December 16, 2008

Talking Ponzie

Ponzie Scheme - a financial gimmick which pays returns on investments through the investments of others, not through any business gains - also known as a pyramid scheme; rob Peter to pay Paul.

Named after Charles Ponzie, an italian immigrant, who in 1920 became notorious in New York for a similar type stunt using postage stamps.

Among Madoff's victims, Frank Lautenburg (D-NJ), Saul Katz and Fred Wilpon (co-owners of the NY Mets), and former Eagles owner Norman Braman.

Clusterstock is keeping a tally.

More well-known Ponzie Schemes

Enron - $70 billion
Worldcom - $11 billion
Madoff - $50 billion and growing

...and the granddaddy of them all
Social Security - $600 billion

Word has it, the Madoff victims (of their own greed) will petition the government for a bailout.

Cartoon courtesy of Mises Economic Blog

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