Monday, November 30, 2009

You Are Stupid and We'll Take All Your Money.

Such is the sentiment of the credit card industry regarding the proles (i.e. us) in Lowell Bergmann's incredible New York Times/Frontline piece, "The Card Game".

Seriously, they're not even pretending they're not ripping us off in every possible instance. Congress legislates a strong consumer advocacy law to protect the public? They use the money from late fees, overdraft fees, inactivity fees, and any of the other industry 'resources' to pay lobbyists to water down said legislation until there is little that could be called teeth included. And that's just the beginning of it... This program is worth 55 minutes of your time, and you can see it here (embedded below) or at the Frontline page.

The sheer audacity of those in and representing the industry is both incredible and incredibly infuriating. I am not anti-capitalist, nor am I a protectionist, in the general sense. But what this shows is a level of dishonesty and greed that touches nearly every American's life. If you are one of these people, you deserve to know about it.

The essence, as paraphrased from Shailesh Mehta, the founder of credit card giant Providian (which he sold to Washington Mutual in 2005 for $6.5 billion), is that (in reference to the credit industry) 'you (the US Government) make the laws, and we'll outsmart you and take your money every time'.

And darn if that hasn't proven to be true. In fact, as Senator Dick Durbin (D, Ill.) said, regarding the United States' governing legislative body "the banks, even as unpopular as they are right now in this crisis, still own this place."

1 comment:

accentuatenink said...

Yes, I saw this the other night. And, odd as it is, I saw this coming years ago. And made numerous comments on it. As far as the crash in the economy, I guess no one realized this would happen. Everyone was living on borrowed money. But now, make sure you are checking your statements, because these credit card companies, are increasing their rates to those with good credit standings. Honestly, I think there is going to be further trouble down the line, when those who do pay, can not afford to pay these monthly payments any longer, because EVERYONE of them seems to be raising their rates. And with the bolts tightened on mortgage lending, these people who were so used to just borrowing against their homes, can't do so any longer.