The Wizard of Fraudz
Every time the economy takes a nose-dive, we roust up a few frauds and a bevy of humbugs.
This outing’s big villain is financier Bernard Madoff. For decades, Madoff made off with billions of other people’s money by pretending to invest it honestly.
Instead, he paid off early “investors” with the “investments” of later “investors.” To keep the Ponzi scheme going, Madoff had to keep widening the circle of the victims — which meant that he and his boosters had to keep whispering sweet cryptic nothings to awestruck big-pocketed individuals eager to join an exclusive club.
Some prospects declined. They now say they could get no real information about how he was investing. What? Oracular pronouncements weren’t enough for these skeptics?
Another Delphic entity that pretends to “invest” our money is the federal government. Its masterminds, too, claim to know everything about doing financial magic — but explain nothing. The Federal Reserve, for example, is refusing to comply with media requests for info on the “emergency loans” now being handed to ailing companies.
America’s government officials “know,” somehow, that they can “invest” in decrepit, floundering, washed-up firms and industries, using money siphoned from actually productive enterprise, while always paying off old government debt with new government debt, adding up to trillions . . . and somehow everything will turn out all right.
Pay no attention to those men behind the curtain!
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.