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Posts Tagged ‘Ivan Boesky

You can lead a man to knowledge…

… but you can’t make him think.


There is enough iron in a human being to make one small nail.

A raisin dropped in a glass of fresh champagne will bounce up and down continuously from the bottom of the glass to the top.

Rapper Ice Cube’s real name is O’Shea Jackson.

There are 336 dimples in a regulation golf ball.

Readers can recharge with hundreds of other fatuous facts at Unnecessary Knowledge.

Episteme, the personification of knowledge, at the Celsus Library (source)


As we perfect our impersonations of Mr. Nigel-Murray, we might recall that it was on this date in 1986 that Ivan Boesky copped a plea, accepting a $100 million dollar fine for insider trading– he confessed to making $200 million trading illegally on inside information–  and agreeing to cooperate with prosecutors in rolling up the nationwide network of nods-and-winks that had fueled the Wall Street boom of the 80s.  Among those caught in the subsequent round-up was Junk Bond king Michael Milken, who was indicted on 98 counts of racketeering and fraud, and pled guilty to six.  Milken’s fines and payments-in-restitution totaled over $1 billion.  Boesky served 22 months of a three year sentence in Federal prison.  Milken was sentenced to 10 years; but served only 19 months.

Boesky (top), Milken on their ways into the courthouse (source)

When I’m good…


Your correspondent imagines that readers have envied, as he has, the rakish sashes worn by Boy and Girl Scouts the world over– and more, the little round “emblems of competence,” the Merit Badges, with which they are bedecked.  How satisfying it would be be to advertise one’s accomplishments as one walked about!  And how gratifying to do it so much specifically than can a fancy watch or a ridiculously-expensive handbag!

Well, Dear Readers, our time has come.  Thanks to the good folks at Merit Badger, one can advertise skills and achievements in such arenas as:

Learning From Mistakes


Having No Outstanding Library Fines

Readers can visit Merit Badger to outfit themselves.

As we try to remember over which shoulder we wear the thing, we might recall that it was on this date in 1982 that arbitrageur Ivan Boesky offered Martin Siegel, a mergers-and-acquisitions executive at Kidder, Peabody & Co., a job.   Siegel declined, and Boesky then suggested that if Siegel would supply him with early inside information on upcoming mergers there would be something in it for him.

Boesky turned Siegel’s tips into profits (one example: he made over $28 million trading Carnation stock on insider info) until 1986, when the Feds arrested dozens on Wall Street for insider and related trading violations.  Boesky was convicted and sentenced to 3 years– a lighter punishment than Michael Milken’s 10 years, but still much more than Siegel’s:  as one of the few cooperating witnesses, and the only one who showed any remorse, Siegel was allowed simply to repay the $9 million he’d received from Boesky.

The 1986 case(s) were the largest stock manipulation scheme prosecuted at the time…  and may still be, though the full dimensions of the pending Galleon case are not yet known.



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