Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


Stateside: The Town Bike, Part 2

Stateside with Rosalea, Part II

The Town Bike, Part 2

See also Town Bike Part I

I got a wee bit sidetracked when I was writing my earlier column and forgot to explain why someone with credit cards at their max is attractive to lenders. Two words: debt consolidation.

It's such a lovely sonorous phrase, and the way it's touted you would think debt consolidation was the financial equivalent of one of those fizzy tablets that promise to take away the thundering headache you woke up with after a night of too much drunken fun.

Let me assure you, it is not the magic fizzy tablet. Nor is it the hair of the dog that bit you--it is the dog itself and it is still biting you. Nonetheless, Big Credit will try to convince you it's a fluffy toy dog that's going to be oh so good to cuddle-wuddle while you sort out your foolishness.

"Pay off your debt once and for all!" they say in their direct mail, knowing that you're desperate and won't read the fine print and even if you did, you wouldn't understand it and don't have a clue how to figure out if it really is better to borrow $5,000 from them at (possibly) 6.9 percent and pay it off over 60 months or if it's better to simply continue paying off that $2,800 debt (with its 15.9 percent interest) as you are now, at twice the minimum payment. Having closed off the credit card, of course.

Aah! Well, there you go. That's why they've sent you the offer. It's the very same company whose credit cards you closed and are paying off who now want you to turn the debt over to them in the form of a loan for even more money than you currently owe, where they can milk it some more.

But don't take my word for how the credit card industry in the US works, check out this website about the Frontline television programme, made last year in association with the New York Times: The Secret History of the Credit Card. It's at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/credit/

The only thing of any value--ie, that is fought over--that people in the US actually own is their debt. And since that isn't actually theirs, they've been reduced to the equivalent of sharecroppers on a money farm. And when their ability to provide a return to Big Credit is exhausted, the newly signed bankruptcy law is brought in to whip the last bit of blood from their hide before throwing them off the financial landscape altogether.

Whatever happened to that Amendment from way back that outlawed involuntary servitude?

--ENDS--

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>

ALSO:

Buildup:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>

ALSO:

Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news