Living and life
Considering Bernie Madoff
This could be off the wall but still I'll still put it out there. There are some lessons even a Mr. Bernie Madoff can give to some of us. True, he scammed people for 50 billion dollars. He wrecked others' lives as well as his own. His two sons are dead. He mislead, lied and cheated, something every 7 year old knows not to do. He is in prison. Mob justice would have him dead.
So what am I talking about? I think Bernie Madoff knew how to make himself content. I think he knew how to meet his needs, create a world and tinker with it, making it his own playpen. Many of us never had this skill. We were not comfortable in our own skins. We served what was bigger than us, the schools, the institutions, our parents, principles and paradigms but we never served ourselves. We were sacrifices to the world or this or that cause. But we never knew how to meet our own needs. We discovered this later, much later, when all that's left was in a damage control mode.
I read Bernie Madoff was a lifeguard in Florida. Not a bad gig for observing how things work. There was much eye candy around and it gave him some importance. . He could observe the scene and see how things worked from his high poach. He saw the human sharks and the real ones. He must have been comfortable with his physical appearance for lifeguards are on display.
Later, when in full bloom, he made Wall Street his toy. He played with them, played the system, and like a kid in a playpen, said I want that and nobody said no. Later, after being caught, he said, to paraphrase 'All of wall street is ponzi scheme.' I don't think Bernie acted out of revenge, or to get even. I just think he liked to play, get what he wanted, and had fun doing it a quicker way. He made it his own boardgame.
When indited we all saw a video of Bernie being escorted to court or somewhere else while scoffers and press hounded him as he emerged out of his car. His fists were raised in defiance, ready to go at it. He was a ninja warrior. Instead of being on his knees begging forgiveness and humbled by remorse, Bernie turned to grade B movie heroes and chose to fight his way out of this. He saw a threat to his world and would strike back. He would defend himself. He was still in charge. It was still him against the world and there was no humility.
Then in prison I read that he was relatively okay. Instead of being raped and pummeled as many would have hoped, he was popular with other prisoners. After all, he was king of the con men. He would enjoy his meals and chatting with other aging goats about the love affairs of fellow inmates soap opera style. It passed the time and Bernie again made his situation work. He survived, met his needs with what the world threw at him, whether he was right or wrong.
My experience, my take is that he had this sense of self contentment early from his mom. She met his needs and so it wasn't so much a stretch to have the world meet his needs. He knew what it felt like to feel good and complete so he knew what to fight for. He was allowed to be who he was, good or bad.
Ok, some of what I'm throwing out there is conjecture, true or not. Then what is my point? My point is the Bernie Madoff made the best out of every situations he was in. He knew how to survive and turn a negative situation into one that served him. He accepted the world as is and made it work. True, he had a warped consciousness and sense of right and wrong. Maybe, on a positive note, what can be taken away is that if the world is corrupt one should survive it as he did and have that serve one's innate sense of balance and good and justice as he had it serve his selfishness.