just said.
Skilling I got plenty of ideas. Mark-to-market, energy trading, that's just the beginning.
Skilling Countries are meaningless.It's all going to be virtual. Oil and land run out.
Skilling There is a whole, glistening, clean industry above what you're talking about that no one's even thought of yet.
Silence.
Skilling My father was a valve salesman. I didn't want to grow up to sell valves. Tiny pieces of something bigger he never saw. There is a dignity to holding something, Ken. Butyour daddy was a baptist preacher. There's a dignity to giving people something they can't touch.
Skilling I don't want to work for you. I feel I gotta say if Claudia takes this job I won't be staying.
Lay considers the younger man and his presumption.
Skilling tries to maintain his dignity and leaves. Lay takes Roe's hand.
As Roe's dreams are shattered, Skilling's dreams are made real.
The transformation of Enron. From discreet, regular offices, Skilling and Lay oversee it becoming an open-plan, free, shiny expanse.
It should feel like a physical liberation; a clearing of clutter.
Skilling and Lay shake hands.
Skilling looks down at the Enron he envisioned beneath him: glass, reflective surfaces, futuristic design, open spaces, a huge trading floor.

Scene 4: An Orgy Of Speculation

Skilling Let's trade.
Magical music.
Above us somewhere there is a twinkle of gold. And then another of silver somewhere else. And then more – commodities like stars in the sky.
The sound of singing, each their own different song. It builds to an atonal babble of commodity prices and bids. It's a musical cacophony of the trading floor. Over time, the voices all conjoin to meet in a pure, single note. It is beautiful.
The gold glints somewhere in the auditorium.
The voices and notes become an atonal mess again. Eventually blending to everyone singing a single note and price.
A shimmer from aluminum.
And again the clamour builds up before finding a commodity value in one distinct harmony.
They split again into babble.
This empty, beautiful purity in Skilling's head is interrupted by the reality of the Traders' arrival.
The Traders flood the stage. The stock price rises.
The chaos, the physicality, the aggression and shouting of a trading floor. This simmers to doing deals, buzzing on phones and computers making money. Overlap is fine.
A melee of sound and trading and speculation into –
Trader 5 whistles the loss.
Suddenly, Fastow enters, all smooth self-importance. All the Traders react mockingly.
One of the Traders makes a 'whoo' noise.
Fastow goes for Trader 2, physically. He gets right in his face, aggressively.
Fastow touches him.
Trader 2 shoves Fastow, who squares right up to him, fearless.
He moves in to break it up.
Fastow is pulled away.
Fastow watches, pleased. Trader 2 reaches into his pockets and doles out a whole heap of bills on the floor.
Trader 2 swings around and hits Fastow, who, not expecting this, scrambles out of the way into other Traders, who all take a pop at him. Other Traders mock and physically berate him. One shows him his penis.
As Fastow beats a hasty retreat he tries to maintain some dignity.
He exits.
The bell rings for end of trading.
Improvisation of trading at its highest pitch.
Market closes.
Trader 1 is delighted, sweating, filled with testosterone and joy.
Lights of commodity prices over the faces of all the Traders, a sea of figures.

Scene 5: Trimming The Fat

The sound of motorbikes revving, screeching brakes, the hum of manly pursuits.
Split scene.
Below: Enron gym. Skilling is on a running machine, in sports clothes. He's pushing himself and relishing the physical challenge.
Above: Ken Lay's office. Lay and Roe are meeting.
Below: Fastow enters the gym with trepidation in a suit.
Skilling Andy Fastow.
Skilling This is the meeting. Get on.
He gestures to the running machine beside him. Fastow, nervous, takes off his shoes and jacket and gets on the machine.
Skilling immediately ups it to a run for Fastow.
Skilling Yeah, you have. You know I was supposed to announce it on the tour today?
Skilling I heard you got aggravated on some trader?
Skilling They'll do that to ya.
Skilling Is that right?
He can't help smiling a little. He ups Fastow's speed. Fastow tries to keep up.
Skilling You ever read those business books, How to Win Friends andThe Seven Secrets of Highly Effective People and shit like that –
Skilling Don't. It's bullshit. Read Dawkins, The Selfish Gene?
Skilling Read Darwin.
Skilling By rights you should be out. I got this company running on Darwinian principles.
He ups Fastow's speed again.
Fastow redoubles his efforts.
Skilling Charles Darwin showed how an idea can change the world. A single beautiful idea changed the way we look at everything.
Skilling No. We're more. Because now we understand our own nature. And we can use that.
Skilling For business. Business is nature.
Skilling Exactly. Money and sex motivate people, Andy. And money is the one that gets their hand off their dick and into work.
Above:
He passes it to Roe.
Below:
Skilling That's cos you're weak.
Skilling What did you say?
Skilling I can't hear you!
Skilling presses the stop button on Fastow's running machine, hurling the younger man from his treadmill.
Fastow regains his balance and composure as Skilling calmly slows his own speed.
Skilling Never apologise, Andy.
He gets off his machine.
Fact is, it's not all your fault.
An exhausted Fastow agrees physically while he pants.
Skilling Electricity's an industry with no competition, no natural selection. We're never gonna make real money till it gets deregulated.
Skilling That's what I'm looking for. It's a political decision though. Ken's dealing with it.
Beat.
Skilling Are you smart, Andy?
Skilling I'm fucking smart. And I like guys with spikes. Ididn't know you had any till I heard about you taking on a pack of traders. Now that takes a special kind of stupid. But also balls. You started in finance?
Skilling Let's get you back there. I know your background, you're an abstracts man. Securitisation, Risk assessment. I never met anyone less suited to retail in my life. Let's get you down in finance. Where you can keep away from people.
Above:
Beat.
As Lay says 'share price' the share price is revealed; a figurative representation of the company's worth, represented by light somewhere on stage.
An Analyst enters and speaks to us.
The analysts are Sheryl Sloman of Citigroup, J.P. Morgan and Deutsche Bank. All follow Skilling, enraptured.
As he walks around the space, various Employees approach Skilling with contracts for him to approve and sign. He smoothly signs though barely looks at them, treating them like autographs.
Skilling Ladies and Gentlemen, Enron is a new kind of company. You want to see the next big thing? It's in the minds of one of these people. We're not just an energy company, we're a powerhouse for ideas. No other company lets people work as freely and creatively as we do. If you hire only the most brilliant people you can create new industries, new economies and reinvent the old ones. Electricity will be deregulated, it has to be, and when it is, Enron will be right there, expanding our vision. The league we're in? We're not the Houston Oilers, we're not even the Dallas Cowboys. We're the whole damn NFL.
The Analysts line up and face the audience.
Skilling Now, let's see Citigroup.
Citigroup Analyst, after a drum roll, reveals her verdict:
The stock goes up.
Skilling And J.P. Morgan.
The stock goes up.
Skilling And finally … Deutsche Bank!
The stock goes up.
It's reached half of its full height. Skilling looks genuinely touched by this.
The Analysts become a barbershop quartet and sing.
The Analysts parade off.
Skilling Thank you for recognising our work and I'm happy –
He notices the stock price rise.
I'm so excited –
He sees it rise again.
I'm a little sad?It drops very slightly.Ha! I'm Enron.
He's delighted by his power and effect. Grinning at the recognition and level of belief.
Lay comes down and approaches his protégé.
He hands Skilling a fifty-dollar bill.
Skilling What, are you tipping me, Ken?
Skilling Is it right you're using the jet later?
Skilling The company jet?
Skilling Just thought we were getting you out to Washington?
Skilling But deregulation's on that agenda?
Skilling OK, well, enjoy your kids.

Scene 6: Time Is Money

A memory.
Skilling You can do this. Seven …
Skilling's Daughter appears somewhere high up, not close to him.
Skilling (amused) God, I can't believe your mother let you watch that.
Skilling OK, once more, but you count with me this time.
He gets a stack of one-dollar bills out of his pocket and begins counting them out ostentatiously, as a familiar game.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven … come on! / Seven …
Skilling Good girl. Eleven, twelve … How long you think before I've counted out a million dollars?
She doesn't know, she fidgets.
Skilling One dollar bill a second. No stopping, how long before I counted out a million dollars? One, two – how long before a million? Dollar every second – guess.
She makes a noise, enjoying the attention of her dad but not comprehending.
It would take Daddy, at one dollar a second, eleven days to count out a million dollars. Eleven days! No sleeping.
Skilling What d'you mean, again? OK, one, two, three, four … how long would it take for Daddy to count out a billion dollars?
Skilling Yeah, there's such a thing, a billion dollars! One, two three, four – I'm gonna do it now –
Skilling OK. I'll work it out instead.
He calculates in his head.
Counting a billion dollars would take me … thirty-two years?!
He scowls, checks.
Yeah, around thirty-two years.
His Daughter fades into the dark.
The counting continues into:
Physical sequence. The company at work. The Traders dance. As they do they create a round table. Skilling holds meetings around it. People come and go. Meetings end and begin. The table is removed. Fast, ordered, fluidity. Numbers fly through the air. The stock price throbs, but never alters much, gradually edging up in comforting, rhythmic pulses. Lay plays golf somewhere in bright sunlight. Time passes. Days and nights. Gradually a slowing. Computer lights over faces. A calm.
Eventually, Claudia Roe makes her way through the building to Skilling's office.

Scene 7: Skilling's Office

Skilling is watching the financial news.
Skilling Well. This is my office.
Skilling turns the sound down on the television.
Skilling You probably want Ken's office. It's just down the hall.
Skilling Have you seen the stock price today?
Skilling nods.
Skilling Well, I'm sure you've got more class than that.
She waits for him to say it.
Skilling It's not about that.
Skilling That's traders. I don't call it that.
Skilling I don't know.
Skilling Skank of America.
She nods. Beat.
Skilling At Harvard?
Skilling Really?
Skilling Give him my number.
Skilling I heard about your party for the opening of the plant at Dabhol.
Skilling You hired an elephant.
Skilling I don't have time to jet off to your consolation prize in India. I'm running a company here.
Beat.
Skilling You know the whole thing was a coward's way of getting things done.
Skilling That's not true.
Skilling That's business!
Skilling Damn right it is!
Skilling Either I'm running this company or Ken is.
Skilling I do! He just … nods and … gives me a cigar!
Skilling It's the shareholders' company.
Beat.
Skilling I don't know if Ken is the smartest guy ever to run a company or the dumbest motherfucker in the world.
Skilling Do I?
Skilling I … You mean I lost weight.
Skilling It works.
Skilling Well, I don't know, Claud, I guess. It's lasers in your eyes.
She uses this as an excuse to look into his eyes.
She's deliberately close to his face. She puts her hands on his face.
Beat.
Skilling Don't. I don't think that's / (a very good idea).
Beat. Skilling closes his eyes. He leans in.
Just then, over her shoulder, Skilling spots a massive graphic flash up on the screen showing the financial news – 'ENRON!'
Skilling spins around. Once he sees what she's referring to, he's just as excited as Roe. They both scrabble for the volume control. One gets there first and turns it up.
Skilling reacts to his name.
Skilling If someone's prepared to pay that for us then / that's what we're worth –
Skilling Sixty billion dollars. That's nearly two thousand years.
Beat.
Skilling Forget it.Fuck. How is that possible?!
Skilling Yeah.
She makes to leave.
Skilling Andy Fastow?

Scene 8: An Unholy Partnership

Below, darkly, Fastow's lair: a dingy place at the bottom of Enron. Fastow flits happily between complex piles of paperwork, records and maybe screens.
He goes back to his calculations.
Skilling enters.
Skilling Andy. Andy, you had a baby.
Skilling Congratulations, fella. You got a picture?
Skilling OK.
Fastow starts looking for his wallet.
Skilling I don't (mind) –
Skilling Do it next time.
Beat.
Skilling Wow. Great name(!)
Beat.
Skilling You know what I was doing when my daughter was born?
Skilling I was on the phone from the hospital negotiating my deal. To come work here.
Pause.
Skilling makes a so-so gesture and sound.
Skilling I guess.
Beat.
Skilling These. What are these?
He is looking at papers covered in complex scrawlings. Maybe they're half-screwed up.
Skilling Raptors?
Skilling Are these hedges?
Skilling For fun?!
Skilling Raptors.
Skilling You're thirty-seven years old.
Skilling So these are protecting you against losses in investments?
Skilling I know about your planes and cars thing, Andy, I've heard you at parties –
Casually intrigued, Skilling looks through them all.
Skilling A little theoretical.
Skilling Well, sure, unless planes fall.
Skilling These are interesting.
Skilling I could do with more guys like you.
Fastow beams.
Skilling is having some pain.
Skilling These shoes … they're not broken in.
Skilling No, Andy, I don't want your shoes. Thanks.
Skilling Yeah I, jeez, I don't know. They're fucking shoes.
Pause.
Nothing.
Skilling You want to get a beer?
He opens up a tiny fridge that's been installed somewhere in his office/lair.
Skilling You got a refrigerator?
Skilling Who did?
Skilling Wow.
They open and drink two beers.
Skilling I got a problem, Andy. We got great stock price. We're declaring huge profits using mark-to-market. Correctly. But those actual profits aren't coming through yet. So.
Skilling That's right. We've got the best business plan, the highest share price, the smartest graduates. Trouble is. Right now. We're not making any money.
Long pause.
Skilling You with me?
Skilling I can't find. Any area. Right now. Except trading. And there, day to day, we may lose as much as we make.
Pause.
Skilling Yeah(!)
Skilling I am not kidding. I don't know what I'm gonna do. I don't mind taking losses. But I can't report taking losses right now. The gap between the perception and the reality is …
He has one hand up at neck level indicating the high perception and the other he puts lower to indicate the reality.
Skilling I don't know what I'm going to do.
His arms droop despondently. Fastow dives in to hold the perception hand up.
Fastow brings Skilling's lower hand up to meet his higher hand.
Beat.
Skilling shakes off the foolish physical intimacy.
Skilling If those Washington fucks would just deregulate electricity like Clinton promised, we'd have those profits!
Beat.
Skilling What you got?
Skilling I haven't found him yet.
Skilling Everybody with / experience of –
Skilling For CFO … ? One of the most powerful positions in / any corporation … ?
Skilling You're not a people person, Andy.
Beat.
Skilling Two guys in a room.
Skilling None of your fucking business.
Skilling Is this something you've heard?
Skilling Do I – ? I don't have time to take a shit
Skilling Find the point.
Skilling (beat) That's why I like you, Andy. You're fucking nuts.
Skilling Explain.
Skilling Example.
Skilling Then move it back. Why doesn't everyone do this?
Skilling Andy!
Skilling This isn't one of your theoretical models. A whole investment fund with money enough to buy bad assets off Enron? Who would do that? Who would invest?
Skilling We can't do business with ourselves –
Skilling Exactly.
Skilling Only three per cent?
Skilling So Enron can do business with a company that's ninety-seven per cent Enron?
Skilling Still gotta find that three per cent.
Fastow is excitedy scoping out the room they are standing in.
He walks around clearing the area to make the three per cent clear.
Skilling Except for three per cent.
He opens up the shoebox.
Skilling Made up of Enron stock …
Out of the shoebox he produces a matchbox.
Skilling On and on.
He opens the matchbox and takes out a tiny red, glowing box.
He holds it up. The men are bathed in it like some totem from an Indiana Jones film.
Skilling And how much is that?
Skilling If that's a few million … ?
Skilling It's made entirely of Enron stock …
Skilling But we can use it to support Enron stock, making sure it doesn't fall …
Skilling The same stock that it's made of … ?
Beat.
Skilling That's fucking brilliant.
Skilling So this shadow company, what did you call it?
Skilling This LJM can buy bad assets off Enron that are operating at a loss. And if anyone looks into it –
The tiny box glows red and throbs.
Skilling Andy, you fucker! This is a whole new thing!
Skilling No, I don't like that.
Skilling Doesn't that feel a bit cheap? A special purpose entity financed by the CFO?
Skilling Why not? Come on, we'll get banks to put that in – Wall Street money.
Skilling Sure.Hey! Get me Arthur Andersen!
Arthur Andersen appears to one side. He has a ventriloquist's dummy, Little Arthur.
A different voice from his mouth:
Beat.
Skilling
(to Arthur Andersen)
We could always take our business elsewhere.
Arthur Andersen's dummy's eyes flit wildly.
Skilling Yeah, that's exactly what we pay a million dollars a month for.I need the lawyers!
The law firm of Ramsay and Hewitt appears to their other side: one male, one female. They appear as 'Justice'; blindfolded, with sword and scales.
Skilling The accountants say it's a legal issue.
Skilling I need the board.
And then, revealed on the level above Skilling and Fastow, the Board appear. The Board is made up of shadowy, dark, imposing figures with the heads of mice, and, in the centre, Ken Lay.
Skilling The accountants and lawyers are OK with it if you're OK with it, Ken.
The Board briefly consult.
Skilling He's our new Chief Financial Officer.
Fastow is delighted at this.
Skilling OK?
He signs papers in front of him.
The Board, Arthur Andersen and Hewitt and Ramsay disappear. Fastow and Skilling hug in the centre of the circle.
Skilling You've saved my fucking life.
Skilling All I have to do is keep the stock price up.
Skilling Which makes Enron strong.
Skilling It's better than good. It's perfect.

Scene 9: Party Like It's 1999

Flashes from cameras.
A media event becomes a party filled with Employees, Press and Analysts. It's a financial love-in.
Skilling is being photographed for yet another magazine cover as the dynamic CEO changing the world. The Photographer is beneath him to make him look impressive, god-like.
A Reporter interviews him.
Skilling I'm just pleased we're giving shareholders value for money.
Skilling We're aggressive, we take risks, and that's why we're successful. Way I see it, if your executives aren't waking up at four in the morning, their heart beating out of their chest, they're not doing their job.
The Reporter flirts a bit.
Skilling Well, I was gonna wait to announce this later tonight, but I'll give you a sneak preview. Video On Demand. We've teamed up with Blockbuster and Enron's gonna be streaming movies directly into your home by this time next year.
The stock price goes up.
Skilling is approached by Lay.
Skilling Hi, great to meet you.
Above:
Skilling Still working, I guess.
Skilling He's not a performer, he's got his own qualities.
Skilling Oh for – seriously, Ken? You're listening to her!? She's jealous! This has all been built by me for Christ's sake. He's mine! All these ideas are mine!
Skilling Broadband, electricity, energy trading, Video On Demand –
Concerned Employees approach Skilling.
Skilling Video On Demand?
Skilling We've got our best people working on it.
Skilling Tell me what you need and you'll get it.
Skilling Bandwidth?
Skilling I know what the fuck bandwidth is. Buy as much as we need.
Skilling There's a finite amount?
Skilling And people want it?
Skilling slaps the employee on the back. He turns back to the press interview.
Skilling Here's the next big thing, people: trading bandwidth.
Skilling (turns to everyone) Yeah, it's a hell of an Enron idea. If you're not using your bandwidth capacity, we could sell it on. It's tradeable. But people don't think in those terms because it's a virtual commodity. Well, Enron gets virtual. We're changingbusiness, we're changing people's lives, we're changing the world.
Lay applauds. The Employees are congratulated and sheepishly proud. The stock goes up hugely. Reaction is ecstatic, like a religious cult. Skilling is messiah-like.
A huge party: absurd, luxurious, delusional, the peak of bull-market excess. Skilling shakes hands with everyone, is treated like a movie star.
Just then, Roe makes a grand entrance to the party. Never one to be outshone, she is on a Harley motorbike, dressed entirely in leather.
Skilling You've got to be kidding me.
She shows off the back on which is stitched 'ENRON'. Whoops of celebration. She removes the helmet, revealing herself, and shakes down her hair. Everyone loves it and all attention is lavished on her.
Skilling This is what I'm talking about. Everything's the Claudia Roe show.
Above:
Roe turns on the party's big event – the lighting up of a huge neon display welcoming in the new year: 2000.
Below:
Fastow turns slowly around to see the other two Raptors have also taken corporeal form and have crept into LJM.
Blackout.
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