Poll

8 votes (61.53%)
2 votes (15.38%)
2 votes (15.38%)
1 vote (7.69%)

13 members have voted

odiousgambit
odiousgambit
Joined: Nov 9, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 7:36:04 AM permalink
A long while ago I used this term and someone got a little snippy. It occurred to me that there might be plenty of people coming to this forum whose occupation is that of accountant or actuary, not to mention the WoO himself. I would think such a term designates someone who is a poor representative of one of those professions, the finer members not fitting the definition of a person too "concerned with quantification, especially to the exclusion of other matters"... clearly a fault.

Nonetheless, such a term can be too offensive to use, such fine points aside. Please let me know by your vote if I should use it here or not.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/bean+counter
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
FleaStiff
FleaStiff
Joined: Oct 19, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 7:53:30 AM permalink
I've occasionally said Green Eye Shade type and Bean Counter. Such terms are perfectly acceptable and are used in Business School scenarios almost as often as the word "widget" for an item that some company sells.

The Bean Counter is viewed as someone so fixated on keeping track of costs he loses sight of the main picture ... it might be very suitable for use in Vegas!
DJTeddyBear
DJTeddyBear
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 10:12:34 AM permalink
Yes, it's offensive, but not very.

I think "Bean Counter" is no more offensive than "Mouthpiece" for a lawyer, or "Flat Foot" for a police officer.

Off-hand, I can't think of something slightly more offensive for accountant, but "Ambulance Chaser" and "Pig" come to mind for lawyer and police certainly are offensive.

On an unrelated note, the term "Cop" for a police officer was originally offensive, but became accepted only after it was overused as mainstream terminology. It's acceptance was at least partially fueled by newspapers, for the ability to make headlines shorter.
Superstitions are silly, childish, irrational rituals, born out of fear of the unknown. But how much does it cost to knock on wood? 😁 Note that the same could be said for Religion. I.E. Religion is nothing more than organized superstition. 🤗
odiousgambit
odiousgambit
Joined: Nov 9, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 1:03:43 PM permalink
I should have made it clear that personal attacks are out of the question, with or without name calling. So I am just talking about using the term generally.
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
Wizard
Administrator
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 1:30:18 PM permalink
It all depends on the context. When I was a government actuary I called myself a "bean counter" at times. However, I would have taken offense if someone I didn't know, and wasn't one himself, called me that.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
boymimbo
boymimbo
Joined: Nov 12, 2009
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March 24th, 2011 at 10:39:59 PM permalink
I work with bean counters all of the time and they would be highly offended if I called them one, probably because they do so much more than that. If I were good friends with one, I would feel comfortable with calling them one in jest.
----- You want the truth! You can't handle the truth!
gog
gog
Joined: Jan 7, 2011
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April 1st, 2011 at 10:48:29 AM permalink
I am a bean counter and the only time I get offended is when my parents call me that, because they seem to genuinely believe it.
nullzero00
nullzero00
Joined: Mar 25, 2011
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April 1st, 2011 at 4:52:22 PM permalink
i think it's only offensive if the accountant in question is mexican.
SOOPOO
SOOPOO
Joined: Aug 8, 2010
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April 2nd, 2011 at 1:48:46 PM permalink
There is a kid who works at starbucks who is taking offense to this discussion. He is a 'coffee bean counter'.
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
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April 13th, 2011 at 5:30:59 AM permalink
People need to quit sitting around waiting to be offended.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others

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