House of cards

I’ve been reading up on Bernard Madoff, because, like you, I can’t believe that a Ponzi scheme of this magnitude…i.e. $50 Billion magnitude, has been perpetrated, yet again, on investors (BIG investors) around the world.  In case you aren’t up to speed, Madoff (former NASDAQ chairman and owner of his securities firm) has been arrested on self-confessed charges of running the biggest single Ponzi (or pyramid) scheme ever perpetrated by a single person.  Far reaching, investors and banks have lost family fortunes and literally millions and billions of dollars by trusting in solid 12% returns for a decade.

Turned in by his sons and creating ripples that will be felt for months as this house of cards tumbles, I couldn’t help thinking of “The Emporer’s New Clothes” which I reread last night.  In the original story, scammers create invisible cloth from the finest silks and gold which the emporer gladly gives them.  They squirrel away the riches and weave nothing, eventually convincing the emporer to take  part in the royal parade completely naked.  It is the voice of an innocent, a young child, crying out that the King had no clothes on, brought the people out of their stupor.  How did these crooks convince the King that the invisible clothes were real?  By getting him and all his advisors to believe that only stupid people would not be able to see the gorgeous robes.  And what King or royal advisors admit they were idiots? 

Madoff’s sons turned him in when they realized that he had perpetuated a major fraud.  What tipped them off?  They asked their dad how staff could possibly be able to receive bonuses when investors hadn’t been paid.

2 thoughts on “House of cards

  1. Hi Janet,
    Many thanks for your Christmas wishes. How lovely of you to remember us here. I hope yours was good and I too think of you more often than you would think. Human mind – wonderful, if not painful tool, but not as mighty as a heart. I find it hard to write on cancergiggles since Cass has been gone. Excuses – maybe, but finding the time is also much harder than I thought. I hope that his words will continue to give people a chuckle and a little more understanding of all terminal illness, just how Cass had wished. I’m sure he will succeed – he usually did. I miss him unbelievably, and find myself very possessive of his memory. He still lives with us (at the bar at the moment) until Rita is ready to let him go.
    My very best wishes to you and all yours for today and the New Year.
    With Love
    Kim xx

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *