A major driving force of manias is broad participation. The Enron debacle failed to demonstrate that point. Regulators, accounting firms, consultants, banks, congress, stockholders, directors, Enron management, and every single employee were culpable in the run up to failure. All of the above parties had a big financial stake in the continuation of the Enron bubble. Except for top management and a major accounting firm, none were punished by regulators or laws. The rest escaped with a major financial hit and blamed others for their losses.
In the Markoplos interview cited in the post below, the deflection of responsibility and blame continued in the subprime debacle. Markopolos was a trader in New York and knew many of the players personally. While trying to warn a fund manager of the fraud, another point was starkly revealed. The fund manager recognized the possibility of fraud, but he had such a large stake in the success of Madoff he felt he could not afford to pull his clients' money. This astonishing denial underlines the power of a mania once it takes hold of a market.
As we continue the buildup in a sovereign bond bubble (which may have years to run), try to remember this lesson.