Overheard

 

Madoff, it turned out, was no Public Enemy No. 1
to rival John Dillinger, the Great Depression thug
at the center of Hollywood’s timely release this holiday weekend,
Public Enemies.”

In the context of our own Great Recession,
Madoff’s old-fashioned Ponzi scheme was merely a one-off
next to the esoteric (and often legal) heists by banks and bankers.
They gamed the entire system,
then took the money and ran before the bubble burst,
sticking the rest of us with that fear, panic and loss.

The estimated $65 billion involved in Madoff’s flimflam
is dwarfed by the more than $2.5 trillion paid so far
by American taxpayers to bail out
those masters of Wall Street’s universe.
A.I.G. alone has already left us on the hook
for $180 billion
.

It’s hard for those who didn’t have money with Madoff
to get worked up about him
when so many of the era’s real culprits
have slipped away scot-free.

 

~Frank Rich, NYTimes
Bernie Madoff is No John Dillinger

 

 

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~ by eaesthete on 07/06/09.

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