Stop the Abuse: It’s time to break up with your Big Bank

Saturday, January 16, 2010, 4:07 AM | Leave Comment

One of my favorite TV hosts, Bill Maher, who keeps making excellent comments on politics and religion, among other subjects, has written an article on big banks on I have been following his shows for quite some time now. But this is the first time I read his article about banks and big banks at that, quite frequently known as “too big to fail.”

Wall Street [big] banks that brought our economy to the brink of disaster, were rescued by trillions of dollars of our taxpayer money, then paid us back by using that money to hire lobbyists to convince our lawmakers in Washington to kill financial reform.

The points that he is making are some serious business. At the same time, he has that humorous touch that very few people in the industry do.

They took our money…

  • and cut back on lending
  • and made record profits
  • and paid themselves record bonuses
  • and returned to the risky behavior that led to the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, with record unemployment, bankruptcies, and foreclosures.
  • and kept on with all the greedy, abusive, ruthless, and cold-blooded practices that have earned them untold billions of dollars a year — year after year after year

I strongly agree with him when he says:

  • You don’t have to stay in a loveless, abusive relationship with your Big Bank.
  • If enough people who have money in one of the Big Six banks — that is, JP Morgan/Chase, Citi, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs — move it into a local community bank or credit union, then collectively we, the people, will have taken a big step toward fixing our broken financial system.
  • Real change is not going to come from Congress or the White House and certainly not from the lobbyists Wall Street hires to make sure their special interests keep beating out the public interest.
  • We’ve got to do it ourselves. And moving your money is a great way to start.

In a Nutshell
American taxpayers are out some $120 billion, while millions have lost their homes, jobs and savings. Wall Street’s biggest banks know they are “too big to fail” and will be bailed out by taxpayers [by the Treasury] if they get into trouble so they can keep making even riskier bets.

Therefore, in all decency, it’s time to go break up with your big banker and get the hell out. Support your local credit union and neighborhood bank. Take part in the development of your community.

You probably could get a credit card from your local credit union with a lot less interest rate – in some cases to the tune of 8% as compared to the more than 20% that some big banks charge.

What do you think?

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