June 16, 2009

"She’s perceived as the succubus to Bernie’s incubus."

The tribulations of the wife of a very rich criminal.


Issob Morocco said...

No doubt the story portrays her as some pariah. Somewhat accurate, as I don't think you can be that close to ground zero of the crime and not have a clue. But this story seems to give Bernie a pass. A bit skewed as she didn't run the scheme, but merely benefited from it.

She should have to eat at Casey Jones in Celina, as her pennance.

Fred4Pres said...

She may be totally innocent, just married to the wrong man. But I doubt it. I suspect she knew something was up.

But in the end, if her punishment is shunning from friends and business establishments...well lots of other people have it a hell of a lot worse.

I recommend she find some other place for the highlights and grab a copy of Bonfire of the Vanities and do some reading (there are excellent benches in Central Park to sit on). She can follow that up with A Man In Full.

traditionalguy said...

This article points out an interesting truth about her. She has no self to assert herself with. Behind the Madoff's wall of wealth, there was no life there after all. The sad truth is that the investors were all hoping that they could join the Madoff's behind their own walls of wealth by getting in on the Madoff's secret monetary trick to get 30% returns. After the great wall of wealth crashed, nothing resembling a human was found inside. The Madoffs and their investors are also the type of people who cannot accept the real family struggles and the real successes of the backwoods barbie, Sarah Palin.

kynefski said...

Ruth and Bernard Madoff have been together their entire adult lives. I would imagine that people who know them find it difficult to view her as completely disconnected from his schemes.

On the other hand, is there anybody who can say that their partner couldn't possibly keep something like that from them?

Kate Gosselin said...

God in Heaven above! A man steals billions of dollars in a massive ponzi scheme, and who's to blame? The wife! A man brings over a slatternly waitress and defiles the beautiful Martha Stewart bedsheets that K-Mart so generously provided for free, and who's to blame? The wife!

MadisonMan said...

The saddest line in the article:

“I wanted to write her a letter, reach out to her, take her out to lunch. But my lawyer said, ‘No.’ ”

It's crazy that Mrs. Boesky's lawyer wants to stifle a decent human reflex.

hdhouse said...

perhaps part of Bernie's sentence incidentally includes that his wife will be left with few friends and fewer who buy her account of things. he can rot in jail for the havoc he caused and to that add the spice of ruining yet another life.

i once heard that a fitting punishment in addition to his sentence would be that each day promptly at 5pm, when he would have settled into his first martini, instead some stranger enters his cell and punches him in the nose. every day for the rest of his life.

for his wife, perhaps in the morning she has to emply cat litter and in the evening take out someone's trash.

Bissage said...

Ms. Madoff’s public redemption will come in the form of her own reality TV show.

save_the_rustbelt said...

Vanity Fair has done some really good journalism on this, for those interested.

Some of the families involved with the feeder funds were much more pretencious than Bernie and Ruth.

Being interested in forensic accounting I have read through many of the legal documents. Ruth did internal work for the firm (payroll, payables, etc.) so it is possible she was clueless (there was plenty of money flowing through the checking accounts, it just never made it to the trading floor).

The sons though, running a large and sophisticated trading operation, had to know. How could they not? Bernie had NOT done a trade in more than a dozen years. Bernie was sending statements indicating thousands of trades per month. Duh.

EDH said...

“She’s perceived as the succubus to Bernie’s incubus,” said Prof. Richard A. Shweder, a cultural anthropologist at the University of Chicago. “She was inside a circle of people whose wealth has been sucked out of the system.”

In other words, is that the academic way of saying "she could suck the chrome off a trailer hitch"?

David said...

The link to NYT first shows an advertisement for a silver Bulgari ring that is part of some "Save the Children" movement. This is perfect--the NYT, newspaper of the rich and liberal, Bulgari hawking jewelry to save children and Madoff.

Memo to Bulgari customers: if you want to save children, send the money to Mercy Corps and forget the bling.

Jennifer said...

That line jumped out at me, too, MadisonMan. My reaction was that it's crazy people consult their lawyers before making lunch dates.

Quayle said...

The sons though, running a large and sophisticated trading operation, had to know.

The interesting thing was, that it was not a large trading operation. The trading floor was unusually small for the amount of money that was being handled, and any trader that saw it knew that something funky was going on.

kynefski said...

The Madoffs and their investors are also the type of people who cannot accept the real family struggles and the real successes of the backwoods barbie, Sarah Palin.

Please go easy on the class warfare, my liberal friend.

paul a'barge said...

It certainly sux to be immoral, sometimes.

Cedarford said...

Gosselin -

The days of the automatic protection of the "poor, victimized" female spouse of drug lords, financial con artists is on it's way to ending.

Investigators are routinely finding wives and children fully aware and participating in the various conspiracies. Authorities made aware of who a major drug dealer is by noticing a woman hard at work trying to launder millions in money. The Wacsal and Fastow extended families...where almost all were in on stock manipulation, insider trading, setting up dummy offshore accounts.

Fast Andy Fastow (of Enron) - the architect of the structure of the scam - saw not only his passport seized to prevent a Marc Rich, Crazy Eddy Antar-style flight to sanctuary in Israel..but also several members of his wife's family. While investigations, prep for trial, plea bargains and restitution as part of the plea deal was negotiated for the Fastows and their relatives.

It is likely the Madoffs are being treated as the Fastows were.

EnigmatiCore said...

"Somewhat accurate, as I don't think you can be that close to ground zero of the crime and not have a clue."

Recently, a Long Island man murdered his wife and two daughters while visiting the oldest daughter at college in Maryland.

Apparently, he was engaged in similar financial crimes as was Madoff, just on a smaller scale (but still plenty big).

His wife and daughters thought he was just a very successful man, up until he killed them.

I see no reason, at this point, to think Madoff's wife is any different. She likely thought her husband was just an exceptional businessman.

William said...

Whether she was part of the scheme or not, she was definitely part of the front. Bernie presented himself as a man of character and settled habits. The fact that he had a successful marriage made him that much more trustworthy....I see no reason why she should live any better than the poorest among Bernie's investors. In moments of self pity, she should contemplate the fact that she spent most of her life with the perks and comforts of an extremely wealth woman.

LutherM said...

BERNIE stole money from a lot of people, and a few institutions.
BERNIE will be sentenced to a long term in prison.
WIFE OF BERNIE, so far, has not been charged with any crime, but is suffering a diminished reputation.
SOMEONE screwed up the chance to kill Osama bin Laden. Leaving him alive resulted in attacks on America on September 11, 2001
IF I remember correctly, there was the SOMEONE who paid a fine, agreed to a law license suspension, then resigned from the bar to avoid being disbarred by the Supreme Court of the United States - but was never tried and convicted for perjury he committed - and, in fact, is quite affluent today.
WIFE OF SOMEONE ran for President, but did not win a party nomination (for these favors we are truly grateful, O Lord), and now is Secretary of State.

Moral of the story -
(1) it is far better to lie, to cheat, to allow enemies of America to go on killing than it is to take the money from people
(2) the thousands dead at the World Trade Center Buildings are less vocal than the living BERNIE victims.

Achmed O'Malley said...

Praise to Allah (PBUH) that Mrs. Madoff has assumed the role designed by Allah (PBUH) for a wife. She is supporting her husband and will be happy to be riven by dogs too when her husband is tossed before them for his crimes. Allah (PBUH) be glorified for her support now and when she is Alpo.

Invisible Man said...

SOMEONE screwed up the chance to kill Osama bin Laden. Leaving him alive resulted in attacks on America on September 11, 2001

George Bush?

traditionalguy said...

Kynefski... Sorry to sound like a class warrior. The Madoff investors were not classy except in their insider knowledge they believed would protect them. The Palin family seems to rely on their hard work and physical skills more than "Knowledge" of the secrets of finance. That is an observation more than an attempt to disrespect either type. We need all types to make the world work. Banking itself is a highly regulated and honest business. Yet the expectation of making 30% returns on invested capital every year is a pride issue that creates an exclusive class attitude in most people.