Salon has an excellent, and exceedingly true tale of greed, manipulation, deception, and misrepresentation. Not from Wall Street but from College Street.
In the midst of a fantastic piece you’ll read
… higher education is the industry that sells tickets to the affluent life. In fact, they are the only ones licensed to do this. Yes, there are many colleges one can choose from—public, private, and for-profit—but collectively they control the one credential that we believe to be of value. Everything about them advertises it. The armorial logos, the Gothic towers, even the names of the great colleges, so redolent of money and privilege and aristocracy: Duke and Princeton and Vanderbilt. If you want to succeed, you must go to them; they are the ones controlling the gate.
What they sell, in other words, is something we believe to be so valuable it is almost impossible to measure. Anyone in her right mind would pay an enormous price for it.
Another fact: This same industry, despite its legal status as a public charity, is today driven by motives indistinguishable from the profit-maximizing entities traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
Grant to an industry control over access to the good things in life; insist that it transform itself into a throat-cutting, market-minded mercenary; get thought leaders to declare it to be the answer to every problem; mute any reservations the nation might have about it—and, lastly, send it your unsuspecting kids, armed with a blank check drawn on their own futures.
Members of administrations might not like these gruesome truths, but that doesn’t make them any less true. Higher Ed has long ceased to be about Ed, and is simply now about Higher (tuition, prices, promises, lies…)
Examine the whole essay. And then ask yourself a simple question- why has it come to this? The answer is painfully simple: greed (by buyers and sellers).