Saturday, April 11, 2009

Terra Incognita 77 Womens objectification, Chas Freeman, Madoff

Terra Incognita
Issue 77
“Written to enlighten, guaranteed to offend”

A Publication of Seth J. Frantzman
Jerusalem, Israel


March 19th, 2009

1) Enough sympathizing with the women, blame the culture: Recent stories about strip clubs and prostitution and sex slavery once again remind us of the destructive influence of culture and feminism in Western states. The turning of women into objects, the fact that women riot to get on America’s Next Top Model, is not a one to one correlation in every culture. In only one culture in the world do middle class and upper class women desire to be human clothes hangers.

2) Of Dictatorships and Double Standards: Charles Freeman and Israel: *(in memory of Jeane Kirkpatrick, U.S ambassador to the U.N) The almost appointment of Charles Freeman to oversee the coordination of America’s intelligence agencies once again reminds us of the importance of Jeane Kirkpatrick’s 1979 essay on dictatorships and Double Standards. Freeman never met a despotism he didn’t like but when it came to the Israeli occupation he was absolutely livid.

3) Some points to consider about Madoff: How much money did Madoff really make vanish? Where did it go? How did his scheme work and what does it say about greed? Is only he to blame? Is he being vilified and scapegoated far beyond logic and beyond others, such as Kenneth Lay or Jerome Kerviel who also made billions disappear? Those calling for Madoff’s blood should do well to realize their anger reflects more on them, than on Madoff.

Enough sympathizing with the women, blame the culture
Seth J. Frantzman
March 9th, 2009

In the past this newsletter has argued that the evils of sex trafficking and prostitution were directly linked to culture and even to ethnicity and religion. The author has been particularly harsh on the cultures that produce wonton prostitution and the cultures that are the sources of women for the trafficking. But the truth is that we must go beyond the culture and condemn the women themselves and the culture, as interwoven, because the two are responsible. The men and sometimes women, the traffickers, must always be condemned. It is the position of this newsletter that pimps and traffickers in women should be tortured and hung publically. No mercy should be shown to those who deny others the right to their lives, those who enslave others in the most degrading manner. But absent of an honest and moral society that will hang the pimps in public we must turn our attention to the source, for without the source their would be no pimps.

There is a never ending lie associated with prostitution and the trafficking in human slaves that argues that economics drives this evil. But this is the greatest lie ever pulled over man’s eyes. If economics drives it then where are the Muslim prostitutes? Muslims are, in some cases, poor. In Hebron they are poor. But Hebron does not have as many whores per capita as Berlin. In fact it is western wealthy women that prostitute themselves willingly more often per capita than poor women in other cultures. Many strippers in western countries are college students, middle class women. There is no correlation between wealth and whoredom. There is a correlation between culture and the selling of sex. There is a connection between liberalism and post-humanism and the selling of women and the trade in women. While it may be true that some poor immoral societies, such as some African countries, produce numerous prostitutes, even they are behind the West. The number of black prostitutes in South Africa or Uganda is less per capita than the number of white prostitutes in the U.S. That is a fact. Poor and even with loose and liberal morals, South African black women do not prostitute themselves. Why? Their culture. Culture is always the answer. There is no other answer. Personal experience is enough to answer this. There is not a white person who grows up in the West who does not know women in school who did not become a stripper or a prostitute or at least wanted to be one.

If one expands the realm of immorality beyond it one can surely not find anyone in the West who doesn’t know numerous women who wanted to be ‘models’ but never achieved their ‘dreams’ because they were ‘not good looking enough’. But let’s compare. If we take the upper class of Palestinian Arab Muslim society and we ask them how many of them want to be models we will find almost none. None. But if we take a similar cross section of western women we will find that the numbers maybe in the 10% range. That is the evidence. Culture. The line between women who dream of being ‘models’, human clothes hangers, and those who willingly allow themselves to be raped and trafficked through Egypt to work behind iron bars as slaves in Israel as prostitutes, is very narrow. The line that connects the western middle class feminist liberal woman and the western white woman who works as a Geisha in Japan is very short. And the line between the same woman in any other culture is quite long. Yes. It is long. How many of those upper class secular Palestinian women, just 40km away from Tel Aviv, work as Geishas in Japan? But their peers in Israel work as Geishas. So let’s be honest. Culture. Secularism and post-humanism, is to blame. That is the line that is much longer than the 40 km. For the Western women to become a Geisha or a model or a stripper or a belly dancer or a trafficked prostitute is only about 10km. But for a similar women in another culture it may be 1,000km. It may be 1,000,000km. In essence, in some cultures it is not possible. No woman in some culture from the middle or upper classes, or even the lower classes, would ever want to be a human clothes hanger, a piece of meat parading on a stage rubbing up against men, a slave in a cage having sex with 13 men a day. Why? Culture. Culture.

Why the decision to indict the culture and the women themselves? Because of four recent stories in Haaretz. The first, a story about an Admiral in the IDF who frequented a strip club called Go-go girls. When it came to light the owner, Kobi Mizrahi, claimed that his strip club employed respectable women, including a former police officer, a art student and a law student. Then there was the story on March 15th of the “Tel Aviv stripper found roaming” Ramallah, an Arab town on the West Bank. The worker at the Pussycat strip club “said she had gone out drinking with a group of people agfter her shift…lost consciousness and woke up at a house in Ramallah.” It is ironic that she loves the Arab culture so much to willingly be drugged and taken their and then not press charges, were she an Arab they would have killed her to preserve their honour. But such is the realm of the western woman, she will love the culture that, were she a member of it, would not let her behave as she does. Then there was the story of ‘L’, a Lithuanian women in Beersheba about to be deported by Israel. L is 29 today but when she was 15 she decided to come to Israel responding to an add to work as a “child care worker.” She arrived and was beaten and placed in an apartment and “put to work as a prostitute.” At 16 she met a client, an Israeli-Arab Muslim from Lob and she did her duty as a good liberal, she converted to Islam and began having Muslim religious children. She produced four children before her husband began beating her and forbid her to speak and leave their house. Liberalism triumphed for her. She lived the liberal coexistence dream. Now she is to be deported since she lived in Israel illegally for 14 years. Then there is the recent story of the Tel Aviv police busting a human trafficking ring. They “smuggled hundreds of women, perhaps 2,000, from the former Soviet Union to Israel over the past few years.” They used “threats of violence” to “force” the women into prostitution. They were said to have gone on a “shopping spree for women” in the former Soviet countries.

The “detectives discovered that the central suspect ran the ring through a network of criminals who, at his behest, located hundreds of women from villages and small towns in Russia, the Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova and Uzbekistan, and manipulating them in to traveling to Israel. The suspects promised the women that they would be employed in Israel as waitresses and club dancers… the ring leaders began to divert their activity to Cypress, where they opened strip clubs in which hundreds of women were forced, through use of threats and violence, to prostitute themselves.”

And then, to cap it all off, there is the story of the 18 year old Russian woman who served in the IDF and worked as a prostitute in Tel Aviv. What else would she do? Liberalism gave her the chance to carry an M-16. She manned the checkpoint one day and at night she sold herself to the same men she checked at the checkpoint. What else would she do? What else would Western and that former satanic Soviet culture have provided her with as the tools to success in life? What else would feminism have given her but the ideology that makes it seem logical to go to the army and work as a prostitute at night? What other culture could transform policewoman, a supposedly empowering position, into strippers. I mean what woman wouldn’t want to work as a stripper rather than a police officer? In some cultures women might choose policing. But in the West and those secular cultures associated with the West the women value prostitution and stripping over working in the army or the police. Can we say feminism was successful? Yes, it was successful if you are a man. It transformed every women into a wanna-be prostitute rather than just some women. Before feminism some women ended up as prostitutes, usually because they were forced to. But today women choose this profession. That is the victory of feminism, to turn all women into sexual objects, sexual beasts of burden to be bought and sold, rather than just a few women. The evidence for this is obvious. Cultures without widespread feminism don’t have women that yearn to be strippers and models. They consider even waitressing degrading. Let’s be honest. In Arab countries the men are waitresses. But Islamism is worse for women in terms of rights? Is it? Compare the fate of women in the former Soviet Union to those in Muslim countries. Women in Muslim countries have few rights. But women in the FSU sell themselves into slavery by the millions, to the extent that there are few women left between the ages of 15 and 25 in the Ukraine and Moldova. So which is worse, a culture that enslaves women or a culture where the women enslave themselves? Which liberalism is worse, the liberalism of Islam or the liberalism or post-humanism? They are both the same. Which slavery is worse, the slavery in Gaza or the slavery of the thousands of FSU women who married Gazan Arabs, abandoning their culture and work as slaves? Choice is worse. Choice is always worse. Let’s examine it another way, which slave is judged worse, the slave of the American South of 1813 born into slavery or some African who sells themselves into slavery. In fact Africans never sold themselves into slavery. But if they had which would be judge harsher? We would judge those who choose slavery more harshly, not those born into it. Muslim women are born into, western women idolize it.

Who do we judge worse, Nicole Simpson and Rihanna, abused American women who returned to their abusers gladly, or women in Muslim societies where it is legal to beat women? We judge the women in the free society more and deservedl y so. But we premise this judgement on the idea that feminism and all the liberal ‘women’s rights’ things we taught in school should have made them ‘know better’. But our culture and cultures of the West only pretends to teach them not to enjoy being abused. In truth they are also educated to want abuse, to return to abusers, to love it, to not ‘judge’ it, to love the ‘other’, to submit, to think it’s romantic and a ‘symbol of his love’. At least the Muslim women just ascribe it to God. At least in some cultures men go to the abuser and say “you should not treat your cherished female property like this, she is yours to guard and protect.” In our culture we don’t guard and protect women, we don’t cherish them, we spite them and spit on them and care less about them when they are imprisoned and abused, because liberalism and feminism says that women are independent so why should their men care what becomes of them. Beasts of burden in Muslim societies, in our society they are just beasts, not even ones to be looked after or cared for. The Muslims kill their women for ‘honour’, but we don’t even honour our women. They are independent so who cares if they disappear into the meat grinder of sex slavery, they were never honoured by us in the first place and their disappearance into some dungeon doesn’t dishonor us. We aren’t the main character in Taxi driver or Sonny in The Godfather or Clint Eastwood in Unforgiven and Gran Torino. Why would we care. Its not our business. Let them be slaves.

To judge culture is harsh. But let us reason. What 15 year old girl has the power and agency to leave her country and travel to Israel as a ‘child care worker’? No one cared when ‘L’ disappeared. The Ukrainian women fleeing Gaza in 2009 were asked about returning to their ‘homeland’. But they said ‘there is nothing for me there.’ Of course not. Their own families could care less where they were. The men in those families, who no doubt don’t even know they have children, might be surprised to learn that those women weren’t aborted before birth. But no man is even existing in those families and if they did exist we can’t describe them as ‘men’ for they never bothered to find out what befell their daughters. In fact there doesn’t appear to be one man in all of the FSU who ever cared at all about what befell the millions of women sold into slavery between 1989 and 2009. In some cases they probably sold their own daughters for profit. Why not? With no morality, why not sell your own children? We would call it chauvinistic were a man, a husband or father or brother, to want to know what his 15 year old family member was doing in ‘child care’ work in Israel. The Muslims, bless their soul, at least care. They murder the women for family honour, but at least they care, for the wrong reasons, but at least. Can that really be worse than a satanic culture where the drunk useless irresponsible men simply toss the women out the door like another bottle of alcohol?
A culture where the law students and police women and female soldiers become whores and strippers is not worth itself. A culture where millions of women still sell themselves into slavery after an entire generation (1989-2009) doesn’t deserve to exist. Yes. Those FSU cesspools don’t deserve themselves. They aren’t deserving of the word ‘humanity’. Neither is the Muslim world. They are two sides of the same coin. Inhuman societies that destroy half of humanity, the female half, the decent half that, at some point, far back in history, was once valued. Yes. The darkness of Islam, as regards women, is no different than the darkness of the Western post-human culture. Both represent a prison. To destroy it, both man and women, must rise above it and build a new culture. Empowerment for women should not mean slavery. Independence should not mean choosing which breast enlargement to pay for. Honour should not mean being buried alive and stoned. We live in a dangerous world, between the hammer of Islam and the anvil of the West and we ask “who shall save us and our most cherished asset, women, from these twin satans?”

Of Dictatorships and Double Standards: Charles Freeman and Israel
March 13th, 2009
Seth J. Frantzman

On February 22nd, 2009 it was revealed that Charles ‘Chas’ Freeman was to be named as the chairman of the National Intelligence Council which is responsible for coordinating intelligence reports and briefing the President. On March 10th Freeman withdrew his name from consideration and, in a sharply worded and angry letter, accused the ‘Israel Lobby’ of slandering. The Freeman outburst and controversy regarding his appointment are important topics but what the entire incident reveals is the degree to which anti-Israel rhetoric, even at the highest and most educated levels, has become polluted by the double standard of excusing dictatorship and repression in one place while castigating it in others.

Charles Freeman was born in 1943 in Rhode Island and his youthful experiences including living in the Bahamas and studying in Mexico. He attended Yale and Harvard before joining the U.S foreign service in 1965. He served in various positions in India, Taiwan and Thailand but his principle experience was in China where he served as an attaché to Nixon’s groundbreaking 1972 trip to the country. He was made ambassador to Saudi Arabia in 1989 and served during the tense months of Operation Desert Storm. His work with the Saudis paved the way for a 1997 appointment as the head of the Middle East Policy Council (MEPC), a non-profit organization that seeks, among other things, to influence the American government from the perspective of Saudi Arabia and includes as a member Talat Othman, a Palestinian-American businessman who is treasurer of the American Task Force on Palestine. In 2004 Freemen took on additional responsibilities as a board member of the China National Offshore Oil Corp. In 2006 the MEPC published John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt’s The Israel Lobby and U.S Foreign Policy.
In a November 3, 2006 speech at the 15th Annual U.S-Arab policymakers conference Freeman advocated on behalf of the Saudi sponsored peace initiative of 2002. He claimed “It would exchange Arab acceptance of Israel and a secure place for the Jewish state in the region for Israeli recognition of Palestinians as human beings with equal weight in the eyes of God.” He predicted that if Israel did not accept this plan that “Arabs will revert to their previous views that Israel is an ethnomaniacal society with which it is impossible for others to coexist and that peace can be achieved only by Israel's eventual annihilation, much as the Crusader kingdoms that once occupied Palestine were eventually destroyed.”

With Freeman’s own experience of being funded by the Chinese and Saudi governments and coming to identify with their ideologies and perspectives he had a unique understanding of what he called the ‘Israel lobby’. In a 2007 speech to the Washington Institute for Foreign Affairs, another pro-Arab leaning think tank, he noted that “American identification with Israel has almost become total” But he took his views of Israel one step further, arguing that the existence of the country “has had the effect of universalizing anti-Americanism, legitimizing radical Islamism, and gaining Iran a foothold among Sunni as well as Shiite Arabs.” He had made similar statements in the 2006 speech; “Israel, a country that has yet to be accepted as part of the Middle East and whose inability to find peace with the Palestinians and other Arabs is the driving factor in the region's radicalization and anti-Americanism.”

Why someone with such a radical, almost conspiratorial view, was considered to head the NIC is not clear but what is most unusual is Freeman’s own contradictory behavior. In 2007 Freeman spoke of “The brutal oppression of the Palestinians by Israeli occupation.” However in comments regarding the suppression of the Tiananmen Square protests by China Freeman wrote in May of 2006 that “The only surprise to me… was that the Chinese leadership did not act earlier to restore order. We would have done so… The main lesson those leaders who survived the affair have drawn from it, in fact, is that one should strike hard and strike fast rather than tolerate escalating self-expression by exuberantly rebellious kids.” He concluded that “I do not believe it is acceptable for any country to allow the heart of its national capital to be occupied by dissidents intent on disrupting the normal functions of government, however appealing to foreigners their propaganda may be. Such folk, whether they represent a veterans' 'Bonus Army' or a 'student uprising' on behalf of 'the goddess of democracy' should expect to be displaced…from the ground they occupy.” Ironically he made these comments just two months before Israel’s 2006 Lebanon War after which he accused Israel of working to “ bomb Lebanon into peaceful coexistence with it and to smother Palestinian democracy in its cradle."

The most dangerous aspect of the fact that Freeman came so close to the nexus of the U.S intelligence apparatus is not his critique of Israel, but the double standards in that critique, his work as a disseminator of Saudi Arabia’s opinions and his excusing of the excesses and suppressions of the Chinese government. The most dangerous potential U.S policy is that which judges her allies, such as Israel, harshly and which excuse other regimes, such as China and given them a carte blanche to occupy and suppress. Freeman was a victim of his own alliances to his former postings and while he accused the Israel Lobby of forcing him to withdraw his candidacy he also accused it of being a “Lobby intent on enforcing the will and interests of a foreign government.” He himself was a member of such a lobby, one funded by China and the Saudis, one less visible than those who support Israel, but one that engenders a dangerous hypocrisy involving dictatorships and double standards.

Some points to consider about Madoff
Seth J. Frantzman
March 16th, 2009

Viewers of the media in recent weeks have gotten used to the vitriol poured on Bernie Madoff and his family, including his wife Ruth and his brother Peter and his two sons. The extreme comments seem to say more about those making them then about Madoff. Governor Mike Huckabee who hosts a show on Foxnews and who is usually calm and composed gave a long list of punishments he would like to see Madoff involved with, including living on the streets or even execution. Execution? For someone who stole money? But as Huckabee pointed out some people have claimed that Madoff’s theft was a bad as if he had murdered. Other shows have happily and cheerfully welcomed guests with ‘smash Madoff’ dolls. There is a mass psychosis taking place in relation to Madoff. In contrast there was never such a psychosis about Kenneth lay of Enron or Sir Allen Stanford.

The truth is that the psychosis is dangerous. People need a scapegoat in these hard times and the glee with which they are roasting Madoff is part of this. It is glee. In fact the smirks of people involved, the cheering, the populism, the tragic joy with which people watch this is all shameful.

There are numerous problems with the hatred being directed at Madoff. But there are more problems with the dishonesty of the reporting about the affair. Madoff is said to have absconded with $65 billion. Even that number is dishonest.

Bernard Madoff was born in 1938 in New York City. He graduated Far Rockaway high school and attended the University of Alabama, Hofstra University and Brooklyn Law School. He studied political science and law but never obtained the latter degree. With earnings from working as a life guard and sprinkler installer in 1960 he founded his own firm, Bernard Madoff LLC. Madoff’s firm became a ‘market maker’ and helped develop the software and technology behind NASDAQ’s early success, where he once served as chairman. On December 10th, after a life of operating in the highest circles of the American elite Madoff confessed to his sons that the asset management part of the firm was a giant ponzi scheme. On March 13th, 2009 his bail was cancelled and he was placed in prison until his sentencing in June 2009. He has pleaded guilty to 11 counts of fraud.
The media has focused on his ‘lavish’ lifestyle including an apartment on the upper East Side of Manhatten, mansion in Palm Beach and another home in the Riviera. He supposedly has a net worth of $800 million, although his actual assets may total no more than $130 million, still a chunk of change. His ‘opulent’ living has also included a yacht and another boat. But those feasting on this supposed opulence should wonder who exactly were the people who invested with Madoff. Where did the $65 billion come from.

What has supposedly made the Madoff scam so terrible is that it bilked charities, most of which were Jewish, out of their money. From Eli Wiesal to Steven Spielberg many well known Jews and Jewish organizations such as Yeshiva University and Hadassah hospital lost money. It’s hard not to sympathize with a charity. But there are some cases where sympathy can be reserved. Yeshiva University channeled its endowment through another investment firm, which took handsome fees, and then the money was fed into Madoff. The firm was run by Ezra Merkin who was also a trustee of Yeshiva University and who was trusted with investing its money. If one doesn’t see the conflict of interest here, then this author cannot help them. But Mr. Merkin isn’t coming in for scorn. Charities have a responsibility to manage their money modestly and conservatively. They don’t need wild Madoff like returns every year. They need normal returns. Endowment funds of Universities don’t exist to make money on the stock market, but to be invested over time in the University. However it seems obvious that charities and their investment advisors liked playing the market, or at least liked making fees and earning money and placed their money with Madoff for these ulterior motives.

What of the individuals? They were the nation’s elite. Investing with Madoff was a sort of viral marketing strategy. It began at select golf clubs and other places of elite gathering. Then it spiraled out, like degrees of separation, to include foreign elites and banks. Once Madoff had drained Jewish charities and Jews of their money he took his road show abroad, selling snake oil to the Gulf Arabs, who were oil-rich. Banco Santander and other European banks were also bilked. In fact the bulk of the $65 billion came only in the last years of the scam, from wealthy Gulf Arab investors.
Madoff claims he began cheating his accounts in the 1990s. He claims that he was unable to keep up with the returns he had promised and, not wanting to disappoint, he began to fudge the books. Other traders have done similar schemes, at Societe General and the Rogue Trader, Nick Leeson, at Barings bank. Leeson gambled away $1.2 billion and caused the destruction of his bank as a trader in Singapore. Jerome Kerviel, the trader at Societe, cost the bank some $7 billion. Kerviel and Leeson didn’t become objects of scorn however, they only lost the banks’ money.

If he is to be believed, Madoff began depositing investors’ money in his own bank account in the 1990s and paying out any redemptions from that account. Otherwise the ‘accounts’ he kept were imaginary and investors received statements of holdings and returned that never existed. When an investor requested money Madoff simply cashed them out based on their paper earnings. However the amount in his own account necessarily would never be enough to cover all the redemptions should everyone want their money back. Along the way the scam snowballed. More money rolled in but of course that meant more fake profits. Consider that when the total value invested in the firm was $10 billion he was expected to earn at least 10% or $1 billion a year. That meant at the end of the year he would have to have $11 billion on the books, an amount that could only be created by getting another $1 billion of investment. But for that $11 billion he would need to show $1.1 billion in profits the next year. The more money invested the more profits needed, the more money that would need to be brought in. Thus at the supposed total amount of $65 billion he would have to show $6.5 billion of returns a year. This is what must have been too daunting in the fall of 2008.
But there are unanswered questions. Where did the money go. Some portion of the $65 billion was not real money, it was just earned income, fake profits. Consider these facts. Hadassah hospital initially claimed it ‘lost’ $90 million. But revealed later that $60 million had been profits earned on the initial $30 million investment. The American Technion Society , an endowment for the Technion University in Haifa, invested $29 million and that grew to $72 million. Yeshiva University first claimed it lost $110 million. It has since noted it only invested $14 million. Thus its ‘disaster’ of ‘losing its endowment’ is partial myth, it merely lost money that it had earned, at least thought it earned, on an investment.

In these select cases that have been revealed the real losses are around 30% of the reported losses. That means the newly revealed $65 billion dollar ‘losses’ might actually total much less in terms of actual investment. What is often forgotten is that some people actually got their money out before the thing collapsed. Fairfield and Tremont holdings, two hedge funds that invested with Madoff and ‘lost’ $11 billion, actually had money cycling in and out of their accounts. So some people got paid off. Now lawyers are even seeking to sue those people under the logic that they were paid with others’ money, which is true.

The investors who gave their money last got hurt the most. Those who began with small amounts, such as Yeshiva university, appear to have lost more on paper but their actual loss was less. When one considers that the DOW and S&P are at 1996 levels it seems fair to say that Yeshiva University cannot exactly claim that had it invested elsewhere it would have made a great deal of money. Its actual loss is $14 million, no pocket change, but not as much as initially thought.

Another thing to consider is where the money actually went. Some of the money went to pay those who redeemed their investments. But it appears that Madoff must have lost some of the money through investing it himself in bad investments that unwound in the fall of 2008. It’s not clear what became of the money. Madoff didn’t take it himself, his lifestyle and Net worth were not that lavish. The big question will be where it all went. If it turns out much of it was redeemed by some investors then the actual amount ‘lost’ will once again have to be ratcheted down.

News commentators seem to insinuate that Madoff stole money from his clients. But his ‘lavish’ living was not so much more lavish than other members of his elite circle. To see them all gloating at his fall seems to say more about their greed and hatred than it says about him. Madoff appears to have worked hard under a lot of stress to pull off his massive fraud. To say that he is worse than Kenneth lay, who destroyed an entire company and thousands of its employees lives, is not logical. Lay destroyed the lives of middle class employees, Madoff bankrupted a few charities and dented the great wealth of a few elite groups. Unfortunate but not really the same. The Madoff losses seem large, but it wasn’t as if he stole from children and poor people.

The tirades against Madoff are maddening because they come from a perspective of ignorance and gloating. One person claimed “Madoff is going to kill more Jews than Hitler.” Did he mean that the rise in anti-semitism associated with the scandal, by those claiming Madoff is an example of the classic Jewish banker who destroys world economies, will lead to people harming Jews? Did he mean that Jews will die of poverty because they were impoverished by Madoff or because Jewish charities won’t be able to support worthy Jewish causes? Either way it’s ridiculous.

I defend Madoff because he has been so misunderstood. Did he rob decent charities and abuse his community and use his friends and connections. Yes. Is he a reputable character? No. But is he some sort of anti-christ, evil incarnate who deserves to have people call for his death and torture. The truth is that that a lot of reasonably greedy people and those who didn’t want to do due diligence invested with him. They didn’t complain when their money doubled in a few years. Then they enjoyed it. Now they are angry, sometimes over losing money they never even had. Bernie Madoff deserves less attention and less fame and more understanding. His scheme was big, but it was big because people allowed it to be big like all stupid investments where people throw money at things that are too good to be true. Consider that Madoff was another .com, another stock that simply turned out to be worthless.

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