Ira Rennert, arguably the most honored man at Yeshiva University…

… and the man after whom the school’s Rennert Entrepreneurial Institute is named, once again shows YU students how to conduct themselves in business.

[T]he government said that Renco had lied when asked about the transaction to keep the pension insurer from finding out about the ownership change until too late. Once a controlled group has been broken, the pension agency loses its ability to go after the parent company’s assets.

And four months later, when R.G. Steel declared bankruptcy, the federal government had to take over the pension obligations and cover a $70 million loss. It sued Renco for fraud, arguing that the deal with Cerberus was a sham, intended primarily to break the link between R.G. Steel and Renco’s wealth.

Details on pensioners and their retirement income here.


Sure, every once in awhile, just like Yeshiva trustee Zigi Wilf, you attract the attention of the courts. Big deal. Price of doing business.


Now, REI grads, go out there and make some deals!

UD Reads the New York Times Business Pages So You Don’t Have To.

Ms Herzer responded with a salacious lawsuit alleging that Mr Redstone was mentally incompetent and had an insatiable appetite for sex and steak.

“I know Gabriel has been suffering immensely over the past few years during this whole ordeal,” wrote Georgia Perakis, a professor of operations management at the MIT Sloan School of Management. “For someone with Gabriel’s character, all this is already a huge punishment.”

UD loves this shit. A hugely influential, venerated, and privileged MIT professor spends years and years stealing more than a hundred million dollars from clients. He did business with Bernard Madoff.

The Bitrans [this was one of those adorable father/son things] paid themselves as much as $16 million in management fees over the life of the businesses and recovered $12 million of their own investments when the funds were doing poorly, the U.S. said in court filings, adding that the two discussed their scheme in e-mail exchanges.

In addition to defrauding investors, the Bitrans lied to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and sought to hide assets by transferring property to a relative without the relative’s permission, prosecutors said.

And a fellow professor gets up during sentencing (three years and nine months) to anguish over his suffering during the long ordeal of running a Ponzi scheme, and to praise his excellent character.

And how does his colleague know firsthand how he’s suffered? Because for all of those “past few years” – in fact, since 2009, long after his Madoff connection and wrongdoing were publicly known – he remained an influential, venerated, and privileged MIT professor. He was even an associate dean. He finally left the school in 2013.


MIT has said nothing and done nothing in all this time. UD doubts that even now – with Bitran suiting up for prison – MIT will say anything about having for years retained on its faculty a massive fraudster.

Meanwhile, all over MIT websites there are statements like this one:

Deputy Dean Gabriel Bitran discussed [with the Financial Times the importance of] producing leaders with a social conscience.

Like Bernard Madoff’s Yeshiva University, you can direct your IT people to erase all images and mentions of Bitran on the school website. I mean, I’m sure MIT is busy scrubbing scrubbing scrubbing right now.

When you ask yourself why so many people detest professors, think of MIT and the way it protected Gabriel Bitran.


Oh by the way. How were the thieves caught?

The scheme was uncovered by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission when, while investigating potential victims of the Bernie Madoff fraud, SEC officials asked for documentation to support the Bitrans’ returns claims. The Bitrans then made false statements to the SEC examiners and provided fabricated records.

Here’s a management tip direct from the Sloan School:


UD’s fond of… call them cosmic convergences.

For instance, there was the time Sheldon Silver won the William M. Bulger Excellence in State Leadership Award. Silver, Bulger, Silver, Bulger … double-barreled … er … Excellence! Two fine gentlemen, the two fine civil servants… and in the case of Bulger an academic servant too! The world’s most incurious university president!

And one of them got a civic leadership award from the other one.

That was a beautiful convergence.

Here’s another one: Green, Milken.

Bernard Madoff’s … associate, Yair Green, is currently being sued by Irving Picard for all that money he got from Bernie and gave to the university that made him chair of its Executive Committee.

Several years ago, Green gave a paper at a conference sponsored by one of America’s most famous financial criminals, Michael Milken.

So Green, Milken… Another great convergence.

Next up in the Shkreli case…

…his noble defense lawyer.

Baruch Weiss’s “purpose in life is to undo injustice … [T]here is something almost superhuman” about [his] drive to do the right thing.”

Weiss worked unceasingly for another persecuted martyr, Sholom Rubashkin, and UD feels sure he will offer the same moral indignation at injustice to Martin Shkreli.

The beauty of hedge fund capitalism…

… is that if any particular hedgie pisses you off, for any reason at all, you stand a fair chance of nailing him on securities fraud. That’s why if you’re a hedgie you should keep your head down and not piss too many people off the way Martin Shkreli did with that price hike on that drug. Because all the annoyed SEC had to do was run its eyes lightly over his financial past in order to arrest him, just now, at his New York digs.


It wouldn’t be University Diaries without anagrams. Try your hand. Here are my first attempts. I imagine it as an abbreviated conversation between an onlooker and Shkreli as he’s loaded into the police van.

[M A R T I N S H K R E L I]





Ira Rennert, the genius behind Yeshiva University’s Rennert Entrepreneurial Institute…

… reveals the key to a successful business career: Spend your entire life in courtrooms. You’ll loot your businesses, of course; that’s how you make big money. And individuals, workers, the government, what have you, will sue you. They will sue you again and again.

And they will win, because after all you do seem to loot or defraud or whatever your businesses. And you’ll have to pay out hundreds of millions of dollars in fines and compensation.

But do not worry, because

1. you’ve got plenty of money left over after you pay out the judgements; and
2. you don’t give a shit about bad publicity.

That’s it, kiddies! The business philosophy of your benefactor. Inspirational.

Kellogg’s Serial …

… cheaters.

Beware the B-School Boys.

Edward L. Queen has a nice Jeff Bridges vibe…

going, plus his recent New Republic piece is a more than worthy addition to one of UD‘s most popular categories, Beware the B-School Boys. Gets a bit preachy at the end (“When a person’s worth is determined only by money, only by success as it is and can be monetized, when one has no sense of being without the BMW, the Rolex, the Armani suits, the yacht, etc, the moral flabbiness emerges. Indeed, it engulfs entire organizations and perhaps even entire societies.”), but one does tend to zoom out in one’s final paragraph…

[The idea that] the only duty of a corporation is return on investment [has now been] drilled into generations of business school graduates… [Further,] evidence suggests that not only are business students more impaired in their moral judgments in a broader sense than are those in other majors and professional schools, but that business schools themselves may be responsible.


SCHOOL FOR SCANDAL: UD has long argued that this would be a wonderful new motto for Wharton.

“We’re great football players, but we’re shit people.”

The soaring oratory of Maurice Clarett. As UD readers know, UD has long recommended exactly the same thing for the B-School Boys (see her ever-popular category Beware the B-School Boys) — charismatic ex-cons drawn from the same crowd as their audience. Andy “Enron” Fastow is one example, but America’s prisons are packed with ciceronian swindlers.

Together, these two lad-categories (football hero/captain of industry) make up much of our national mythology, and therefore America’s institutions continue to deal gently with them, which is why remarkable numbers of them keep raping women and financial systems.

UD is a big believer in the power of testifying. She thinks Business Ethics courses are bullshit, but she thinks Madoff on the hustings would be marv.

‘”When I first met people at HBS and they had worked in a bank, I would pick up on them feeling like they were almost ashamed,” Gandhi said.’

Ashamed? Ashamed? ASHAMED???


(Say it out loud like Bracknell saying A HANDBAG???)

What is happening to this country? People at Harvard Business School are ashamed to admit they were like this with great Americans like Lloyd Blankfein, Squido di Tutti Squidi? This country is about to elect as President a proud graduate of Wharton, the BIZnessest biz school in the world, and current students at HBS are ashamed of having worked in an investment bank? What the hell is that? Can it be that the, uh, symbolic value of people Blankfein, Jamie Dimon, and pretty boy Dick Fuld and his merry men is declining?

It’s partly the fault of those goddamn case studies.

“There are several case studies dealing with investment banks wherein students discuss the brutal work environment and incredibly out-of-whack work-life balance,” [said one observer]. “The banks’ efforts — their success or lack thereof — to bring about change have not been discussed, but what is consistently highlighted is the dark side of investment banks.”

What to do?

Big banks are fighting back, promising recruits more hours to sleep, the occasional day off and reasonable deadlines. The effort, prompted by the death of a Bank of America Corp. intern in 2013, is driven in part by fear that the brightest students no longer see investment banking as a sustainable career. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. invited celebrity author Deepak Chopra to talk to its staff a few months ago about wellness, relaxation and the value of vacation.

Deepak! Deepak baby! Teach them how not to die!

I’m sure the rest of their global operations are just fine.

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, which was fined a record 3 billion yuan ($483 million) for corruption in China last year and is examining possible staff misconduct elsewhere, faces new allegations of bribery in Romania.

…The company is already probing alleged bribery in Poland, the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Iraq.

Sepp Blatter’s coming in to clean up the mess.


How do all the Glaxo Professors of this and that in med schools all over America and England feel about having their name cheek by jowl with this company?

UD‘s confident they don’t give a shit.

“You don’t have to be a megalomaniac to prefer quantity of attention over quality of attention, as the Wharton-educated Trump would probably tell you if he were to allow himself a reflective moment.”

If UD had never started this blog, she would never have come to know the Wharton School, one of America’s most curious institutions. Though Donald Trump is by far its highest-profile graduate, Wharton (as you know if you read this blog) is the dominant source for this country’s insider traders in particular and fraudsters in general.

B-School boys do dither on a regular basis about the amorality many of their schools champion – I mean, as regular as each breaking story about another Raj Rajaratnam… Some of these guys even notice that a major function of schools like Wharton is to bring conspirators together. Guys who as lads were maladjusted malefactors find at Wharton (type WHARTON in my search engine for all of my posts about the school) a warm inviting community of people just like themselves with whom to mastermind billion-dollar larcenies. When the Justice Department starts saying unkind things about one or another Wharton grad, their school buddies come out with eloquent character references.


Still, how unfair to say Donald Trump isn’t reflective! He founded a university.

“They met while business students at the University of Texas at Dallas …”

The breastaurant entrepreneur course of study:

Breastness Analytics

The Ebreastive Leader

Breastness & Society

Managing Complex Breasts

Breastal Strategy

Breast-Based Marketing

Management of Breasts

The Silicone Experience

Global Strategy


Penetration Testing

TIT Project Management

Thinking Like a Business School

The former dean of George Washington University’s business school massively overspent, leaving the school with a $13 million deficit. How to repay it?

Robert Van Order, the chair of the school’s finance department, said the about 60 faculty members at the meeting discussed where the burden should fall. Some faculty thought the University should forgive the $13 million budget deficit altogether because it was incurred two years ago.

Yeah, screw it. Ancient history!

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