Monday, January 26, 2009

Bailouts - When Do We Get Our Share?

When I think of my younger years, I recall that I owed both Bank of America and Citi a whole lot of money. And they didn't care that I had lost my job, they didn't care that rent and food had to be my top priorities -- they wanted the money I owed them, and every second until I was able to pay them, they tacked on fees and interest and penalties, increasing my debt while I struggled to lessen it.

And now that their greed has consumed them, they've come to *me* for help, and I don't have the option of saying 'no' ....

You know, these bailouts, for me, go far beyond partisan politics and power struggles -- to me, they represent the worst of American businesses' greed and the unfair role the common citizen plays.

They made their money on the backs of indebted Americans, then squandered the wealth they accumulated, and now the same Americans who were pillaged by these institutions are being forced to help them?

That's like a newly freed slave being told he has to go back to the plantation because his former master needs the free labor to keep his business afloat.

To add insult to injury, do you ever remember a time, when the banks were doing well, that they passed that good fortune on to us, in terms of high interest rates on our savings, or by lowering the interest rates on the money we owed?

No. They never helped us when we were down. Hell, kicking us when we were down made them even more money.

Just a few weeks ago, I had a credit card payment that was in 1 day after the due date (I forgot about the holiday), and my interest rate went from 12% to 22% -- no questions, nothing, just BAM, an additional 10% because of a 1-day-late payment.

And now that they're failing, it's up to us to save them?

And I know that there are jobs at stake, and a lot more at stake, but I can't shake the feeling that this is all so unfair. We're giving them money to continue the same pattern of behavior and greed, helping them continue to exploit us.


No comments: