Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Cult of Money

The rich have conned themselves. Decades of the pseudo-science, the dismal delusion — economics — had the Milton Friedmans, Alan Greenspans, Robert Rubins believing their own lies and the money-grubbing toads of Wall Street likewise believing while inventing further cons to deceive us out of our savings. Billions were made, now billions are lost. Sadly, the principle losers will not be the architects of the con but us. The bailout is just the beginning.

The newest development in Wall Street's Comedy of Errors — Bernard Madoff's ponzi scheme conning people out of some $50 billion. According to the BBC and other news organizations,
Some of the world's wealthiest private and corporate investors are reported to be victims of an alleged $50bn fraud by Wall Street broker Bernard Madoff.

Mr Madoff is alleged to have confessed to a huge Ponzi scheme (pyramid fraud).

Reports say the main owner of the New York Mets baseball team, Fred Wilpon, and former American football team owner Norman Braman are among the victims.

Others facing losses reportedly include French bank BNP Paribas, Japan's Nomura Holdings and Zurich's Neue Privat Bank.
The rich fall prey to their own con.

Again according to the BBC, Madoff has also said, "that he planned to surrender to the authorities but not before he used his last $200m-$300m to pay 'selected employees, family and friends'."

But here is the best part. Madoff ran a pyramid scheme that burned $50 billion. But, "If found guilty, US prosecutors say he could face up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 [million]."

So, if were not for the fact that he is now 70 years old, he might very well conclude that robbing $50 billion is cost effective. This pales when compared to the Wall Street conmen who, like John Thane of Merrill Lynch, are still seeking bonuses in the millions.

This is the nature of American justice. Steal a car, serve 5 years. Steal tens of billions, as Wall Street has done, get a bonus.

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