It was a tour de force of "me me me" without an ounce of remorse or an element of empathy.
Yet I saw in her son’s face an enormous amount of emotional pain. I took him at his word that Bernie Madoff used and betrayed his children.
The relationship with Andrew Madoff's fiancé is a little less clear. Why does anyone stay engaged for 3 years? No one does. No one does unless they want to protect their own assets from being swept up by the creditors still zeroing in on the Madoff’s remaining dough. And losing money that way means no more Botox of the kind that kept the poor woman’s face frozen in Upper East Side perfection throughout the interview. That happy couple had zero connection with one another. No hand touches. Bad body language. Phooey.
But now back to Ruth. Did I believe her? I didn’t care enough about her to care about her truth. She didn’t even know what a ponzi scheme was? Really? My teenager knows what one is. How can you be in the high finance world in Manhattan and not know what that broad term means, even if you don’t know that your own husband is the poster child for such fraud.
She tried to kill herself, but can’t recall with what? Or how much she took? Really?
She went to the U.S. Post Office on Christmas eve to mail a bunch of jewelry to her son. Really? She stood in line with the unwashed masses and probably hundreds of thousands of dollars in family heirlooms to mail, what, parcel post? First class? Insured? She had no friends, or even a courier service who could bike messenger that pouch over to Andrew’s apartment? Forgive me my cynicism.
I don’t know if it was the $300 ($500?) color job, the cashmere sweater and very expensive skin, or the nasal insouciance that turned me off more. Sure, Ruth was probably tranq-ed up the wazoo. And I probably would be too.
But what I never heard, once, from any of them, was how sorry they were for the people who were wiped out. Now, either Morley Safer didn’t ask that question, in which case shame on him. Or I simply didn't hear it. But had I been Mrs. Madoff ("what's the point in divorcing?") I’d have made sure that my feelings on the matter were included in the interview. Unless I was so darned self-centered that I couldn’t care less and I didn’t have any feelings.
And that’s essentially what I saw: you can take the girl out of the entitled, but you can’t take the entitled out of the girl. This interview was to sell one of two books designed to profit family members. I don’t care how you slice it. My thoughts remain with the folks who lost their funds to these frauds.