Investors Need to Shoulder Blame in Madoff Folly, Too

By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2009 5:30 PM CDT
Judith Welling, left center, who lost money investing with Bernard Madoff, talks to the media outside the courthouse yesterday.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – As dastardly as Bernard Madoff’s scam was, it’s hard not to pin some blame on the victims themselves, Joe Nocera writes in the New York Times. They shouldn’t have put all their eggs in one basket, no matter how promising it seemed: “Diversification has many virtues; one of them is that you won’t lose everything if one of your money managers turns out to be a crook.”

Nocera also takes issue with Elie Wiesel and other victims who say the Securities and Exchange Commission and other federal agencies should reimburse them for at least some fraction of their pain. “Investors blaming the SEC for their decision to give every last penny to Bernie Madoff,” he stews, “is like a child blaming his mother for letting him start a fight while she wasn’t looking.”