The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort
|The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort|
|Reviewer: Chris Bradshaw|
|Summary: Shady business dealing and industrial quantities of drugs. Oh and not forgetting sinking yachts, drunken helicopter flights and dwarf throwing. Welcome to the crazy world of Jordan Belfort.|
|Buy? No||Borrow? Maybe|
|Pages: 528||Date: December 2013|
|Publisher: Two Roads|
As if we didn't have enough excuses to appreciate the 'Masters of the Universe' of the financial sector. After the tax dodging, the bonus scamming, price fixing and the valiant attempt to bring down the entire world economy comes Jordan Belfort aka the Wolf of Wall Street. To be fair to Belfort, he plied his trade long before the most recent financial meltdown. Still, he's managed to piggy back the latest crash via a best selling book which has been re-released to coincide with a film adaptation starring Leonardo Dicaprio.
According to Belfort, the nature of 20th century capitalism (was) that everyone should scam everyone, and he that scammed the most ultimately won in the end. Needless to say, the Wolf ended up as one of the biggest winners, pocketing millions of dollars courtesy of his stockbroking company Stratton Oakmont. Belfort's dodgy dealing included getting relatives to launder money into secret Swiss bank accounts, not to mention creaming millions of dollars in 'pump and dump' stock scams.
Oh, but what japes Belfort and gang at Stratton had in the process. Taking industrial quantities of drugs, assaulting air stewardesses, bedding an endless procession of prostitutes not forgetting dwarf throwing. Oh yes, there was flying helicopters while off his face, sinking a boat in rough Mediterranean seas and kicking his wife down a flight of stairs. As Belfort himself writes, there was a constant need for a depraved act. But relax, it's all okay because they were filthy rich.
I suppose you have to grudgingly admire the fact that an author can paint himself in such an unsympathetic manner. Belfort doesn't sugarcoat any of his actions. There's plenty of self justification but very little in the way of remorse, especially towards the people who lost money. If you had to draw a stereotype of 'the ugly American', Belfort would be a pretty close representation. Supremely arrogant and utterly devoid of charm but hey, he got paid millions of dollars so we should all laugh along. Tee hee.
Justice of a sort finally caught up with Belfort. He spent 22 months in jail and is now playing his trade as a motivational speaker.
The truth is that we're nothing more than sleazoid salesmen, a colleague told Belfort at the start of his Wall Street career. That seems a pretty apt description of the Wolf of Wall Street and the world he inhabited.
If this book appeals then have a look at:
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You can read more book reviews or buy The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort at Amazon.com.
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