December 25, 2008
2008 was like herpes, very hard to get rid of. 2009 will be worse, trust me, as Bernie Madoff used to tell the suckers. This one, incidentally, is not over. The greatest scam ever perpetrated will go on and on. Madoff was not alone, and if the crooks in the SEC who turned a blind eye to his Ponzi scheme are ever forced to come clean, some pretty big names will hopefully end up in striped suits sewing buttons. Madoff scammed small investors, billionaires, hedge fund idiots, charities, pension funds and multinational banks. What is incredible is that his fund was repeatedly brought to the attention of the SEC, and every time he was given a clean bill of health. The fact Madoff’s niece was married to an SEC regulator has to play a role in the investigation. Libel laws prevent me from naming names, but they’re out there, being talked about by everyone who can smell a rat after the fact. The SEC never subpoenaed the firm’s records but “relied on information voluntarily produced by the Madoff family…” That’s like asking Al Capone if he had anything to do with a massacre that took place on St Valentine’s Day, and letting him off the hook once he had denied it. Which come to think of it is exactly what happened.
There is something rotten in Wall Street and the rot starts at the top. Greenspan, Rubin, Levitt, the main architects of the financial disaster are cashing in daily and—I am convinced but without poof—are shielding the crook. Maybe he’s got something on them, or so say my Wall Street spies. The evil Madoff is skulking around free in the Bagel, and smirking at the paparazzi even after failing to come up with his ten million dollar bond. (This was an obvious trick. As was the ploy of his two sons reporting him to the Feds. His stolen billions I suspect are safely deposited in off shore accounts to be enjoyed later on by his numerous grandchildren.) Here’s my crystal ball for 2009: The Madoff swindle is the first major scam of the current financial crisis. If history is any guide the first frauds to be discovered are not always the largest. The 50 billion dollar loss could be just a foretaste of what will eventually be exposed.
But how does one expose the perpetrators when they are the ones in charge? I know many of the losers, at least three of the major ones live in Gstaad, and last week I was informed by my bank that I, too, had been granted the right to buy Madoff shares. (Not too many, thank God, but a seven figure sum all the same.) America seems to have totally lost her way. Wall Street and Washington are much too close for comfort. Robert Rubin was the Draft Dodger’s Treasury Secretary and is now heading Citigroup, being bailed out by the tax payer. The present secretary of the treasury Hank Paulson, was once the chairman of Goldman. Goldman alumni are sprinkled throughout high levels of government. Greenspan is now head adviser to the Carlyle group, instead of a nut house, where he really belongs. In civilized countries such as those in the Middle East and Africa, Greenspan, Rubin, Paulson, Levitt and their like would have been roasted alive and served as delicacies to convicts. Which makes me want to move down south, except that the snow is very good this year in good old Helvetia.
Yup, old Uncle Sam has turned out to be a fool, after all. He never appreciated the past and has no respect for tradition and his ancestors. He relies on militarism instead of conducting a foreign policy, and his love for unfettered capitalism has him now begging the Chinese for loose change. His love of porn has brutalized him and has destroyed any sensibility he might have had after Hollywood got through brainwashing him. He never read history but listened to the Fifth columnists, the neocons. He dismissed Russian orthodoxy and the mysteries of faith. He laughed out loud at religious ritual, and crudely went around invading countries in order to bring them democracy and freedom. Solzhenitsyn tried to warn him about the dangers of losing one’s soul, but Sam dismissed him as a nut. Woodrow Wilson’s imperatives that split up the Hapsburg Empire were a major crime committed by a major criminal who used the same words that the Cheney-Bush gang did ninety years later. Uncle Sam should have thrown the bum out as he lay croaking in the White House. Instead, he has followed both his principles and his verbiage. He continues to trust and pay homage to the Saudi gangsters, who in turn pay Lashkar-e-Taiba to murder innocents the world over. His war on terror has been an unmitigated catastrophe. The real Arab victims, the Palestinians, Sam calls terrorists and sends cluster bombs to Israel to ensure the occupiers kill as many Palestinian kids as possible. I could go on and on, but Uncle Sam is a busted flush so I’ll lay off.
Otherwise have a very happy new year—it will not be prosperous, that I guarantee—and keep a sharp eye out for anyone who tells you he has discovered a genius money manager. In fact, don’t hesitate. Call the fuzz.