When I was in third grade, or maybe sixth, at the end of one school year in June we had a brown-bag day with kids running all over the playground behind Monroe Elementary, and parents and teachers organizing races – sack race, three-legged race, sprints. I got third prize in something: a little brown “ribbon” made of construction paper and glitter. Later I was left alone on the sidelines, sitting on the grass next to one of the grown-ups’ bags of supplies. There were some extra ribbons. They were blue and silver, glitter and glue. I took a couple of the Firsts.
This is the only key idea necessary to keep in mind whenever I meditate on how anyone with a shred of decency would ever get into the financial speculation industry. As an acorn, it explains a lot.