A big portion of our big paper this week is taken up with two big special reports both starting on page 1.

With the election just a few days off, we devote 10 stories to the various state, local and national races that have special significance for the area's economy. I happen to be an old political junkie having worked in Washington as a reporter more years ago than I'd care to think about so putting together the package was almost like old home week. Howard Fine deserves special credit for reporting out many of this week's pieces. (Howard happens to be a political junkie himself so I suspect he had a ball.)

Also this week is another one of our Who's Who sections this time devoted to L.A.'s number crunchers who scrutinize the books of publicly held companies. They themselves are under more scrutiny these days along with the companies they audit and analyze as more and more financial reports are being manipulated and restated, all in the name of higher stock prices. Their thoughts on the current environment make for important reading.

Mark Lacter


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