James Kwak: Why Taxpayers Should Be Angry When Harvard Grads Go To Wall Street

harvard commencement 2004

Photo: AP

James Kwak has a great post at Baseline Scenariobased on an article by Ezra Klein — on why Harvard grads go to Wall Street. He argues that Harvard’s overacheivers are suckers for a corporate recruiting process that makes the next step toward greatness easy.What’s interesting is Kwak’s explanation for why you, the average American, should be angry upset that top college grads go to Wall Street:

A college student asked me at a book talk what I thought about undergraduates who go work on Wall Street. And individually, I have nothing against them, although I do think they should do their best to keep their expenses down so they will be able to switch careers later. But as a system, it’s a bad thing that a small handful of highly profitable firms are able to invest those profits into skimming off some of the top students at American universities — universities that, even if nominally private, are partially funded by taxpayer money in the form of research grants and federal subsidies for student loans –and absorbing them into the banking-consulting-lawyering Borg.

In other words, you’re buying a $100 billion feeder system for Wall Street.

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