The Believers: How America Fell for Bernard Madoff's $65 Billion Investment Scam

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Orion Publishing, Sep 10, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 280 pages
It was in luxurious Palm Beach, by the manicured lawns and Olympic-sized swimming pool, that financier Bernard Madoff ravaged the world of philanthropy and high society he strove so hard to join; vaporizing the assets of charities, foundations, and individuals that had trusted him with their funds. It seems nothing was sacrosanct to Madoff, possibly the greatest con-man in history--even Elie Wiesel's foundation lost tens of millions. How could Madoff, a pillar of the Jewish community, do this to a Nobel Laureate and Auschwitz survivor? How could some of the most sophisticated and worldly people in America fall victim to a collective delusion for years? To answer these unsettling questions, this book opens up the clubbish world where Madoff operated, tracing the links from Palm Beach and the Hamptons to the clubs of Manhattan society. It details the network of relationships across which flows hundreds of millions of dollars, and shows how despite material success and acclaim, some human impulses remain eternal. It reveals how an underlying sense of insecurity still shapes some of the richest and most successful individuals in America, making them crave ever more status and peer acclaim.

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About the author (2009)

Adam LeBor is an author and journalist with more than 25 years experience who currently reports from Central Europe for the Times. His previous books include City of Oranges, Complicity with Evil, and Seduced by Hitler.