Any Cornell grads who go work for Goldman Sachs are "a**holes" according to an editor at the Ivy League school's student newspaper, The Cornell Daily Sun. He wants to see Goldman Sachs banned from recruiting on campus.
Tony Manfred, the associate editor at the student newspaper, is obviously borrowing a bit from Matt Taibbi, who famously called Goldman a Vampire Squid.
Goldman Sachs is a criminal money factory with a vast network of alumni who occupy the most powerful positions in the financial-regulatory world, effectively protecting the bank from any economic threat — governmental or otherwise — such that the bank is free to suck every bit of profit out of every corner of American life, regardless of collateral damage, like an impossibly large vacuum cleaner whose belly fills not with dirt and hair destined for the garbage, but dollars and cents destined for the already bulging pockets of the upper-class. This we can all agree on.
Yet each fall and spring Goldman recruiters are afforded space on East Hill. The bank, along with the rest of corporate America, pursues Cornell’s best and brightest — tabling at career fairs, holding information sessions and setting up shop in the narrow corridors of Barnes Hall. It vets and interrogates, tests and examines, and eventually it leaves campus with a wish list of eager undergrads. A few months later, those same undergrads are paying for a few rounds of drinks at a celebratory Long Island iced tea night. And come summer, these undergrads have transformed into full-fledged Goldmanites — squeezing every drip of profit out of the rag that is America with conscious abandon — under the tragically correct assumption that the rest of us are, above all else, jealous of them.
This must end. A corporation with Goldman’s track record of bubble-building and profiteering has no place on this campus.
But this is more than an indictment of Goldman Sachs . Manfred goes on to argue that the fact that so many students want to work at a place like Goldman shows that they've sold their souls to the devil.
Goldman’s presence on campus, and the notable mass acceptance of this presence, illustrates our generation’s irrational conception of work. We act like the professional aspect of our lives lies outside of the morals, values and interests that govern the rest of our choices. For us, the goal of getting a job supercedes the substance of that job. Employment of any kind, by definition, cannot be a bad thing. Yes, a job can be amoral, meaningless, sadistic and socially destructive, but — as our mindset suggests — it is still a job.
Indeed when a friend tells me she’s applying for investment banking positions, I don’t protest. In fact, I say good luck. And when an acquaintance tells me that he scored a position at Merrill Lynch, I offer my truthful congratulations.
But this sort of courtesy is undoubtedly a part of the problem. We need to move past the idea that employment is unassailable, that jobs are immune to moral—or value-based criticism. We need to come to terms with the fact that people who go to work for a greedy, criminal machine that has been consciously inflating economic bubbles and screwing over the public since the 1920s, are, by definition, greedy criminals. These people are our classmates, our sorority sisters, our best friends, but they are also bad people. To put it bluntly, they are a**holes. Huge a**holes. A**holes who are aware of the social and economic damage they will soon perpetuate, but don’t care.
We pause for a moment to marvel at the moral certainty of the outraged young. Manfred is convinced that all his fellow students agree with him about the evils of Goldman Sachs. It's just that they don't mind working for evil if the money is good enough. In our experience, this is far from the mindset of the young headed to Wall Street. They tend to be convinced that Wall Street is good for something more than making money. "God's work" and all that.
Questions? Comments? Email us atNetNet@cnbc.com
Follow Cadie on Twitter @ twitter.com/CadieNetNet
Follow NetNet on Twitter @ twitter.com/CNBCnetnet
Facebook us @ www.facebook.com/NetNetCNBC