Bernie Madoff gave his first interview for publication since December 2008 to the New York Times, published in today’s paper, but you wouldn’t know it was an exclusive from reading the New York Post, which also happens to include a curiously similar Madoff interview today. Then, of course, it becomes clear that the Post whittled down Madoff’s words from Diana Henriques’s Times interview, giving Henriques credit as an “author…who is writing a book on the scandal.” And yet the Post manages to more or less reprint all of the good parts without once using the words “exclusive” or “New York Times.” Newspaper wars! More on Madoff’s own words after the jump.
“They had to know,” says Madoff in his money quote, of the banks and hedge funds he made money for with his super-big Ponzi scheme. “But the attitude was sort of, ‘If you’re doing something wrong, we don’t want to know.'”
Appearing “noticeably thinner and rumpled in khaki prison garb,” Madoff also repeated claims that his family — wife Ruth, and two sons, Andrew and Mark — did not know about the crimes. The same goes for Mets owner Fred Wilpon and his partner,Saul Katz, who are now facing an investigation about their Madoff profits. “They knew nothing. They knew nothing,” Madoff says, twice for impact.
Read the rest of the front-page story, in its full, un-Post-ified version, here.