It is entirely possible to make an investment in a publicly-traded company one day, only to have it declare bankruptcy the next. Navigating the labyrinth of public disclosure documents that would be necessary to get the very simple piece of data that would tell you that the investment that you are about to make is going to zero tomorrow is near to impossible.
Why not have a one pager on every public company that gives the investor some very basic, very important information?
Information like how much cash they have. And, if they are not cash-flow positive, how much cash they burn each month. Maybe a link to a list of infractions for which they been convicted. How about a simple sales & profit graph that shows which direction they are headed.
If the Government really wants to protect investors from the shenanigans of late, how about making corporations provide real disclosure.