Government Spending in XBRL?

by on December 22, 2008 · 28 comments

Mark Cuban probably didn’t know how much he’d rev up the hypocrisy meter when he suggested that the government should report its own spending and other financial information in XBRL. The SEC recently announced that it would require public companies to do their financial reporting in the format.

Having the government do it to is a GREAT idea.

And it will take years for that to happen.

Why? Because releasing information in a usable form is like releasing power. Agencies and bureaucrats aren’t in the business of giving away power.

I won’t lay predictions because the idea is so good that it may catch a head of steam, unify the transparency community, and get high-level attention in the administration. But barring that, it will be a cold day (today happens to be a cold day) when the government adopts XBRL. Until then, the hypocrisy meter is rising.

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