Bernie and the Blowhard


A report once filed by the SEC about BLM Securities noted that Bernie Madoff was a "wonderful storyteller," and now he's putting that skill to good use: by telling stories about the SEC. The most entertaining portion of the report released by SEC overseer David Komansky last Friday are Bernie's vivid stories of his interactions with William Ostrow, an agency examiner.

Like the time Ostrow came into his office and started asking him questions about a report in MARHedge that was skeptical of Bernie's returns.

Bernie recounted:

WO: "So tell me about this article." (Leaning back with his hands behind his head "like Lieutenant Colombo.")
BM: "What about it?"
(Madoff stated that Ostrow was "acting as if I didn't do this business.")
BM: "Lori Richards has a whole file I sent her with this info. They have it."
WO: "Well, it's a big organization; we don't talk to each other."

In general, Madoff said, Ostrow was just kind of a dick. Power-mad, you know? Like one of those mall cops, or a power-mad crossing guard.

Madoff stated that Ostrow "was very cryptic." Madoff stated that Ostrow was "doing things that made no sense to us at all." He added that Ostrow was a "total asshole."
He said Ostrow "was an idiot," citing Ostrow's repeated requests for computer runs, which would take eight hours to run off. Madoff stated, "I almost came to blows with him." Madoff also characterized Ostrow as a "blowhard" who acted aggressively and was not intimidated by Madoff. He noted that Ostrow "talked tough, but didn't look at anything."

Oh, and there was the jacket. Jesus Christ, the jacket:

Madoff indicated that Ostrow was an "obnoxious guy," and noted that Ostrow wore an SEC jacket with the word "Enforcement" emblazoned across the back. Madoff stated that Ostrow wore this jacket in the BLM offices, as well as while going in and out of the building. Madoff also stated that this jacket "caused an uproar" in the BLM offices, and that it did not look good to have someone walking through the building with a jacket such as that.

Ugh, yeah, that was really jerky of Ostrow, to make everyone all suspicious, when after all the guy was just trying to run a business — wait, who's the villain here again?

Exhibit 0104 [SEC via WSJ]