Tuesday, August 19, 2014

How does one become a banker?

In the previous post I spoke about the horrible world of finance and economic policies. But it need not be horrible at all, or, in correct English: the world of finance and economic policies does not need to be horrible. And, I would add, you can also enjoy looking at the world of finance and economic policies and engage with joy in actions and thinking related to that world.

The reverse of what I wrote in my previous post can also be true: the horrible world of international solidarity.

When I was seventeen I went a whole day to a psychological test bureau in Utrecht to help me choosing the right university study. At the end of the day they suggested to me to study either economics, sociology or dentistry. I chose sociology as I thought (and still think) economics is part of it.

When I was forty and had already founded FONDAD, I went through a long and difficult period of conflict with NGO leaders participating in FONDAD who pretended to represent the world of international solidarity. I learned a lot thanks to that conflict (they tried to kick me out of my office in The Hague and tried to forbid me to use the name FONDAD) including that those who are working in the world of international solidarity can be terrible, opportunist and full of false pretenses.

Would I have been able to work with joy in the world of finance and economic policies?

There is a funny note to my psychological test in Utrecht at age seventeen. The testers thought it likely that I would abandon my study in economics after a couple of years to become a banker. (That was not the reason I dropped the idea of studying economics; the reason for that was what I just said.)

How does one become a banker? What emotional character or mood drives you to become a banker and stay a banker, either a commercial or a central banker?

I will ask some of my banker friends, both from commercial and central banks.

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