02/17/2009 04:09 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Madoff Blames Ponzi Scheme on Youth, Immaturity

Disgraced financier Bernie Madoff offered a partial mea culpa for his massive Ponzi scheme today, telling reporters that he blamed his "youth and immaturity" for his poor judgment in the matter.

"You have to understand, when this scheme really got out of hand I was only a lad in my sixties," Mr. Madoff said.

Reflecting on his role in the fraud, which wound up bilking $50 billion from unwitting investors, Mr. Madoff said, "I think I felt under pressure to become the biggest scumbag of all time."

But Mr. Madoff pleaded for understanding, explaining, "You do all kinds of crazy things when you're at an impressionable age like 60 or 61."

In the interest of "giving something back," Mr. Madoff said he hoped to make a tour of investment houses and warn brokers in their forties and fifties against starting Ponzi schemes of their own: "I want to get to them while they're still kids."

In other business news, GM and Chrysler revealed their rescue plans, which call for the two auto giants to stop making cars and become banks instead.

After reviewing the size of the bailouts that the government has offered to the nation's banks, GM chairman Rick Wagoner said, "Only a total loser would keep making cars."

The CEOs of GM and Chrysler said that in their first official act as banks they would award themselves $10 million bonuses and fly to the Cayman Islands.

Elsewhere, keeping a 200-lb chimp as a pet and giving it drugs could lead to regrettable consequences, according to a report in the latest issue of Duh magazine.

Andy Borowitz is a comedian and writer whose work appears in The New Yorker and The New York Times, and at his award-winning humor site, He is performing at the 92nd St. Y on April 30 at 8 PM with special guests Judy Gold, Hendrik Hertzberg, and Jonathan Alter. For tickets, go to