Sheldon Adelson, whom I referred to in the spring as Israel’s sugar daddy, is in a lot of trouble. The value of his casino company, Las Vegas Sands, which owns the Venetian, has lost 96 percent since reaching $138 a share in October 2007. Because Adelson owns two-thirds of the company, his personal wealth has plummeted—absolutely tanked—from $32 billion to $2 billion.
Now, that’s still a lot of coin. But it’s a big swing for a guy who last year was the third-wealthiest American and country’s richest Jew.
A handful of stories have been written about Adelson’s troubles. This one from Bloomberg includes an interesting quote about how even in times like this Adelson will find a way to survive:
“If the world came to an end, there would be cockroaches and Sheldon,” said David Kaminer, 64, a former vice president at an Adelson operation that ran the Comdex computer trade show in Las Vegas. “And Sheldon would immediately be smart enough to open a pest-control company.”
I based the headline for this post on the most cynical, paranoid reading of that quote. Anti-Semites have long referred to Jews as pests and vermin—miserable creatures deserving an exterminator. (Hey, some of these sentiments were made plain in my profile of Long Beach professor Kevin MacDonald and some of the reader feedback I received.) However, in this case I don’t see the ADL demanding an apology or the JDL rushing to the armory.