The average MIT graduate wants to work at Google or Microsoft, because it's a recognized brand, it's safe, and they'll get paid a good salary right away. It's the job equivalent of the pizza they had for lunch. The drawbacks will only become apparent later, and then only in a vague sense of malaise.
And founders and early employees of startups, meanwhile, are like the Birkenstock-wearing weirdos of Berkeley: though a tiny minority of the population, they're the ones living as humans are meant to. In an artificial world, only extremists live naturally.
He goes on to argue that small companies ought to aim to remain small.
I do think that there is something degrading about working in large organizations. For people like Paul Graham, certainly.
But as an economist, I have to respect revealed preference. And many people, for whatever reason, work for large organizations. They value security. Or structure. Or group identity. Or...