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I happened to catch about 15 seconds on Anderson Cooper on CNN tonight, in the middle of the ongoing story on the Bernie Madoff Ponzi Scheme, which we're all reading and hearing about in the MSM over the past few days: here,  here, and here.

But, the real story, at least as far as the Progressive blogosphere's concerned, is that Madoff's crimes have resulted in the virtual evisceration of hundreds of the very best, privately-funded social programs in the U.S. and throughout the world.

Madoff, single-handedly, has done more harm to the Progressive cause than almost anyone yet realizes. And, that's because The JEHT Foundation, one of the leading providers of grants for all things Progressive, has just abruptly announced they're shutting their doors at the end of January as a result of having come to the realization that they've lost virtually all their money because it was all under Madoff's management.

Of course, it's easy to blame Madoff.  And, I'd like nothing more than for this guy to be taken out back and shot. But, I have to ask: What about the total lack of regulatory supervision that occurred as far as all of this was concerned? The extent to which our markets have gone completely unsupervised under the Bush Administration is beyond the pale! (I'll save that rant for another time. And, despite the title of this diary, the reality is that Bernie Madoff now belongs on the list of "All-time Progressive Enemies;" but George W. Bush still lays claim to the top spot on it.)

You might ask: What is The JEHT Foundation?

Think: Amnesty International, the ACLU, Center for International Environmental Law, Center for Constitutional Rights, Human Rights Watch,  Physicians for Human Rights, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, Center for Public Integrity, Center for Investigative Reporting....the list just goes on and on!


The JEHT Foundation was established in April 2000. Its name stands for the core values that
underlie the Foundation's mission: Justice, Equality, Human dignity, and Tolerance. The Foundation's programs, in Criminal Justice, Juvenile Justice, International Justice, and Fair and Participatory Elections, reflect these interests and values.

Criminal Justice
The Criminal Justice Program works to reduce levels of incarceration in the U.S. while protecting public safety; easing the financial burden to society of criminal justice systems; and ensuring that adults who come into contact with the justice system are fairly and appropriately treated and have a better chance of success upon re-entry.

Juvenile Justice
The Juvenile Justice Program works to reduce the unnecessary detention and incarceration of youth in the U.S. while protecting public safety; easing the financial burden to society of juvenile justice systems; and ensuring that juveniles who come into contact with the justice system are fairly and appropriately treated and have a better chance of success into adulthood.

International Justice
The International Justice Program seeks to promote U.S. adherence to the international rule of law and the engagement of key stakeholders in and outside of government to this end.

Fair and Participatory Elections
The Fair and Participatory Elections Program seeks to improve the voting process by promoting best practices and reducing barriers to voting. The Program also seeks to enhance fair representation and competitive elections and to strengthen government transparency and responsiveness.

"Statement of Robert Crane, President of the JEHT Foundation, on behalf of the Foundation's Board of Directors:"


Statement of Robert Crane, President of the JEHT Foundation, on behalf of the Foundation's Board of Directors
Posted under General News on Monday, December 15, 2008

The JEHT Foundation, a national philanthropic organization, has stopped all grant making effective immediately and will close its doors at the end of January 2009. The funds of the donors to the Foundation, Jeanne Levy-Church and Kenneth Levy-Church, were managed by Bernard L. Madoff, a prominent financial advisor who was arrested last week for defrauding investors out of billions of dollars.

The Foundation was established in 2000. Its name stands for the values it holds dear: Justice, Equality, Human dignity and Tolerance. It supported programs that promoted reform of the criminal and juvenile justice systems; ensured that the United States adhered to the international rule of law; and work to improve the voting process by enhancing fair representation, competitive elections and government transparency.

The JEHT Foundation Board deeply regrets that the important work that the Foundation has undertaken over the years is ending so abruptly. The issues the Foundation addressed received very limited philanthropic support and the loss of the foundation's funding and leadership will cause significant pain and disruption of the work for many dedicated people and organizations. The Foundation's programs have met with significant success in recent years - promoting change in these critical areas in partnership with government and the non-profit sector. Hopefully others will look closely at this work and consider supporting it going forward.

Contact:
Robert Crane, President and CEO
JEHT Foundation
212-965-0400

Here's a list of the JEHT Foundation's active grants, virtually all of which will be cancelled over the next 45 days:

JEHT FOUNDATION INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE GRANTS

List of active international justice grants of the JEHT Foundation:
(I'm assuming that all active grants on this list, with millions of dollars yet to be distributed, will be cancelled.)

Organization Name--Amount of Grant--Year Grant Was Made--Duration of Grant

$15,000 2004 1 year Advocates for Environmental Human Rights $450,000 2005 3 years
Altus Global Alliance $300,000 2004 18 months
American Civil Liberties Union Foudation $600,000 2006 3 years
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation $500,000 2004 1 year
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation $350,000 2004 2 years
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation $300,000 2007 1 year
American Public Media $80,000 2007 1 year
American Society of International Law $151,800 2005 18 months
American Society of International Law $140,500 2007 18 months
American Society of International Law $125,000 2008 1 year
American University, Washington College of Law, War Crime Research Office $103,000 2004 1 year
American University: Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law $83,365 2005 9 months
Americans for Informed Democracy $10,000 2006 3 months
Americans for Informed Democracy $65,500 2007 1 year
Amnesty International USA $250,000 2004 1 year
Amnesty International USA $300,000 2007 1 year
Amnesty International USA $250,000 2004 1 year
Amnesty International USA $1,000,000 2005 3 years
Aspen Institute $160,000 2005 1 year
Aspen Institute $324,570 2006 2 years
Brandeis University: The International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life (ICEJP) $600,000 2005 3 years
Brandeis University: The International Center for Ethics, Justice, and Public Life $600,000 2008 3 years
Business and Human Rights Resource Center $100,000 2006 2 years
Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict $150,000 2006 3 years
Center for Constitutional Rights $325,000 2007 2 years
Center for Constitutional Rights $37,500 2004 4 months
Center for International Environmental Law $600,000 2006 3 years
Center for Investigative Reporting $300,000 2006 1 year
Center for Justice and Accountability $450,000 2006 3 years
Center for Public Integrity $316,000 2005 1 year
Center for Public Integrity $900,000 2008 3 years
Center for Public Integrity $107,000 2007 6 months
Citizens for Global Solutions $250,000 2006 1 year
Coalition for International Justice $75,000 2004 1 year
Coalition for International Justice $60,000 2005 6 months
Columbia Law School: Human Rights Institute $90,000 2006 1 year
Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro $150,000 2004 2 years
Crimes of War Project $60,000 2004 1 year Crimes of War Project $23,400 2007 2 months
Crimes of War Project $60,000 2005 1 year Crimes of War Project $200,000 2008 2 years
ETV Endowment of South Carolina: Hedrick Smith Productions $75,000 2005 3 months
EarthRights International $200,000 2005 2 years
EarthRights International $325,000 2008 2 years
European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights $49,600 2007 1 month
Harvard Law School: International Human Rights Clinic $43,261 2006 7 months
Harvard Law School: International Human Rights Clinic $118,000 2008 1 year
Harvard University: Program on Criminal Justice Policy and Management, Kennedy School of Government $768,739 2005 3 years
Heartland Human Care Services, Inc.: National Immigrant Justice Center $720,000 2008 3 years
Human Rights First $100,000 2002 7 months
Human Rights First $1,500,000 2005 3 years
Human Rights First $350,000 2004 1 year
Human Rights Watch $225,000 2002 1 year
Human Rights Watch $250,000 2004 1 year
Human Rights Watch $500,000 2005 2 years
Human Rights Watch $1,000,000 2007 3 years
Human Rights Watch $172,500 2007 1 year
Interights $600,000 2006 3 years
International Bar Association $29,729 2005 6 months
International Center for Transitional Justice $150,000 2005 1 year
International Judicial Academy $205,000 2006 4 years
International Judicial Academy $234,000 2008 3 years
International Labor Rights Fund $100,000 2007 6 months
Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights $300,000 2006 1 year
Nation Institute $50,000 2007 3 months
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers $250,000 2004 1 year
National Institute of Military Justice $510,000 2007 3 years
National Security Archive $110,000 2006 2 years
National Security Archive Fund, Inc. $200,000 2008 10 months
New York University Center for Human Rights and Global Justice $130,000 2007 1 year
New York University Center for Human Rights and Global Justice $130,000 2007 1 year
New York University School of Law: Center on Law and Security $$75,000 2006 14 months
New York University, Center on International Cooperation: Project on International Courts and Tribunals $160,000 2004 18 months
New York University: Center for Human Rights and Global Justice $160,000 2005 2 years
Physicians for Human Rights $350,000 2006 2 years
Physicians for Human Rights $350,000 2008 2 years
Physicians for Human Rights $233,000 2005 2 years
Physicians for Human Rights $260,000 2005 18 months
Physicians for Human Rights $209,850 2006 1 year
Program on International Policy Attitudes $5,543 2005 1 month
Program on International Policy Attitudes $150,000 2005 1 year
Proteus Fund, Inc. $120,000 2004 1 year Reprieve $63,700 2006 6 months
Reprieve $400,000 2007 2 years
The American Prospect $132,500 2004 10 months
The Center for Justice and Accountability $100,000 2005 6 months
University of Minnesota Human Rights Center $175,000 2007 1 year
University of Notre Dame Law School: Center for Civil and Human Rights $176,825 2003 1 year
University of Texas School of Law $25,344 2003 4 months
Vera Institute of Justice $250,000 2004 1 year
Vera Institute of Justice $250,000 2005 1 year
WITNESS, Brooklyn, NY $75,000 2006 4 months
Yale Law School $120,000 2007 1 year
Yale University Law School, Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic $50,000 2004 1 year

JEHT FOUNDATION CRIMINAL JUSTICE GRANTS

List of active criminal justice grants of the JEHT Foundation which will now be cancelled:
(I'm assuming that all active grants on this list, with millions of dollars yet to be distributed, will be cancelled.)

Organization Name--Amount of Grant--Year Grant Was Made--Duration of Grant

American Civil Liberties Union Foundation $180,000 2006 1 year
American Prosecutors Research Institute $183,687 2005 15 months
Association of Paroling Authorities International $35,000 2006 4 months
Association of Paroling Authorities, International $200,000 2007 16 months
Association of Paroling Authorities, International $200,000 2007 16 months
Baptist Community Ministries $390,000 2008 8 months
Bazelon Center for Mental Health $493,162 2005 2 years
Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law $25,000 2006 8 months
Brown University: Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies $355,937 2006 18 months
California Commission for the Fair Administration of Justice $57,500 2006 1 year
Cascade Center for Community Governance $382,750 2006 18 months
Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services $360,000 2008 2 Years
Center for Effective Public Policy $268,000 2008 6 months
Center for Effective Public Policy $45,000 2008 1 year
Center for Effective Public Policy $500,000 2005 2 years
Center for Effective Public Policy $24,198 2006 6 months
Center for Effective Public Policy $50,000 2006  7 months
Center for Effective Public Policy $163,500 2007 1 year
Center for Employment Opportunities $350,000 2005 3 years
Center for Traumatic Grief and Victim Services $75,000 2006 2 years
Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice $30,000 2006 9 months
Chicago Metropolis 2020 $65,150 2006 1 year
Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending $490,000 2004 3 years
City of Providence $197,000 2007 3 years
Colorado Department of Corrections $321,500 2007 12 months
Community Foundation of North Florida, Inc. $200,000 2007 6 months
Community Foundation of Southeast Michigan $510,000 2007 18 months
Corporation for Supportive Housing $643,500 2008 15 months
Corporation for Supportive Housing $251,000 2008 30 months
Corporation for Supportive Housing $150,000 2006 1 year
Council of Michigan Foundations $20,000 2006 1 year
Council on Crime and Justice $265,310 2007 18 months
Dallas County District Attorney's Office $454,000 2008 24 months
Death Penalty Information Center $125,000 2007 12 months
Drug Policy Alliance $750,000 2004 3 years
Families Against Mandatory Minimums $500,000 2006 2 years
Family Justice $30,000 2007 4 months
Fight Crimes: Invest in Kids $250,000 2007 2 years
Florida Justice Institute $52,000 2007 2 years
Florida Partners in Crisis, Inc. $125,000 2008 1 year
FrameWorks Institute $270,000 2003 2 years
Georgia State University Research Foundation $477,132 2006 2 years
Grand Rapids Community Foundation $205,000 2006 1 year
Immigrant Legal Resource Center $200,000 2004 2 years
Immigrant Legal Resource Center $25,000 2006 1 year
Innocence Project $2,400,000 2004 3.5 years
Innocence Project $2,250,000 2008 36 months
Institute for Social and Environmental Justice Education $61,680 2006 6 months
Intermountain Harm Reduction Project $35,000 2006 1 year
Job Opportunities Task Force $231,000 2007 24 months
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Center for Modern Forensic Practice $249,000 2008 12 months
Kansas Department of Corrections $450,000 2006 1 year
Kansas Department of Corrections $4,670,000 2006 3 years
Local Initiatives Support Corporation $592,000 2005 2 years
Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute $156,000 2007 1 year
MDRC $1,097,143 2006 4 years
Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County $300,000 2005 2 years
Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency $300,000 2008 8 months
Michigan Public Health Institute $334,300 2007 5 months
Michigan Public Health Institute $197,154 2007 2 months
Michigan Public Health Institute $280,000 2007 5 months
Missouri Department of Corrections $240,300 2008 12 months
National Center for Youth Law $204,000 2008 8 months
National Commission on Correctional Health Care $451,500 2003 3 years
National Employment Law Project $90,000 2006 18 months
National Governors Association $400,000 2005 2 years
National Housing Law Project $50,000 2006 6 months
New Jersey Association on Correction $90,000 2006 1 year
New Jersey Institute for Social Justice $450,000 2004 3 years
Pacific News Service $50,000 2006 1 year
Police Foundation $353,000 2008 28 months
Positive Health Program $264,999 2006 1 year
Pretrial Justice Institute $300,000 2007 12months
Pretrial Justice Institute $193,000 2007 12months
Pretrial Services Resource Center $343,528 2006 1 year
Pro Bono Net $50,000 2006 6 months
Public Policy Associates $67,500 2007 9 months
Public Policy Associates $1,694,914 2005 30 months
Rhode Island Family Life Center $512,014 2007 24 months
Rutgers University $236,554 2006 2 years
Stop Prisoner Rape $300,000.00 2008 2 years
Texas Defender Service $280,000 2006 2 years
The American Judicature Society $700,000 2007 18 months
The Defender Association $271,510 2006 18 months
The Institute $156,000 2004 2 years
The Sentencing Project $350,000 2006 1 year
The Urban Institute $112,986 2006 1 year
Tides Foundation $120,000 2004 18 months
Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse $283,000 2005 2 years
University of California, Berkeley School of Law $500,000 2007 1 year
University of California, Berkeley School of Law $296,600 2007 3 years
University of Missouri - St. Louis $$226,700 2008 16 months
University of Pennsylvania, School of Social Work $117,500 2007 1 year
Urban Institute $98,000 2007 9 months
Vera Institute of Justice $500,000 2007 24 months
Vera Institute of Justice $500,000 2007 30 months
Vera Institute of Justice $600,000 2007 24 months
Vera Institute of Justice $500,000 2005 2 years
Vera Institute of Justice $900,000 2004 3 years
Vera Institute of Justice $38,400 2005 1 year
Vera Institute of Justice $75,000 2007 3 months
Volunteers of America $500,000 2003 4 years
WISDOM $71,500 2007 15 months
Western Prison Project $200,000 2005 2 years
Western Prison Project $63,400 2006 9 months
Wisconsin Court System, Director of State Courts Office $573,000 2007 3 years
Women's Prison Association & Home, Inc $150,000 2007 2 years
Women's Prison Association & Home, Inc. $150,000 2007 1 year

JEHT FOUNDATION JUVENILE JUSTICE GRANTS
(I'm assuming that all active grants on this list, with millions of dollars yet to be distributed, will be cancelled.)

List of active juvenile justice grants of the JEHT Foundation:


Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore, MD
aecf.org
Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative

The Annie E. Casey Foundation seeks to foster public policies, human service reforms, and community supports that more effectively meet the needs of today's vulnerable children and families. In 1992, it launched the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative program, a multi-year, multi-site project designed to demonstrate that jurisdictions can safely reduce reliance on secure detention. The Initiative works with system leaders across agencies to create better options for young people who do not require incarceration. This grant supports the expansion of this work.
Amount: $2,500,000
Year Made: 2005
Duration: 3 years

Center for Children's Law and Policy, Washington, D.C.
The Congress Project

The Center is a public interest law and policy organization focused on reforming systems that affect troubled and at-risk children. This grant supports building the capacity of juvenile justice advocates and stakeholders to support the reauthorization of the Juvenile Justice and Accountability Act and to promote other federal policy reform.
Amount: $280,399
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 18 months

Center for Public Representation, Northhampton, MA
centerforpublicrep.org
Juvenile Justice Advocacy and Support Project

The Center for Public Representation (CPR) is a public interest law firm that works on behalf of people with disabilities in communities and institutional settings. This grant supports CPR's work with "Protection and Advocacy" agencies, a network of federally funded legal advocacy organizations in all 50 states, empowered by Congress to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. CPR's work with P&A's aims to improve services for youth in custody, but CPR's ultimate goal is to encourage justice agencies to press for the diversion of young people with disabilities into community based programs.
Amount: $718,320
Year Made: 2007
Duration: 3 years

Commonweal, Bolinas, CA
commonweal.org
Youth Corrections Policy Reform in California

Founded in 1976, Commonweal is a California-based research institute with programs dedicated to children and families, health, and the environment. It established a Juvenile Justice Program in 1982. This grant supports the Juvenile Justice Program's efforts to reduce the number of juveniles detained at the California Division of Juvenile Justice and promote restructuring of parole and reentry services.
Amount: $100,000
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 2 years

Connecticut Juvenile Justice Alliance, Bridgeport, CT
ctjja.org
Regional Youth/Adult Substance Abuse Program

Formed in 2001, the Alliance's mission is to promote a safe, effective, and equitable system of services designed to meet the needs of children and adolescents in or at-risk or becoming involved in the juvenile justice system. This grant supports the Alliance's efforts to advocate systemic reforms on the issues of disproportionate minority contact, adult waiver, and the decriminalization of youth.
Amount: $200,000
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 2 years

Equal Justice Initiative, Montgomery, AL
eji.org
Challenging Death in Prison Sentences for Children

Founded in 1995, Equal Justice Initiative is a private nonprofit law organization focused on U.S. criminal justice reform. This grant supports a new program working to reduce sentences of life without parole for crimes committed by 13- and 14-year olds and to establish new Eighth Amendment jurisprudence declaring such sentences to be cruel and unusual punishment and therefore unconstitutional.
Amount: $500,000
Year Made: 2007
Duration: 1 year

Juvenile Justice Initiative, Springfield, IL
jjustice.org

Founded in 2000, this statewide coalition includes state and local organizations, advocacy groups, legal educators, community service providers, and child advocates. The organization is dedicated to reforming the juvenile justice system by reducing Illinois' reliance on incarceration, promoting fairness for youth and developing an adequate range of community-based resources. This grant provides general operating support.
Amount: $300,000
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 2 years

Juvenile Law Center, Philadelphia, PA
JLC.org

The Center is a public interest law firm dedicated to protecting and advancing children's rights in the public welfare and juvenile justice system. This grant provides operating support to deepen the Center's state-based work moving Pennsylvania toward policies and practices informed by principles of adolescent development.
Amount: $150,000
Year Made: 2007
Duration: 1 year

Mental Health Association of Greater Houston, Houston, TX
mhahouston.org
Operation Redirect: Building a Safety Network for Our Youth

The Mental Health Association of Greater Houston is dedicated to promoting mental health and improving the care and treatment of persons living with mental illness. This grant, together with other private and public funds, supports the launch of a comprehensive system of services and interventions designed to keep youth with mental health needs out of the juvenile justice system.
Amount: $500,000
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 2 years

Santa Clara Probation Department, San Jose, CA
sccgov.org
Ranch Enhancement Program Phase II

The Santa Clara Department of Probation provides a wide range of administrative, court, investigative, detention, and supervision services for youth and adults. This grant augments county funds to hire the Missouri Youth Services Institute to support the development and state certification of a new training curriculum for the Department.
Amount: $162,600
Year Made: 2008
Duration: 1 year

The Correctional Association of New York, New York, NY
correctionalassociation.org
Juvenile Justice Project: Campaign to Close Youth Jails

The Correctional Association of New York is a non-profit organization advocating for a fair and humane justice system. This grant funds the Association's efforts to support New York State's Office of Children and Family Services to close six detention facilities and reinvest the savings in community-based and alternative-to-incarceration programs.
Amount: $12,500
Year Made: 2008
Duration: 4 months

University of San Francisco Law School, San Francisco, CA
usfca.edu/law
End Juvenile Life Without Parole Project

This grant supports the Law School's Human Rights Clinic to lay the groundwork for a ban on juvenile life without parole, by strengthening opposition to its use in human rights forums, and subsequently using this opposition in litigation to advocate for an end to the practice in the United States.
Amount: $159,900
Year Made: 2006
Duration: 2 years

Vera Institute of Justice, New York, NY
vera.org
Juvenile Pre-Trial Services Planning Project

This grant supports a planning process for the implementation of a demonstration project to effect comprehensive reform of detention practices in New York City. The project will include family outreach, application of the risk assessment screening to match young people with appropriate alternative programs, and collecting juvenile justice data in a central location.
Amount: $80,000
Year Made: 2007
Duration: 27 months

YouthBuild USA, Somerville, MA

youthbuild.org
Criminal Justice Reform Initiative

YouthBuild USA is a national program that provides education, counseling, and job skills to unemployed youth. The organization is comprised of a network of 225 local YouthBuild programs serving about 8,000 youth annually. This grant allows YouthBuild to provide technical assistance to nine state coalitions to advocate for increased state-level funding to expand services for court-involved youth.
Amount: $275,000
Year Made: 2007
Duration: 2 years

JEHT FOUNDATION GRANTS FOR FAIR AND PARTICIPATORY ELECTIONS

"Pew Center on the States and the JEHT Foundation Award $2.5 Million to Improve U.S. Elections."


"In 2008, the JEHT Foundation partnered with the Pew Center and the Pew Charitable Trusts to deliver $2.5 million in support of their "Make Voting Work Initiative" to improve voter registration systems, polling place access,  and poll worker training and on election audits and performance assessment."

The program focused upon "Voter Registration Assessment" ($669,000),  "Vote Centers"--to study ways to improve overcrowded, inconveniently located and poorly designed polling places ($568,000),  "Audits of Elections" ($467,000),  "Online Training for Poll Workers" ($318,000),  and "Election Performance Assessment" ($465,000). Key locations targeted for these studies included selected counties in: Indiana, Colorado, New Mexico, Florida, and many other areas that ended up being quite critical with regard to the outcome of the national election early last month.

Originally posted to http://www.dailykos.com/user/bobswern on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 01:38 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip! And, may god help us fellow Progressives! nt (20+ / 0-)

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 01:43:19 AM PST

  •  Pity the Mormon Church did not have (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mollyd, G2geek, tovan, Naniboujou, bobswern

    a large account with Madoff.

    I voted with my feet. Good Bye and Good Luck America!!

    by shann on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 01:53:05 AM PST

    •  Wonder if that's pronounced (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bobswern, luckylizard

      as "made off."  In which case, perhaps the name was a motivation. Madoff made off with other people's money.

      The ethical justification?  Well, we've got a long tradition of considering the accumulation of wealth a sign of greed and greed, being a moral failing, the greedy are perceived to deserve being ripped off.

      I suppose that since Madoff made his targets beg to be let into the magic circle, there's a bit of psychological abuse involved.  Or maybe even a bit of sadism.

      The bigger problem is that instead of holding the stewards of assets to a higher standard of prudent management than they apply to what they own, it has become rather standard to assume that other people's money is theirs to lose.

      How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

      by hannah on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 02:48:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I want to know why he did something (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bobswern

    so despicable.  And where did the money go?  Just saying ponzi scheme doesn't cover it.  Who profited?  Until we know that, we may never know why.

    The Bush Legacy Project: Mission Impossible

    by tovan on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 02:19:41 AM PST

    •  Now that I think about it, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bobswern, luckylizard

      given the stunning list of progressive projects and causes that will be descimated by this crime ... could that have been the point of the entire scheme?  

      God knows, the conservatives and Bush adminstration have, with the willing aid of Wall Street, gone on a crime wave of thievery on a scale never seen before in history.  If they knew or suspected Madoff was ripping off funding for progressive causes, would they have stopped him, allowed him to continue, or aided and abetted?  And smirked.

      The Bush Legacy Project: Mission Impossible

      by tovan on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 02:50:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think he just pillaged everyone, actually. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tovan, luckylizard, Jon Says

        But, Madoff was active in Democratic circles, apparently (what I've heard third- and fourth-hand, anyhow).

        Pissing away $50 billion...I mean, that must really take some effort, now?

        Then again, if our elected officials can spend a trillion bucks in one night (i.e.: the bailout), I guess $50 billion over a few years is child's play.

        "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

        by bobswern on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 02:55:42 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I think he fleeced everyone (4+ / 0-)

          who handed him any money at all.  He had access to things like the JEHT Foundation, but I don't get the sense that he had any ideological agenda.

          As for the 'where did the money go' question -- probably the money never existed.  It was paper profits.  Kind of like when you're told that your house, for which you paid $185,000, is now worth $530,000.  That's only real money if you sell the house for $530K (or take home-equity loans against it, as so many did); otherwise, it's just a paper profit.  And when the housing bubble bursts, and your house is suddenly worth only $200,000, that doesn't rock your world unless you did think that the $530K was real money (and borrowed against it).

          Madoff's clients got account statements showing that their $100,000 investment was now worth $500,000, but there wasn't any real money behind those statements.

          "It's not getting any smarter out there. You have to come to terms with stupidity, and make it work for you." (Frank Zappa)

          by cinnamondog on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 04:13:25 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, yes, but the original $100k (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cinnamondog

            was real, insofar as any money is ever real.  And the endowment funds from the JEHT Foundation were real.  I gather quite a few people gave him real money to invest.  

            So I suppose my doubt is, where did that money go?  Did he redistribute it all, selectively distribute it, or sock it away in offshore accounts?  Or all of the above?  And, still, why?  WHY?

            The Bush Legacy Project: Mission Impossible

            by tovan on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 04:21:58 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Oh, gotcha! Sorry, I posted before (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              tovan

              I read -- my bad.

              Yes, he got a hell of a lot of money from all those people and institutions.  When the disposition of that is discovered/revealed, it will make for some horrific reading.

              I am old enough (52) to remember when having one's mind boggled was an event that occurred maybe every couple of years.  Now it seems like it's occurring every WEEK.  We need recovery time between bogglements, but we get none.

              "It's not getting any smarter out there. You have to come to terms with stupidity, and make it work for you." (Frank Zappa)

              by cinnamondog on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 05:18:12 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  the REAL question: Where'd the money go?? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                tovan

                And you can count on the fact that many lawyers will make it their careers to find out.
                the moe y we're talkiing about isn't paper interest or inflated evaluations but the actual money people gave hi to invest.
                This is the real question because its going to settle who gets how much at the fire sale. Are there still assets to recover? Well, $50 billion is  a whole lot just  to put up your nose--I'd suspect a lot of it is still recoverable.
                We don't know exactly how the whole thing worked but surely at least part of it involved taking money to buy securites or whatever, then NOT buying those secirites but saying he did. Madoff eveidently gave good monthly statements---evidently  based on thin air.
                One thing you can bet on---he wasn't the only one working on the scam---It's just too big an amount. One guy couldn't have done it all: all the falsifications and bogus paperwork. there has to be other people in on it.
                Also he must have been making SOME investments to keep paying people off for as long as he did. This is what the  career-minded attorneys will be working on.

                If Liberals really hated America we'd vote Republican

                by exlrrp on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 07:03:59 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I heard of Savage that Madoff (0+ / 0-)

          was active donor to Democratic causes. He provided no references or examples to his statement and I did not take him seriously.

          Does anyone know more who'd care to say?

    •  The Madoff Redemption (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cinnamondog, tovan, Halcyon

      I'd bet that the loot is squirreled away in Swiss bank accounts, hedge fund islands, etc. It remains to be disclosed (if it ever will be) what Madoff actually did with the investments he received over the years. He claims to have used a "split strike conversion" strategy which involved S&P100 stocks and associated options, but analysis of the S&P100 market, which isn't huge, indicates that there wasn't enough volume there to account for what Madoff would have allegedly traded. Why the SEC didn't pick up on that red flag is another question.

      So it could have been just a huge slush fund where some selected people profited immensely by redemptions over the years. This year alone he was facing something like $7 billion in redemptions, which is how the scheme actually was exposed. So, what assets there were just bled out rapidly. It remains to be seen if these redeemers knew what was up, and if so, they could be culpable and forced to surrender the money, although they may have enough time to sock their ill-gotten gains away too where the courts can't find it.

  •  If our public corporations (governments) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Halcyon

    were functioning correctly, there would be no need for private eleemosynary foundations and institutions.  The goods and services to which our people are entitled by virtue of their human rights would be provided for from the public treasury and there would be no need for charity.

    Besides, much of the funding of these eleemosynary enterprises is prompted by a desire not to have the disposition of wealth managed via the internal revenue system, but rather to distribute assets according to personal preference.  Why should rich people get to pick and choose whom their money helps, rather than having it distributed equitably?

    Charity sucks.

    How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

    by hannah on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 02:39:14 AM PST

  •  Tie him up and flog him in the city square and (0+ / 0-)

    show it on TV all over the world

    Too frequent rewards signify that the enemy is at the end of his resources; too many punishments betray a condition of dire distress.

    by publicv on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 05:25:20 AM PST

  •  Feds stepping up (0+ / 0-)

    Many of these orgs that were funded by JEHT were funded by pre-1995, pre-Contract on America,  by the federal gov't (such as EJI & TDS). I'd love to see the dems step-up and re-fund these orgs the way they did in 1994. The orgs have proven they are viable without gov't funds, so there is no reason to believe they are being run ineffectually.

    "Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living."

    by Kwyjibo on Sun Dec 21, 2008 at 08:10:59 PM PST

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