You're currently reading an archived version of Jim Hightower's work.
The latest (and greatest?) observations from Jim Hightower are only now available at our Substack website. Join us there!
Let’s say you’re a run-of-the-mill burglar arrested for stealing $50,000-worth of stuff. How deep in jail would you be right now?
Then, let’s say you’re Bernard Madoff, the New York City high-society scammer who looted some $50 billion from his victims. Having stolen a million times more than the common crook, shouldn’t Madoff be that much deeper in jail?
Enjoying Hightower's work? Join us over at our new home on Substack:
But, no, the Ponzi-scheme superstar posted $10 million in bail money and was allowed to remain under house arrest in the $7 million luxury penthouse he owns on the upper East Side of Manhattan. In another mink-glove touch from authorities, Madoff didn’t have any gruff guards posted outside his door – instead, he was allowed to hire his own private security agents.
Excuse me, but why is this confessed scam artist still able to spend his ill-gotten money for bail, guards, and a luxurious lifestyle?
Meanwhile, investors he bilked are told they’ll have to wait up to three years to see if they can recover even pennies on the dollar they had entrusted to him. That’s because the court says it’ll take months for investigators to track what business funds and personal assets Madoff has tucked away.
Excuse me again, but why not speed up the process by making him do that? Throw him in a cold slammer until he accounts for every dime.
Why have the authorities pampered this guy for so long? Because he’s a silk shirt crook who was not only a Wall Street insider, but has also been a longtime crony of Washington regulators, Even while he was running his scam, Madoff was serving on several advisory committees to the very regulatory agency that was supposed to be watching him!
It’s time for regulators like the SEC to start regulating again, and for the justice system to stop coddling the Madoffs of our country.
“Bid to Revoke Madoff’s Bail Cites His Gifts,” The New York Times, January 6, 2009.
“Madoff investors could face long fight to recover pittance,” Austin American Statesman, January 21, 2009.
“Lawmakers blast SEC for ignoring alarms on Madoff,” Austin American Statesman, January 6, 2009.