We're taught to shoot for the stars, to be ambitious. Well screw that, because, as swindler Marc Dreier demonstrates, no matter how hard you try to be the best, someone will always be better.
Dreier's that hot shot lawyer who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for selling phony promisory notes and raking in about $400 million for his "law firm." Then he was caught and now his name's synonymous with dirt. So, why'd he do it?
Dreier's been saying all along that he wasn't motivated by greed, as some would assume, but because he had an insatiable thirst for success. Or, as he explained it to the 60 Minutes' audience, his plot was akin to a midlife crisis:
I was very disappointed in my life. I guess some people would say maybe a lot of men reach a so-called midlife crisis. I was 52.... I remember being at a place in my life where I was perhaps desperate to better myself and to make a place for myself.
But even his ambition-fueled thievery was topped. Sure, he was a media sensation for a minute, but Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme soon broke and became the amoral financial litmus test. At his sentencing, the judge even said, "he is not Mr. Madoff from any analysis, and that's why I can't understand why the government is asking for 145 years." Ouch.
And the worst part? He has to come up with some bullshit self-analysis to explain it all and, we guess, elicit some sympathy from the masses. Well, it didn't work. Now we just think he's a sad sack coward. At least just fess up and say you liked money and yachts. That's what a real man would do.