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In December of 2008, former NASDAQ Chairman Bernard L. Madoff’s multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme collapsed under the weight of client redemptions spurred by the financial crisis of 2007–2009. The story of Madoff’s devastating fiction seized international attention until his sentencing to 150 years. However, the Madoff Trustee’s clawback suits, which make claims on how fictitious profits should be treated—continues to be overlooked by the public and scholars. This paper argues for their significance to the very ideological bulwarking of finance capital in the twentyfirst century by providing a Marxist reading of these suits and their outcomes. The author applies insights from Capital Volumes II and III, while situating the suits and the debates surrounding their use within the cultural logic of capitalism in the twenty-first century. This logic, as shown through clawback suits, is more and more willing to consciously and brazenly embrace the obliteration of lines between Marx’s concept of fictitious capital and real capital.
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- The Final Fiction: Madoff Clawback Suits and Their Implications for Capitalism in the Twenty-First Century
Colleen P. Eren
- Chapter 12
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