Tuesday, December 26, 2017

2017, A Hell Bound Train Of A Year (Part 2): Bernie Madoff & Donald Trump: A Tale Of Two Cons


-by Noah

People lost their life savings. They lost their homes. Their lives were destroyed. You didn’t think of that as stealing? People felt safe with you.

Yeah, but those were…

And yet you were betraying them all.

Well, but these people, you know they had a little greed in them, too. They were a little bit of, you know… Look, you know, and they didn’t wanna look too hard. They looked just far enough. So they’re accomplices in some way, too.
- from a conversation between Bernie Madoff and his interviewer Diana Henriques
I recently watched HBO’s The Wizard Of Lies, a movie depiction of the $64.8 Billion Bernie Madoff scandal. The movie features one of Robert De Niro’s greatest acting portrayals, and it is so much more. As I watched it, I couldn’t help thinking about another big time con artist, a con who has perpetrated a tremendous con. The best con. The worst con. A con that makes your head spin. The con that put a conman in the White House. A con that makes Bernie Madoff look like a cub scout.

How’s this for perspective: Bernie Madoff’s con was sociopathic and evil. He ripped off $64.8 Billion, mostly from rich people, using his position and the trust he had built up over the years to his advantage. Many of his victims lost every penny they had. Many lost their homes. In the end, Madoff accused his victims of being greedy. Did they want more money? Yes, but they were really just looking for reasonably safe investments. The lion’s share of the greed was on the part of Madoff himself, as he looked to acquire massive amounts of money for his family. Some of his victims who weren't rich suffered because their pensions had invested with Bernie. They had their futures tied into Madoff's scheme without even knowing it, until it was too late.

Donald Trump’s con, on the other hand, was for an exponentially larger amount, $1.5 Trillion, an amount that, incredibly, makes Madoff’s con look embarrassingly small. But wait, there’s more. Trump’s con was every bit as evil but he stole from people who aren’t rich to give to the rich, including himself and his family. As for the trust element in regards to Trump, it’s safe to say the rich knew of his reputation as a conman and were all for it. Unfortunately, millions of other voters refused to see the obvious; letting their bigotries and emotions make their decision at the voting booth. They were easy marks and now they will pay, as will so many of us.

Despite the huge difference in the amounts conned, one almost has to ask if the two perps were separated at birth? Bernie Madoff and Donald Trump are both two American criminal masterminds: two of the very, very biggest and worst of all time. One is a sociopath. The other one, currently masquerading as a President of the United States, is even worse. He is a psychopath. It’s important to note that, in both cases, the victims looked just far enough to see what they wanted to see. When the history of both men is written, it will be noted that, in each case, the people around the victims also paid a price. To the perps and their defenders, none of that matters for a second, as long as the money is in their pockets, that is.

What does matter is the size, scope, and down the road effects of the scam. The Madoff scam ruined a lot of people. Tax Scam 2017 just might ruin the United States of America, turning it from a small d democracy to a large O Oligarchy.

Madoff’s con ruined the lives of countless people and destroyed companies with a financial ponzi scheme that stole their money, while telling investors that their money was being invested while, in reality, it was being put into his pockets and his company. Trump’s con is being sold on a myth that those getting the money from us will invest it for the great good. It’s called “Trickle Down.” It has already been shown to be nonsense going back to Ronald Reagan’s bogus “Trickle Down.” On top of that, today’s corporate CEOs made it clear that they weren’t going to invest the money in anything other than shareholder stock prices and their own offshore bank accounts.

Once the Tax Scam passed both houses of Congress, you could hear the laughter coming from Washington and Wall Street. It was the Republican Party’s biggest F.U. to date.

Trump, of course, has a history of, among other things, ripping off people who work for him by not paying them the contracted amount and goes Bernie one further. He doesn’t care if anyone dies from the acts of greed he plans and partakes in. Witness Trumpcare and now, the aforementioned Trump/Ryan Republican Tax “reform” Scam, both of which aim to take money from us and put it into the pockets of the super rich. Working with fellow congressional scammers, Trump even managed to combine the two in his $1.5 Trillion scheme. No doubt, he calls that efficiency.

Many of the victims of Trump’s ideas for “healthcare” will die of cancer and other diseases. Many now will go undiagnosed. It’s all in order to give himself, his family, and his allies in Congress (I’m talking ‘bout you Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, et. al.) and the corporate world that humongous tax break that will redistribute a historical amount wealth upward from out of the pockets of the middle and lower rungs of the class ladder to the pockets of very highest. Madoff just wanted the money. Trump wants to create dynastic oligarchies. It’s a matter of proporation or scope. And, forget about the idea of subsidizing Big Pharma as part of Obamacare. The Republican Tax Scam does much more than make up for any loss from that.

Trump and his party’s ideas for the alleged tax “reform” are part of a two-pronged plan that do the same thing, not just because the Republican tax scam contains some fine print that will all but end Obamacare, but also because of what it would do to the financial security of millions and millions of Americans and their families to begin with, all while those at the very top increase their financial distance from the rest of us. Cuts to Medicare and Social Security which will threaten lives, shorten lives, and lessen the dignity of lives are now planned in order to pay for the money being doled out to the rich and to corporations. No doubt more money will be borrowed from China, thus providing a further drag on the nation’s economy in the future. You have to have a very sick mind to want that any and all of this. You have to be psychotic. It’s called building a society of lords and serfs. Madoff was greedy alright. Trump is Madoff times millions, if not billions, with the deaths thrown in as an added touch that only adds to his smirk.
The rich will not be gaining from this plan.
- Donald J. Trump, at the White House, 9/12/17
If Bernie Madoff is “The Wizard Of Lies,” Donald Trump is “The Beelzebub Of Bullshit.” Gullible, naïve people fell for the cons of both men. Both promised the world to their victims. In the case of Trump, it isn’t just the individual investors that will be victims. Madoff was to the financial world what Trump is to the political world. Madoff was once even the Chairman of NASDAQ and built his con on a ponzi scheme.

Trump launched his candidacy for president on, among other lies, stories of a non-existent conspiracy of birtherism and false tales of thousands of Jersey City Muslims cheering as the World Trade Center towers crashed to the ground. Now, he continues to con his gullible supporters by saying that news of his own particular scandals are “fake news.” His favorite “journalist,” Alex Jones, even tells his fans that the Sandy Hook massacre of children is a hoax, and, they believe it.

Madoff, incidentally, ignored the events of 9/11. He made no claims of seeing cheering Muslims. While everyone else in his offices had their eyes glued to the TV sets, Madoff stayed at his desk building his ponzi pyramid and ripping off his investors. Being a con artist requires a certain kind of single-mindedness.

Both Madoff and Trump knew that the world is full of easy marks. They made good use of that knowledge and caused staggering damage. In the case of Trump, the damage is still growing and there’s no telling where it will end: a final, total worldwide financial collapse? World War III? A screaming, babbling, madman, losing control of his bodily functions, clawing at the White House carpeting as he is dragged out?
People have been talking about the end of the cycle for 12 years, and I’m excited if it is. I’ve always made more money in bad markets than in good markets.
- Donald J. Trump, 2007
Housing market crashes usually precede a greater economic crash. If you’re worried about the current rumblings in the housing markets, don’t go thinking that Trump is worried about it. For him, it’s an opportunity. He isn’t going to be thinking of people who lose their homes any more than Bernie Madoff did. He’s the maggot that eats up the mess.

In The Wizard Of Lies, we see Madoff sitting at his desk creating his fragile pyramid. He’ll smooth talk his marks in meetings on Long Island or at New York City restaurants, and also, interestingly enough, Trump’s Palm Beach Mar-a-Lago resort. Madoff’s scam had global reach through the markets but his world is small, at least compared to Trumpworld. Madoff played stock market schemes. Trump casts a bigger net. Trump played the students of Trump University. Trump played Atlantic City. Trump says he doesn’t know convicted stock swindler Felix Sater, a Russian crime figure. Yet the photos say other wise, as do real estate scam lawsuits. Trump and his son bilked a kids cancer charity. I doubt even Madoff would have gone there.

Trump has spent years traveling to Russia and China. God knows what he’s been doing but you know it isn’t good, at least not for anyone who isn’t a relative or an associate. His world is so much bigger than Madoff’s was. What pieces of the action has he sold to America’s adversaries and for what price? What has he bought with scammed and laundered money? When he works to destroy our budding solar industry, China laughs, knowing that he’s handing it over to them while we lose staggering amounts of jobs in the new industry as a result. The TPP had flaws, but now that Trump has pulled out of it, China’s dream of unrivaled domination of Asia and the Pacific Rim is coming to fruition.

Russia? Putin wants to move and strengthen his sphere of influence over Eastern Europe again. Trump talks down the importance of NATO while he seeks to build hotels in Russia. Where does that partnership go? Where does it end?

Whatever Robert Mueller and his team find out about Trump and his crime syndicate; it will just be the top of the pyramid. Even with whatever Mueller does find, it will be so awful that they’ll never tell us the complete story. Any trial will just be the farce of a pantomime trial. Why? Simple. As they allude in The Wizard Of Lies a full trial would require putting many of the richest men in the world on the stand. That ain’t gonna happen. You’re not going to see people like Putin, the titans of the banking world like Jamie Dimon, the Koch brothers, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, various oligarchs, drug lords (legal and non-legal), or any of the top political donors for either party facing questions on the stand from smart inquisitive lawyers. We got that story with Madoff. Anything we do see will be well scripted in advance. The Trump scams are so much bigger and so much uglier. Some in charge will think we can’t handle the truth. They’ll say that if we knew the truth of what goes on with our leaders and the financial community, the whole world economy would disintegrate in a giant explosion of flame. Others in charge will want to keep it from us, keeping the roadmap
The message must be sent. Mr. Madoff’s crimes were extraordinarily evil. This kind of staggering human toll.
- Judge Denny Chin, presiding judge, Madoff sentencing hearing.
There are other similarities and differences between Madoff and Trump, of course. Although, to this day, Madoff rationalizes his 150-year prison sentence by saying that, after the 2008 crash, “they” just needed a “face to blame,” and although Trump will blame others as he always does, both parasites will never admit to their frauds. In the end, Madoff plead guilty; something Trump will never do. Madoff went to jail but he couldn’t admit to his failure. Trump would rather be paid to go away like Nixon was, or get to keep his swag, also like Nixon (his pension and aides paid for by us). Also, Madoff was turned in to the authorities by his sons. None of us will hold our breath waiting for Eric or Don, Jr to do the same.

By the time the era of Trump and his cohorts is over, who knows how much money disappears into thin air? With Madoff, it was billions. Trump will take pride in how much more he makes disappear.

If he’s allowed to continue, Trump will follow his idol Putin’s ways. Every exchange of money will involve a cut for hm. That is his dream. If allowed to continue, he will do it with his little puppy Paul Ryan on his lap and slobbering hound Mitch at his side. He will take the ultimate perverse pride in being the best conman who pulled off the most tremendous con of all; getting to the White House and using his power and position better than anyone, better than any two bit dictator ever, to ruin the lives of millions and millions of people, if not billions. Caligua and Hitler, and Stalin. Louis XVI, Saddam Hussein, Chairman Mao, Ferdinand Marcos, Idi Amin Dada. Putin. He longs to top them all, paint the White House gold, inside and out, and yell “Let them eat cat food.” That, too, is his dream. It is the dream of a true psychopath. Only the 2008 crash stopped Madoff. What will stop Trump? Mueller? A bigger crash due to insane Republican policy?

Madoff’s dreams were puny compared to those in the sick mind of Trump. Trump and his cronies look at all of us as marks, not just a relatively small list of clients like Madoff kept in his desk. Trump and his cronies seek to take more of our money, bigger percentages of our money to finance their dreams of a 1000 Year Reich Of The Rich. They don’t need armies. They just need our money to make more money and to gain more power over us. Lords and serfs. The con is on. Over 60 million Americans gave it their stamp of approval last November. To paraphrase Diana Henriques, the reporter who broke the Madoff story, the true measure of the con was not what was lost but what people had left after the fraud was revealed. The thing with Trump is that, the longer the fraud goes on, the worse the world will be when the full extent of what he’s done and is doing is revealed, and he’s gone.

In a recent commencement address at Brown University, De Niro, who had so deftly played Bernie Madoff artist, spoke of Don the Con, saying
When you started school, the country was an inspiring, uplifting drama. You are graduating into a tragic, dumbass comedy.

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At 2:11 PM, Anonymous Hone said...

Just put a hold on the DVD The Wizard of Lies at the local library. Thanks for the recommendation!

At 3:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Madoff was a piker.

trump/ryan/mcturtle, by a factor of 20, are worse, for sure.

But nobody in history compares to the banksters, who between 1998 and 2008 orchestrated a MUCH bigger theft, by a factor of 300 over Madoff. And they didn't steal from the greedy rich nor did they sign up to borrow it like trump/ryan/mcturtle. They pretty much stole 20-odd TRILLION (yes, some borrowing was involved here too due to the government bailouts) and 10 million homes and jobs lost from all over the world.

Madoff turned himself in to escape being hit by mobsters he defrauded. It remains to be seen if trump/ryan/mcturtle suffer any inconvenience for their deeds.

But nobody, and I mean NOBODY suffered any professional, legal, economic nor societal inconvenience whatsoever from the 2008 crash. In fact, because obamanation/holder refused to act in ANY way in response to the biggest heist in world history, those same greedy sociopaths were in place to write the SECOND biggest heist -- the 2018 tax cuts.

So when your taxes whiplash back up in 2027 or when the crash happens due to this, please remember to thank obamanation and holder for refusing to do one single thing about the 2008 crash. And please remember to thank Clinton for passing and signing the lege that made 2008 both possible and inevitable.

Only then should you remember trump/ryan/mcturtle for their role here.

If democraps were still DEMOCRATS in 1998, none of this would have happened.

Remember that.

At 3:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now I absolutely know this site is working for the democraps. You illustrate only the second and third worst heists in world history. But you purposely refuse to recognize the worst one because THAT one is the fault of the democraps, and pretty much only the democraps.

Not everyone who reads this shit is a moron like you think.

Be fucking fair about trowelling on the blame for this shit or expose your true mission -- to keep the motherfucking democraps in "power" so a truly left party never coalesces.


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