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Obama Makes Appeal to Credit Card Debtors ("Not your fault")
CNS News ^ | June 12, 2008 | Susan Jones

Posted on 06/12/2008 1:14:35 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

Burdened by credit card debt? It may not be your fault. Sen. Barack Obama says in many cases, the credit card companies are to blame for "pushing" financially strapped Americans "over the edge." The banking industry disagrees.

In a speech in Chicago Wednesday, Obama outlined his plan to "build an economy that works for all Americans." He spoke mostly about personal credit card debt, which he views as a problem with a government solution.

Obama says the sour economy is forcing Americans to put more and more of their debt onto credit cards. (The American Banking Association on its Web site debunks a number of "myths," including the notion that Americans are "up to their eyeballs" in credit card debt. In fact, the ABA says, only about 46 percent of all families carry a credit card balance while 54 percent pay their outstanding balance in full each month. The ABA also points to a Government Accountability Office study showing that credit card balances as a percentage of total household debt have been declining since the mid-1990s.)

Obama noted that while some people make "reckless decisions" -- buying luxury goods they know they can't afford -- many more Americans aren't falling into debt because they made an irresponsible decision -- they're falling into debt because credit card companies are forcing them into it. He accused the credit card companies of using "unfair and deceptive" practices to trick Americans into signing agreements they can't afford." Or understand.

Obama said card-holders must sign long, complex contracts that are filled with "traps and fine print that only a credit card executive could understand."

He said "Washington" has let the companies get away with it -- because those companies have "spent millions" on political campaigns and lobbyists who influence legislation beneficial to the card companies.

"This has to stop," Obama said. "We cannot let the rules of the game continue to be rigged against ordinary Americans. We need a president who will look out for the interests of hardworking families, not just their big campaign donors and corporate allies."

Obama accused Republican John McCain of siding with the credit card companies by supporting a bankruptcy bill that Obama opposed. (The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 made it more difficult for Americans to escape their debts through bankruptcy protection. McCain called the bill "an important step toward a fair and balanced approach to restoring personal responsibility to our federal banking system.")

Pending legislation in Congress -- a "Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights" -- would protects cardholders against arbitrary interest rate increases, due-date "gimmicks" and misleading terms. Obama on Wednesday proposed his own "bill of rights."

"I'll protect the rights of ordinary Americans by cracking down on companies that are trying to deceive them," Obama promised. He said his plan begins with transparency -- helping Americans understand the risks involved in signing up for a credit card. To that end, he said he'd create a five-star rating system. "That way, Americans can compare credit card companies and avoid those that are stacking the deck against them."

Obama said he'll propose a credit card bill of rights that would ban unilateral changes to credit card agreements. "You should pay the rate you signed up for. If the credit card company wants to raise that rate, you should be able to opt out of the agreement."

According to the American Banking Association, if consumers are unhappy with the interest rate or other terms, "there are thousands of issuers that would be happy to accept their business." The ABA says the consumers' "power of choice" to transfer outstanding balances "cannot be overstated." It notes that hiking the interest rate allows credit card companies to "avoid taking on risks that are too high to maintain."

Obama also wants to ban rate changes on past debt. "If a credit card company wants to raise interest rates, then that new, higher rate should apply to the debt you add going forward, not what you already owe." And he would ban interest charges on transaction fees. "If you're late in making a payment, you have to pay a late fee. But you shouldn't be paying a fee for paying a fee."

"It's time Washington established some rules of the road to level the playing field for hardworking families," Obama said. "It's time we had an economy that worked for companies and consumers alike. That's what my campaign is all about."

He said Americans have a "clear choice" in November -- "you can choose an approach that sides with the credit card companies...or you can choose to finally have a President who looks out for Main Street, not just Wall Street..."

"Consumers are in complete control of how they use their credit cards," the ABA says on its Web site. It also says most bankruptcies in this country are not caused by credit card debt, but by life crises such as divorce, job loss, or uninsured illness.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Extended News; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2008; barackobama; credit; debt; democratparty; democrats; election; elections; fiscalresponsibility; mccain; obama; sheeple
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Whatever happened to personal responsibility and binding legal contracts? This guy is a Marxist, pure and simple!
1 posted on 06/12/2008 1:14:36 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Isn’t interest against Islamic law?


2 posted on 06/12/2008 1:17:43 PM PDT by weegee (In 1988 Lenora Fulani was the 1st black woman to appear on presidential ballots in all 50 states)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

He’s pullin a Chavez already.


3 posted on 06/12/2008 1:17:53 PM PDT by Danae (Remember: Obama = Pull out from Iraq. PLAN on voting, or accept responsibility for the consequences.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Photobucket
4 posted on 06/12/2008 1:18:21 PM PDT by BunnySlippers
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
It seems like I get two or three of these little come-ons every week from banks I've never heard of. I fill the little free postage envelopes with the stuff they send me and add newspaper clippings, Kleenex and anything else at hand...
5 posted on 06/12/2008 1:19:14 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Personal responsibility has no place in the Obama agenda.


6 posted on 06/12/2008 1:19:16 PM PDT by Allegra (If you lived here, you'd be home by now.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
While I wouldn't use OHB's stupid Marxist rhetoric--the Repubs have been at fault for writing laws that encourage lenders to lend to the uncreditworthy and then leave the government the job of acting as enforcer. An example of this was the special action to change the bankruptcy laws--one of the few last bulwarks against predatory lending.

Predatory lending is when a bank lends money to people that the bank has little reason to believe can repay the loan.

Person responsibility cuts two ways. The lender should be professional--should be moral.

The first time you drop off your naive freshman--who has no income to record!--on campus where there are rows of booths hawking easy credit, maybe you'll see what I'm talking about.

Responsibility goes both ways.

7 posted on 06/12/2008 1:19:35 PM PDT by Mamzelle
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Let's see:

Make me pay for your mortgage with my tax dollars, now I'll be paying for your credit card debt, too?

What a country !

8 posted on 06/12/2008 1:20:14 PM PDT by traditional1
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
When even SNL has a skit on people spending too much...you know nobody is going to take him seriously.
9 posted on 06/12/2008 1:21:15 PM PDT by 2banana (My common ground with terrorists - they want to die for islam and we want to kill them)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
"You should pay the rate you signed up for. If the credit card company wants to raise that rate, you should be able to opt out of the agreement."

Actually one of my cards did just that, which I took advantage of and froze the account.

I do think there should be a cap on rates, some are ridiculous and I think unjustifiable.
10 posted on 06/12/2008 1:21:21 PM PDT by visualops (artlife.us . nature photography desktop wallpapers)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Mindless, vapid, populism.

The scary part is that Obama, coupled with this moronic congress, will act on it, and drive the banking industry completely into the ditch and interest rates will SOAR as a result.


11 posted on 06/12/2008 1:21:26 PM PDT by bamahead (Avoid self-righteousness like the devil- nothing is so self-blinding. -- B.H. Liddell Hart)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“You should pay the rate you signed up for. If the credit card company wants to raise that rate, you should be able to opt out of the agreement.”

What a blooming idiot! Is he not aware of the contracts on back of all credit offers consumers receive and thereby agree to when they sign?

Obama is a dunce.


12 posted on 06/12/2008 1:22:20 PM PDT by Boanarges
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I bet he would oppose restoring the tax deductibility of interest paid on credit cards and automobile loans.


13 posted on 06/12/2008 1:22:46 PM PDT by VRWCmember
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To: Mamzelle

I agree.


14 posted on 06/12/2008 1:22:57 PM PDT by visualops (artlife.us . nature photography desktop wallpapers)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“He spoke mostly about personal credit card debt, which he views as a problem with a government solution.”

“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.””


15 posted on 06/12/2008 1:23:33 PM PDT by RWB Patriot
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
This guy is a Marxist, pure and simple!

He is an idiot....in five years, low income Americans won't be able to get a credit card if you take the profit out of them.

Let's see what happens when a majority have to pay cash for big dollar items.

16 posted on 06/12/2008 1:23:50 PM PDT by A.Hun (Common sense is no longer common.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

B. Hussein is VERY good at the politics of victim-hood.

He may very well be elected Chancellor this November. Then his Ministry of Finance can get to work helping out the poor helpless folks who have been taken advantage of by the evil corporations in this country.


17 posted on 06/12/2008 1:24:06 PM PDT by WayneS (And now I shall return to my hovel and cling to my guns - but only until it is time to go to Church)
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To: Boanarges

I do not think he is a dunce.

I think he knows exactly what he is doing.


18 posted on 06/12/2008 1:25:49 PM PDT by WayneS (And now I shall return to my hovel and cling to my guns - but only until it is time to go to Church)
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To: weegee
>Isn’t interest against Islamic law?

Charging those kinds of interest rates would have gotten you burned at the stake in any Christian country 400 years ago.

19 posted on 06/12/2008 1:26:54 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Not that I'm EVER going to vote democrat or anything but on the GOP watch the CC industry bought and paid for a much more restrictive bankrupcty law under the guise of reform in Congress during Bush's term.

Bankruptcy and no debtor's prison were some very attractive things in the early USA that allowed people to come here and make a fresh start.

20 posted on 06/12/2008 1:27:50 PM PDT by Centurion2000 (Beware the fury of the man that cannot find hope or justice.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

You can argue theory all you want, but as long as there are true accounts of credit card issuers jacking up somebody’s interest rate from 8% to 38% because their water-bill payment got lost in the mail (the technical term is “universal default clause”), this is simply not a hill that any sane Republican candidate (or even Grandpa John) should consider charging (pardon the pun).


21 posted on 06/12/2008 1:28:02 PM PDT by steve-b (The "intelligent design" hoax is not merely anti-science; it is anti-civilization. --John Derbyshire)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This is ridiculous. All Obama is doing is encouraging increased debt and consuption. If I run up a big bill on my credit card, it’s not my fault?


22 posted on 06/12/2008 1:28:20 PM PDT by popdonnelly (Does Obama know ANYONE who likes America, capitalism, or white people?)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
small>"I fill the little free postage envelopes with the stuff they send me and add newspaper clippings, Kleenex and anything else at hand"

Isn't that cute?


23 posted on 06/12/2008 1:28:21 PM PDT by I see my hands (_8(|)
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To: traditional1

Don’t forget the socialized health care coming our way if this idiot gets elected.


24 posted on 06/12/2008 1:28:33 PM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (Typical white person, bitter, religious, gun owner, who will "Just say No to BO in Nov.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
they're falling into debt because credit card companies are forcing them into it.

Yes!! Home Depot came to my house, put a GUN to my head, and said "sign here..." The days are gone when credit card companies can simply send you a card (remember those), and once you used it, it constituted your agreement. Now you receive an offer and either you decide to take it or you don't. Most of those "offers" you get in the mail are for low-balance cards with a "yearly fee" of upwards of 20% of the balance. Capital One, for instance, sends me an offer on the average of twice a week for some reason.

25 posted on 06/12/2008 1:28:41 PM PDT by Right Cal Gal (Abraham Lincoln would have let Berkeley leave the Union without a fight)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I agree. How hard is it to pay your bills on time?

How does one justify spending and spending beyond their means?

Who held a gun to anyone’s head and made them apply for a credit card?

Who told anyone to use a credit card as cash was worthless?

Victims my fanny.


26 posted on 06/12/2008 1:29:25 PM PDT by Lumper20
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

is he speaking from personal experience? before he bathed in the river jordan, he was dead broke, apparently he couldnt afford to go to the 2000 dem convention because he credit cards were maxed out


27 posted on 06/12/2008 1:30:07 PM PDT by stan_sipple
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To: Mamzelle

That’s my point — as long as credit card companies act in technically legal but obviously abusive ways, only a moron would expend political capital defending them.


28 posted on 06/12/2008 1:30:07 PM PDT by steve-b (The "intelligent design" hoax is not merely anti-science; it is anti-civilization. --John Derbyshire)
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To: VRWCmember

Don’t confuse Nobama with logic.


29 posted on 06/12/2008 1:30:19 PM PDT by Right Cal Gal (Abraham Lincoln would have let Berkeley leave the Union without a fight)
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To: I see my hands
Isn't that cute?

These companies are creating E-Z ID-Theft-O-Matic Kits targeted at the (intended) recipient. They deserve to be mailed something a lot more noxious than newspaper clippings and Kleenex.

30 posted on 06/12/2008 1:31:56 PM PDT by steve-b (The "intelligent design" hoax is not merely anti-science; it is anti-civilization. --John Derbyshire)
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To: Allegra

Yeah, you’re right about this. As with most things personal responsibility, or more precisely the lack thereof is the culprit. Mencken once made the point that it was an error to say that the most salient characteristic of the Americano was his “money grubbing.” He said it was his prodigality. The sad thing about these credit card addicts is how easy it is to fleece them. They are vulnerable to the most childish ads and will spend thousands for gimcracks, gewgaws, gizmos and gadgets. Check out the Dave Ramsey show. It is replete with examples of fools buying crap with credit cards and having nothing to show for it but shiny baubles that they can’t get rid of.


31 posted on 06/12/2008 1:32:59 PM PDT by donaldo
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To: Mamzelle
Predatory lending is when a bank lends money to people that the bank has little reason to believe can repay the loan.

Like a company who doesn't fire a certain employee not b/c they don't want to, but b/c they are afraid to, is it "predatory lending" when the bank grants loans to people they feel it might be, er, "imprudent", shall we say, not to?

32 posted on 06/12/2008 1:34:33 PM PDT by yankeedame ("Oh, I can take it but I'd much rather dish it out.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“In his most recent book, “The Audacity of Hope,” Barack Obama describes the financial trouble he faced after losing a 2000 race for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. He said that the campaign’s demands “had left me more or less broke,” and he described difficulty renting a car when in Los Angeles for the 2000 Democratic National Convention because his credit card was initially rejected.”
http://articles.latimes.com/2008/mar/26/nation/na-obamataxes26


33 posted on 06/12/2008 1:34:43 PM PDT by stan_sipple
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

When you use a credit card, you are borrowing money.

It’s simple; only fools borrow.

Those same fools belive Obama.


34 posted on 06/12/2008 1:39:19 PM PDT by Rapscallion (Our tolerance will be our undoing.)
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To: steve-b
"They deserve to be mailed something a lot more noxious than newspaper clippings and Kleenex."

Thanks for identifying yourself. I'll pass it along.


35 posted on 06/12/2008 1:40:20 PM PDT by I see my hands (_8(|)
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To: donaldo
...They [Americans] are vulnerable to the most childish ads and will spend thousands for gimcracks, gewgaws, gizmos and gadgets....

As opposed to whom?

36 posted on 06/12/2008 1:40:26 PM PDT by yankeedame ("Oh, I can take it but I'd much rather dish it out.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Burdened by credit card debt? It may not be your fault. Sen. Barack Obama says in many cases, the credit card companies are to blame for "pushing" financially strapped Americans "over the edge." The banking industry disagrees.

Obama is an idiot.

Having dealt with both the banks issuing credit cards and the U.S. Government, with regards to debts owed, I would much rather deal with the banks than the Federals.

37 posted on 06/12/2008 1:41:37 PM PDT by rabscuttle385
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To: traditional1

Will Dave Ramsey please pick up the white courtesy phone.

38 posted on 06/12/2008 1:46:08 PM PDT by MooseMan
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To: Boanarges
What a blooming idiot! Is he not aware of the contracts on back of all credit offers consumers receive and thereby agree to when they sign?

If four point type that starts

"Party of the second part, hereinafter called 'Borrower', the aforesaidmentionednotwithstanding &etc..."
for fifteen pages is not clear about the consequences of "Oops, haha, (Wink) the mail was late again!"

, it take a lot more than that to fully prepares someone for the Nuclear Chain Reaction of compounded interest at the default rate of 30+%

I don't carry balances- They hate me..But nevetheless I recall years ago when we got into that scene because of a hospitalization, the principal due to purchases was NOTHING compared to how the debt ballooned with all manner of fees and indefensible rates like that.

39 posted on 06/12/2008 1:47:19 PM PDT by Gorzaloon
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
He said his plan begins with transparency -- helping Americans understand the risks involved in signing up for a credit card. To that end, he said he'd create a five-star rating system. "That way, Americans can compare credit card companies and avoid those that are stacking the deck against them."

Jeez. Bambi brings back memories of the Carter administration ... they wanted to do a rating system for ice cream.

There is plenty of advice on the net about choosing a credit card. If people are too dumb to avail themselves of it, they are probably going to get themselves in trouble regardless of which credit card they pick.

And when they do, it will be Bush's fault!

40 posted on 06/12/2008 1:47:52 PM PDT by freespirited (Difference #1 between McCain and Obama: McCain is actually qualified to be president.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Anything for a vote. Another “Bill of Rights” thingy for Americans to attach themselves to. Gees. Babies.
41 posted on 06/12/2008 1:48:21 PM PDT by GOP_Lady
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To: Rapscallion
It’s simple; only fools borrow.

Well then, I guess we're all fools for not prepaying all our bills, for buying a house using a mortgage, and for taking out student loans to get a degree that will double annual income. Hell, even companies borrow by ordering inventory and asking employees to work while not paying them immediately.

The fact of the matter is that responsible, prudent credit is the lifeblood of the U.S. economy...and believe me, that's not foolish at all.

42 posted on 06/12/2008 1:51:07 PM PDT by rabscuttle385
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Obama is right!

Someone should start making the Credit card companies live up to their original offers instead of allowing them to use bait and switch tactics and change the terms and rates once you’ve got a balance.


43 posted on 06/12/2008 1:57:43 PM PDT by DannyTN
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
“..........trying to deceive them,” Obama promised.......”

It's hard to disagree with that part.

Yes, ignorance has a price, it always does. It's not your fault people, your just to dumb to understand. Who knew that you would get a bill at the end of the month.

44 posted on 06/12/2008 1:59:15 PM PDT by CarryingOn (The Presidency of the United States is not an entry-level position.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

It’s true this is a political gimmick, but it’s also true that rising costs of fuel, medicine and other necessities has thrown budgets out the window, and this can wreak havok on people just starting out, who haven’t had a chance to build up any savings.

Once you get in a hole financially it is hard to get back out, especially if you want to maintain any semblance of a life (meaning something more than bread alone).

That said, the credit card companies will turn around and sell the debt of defaulters to rapacious collectors for pennies on the dollar, and then they will sue the debtor in justice court with absolutely no way to prove up their case, getting default judgments in 75% of cases, and dismissals in the rest.


45 posted on 06/12/2008 2:02:45 PM PDT by Unlikely Hero ("Time is a wonderful teacher; unfortunately, it kills all its pupils." --Berlioz)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Not in a rat world. The only people at fault are eeeeeeeevil corporations.


46 posted on 06/12/2008 2:05:22 PM PDT by vpintheak (Like a muddied spring or a polluted well is a righteous man who gives way to the wicked. Prov. 25:26)
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To: yankeedame

As opposed to those (a minority) who spend their money on property or investments. Ramsey makes the point that if a person begins at the age of 26 and invests $100.00 per month he will have $1,000,000 at age 65. Certainly a reasonable goal but not for those who drop $200 a month for Latte’s at Starbuck’s every month. Mencken was right. It’s astounding how much the typical Americano spends on crap. No generation in history has ever lived above subsistence levels as this one. I have a friend whose son sends text messages to the tune of over 2,000 a month. I think this money could be put to better use. People need to get a life and quit mortgaging their future to CC debt. Most of this prodigality is a trait of naive youth. This is indisputable. Fully ninety nine percent of advertising is addressed to this prehensile (Mencken’s term) morons.


47 posted on 06/12/2008 2:05:28 PM PDT by donaldo
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To: Arrowhead1952

And don’t forget about Obama wanting the government to pay more of peoples higher education bills. If they get their way they will bankrupt our country.


48 posted on 06/12/2008 2:08:31 PM PDT by pepperhead (Kennedy's float, Mary Jo's don't!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Photobucket

What a crock.
I have close to $4,000 in credit card debt - because I went through a tight time. I’m now paying it down, and I sure as heck don’t blame the companies who were nice enough to extend me credit.

49 posted on 06/12/2008 2:12:18 PM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Photobucket

What a crock.
I have close to $4,000 in credit card debt - because I went through a tight time. I’m now paying it down, and I sure as heck don’t blame the companies who were nice enough to extend me credit.

50 posted on 06/12/2008 2:12:18 PM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink)
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