December 30, 2010

Oh, for a Do-Nothing Congress

John Stossel: Please Stop "Helping" Us.

He's talking about the CARD Act. Like its ludicrous acronym ("Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure") it exemplifies irony, having achieved precisely the opposite of its presumed aims. It should been called the RANCID Act (i.e., the Raise Rates, Add Annual Fees, Cancel Accounts, Increase Misery, and Destroy People Act) -- see, I'm good at this legislation stuff. If elected, I promise less than nothing, with better acronyms.

Posted by Dr. Frank at December 30, 2010 09:47 PM | TrackBack

I don't know... I will agree that just prior to many effective dates of the CARD act (acronym aside) that many of the consumer protections of it are great - that the industry was just looking to skirt it as much as possible prior to implementation. I've had a few of the fee/overdraft protections protect me already and i was THANKFUL for them. It took me just a minute to rectify by contacting the bank through my iPhone.... (sounds bougie but you could just call, too).

Anyway I think it's generalizing to take this view. Wait till you see it in effect. Does it help you in the times you need or hinder? The best way to think of this is personally. I was so surprised when it happened that I shared the story, as I am now.

Do you personally feel screwed already?

In a moment of levity - I love your cat picture.


Posted by: michael at December 31, 2010 08:43 AM

Thanks for the comment, Michael. Personally speaking, most (maybe all) of my accounts immediately added charges, raised rates, or lowered limits. I even had one bank send a notice saying "congratulations -- Congress has now decreed we can't raise your rates for late payments in the future, so we are raising it now to the maximum possible." Also, I gather from talking to others that some companies have become much more aggressive in punishing people for late payments by lowering their credit limit to just slightly above the balance owed. This, of course, effects their overall credit and possibly their other accounts. I'm not the only one complaining about this.

It was completely predictable that this would happen, moreover. Every time they try to pass a free lunch law, somehow, the lunch suppliers figure out a way to charge for it anyway.

Posted by: Dr. Frank at December 31, 2010 04:59 PM

I had a card lower my limit to something ridiculous like $1500 despite having perfect credit. I think it may have actually been because I pay every month so I never accrue any interest.

Posted by: josh at January 4, 2011 04:25 PM
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