You can’t keep Bernie Madoff down.
In a story right out of the plot of some Saturday morning cartoon, the King of Ponzi schemes has taken control and cornered the market on every packet of Swiss Miss hot chocolate packets in his prison.
From Market Watch:
“He’s a star in prison. He stole more money than anyone in history, and to other thieves, this makes him a hero.” According to [“Ponzi Supernova” host Steve] Fishman, he is frequently approached for financial advice, including by another inmate who was debating a stock purchase with his broker. “The guy later said he wished he had followed Bernie’s advice closer.”
Madoff, who opened his first business with money earned from working as a lifeguard, has even returned to entrepreneurship, albeit a crafty one.
“Bernie really was a successful businessman with quite original insights into the market, and he’s continued applying his business instincts in prison,” Fishman said. “At one point, he cornered the hot chocolate market. He bought up every package of Swiss Miss from the commissary and sold it for a profit in the prison yard. He monopolized hot chocolate! He made it so that, if you wanted any, you had to go through Bernie.”
For a guy that pocketed close to $20 billion dollars from his legendary rip-off fund, this is a classic Madoff power move. Stories about Bernie often quote him as being “relieved” he was finally caught for his scheme. Almost like he didn’t have to hide what a massive douchebag genius he was anymore. It must’ve been an incredibly freeing feeling.
As for cornering the prison commissary, I have a theory I stand by that all the asshole billionaires in the world are the product of luck and circumstance only. If somebody handed me ownership of a troubled company, I think of myself as being smart enough to gut, sell off, and outsource its lean, salty corpse for maximum personal profit with no problem at all. It’s only because I don’t have any capital that I’m stuck as a dim cog at the base of the corporate machine.
Bernie proves that with the right attitude and resources, you can become a kingpin anywhere.
You just have to take advantage of what you have. And also not be afraid to piss a whole bunch of people off. But hey, there’s more money in being hated and feared than there is in love and charity anyway. That’s the heart of capitalism..
[via Market Watch]
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