I refer to my two earlier posts on John Fox where it transpires I was unduly sympathetic to the man.
He has now admitted he had developed a Ponzi scheme as early as the nineteen-nineties, and that it’s been twenty five years of running it into a wall. I was surprised, even dumb-founded by the revelations recently revealed in his plea bargain case and in the press. By the more sordid details even more so.
I never said he was a saint, but I didn’t believe he was so criminal. I was clearly overindulgent and wrong.
This said I maintain a position that those large private creditors suffering huge personal losses have no one but themselves to blame. Caveat emptor, or “Buyer beware” should be the first rule in any transaction, and the wine world remains, mercifully, replete with honest merchants, brokers and shippers keen to sell good wine at a fair price.
However, as long as a substantial part of the consuming public is more obsessed with great names and high critical “scores” than fundamental knowledge and simple epicurean pleasure, opportunities for fraud, theft and deception will continue to arise.
As I stated previously, in business, as in life, if something appears too good to be true, it generally isn’t.
I maintain my position, as always, that a bottle of wine is nothing but a cylinder of liquid. Unopened, and beyond the cost of production, it possesses a subjective and arbritrary, theoretical value; opened it is worthless beyond the infinite ephemeral pleasure it can offer. And that is priceless, or worthless depending on your point of view.