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Two thoughts by Paul Krugman:

1. "Meanwhile, how much has our nation's future been damaged by the magnetic pull of quick personal wealth [by Wall Street], which for years has drawn many of our best and brightest young people into investment banking, at the expense of science, public service and just about everything else?"

2. "Think of the way almost everyone important missed the warning signs of an impending crisis. How was that possible? How, for example, could Alan Greenspan have declared, just a few years ago, that "the financial system as a whole has become more resilient" - thanks to derivatives, no less? The answer, I believe, is that there's an innate tendency on the part of even the elite to idolize men who are making a lot of money, and assume that they know what they're doing.

After all, that's why so many people trusted Mr. Madoff."