Thursday, December 03, 2009

Cash, thank you very much

A new study by the execrable FDIC shows that 12% of Georgians refuse to open a bank account, and another 20% barely use a bank account. For 31% of these people, the primary reason is the bank's fees.

I'll second that. I have some friendly acquaintances who are unfortunately riding the edge of zero in their accounts, and each one of them had to learn a new lesson when dealing with banks: a debit card can be overdrawn, resulting in the issuing bank charging up to $35 for each debit transaction that is "overdrawn."

The reason these folks got caught unaware was that they thought a debit card could not go past zero, so they figured that they would be declined at the grocery store if it edged over what they had in their accounts. Nope. The wily banks have found this territory to be a rich fountain of newfound cash.

One person I know in Texas got 5 separate overdrawn $35 charges within hours of each other on small purchases by his bank. He'd had a bill he'd forgotten he'd paid months earlier that finally hit his account, leaving him with a couple hundred dollars less than he thought he had, so he made small purchases for lunch and other things, and all of them ended up giving the bank a $35 tip.

Now, as my dear readers know, I am for accountability and realize that these people have a responsibility to read the fine print when they join a bank. But! But when rules flout common sense and are instituted to fleece customers, then the banks should pay big. In this case, newspapers should run daily pieces on this scam, and customers should refuse to do business with these banks or just go cash on everything. "Cash or credit?" ... "Cash, of course. I HATE banks!"

Most of us Americans are already disgusted by the financial institutions' being in cahoots with the government in the real estate fraud and the consequent theft of a trillion dollars from us citizens so the institutions wouldn't fail, as they should have. This is just one more blight by these bastards that makes me want to take the sons-a-bitches by the collars and ...

Oh, nevermind.

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