Now that new credit card regulations from Congress and the Federal Reserve are in effect, the banksters have come up with lots of new ways to rip us off and are expanding on old ways to rip us off. Before I go on, I want to remind people of one central fact.
"Credit Card Companies" = Banks
The banksters reserve many of their most reprehensible practices for their credit card customers. These practices are so larcenous that the banksters have invented the fiction of "credit card companies" in order to make it seem like somebody other than the banksters are responsible for that crap.
American Express: Now, if you are late with a payment, you have to pay a $29 fee to get access to the rewards payments you made on purchases. (CNN Money 2/22/10)
Bank of America: Intimidated customers trying to turn off the overdraft functions of their credit cards at bank locations. . (MSNBC article updated 2/23/10)
JPMorgan Chase: has raised it's fee for transferring credit card balances from 3% to 5%. (CNN Money 2/22/10)
JPMorgan Chase: Sent out threatening letters to customers trying to frighten them into opting into expensive overdraft protection. (MSNBC article updated 2/23/10)
Inactivity Fees: Some banksters are charging up to $36 per year for not using your charge card. (MSNBC 2/23/10)
Rising Interest Rates: Average interest rates increased by over 1% in the last six months. (MSNBC 2/23/10)
How Much Power Do the Banksters Have Over You?
According to a column in the Chicago Sun Times suggests that getting rid of a credit card account may not be as damaging to your credit score as you think.
Your concern is understandable, since it seems the credit card companies have all the power these days, in spite of the benefits of the new Card Act, which took effect Monday. If you make the decision to close your credit card account, assuming your credit is in good standing, it might have a small impact on your credit score. But that might not be enough of an impact to cause you to hang on to the card and pay an annual fee.
There could be two consequences of closing an account. Part of your credit score is based on your length of credit. So if you've had that card for many years, closing it could ding your score about 20 to 30 points, depending on whether you have other long-held cards. Even so, your score is likely to rebound within months.
One way to protect yourself, if you are the one closing the card (instead of the issuer), is to send a registered letter to the issuer when closing the account. Then keep a copy of that letter so that if your credit score declines, you have proof you were the one who closed the account.
Read the Full Article for Details.
Where Is the Money Going?
From AFP 2/23/10:
Bonuses paid to Wall Street securities industry employees in New York rose 17 percent to 20.3 billion dollars in 2009, state officials said Tuesday.
New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said total compensation at the largest securities firms grew even faster and industry profits could hit a record amount after unprecedented losses in 2008.
Banks are a big part of the "Wall Street securities industry."
What Is the Real Value of the Banksters?
A while back, Craig Murray posted a brilliant indictment of this parasitical class. One paragraph reminds us, in particular, just how little banksters contribute to the real economy.
I am typing this on a keyboard which was not made by a banker. It rests on a desk which was not built by a banker. I am sitting on a chair which was not made by a banker, which rests on floor tiles not made by bankers, resting on a concrete and steel reinforced floor not built by bankers in a house of similar construction. I have to hand a sausage sandwich - the pigs were not reared by bankers and the wheat was not grown by bankers, and a cup of coffee - the beans were not grown by bankers, the milk was not from banker raised cattle, the water was not purified by a banker, the sugar cane was not cut by a banker. The clay was not dug by a banker nor the kiln fired by a banker. None of it was brought to this spot and assembled or constructed by a banker.
The entire commentary is well worth reading. Money is a symbolic representation of goods and services. That's it. Yet, we have allowed the banksters to mystify money and their relation to it to the point that many of us don't realize just how inept and easily replaced these people are. We are bombarded with messages from media where the banksters advertise and make loans telling us we have no choice to go along with what the banksters want no matter how insane or destructive.
We all need to take a step back and think critically.
The disgusting and irresponsible behavior of the banking industry is starting to get people to think about alternatives. One alternative that is getting a fresh look is North Dakota's socialist bank. More conventional alternatives like credit unions are getting more and more attractive.
Think You're Pissed Off at the Banksters?
This guy bulldozed his house rather than letting them take it via foreclosure.