Mortimer Zuckerman and Michael Steinhard are quoted as saying this whole Madoff ponzi shizzle "shouldn't be considered a Jewish scandal just because there were a large number of Jewish victims". Per a Bloomberg article, the two made comments at a Manhattan panel discussion last night called "Madoff: A Jewish Recoking". Among the 250 participants was everyone's favorite Pershing Square Capital manager and monoline fraud exposer, William Ackman. To quote Zuckerman "It's unfair that Madoff's Jewishness has become part of this narrative. Late Enron CEO wasn't called a 'prominent Protestant energy fraudster', and Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevic hasn't been identified in news coverage by his ethnic origins". Steinhardt said he feared Madoff could revive anti-semitism in the U.S.; Steinhardt should know - after all he founded his hedge fund in the distant 1967, when probably the only other HF around was Bernard L Madoff Investment Securities.
Ezra Merkin's "Jewishness" wasn't lost on the panel either. Speaking of Merkin, Ackman said "I think he is an honest person, an intelligent person, an interesting person, a smart investor."
Even though Woody Allen was absent to provide comic relief, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, summarized the situation eloquently "We are all concerned to go on a miserable and cold night to talk about it. That's what we Jews do. We don't sit home and stew".
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