Do Wine Wholesalers Need To Be Taught How To Be Criminals?
In 1998 Jordan Belfort was indicted and convicted of money laundering and securities fraud. He stole, bilked and defrauded more than $200 million from thousands of Americans. He cheated. He was a con man. He ripped people off. He spent two years in prison and was ordered to pay back more than $100 million to those he ripped off. Of course he never has done that. In fact, he was paid $1.7 million for two books and the movie rights to his story. But he never paid restitution out that according to the feds.
Today, Belfort makes $30,000 per speech that he gives.
I was thinking, wouldn’t it be appropriate for this crook to be the keynote speaker at the Wine & Spirit Wholesalers of America Convention now taking place in Las Vegas.
Oh…wait a minute….HE IS! In fact yesterday, Belfort collected his fee for giving a speech to America’s wine and spirit distributors who describe the crook this way:
“As the owner of Stratton Oakmont, Belfort employed over 1,000 stockbrokers and raised over $1.5 billion and started more than 30 million-dollar-companies from scratch.”
No mention of his crimes. No mention of the money he stole. No mention that he hasn’t repaid what he owes.
The Wine & Spirit Wholesalers of America are the folks who have paid off politicians to oppose direct to consumer wine shipping. They have supported franchise laws that require beer, wine and spirit producers to pay them off before they can switch wholesalers. America’s wholesalers are the ones who lie about the benefits of the three-tier system. They are the ones that lobby lawmakers to have beer producers pay them protection money. These are the people who, by virtue of doing anything they can to protect the corrupt three-tier system, have cost Americans and American businesses million if not billions of dollars.
What in the world could Jordan Belfort teach America’s wine and spirit wholesalers?