Saturday, July 19, 2008

Why no Outrage?

There is an EXCELLENT article in today's edition of the Wall Street Journal titled "Why No Outrage?" The question is posed regarding the collapse of the financial sector and the Government's willingness to continue to help them stay afloat. I believe he puts it as "throwing money at those who need it the least".

The result of the mistakes made by these financial institutions is that our savings and investment opportunities are tanked and homes are foreclosing across America. So, why aren't Americans shouting out in protest.

I have a theory. I think it's because we think no on is listening. Well, no one that counts at least. During Bush's administration, the National Bank of America drafted a bill that would make it more difficult for the consumer to file for bankruptcy. Neither the white house nor congress made it any less difficult for the credit card industry to continue to push the consumer into more debt than they could bear.

I think Americans have felt that as long as this administration is in office our cries cannot be heard. I take that back. Our cries ARE heard but perhaps this administrations believes that the public is to be seen and not heard. And then any policies that the administration does put into place isn't going to help the consumer.

Does anyone recall that our President proposed that our Social Security be privatized? Can you imagine the mess this whole situation would have been if indeed our social security had been handed over to the financial "rocks" to manage for us?

So, here we discover that our savings, money market accounts and mutual funds are growing at glacier rates due to low interest rates. But is anyone noticing that the credit card industry continues to justify their sky rocketing credit rates at 18%, 24% and now my sister tells me they can go up to 35%. Why not? Does Congress or the Bush Administration care if Americans are drowning in debt. It would seem they are more concerned with being sure that the very wealthy in this country aren't too uncomfortable.

Early this week, Bush gave a speech. I was able to listen to it. In this speech, he kept reiterating that American's deposits up to $100K were insured and that they needn't worry about their money. According to this article about the fall of Indy Mac in the San Francisco Chronicle, "the continuing stampede on IndyMac suggests that Americans either don't understand deposit insurance or have lost faith in the banking system." I think they've lost faith in both the banking system and in this administrations ability to do the right thing.

We should thank our lucky stars that our President has limited terms in office. And I sincerely hope that we are simply patiently waiting for the current administration to leave. I also hope we are not being naive in anticipating that the new administration will listen to voice of it's people. I would very much like for America to find her voice again.

1 comment:

SunWolf said...

Yes, I am very outraged. And, I plan to express my outrage by not keeping a balance on any of my credit cards. I, too, want to be debt free! But to get the kid out of college!

Now by law interest is capped at 36%. Before this administration, 25% used to be the level for usurious rates.

Credit card companies are the new equivalent of the "company store." I really feel sorry for people who get caught up in credit card debt and can't get out from under it. As if they aren't getting enough blood, the credit card companies send checks in the mail with a high interest rate attached, and fees to boot, and on top of that, they increase the limit to try to get us to spend more.

Yes, you are right, until enough people speak up, we are stuck with the unscrupulous business practices of credit card companies.

When enough people have to declare bankruptcy due to the sub-prime mortgage fiasco, rising gas prices and lost businesses, and out-of-control credit card debt, maybe our wayward congress will do something about it. Unfortunately, until then, a lot of people will suffer...and our current president and his cronies are not among them.