In other words, does the rational part of your brain, which wants you to be circus freak-crazy pissed at him, lose out to the part that gets one look at that beard and decides “I can’t stay mad at you”? Because that’s a theory being floated for why JSC isn’t faring too badly in the court of public opinion.

Thought experiment: Would you feel any sympathy at all for a hypothetical superrich ex–frat boy, ex–Goldman Sachs exec with a penchant for taking enormous risks, the most recent of which just torpedoed an entire company? No? Because that’s who Jon Corzine is, and that’s what he just did. And yet in coming days we will see less public anger directed at Corzine than descended mightily upon Lehman Brothers’ Dick Fuld, AIG’s Joseph Cassano, and the rest of our era’s rapaciously overleveraged financiers. Instead, Corzine is viewed more like an old person who hit the wrong pedal and drove through a garage door. And it is because of his beard.

To that end, how mad would we be if he put MF Global out of business but had a five o’clock shadow? Or a soul patch? A goatee? Mutton-chops? A Van Dyke beard? Hank Paulson’s face, shaved into his right side burn? Scale of 1 to 10.

Nice Beard [NYMag]

15 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (15)

  1. Posted by InfiniteGuest | November 7, 2011 at 6:30 PM

    I hear the Short Hills mall is hiring Santas.

  2. Posted by Dr. Zaius | November 7, 2011 at 6:31 PM

    please don't mention 5 o'clock shadow.

    – richard milhous nixon

  3. Posted by I'm a Dude | November 7, 2011 at 6:44 PM

    didn't OJ grow a beard for that reason?

  4. Posted by Chubbs | November 7, 2011 at 6:00 PM

    Grizzly Adams did have a beard.

  5. Posted by The Brazilian | November 7, 2011 at 6:06 PM

    In fairness, don't most guys like you better when you shave, Bess?

  6. Posted by expert | November 7, 2011 at 6:08 PM

    One gets a Brazilian by waxing, not shaving.

    Other than that I have no concerns.

  7. Posted by derp | November 7, 2011 at 6:09 PM

    My beard helps me get away with stuff too.

    – T. Cruise

  8. Posted by Child of the '70's | November 7, 2011 at 6:16 PM

    Say it ain't so, Bess!

  9. Posted by guest | November 7, 2011 at 6:18 PM

    I think maximum sympathy would be garnered if he had an Amish-style beard that was sheared off in a late-night attack by the Bergholz Clan.

  10. Posted by vinny | November 7, 2011 at 7:15 PM

    I am sure his fellow inmates will be most appreciative of his beard. If not, then they will shave it for him.

  11. Posted by MCM | November 8, 2011 at 9:43 AM

    I prefer a dirty sanchez

    – L. Tilton

  12. Posted by anonymous | November 8, 2011 at 10:19 AM

    Being able to pull of a Salvation Army Santa outfit at a moment's notice, while losing hundreds of millions of dollars during the day at your day-job is the NKI.

  13. Posted by Seaman Bodine | November 8, 2011 at 10:28 AM

    I thought he was moving to Mexico because his penis implants were setting of metal detectors or something.

  14. Posted by fedup | December 3, 2011 at 9:29 AM

    The guy belonged in jail long before he put MF in the tank. He was SLEEPING WITH THE HEAD OF THE UNION THAT HE WAS NEGOTIATING WITH. Typical Democrap. All the rules apply to everyone but me.
    I hope he gets twenty years

  15. Posted by fedup | December 3, 2011 at 9:30 AM

    Ah yes. They will bring him to the shower and shave off ALL of his body hair.