Can anyone think rationally about investing for 7 years in the future?
Paul Campos zeros right in at the InsideTheLawSchoolScam blog on an insightful comment made by a “soon-to-be-unemployed Columbia law student”:
Are you aware that [prospective law students] actually, mentally CANNOT do this? It’s not a matter of being smart. The optimism bias is hardwired into our DNA. The rational actor model has been thoroughly discredited. Pick up a fucking newspaper.
Was it just 5 years ago that the iPhone was invented? Heck, the Internet has only been really rolling for about fifteen. Yet, we ask students to gamble several hundred thousand on an undergraduate degree and another hundred thousand or so on a graduate degree because they’ll be able to predict what kind of work will be in demand at the end of the four to ten year pipeline?
Yet that’s the vision endorsed by the college industrial complex. Kids and their parents will invest in their future– taking on 100% of the risk themselves– by paying outrageous tuition, all because it used to work out well for the college educated. Then, the college industrial complex insists that it’s perfectly fair for them to take a big chunk of whatever income comes along because the college created the wealth.
As I pointed out, Jeff Bezos at Amazon thinks he’s a rare capitalist
because he commits his company to projects that won’t reach fruition for five to seven years. We are asking kids to take insane risks and then we’re taking advantage of their insane optimism, an optimism that’s wired into our brains. Ugh.
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