Unlike earnings, dividends can't be manipulated or misrepresented

Although the vast majority of companies report their earnings accurately there have been numerous companies that have significantly misrepresented their income statement in order to enhance their performance.  

Revenue and profits may be subject to manipulation but dividends are a matter of fact. Dividends are paid from real earnings and in ‘hard’ cash. They cannot be manipulated by creative accounting. A dollar paid out to the investor is just that.