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Published on Dec 8, 2011
Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Division recruitment session mic-checked at Princeton University by Occupy Princeton (www.occupyprinceton.net).
After several pointed questions on the financial crash and Wall Street's heavy hand in Washington, the Goldman Sachs recruiter asked who in the audience was interested in a career on Wall Street, and who was there "to play gotcha."Occupy Princeton responded with a resounding mic check:
Goldman, your actions violate our motto. In 2001, you helped mask Greek Debt. From 2007-2008, your imposed commodity market contributed to the global food crisis with a quarter-million people starving. In 2008, you paid a mere $14 million dollars in global tax, while making a $2 billion profit. Your lending practices helped crash our economy. Our bailout dollars went to your executives' bonuses. In light of these actions, we protest the campus culture that whitewashes the crooked dealings of Wall Street as a prestigious career path. We are here today as a voice for the 99% shut out by a system that punishes them just for being born without privilege.
Dear Fellow Princeton Students, we are here to ask you for a moment of reflection. Deciding on a future career path is difficult. It deserves serious introspection. When you came to Princeton as a wide eyed freshman, you probably didn't dream of working at Goldman Sachs. What happened? We are all privileged to have made it to Princeton. However, our talents will be wasted if we send all our best and brightest to Wall Street. Some of you joke that you're going over to the dark side. To the Gold Man Sacks. Those nicknames exist for a reason. You've heard that investment banking is an exciting, fast-paced career. That is what smart people like you do. You've been told that this is what success looks like. We are here to challenge those beliefs. What you've been listening to is a carefully crafted recruitment pitch. You can do better for yourselves and you can do better for our society. Princeton is a university "In the Nation's Service, and in the Service of All Nations." We invite you to join us at our next General Assembly.